The experience of any concert is heightened with some preparation. The director and members of the Ensemble William Byrd are always ready to give introductory conferences and public rehearsals.
During the Ensemble’s residence in Sannois in 2003-4, each concert was prepared with a musicological conference for the general public
At the request of the Fundaçion Gulbenkian (Paris), Graham O’Reilly gave a conference on the music of João Rodrigues Esteves before the Ensemble’s concert in the church of St Roch, Paris.
In preparation for a concert in Pontigny in 2011, Graham O’Reilly gave a conference on music in the Sistine Chapel of the Vatican during the 19th century.
Graham O’Reilly presented a paper entitled “A unique singers’ manuscript from the 19th century: Domenico Mustafa’s version of the Miserere of Tommaso Bai and Gregorio Allegri” to an international conference organized by the National Early Music Association called “Singing music from 1500 to 1900: style, technique, knowledge, assertion, experiment” at the University of York, England. The paper forms the basis of the book he will publish during 2014 on the subject of the Allegri Miserere.
In December 2013 Graham O’Reilly presented a conference to the staff and senior students of the Conservatoire of Clermont-Ferrand on the subject “The Practice of Early Music”.