Archived News for April 2012
05 Apr 2012
11 Apr 2012
Back at the annual International Cello Course at Bryanston as one of the resident pianists for the week (along with John Thwaites, Head of Keyboard at Birmingham Conservatoire, and JP Ekins, soloist and chamber musician extraordinaire). Where a typical day might involve playing the Shostakovich, Rachmaninov, Prokofiev, Chopin, Fauré and Brahms sonatas plus a few hefty concertos, across nine hours of lessons, it's certainly hard work, but wonderful to be totally immersed in such rich repertoire. Playing for lessons given by Pierre Doumenge and Sandy Baillie is always an inspiration, and there was some truly excellent cello playing. Lovely to give a concert with Matt Lowe, JP Ekins and guest star soprano Louise Alder as part of the week, too!
16 Apr 2012
A little trip round the country this week, leaving the cello course in Dorset slightly early, for a concert near Warrington with James Turnbull. The Live at St Wilfrid's series take place in the picturesque Grappenhall Village, and seems to be extremely well supported. From there to Cambridge, to teach on the Oundle For Organists 'Advance' course (for current or incoming organ scholars, working on the range of broader skills needed as an organ scholar - in my case, how to play the piano without 'sounding like an organist', how to play for auditions, how to play for or lead rehearsals from the piano, and how to accompany). Always interesting to reflect on how my own training as an organ scholar has set me up so well for the range of things I do now, even though they seem at first glance to be unrelated! And then to Oxford, to give one of the popular Oxford Coffee Concerts in the Holywell Music Room, with recorder player Ian Wilson (Head of Wind at Eton at professor at Guildhall). Always a joy to be back at the Holywell, something of a second home having studied at Oxford and been so involved with the Oxford Lieder Festival! And finally back to London....
19 Apr 2012
In the middle of a solid week of playing for chorus music rehearsals for Grange Park Opera. Their two separate choruses, led by the indefatigable and exacting Cameron Burns, are preparing four operas for this summer's season: Idomeneo, Madama Butterfly, Queen of Spades, and Eugene Onegin. The singers are doing valiant battle in particular with the Russian language, and both choruses are already sounding on fine form!
30 Apr 2012
Conducted an exuberant come-and-sing Vivaldi Gloria in the Music at St Peter's series last night. Beautifully enhanced by the singing of Aoife Miskelly and Fiona Mackay (stepping in at the last minute for the indisposed Sarah Shorter) and the organ playing of Oliver Lallemant, the intensive afternoon workshop with singers ranging from the experienced to the complete novice produced a characterful and enjoyable performance. Well done all! Looking forward to welcoming Aoife back on 12th May to sing in the next recital in our series.