Friday, 30 January 2015

Totnes Early Music Society Spring Programme 2015 Update from Jasper Solomon

Elizabeth Kenny
appearing with:
His Majesty's Sackbuts & Cornets Frome 28 Feb
Countertenor Robin Blaze Dartington 18 April

Saturday 7 at 7.30pm
Holy Trinity Church, Rolle Road, Exmouth EX8 2AB
Exmouth Choral Society conducted by Laurence Blyth with Devon Baroque
HANDEL  Dixit Dominus
HAYDN  Little Organ Mass
PERGOLESI  Magnificat
Tickets £10 + booking fee online at:

Saturday 21 at 2pm
Dillington House, Somerset TA19 9DT
Colin Booth harpsichord
The Attraction of the Ground
Recital of works from his recent CD Grounds for Pleasure with talk at 11am
Tickets for recital only £14, under 18s £7 at

Saturday 21 at 7.30pm
St. John's Church, Bridgetown, Totnes TQ9 5AD
Devon Baroque led by Jane Gordon
JS BACH Violin Concerto in A min (soloist: Jane Gordon)
PACHELBEL Canon & Gigue
HANDEL Suite from Rinaldo
HANDEL Concerto Grosso Op.6 No.9
CORELLI Concerto Grosso Op.6 No.1
VIVALDI Concerto for Strings in A maj.
Tickets £15, students & under 18's £5 from Totnes TIC 01803 863168
or online at

Sunday 22 at 2.30pm
Dillington House, Somerset TA19 9DT
Devon Baroque led by Jane Gordon
As 21st February Totnes
Tickets £16, children £8 at from 01460 258613 or

Saturday 28 at 7.30pm
Christ Church, Christ Church Street West, Frome, Somerset BA11 1EH
His Majesty's Sagbutts and Cornetts with Elizabeth Kenny
A recital of 16th and 17th century instrumental music from around Europe.
Tickets £15 (£7.50 for under 18s and students)


Sunday 1 at 6.30pm
All Saints Church, Culmstock EX15 3JB
Blackdowns Early Music Project (BEMP) directed by JanJoost van Elburg
Amor vince ogni cosa
Intimate secular renaissance music with works  by Monteverdi, d'India & Charpentier
Tickets £12, students £6, under 12s free from Taunton TIC 01823 336344

Saturday 7 at 7.30pm
St. Mary's Church, High Street Totnes
Angel East
BACH Cello Suites Nos. 1,2 & 5
Tickets £12, students & under 18s £5 at the door, from 01803 847070 (daily 12.30 to
7pm) or online

Saturday 14  at 7pm
Exeter Cathedral
Exeter Chamber Choir  dir. Andrew Daldorph with Devon Baroque
J.S.Bach St. Matthew Passion BWV244
Tickets from £9 to £25 (less £3 for children & full-time students),
ring 01297 553955 or go to:

Saturday 21 at 7.15pm
Buckfast Abbey, Buckfastleigh
Torbay Singers conducted by Tina Guthrie with Nigel Guthrie (organ)
VICTORIA Requiem à 6
LOTTI Crucifixus à 8
CASALS O vos omnes
BRUCKNER Christus factus est
PALESTRINA Sicut cervus
Tickets £10, under 25s in full-time education free, at the door.

Saturday 21 at 7.30pm
St. Peter's Church, The Lawn, Budleigh Salterton EX9 6LR
Convivium Singers directed by Alexander Norman with Apollo Baroque Consort
HANDEL Messiah
Tickets £15 students & under 16s £7.50 from 01395 445275 or online at:

Sunday 29 at 7.30pm
The Great Hall, Dartington
Dartington Community Choir conducted by Bob Barsby with Devon Baroque
J.S.Bach Mass in B minor BWV232
Tickets £16, students & under 16s £5 from 01803 847070 or online at


Saturday 18 at 7.30 pm
The Great Hall, Dartington
Robin Blaze - counter-tenor and Elizabeth Kenny - lute
17th Century song from Dowland to Purcell
Tickets £15, students & under 18s £5, from the Dartington Box Office (01803 847070),
or at

St Boniface Concert Society Event Calender 2015 Message from Society Secretary Rosemary Allsop

Church of the Holy Cross
- and the Mother of He who Hung Thereon
on the former site of Crediton Cathedral
Venue for St Boniface Concert Society Concerts

St. Boniface Concert Society

Now beginning its 34th year, the St. Boniface Concert Society was founded in 1981, following a successful series of concerts presented during the 1300th anniversary of the birth of St. Boniface in 680 AD. Since then the Society has presented outstanding artists to perform in Crediton.

The Society Acknowledges with gratitude the financial support it will receive this season from:
The Countess of Munster Musical Trust
The John Ireland Turst
The RVW Trust
The Exeter & District Classical Music Trust
and Crediton Town Council

The Society is also grateful for the continued loyalty and suport of our Patrons.

The Committee reserves the right to modify these programmes if unforeseen circumstances should make this necessary.

Should this arise, please refer to our website for further details.

For further details of the Society contact:

Chairman: Mrs Isolde Summers (Tel: 01363 773472)

All concerts commence at 7.30pm and take place in the
Crediton Parish Church 
(All seats are unreserved)

Tickets for these concerts are available

by post from:
The Ticket Secretary, 24 Dean Street, Crediton, EX17 3EN
(Please enclose a stamped addressed envelope)

in person from:
A.E.LEE, Outfitters, High St. Crediton

and at the door (subject to availability)

cheques should be made payable to:
"St Boniface Concert Society"

Ticket Prices:
Season Ticket for all five concerts: Adult £64.00

Individual Concerts:
23rd April:           Adult £14 Students* £6.00 Child Free
18th June:            Adult £14 Students* £6.00 Child Free
16th July:             Adult £14 Students* £6.00 Child Free
13th August:         Adult £14 Students* £6.00 Child Free
3rd September:     Adult £14 Students* £6.00 Child Free

Student* Group Pricing:
(minimum 5 per group - to include Leader)
£5.00 Per Person.
*Student ID required.

Single: £87.00 (to include one season ticket)
Double: £174.00 (to include two season tickets)

Reg Charity No: 282441

Season 2015

Piatti String Quartet
23rd April

Kammerphilharmonie Europa
18th June

Mark Bebbington - piano
16th July

Jane Lindsay - cello
13th August

Passacaglia Trio
3rd September

Thursday 23rd April                                                    PIATTI QUARTET
Nathaniel Anderson-Frank, Michael Trainor - violins: David Wigram - viola: Jessie Ann Richardson - cello

Taking their name from the great 19th-century cellist Alfredo Piatti, the quartet is amongst the UK's foremost young string quartets, with a host of awards and critically-acclaimed recordings to their name.  They have performed in all the major venues around the country, broadcast with the BBC and appeared extensively abroad. They currently hold the Richard Carne Junior Fellowship for String Quartet at Trinity Laban Conservatoire of Music and Dance.

They will play Beethoven Op.59, No.1 (Razumovsky) and Dvorak Op. 106.

Thursday 18th June                                     KAMMERPHILHARMONIE EUROPA     chamber orchestra
Soloists:     Andrej Sur - violin     Cyrill Gussaroff - trumpet

Founded in 2006 in Cologne, Germany, the Chamber Philharmonic Europe engages talented young musicians from 18 European nations, aiming to give these promising artists the opportunity for further development through a wide-ranging repertoire. They have performed in many concert halls and opera houses throughout Europe including Paris, Burssels, Amsterdam, Edinburgh and London's Conway Hall. Thier tour this year brings an ensemble of 9 musicians. The concert is part of Crediton Festival 2015.

Their programme includes Bach's Violin Concerto in A minor BWV 1041, Hummel Concerto for Trumpet & Orchestra in E major, Mozart Divertimento in F KV 138, and Holst Suite for String Orchestra Op.29.

Thursday 16th July                                                   MARK BEBBINGTON    piano

We are delighted to welcome Mark Bebbington back to Crediton.  The cirtical plaudits which greet his performances and recordings describe him as a British pianist of the rarest refinement and maturity. He has toured extensively throughout Central and Northern Europe as well as East and North Africa. His programme demonstrates his firm commitment to British Music and to music of our time: it includes works by British composers, among them Richard Causton and Thomas Dunhill with their local connections! The concert is supported by the John Ireland and RVW Trusts.

Cesar Franck: Prelude, Chorale and Fugue; Beethoven: Sonata in F minor Op. 57 "Appassionata"; John Ireland: London Pieces; Thomas Dunhill: two Concert Etudes; Richard Causton: Non mi comporto male (1993); Chopin: Barcarolle Op. 60, Tarantella and Scherzo in B♭ minor Op. 31.

Thursday 13th August                             JANE LINDSAY - cello     JENNIFER HUGHES - piano

Cellist Jane Lindsay is rapidly developing a reputation as a compelling performer. She has appeared both as soloist and chamber musician at venues including the Wigmore Hall and Purcell Room, as well as at major festivals across the UK and Europe. Among her many awards is a place on the prestigious Countess of Munster Trust Recital Scheme which is supporting this recital. Jennifer Hughes currently holds the Gilbett and Eileen Edgar Junior Fellowship in piano accompaaniment at the Royal College of Music. Among other awards, she won the Accompanist Prize in the 2013 Royal Overseas League Music Competition and received an award from the Geoffrey Parsons Memorial Trust.

Their programme is Beethoven Sonata No.2 Op.5, Janacek 'Pohadka', Schumann Fantasiestücke Op.73 and Saint-Saëns Sonata No.1 Op. 32.

Thursday 3rd September                                                    PASSACAGLIA
Annabel Knight - Recorders & Flute, Robin Bigwood - Harpsichord, Reiko Ichise - Viola da gamba

Founded in 1992, Passacaglia entertains audiences with the unique 18th-century sound of recorders, flutes, viola da gamba and harpsichord. The ensemble has performed at major venues and festivals throughout the British Isles, Europe and america, featured in numerous BBC radio broadcasts and world-wide networks and has made recordings for Linn Records, Naxos and BCR, all to a consistently enthusiastic press.

They will play a programme that includes Handel's Sonata in G major HWV 363b; Bach's Sonata for viola da gamba and harpsichord in D major BWV 1028 and his Toccata in  G minor BWV 915; Telemmann's Trio Sonata for Recorder and Viola da Gamba in F major; Corelli's Sonata 'La Follia' and Chedeville attrib. A Vivaldi Sonata in G major from 'Il Pastor Fido'.

Thursday, 29 January 2015

Two Moors Festival: A Message from Penny Adie Fifteenth Anniversary Press Article – January 2015

Dulverton Parish Church
Venue for a long weekend of Festival events in 2014
(John Rowlands-Pritchards's Gregorian Chant Workshop 18 October
Opus Angelicanum's afternoon concert of English Chant 19 October
David Goode's 'Sacred Classics' organ recital 19 October
Sarah Ewins & Harvey Davies' Mozart Marathon 20 October)

How Foot & Mouth gave rise to international concert series -
The story of the Two Moors Festival – 15 Years on!

Schubert the Sheep
Festival Mascot
The Two Moors Festival celebrates its 15th Birthday this year. Who would have known that one of the few good things to result from 2001’s Foot & Mouth’s tragic outbreak would be a classical music event of such class as to compare with others of global standing.

The supposedly one-off series of concerts set up to bring cheer to Dartmoor and Exmoor following the epidemic was so successful that the organisers, John and Penny Adie, were easily persuaded to continue and with unsurpassed passion. On achieving its first milestone, the festival injects over £300,000 to the local economy during ten days every October. Tourism benefits too due to the influx of avid concert-goers from outside the area. Since 2011, over 5000 tickets have been sold annually; and so far, three BBC Radio 3 live broadcasts have taken place. The musical standard easily matches that of the top international festivals and with Kate Royal, Viktoria Mullova and Angela Hewitt among the glittering array of esteemed artists attracted to perform, it’s easy to see why.

Detail of the mighty Bösendorfer grand piano
used by Sarah & Harvey in the Mozart Marathon
(see 2014 programme for details)
Offshoots have emerged too in the form of workshops taking place in primary schools. In addition, young aspiring instrumentalists have been given the chance to play alongside a professional orchestra and in 2003, a Young Musicians Platform competition was established. The most unusual events to take place are the concerts in the acoustically brilliant Ticket Office at Tiverton Parkway Station.

Her Royal Highness the Countess of Wessex became Patron in 2007 giving generously of her time. One aspect that was never anticipated was the growth of cultural awareness in the Southwest (previously non-existent).

Always unique and whacky in its approach, the 2mf celebrated its 10th Anniversary (2010) with a Gold Medal-winning and Best Courtyard Garden at the Chelsea Flower Show. The garden fulfilled its aim in providing a PR exercise like no other. Of course the story of the dropped Boesendorfer piano also caught the attention of the world media.

Penny Adie

Funding, as with so many arts organisations, is always a problem. So far, the event has remained on an even keel with the aid of many trusts, Friends of the Festival and with ever-growing ticket sales. And as far as publicity is concerned, the generous media partnership with Classic FM (originally attracted by the inspired Sheep on a Bicycle logo) is never forgotten.

The Adies have no plans as yet to retire. With some farmers in the area still struggling to make ends meet, and relying to a degree on local food banks, the festival continues to retain its raison d’être.

Penny Adie
Artistic Director

Two Moors Festival
Barkham, Sandyway, South Molton, Devon  EX36 3LU  Tel:01643 831370
Reg. Charity no 1095723 Vat registration no 791 1650 25

Tuesday, 27 January 2015

Music and Poetry for Holocaust Remembrance Week St Mary's Church Totnes Saturday 24 January 2015

 Holocaust Remembrance Day
Music and Poetry

Pianists: Sam Richards & Lona Kozik
Poetry: Jane Spiro
Piano & Clarinet: Elie Fruchter
Soprano Voice: Claudia Alvarez-Calderon

Today it is precisely seventy years since soldiers of the 60th Army of the First Ukrainian Front arrived at Auschwitz-Birkenau concentration camp in southern Poland. Seven thousand starving survivors were found inside, abandoned by their captors.

The tens of thousands of Poles, Soviets, Roma and other nationalities who had been sent to the camp were eclipsed by more than one million Jews who were deported to Auschwitz. Nearly all were systematically murdered.

To open a week of remembrance for the victims, five Totnes performers brought together music and poems of remembrance in a one hour performance. The venue was St Mary's Church in Totnes High Street. Publicity for the concert had been excellent. By 10.30am the church was full and everyone was settling in with hot drinks and cakes provided by church members.

At 11am, against the swell of conversation, Elie Fruchter opened the concert by playing gently on his clarinet. He chose the Shabbat hymn "Hine Ma Tov" ("Imagine how good" [ - and how pleasing, if all could sit together in unity.] ) The quiet, tender sound focussed attention and soon everyone was sitting silently, listening, the mood just right.

Elie introduced the Holocaust Remembrance theme. The day of remembrance was formally introduced as an internationally recognised event in 2006. The United Nations General Assembly passed the resolution inaugurating the commemoration in November 2005.

Elie also spoke passionately about his time in London as a young adult. He lodged with an elderly Jewish woman who had survived incarceration in Auschwitz. She was then living with her husband, who had been an interpreter at the Nuremberg Trials where twelve of the surviving architects of the Holocaust were convicted and sentenced to death in 1946.

Elie is also Jewish, and recalled fondly the memory of being with someone who despite having experienced the terror first-hand, had remained a caring loving person. Elie just had time to hint at the long-lasting effects of the experience on his land-lady. Everyday concerns meant little to her after having endured such a terrible ordeal.

Jane Spiro took over from Elie and recited a series of poems illustrating the terrible experiences of Jews and all victims during the 1930s and the Second World War. As Jane read each poem one of the musicians would take their place at the grand piano to play a complementary piece of classical music - many of which were by Jewish composers.

First, Jane read "Exodus" by Lotte Kramer. Lotte was one of the last children to be rescued from Germany on a 'Kindertransport' in July 1939. For the following six years Lotte dreaded the news that must eventually come. After the war she discovered that all twelve members of her extended family in Mainz had been deported and murdered.

"Exodus" compares her experience to the story of Moses, set adrift by his mother in a basket. Lotte's train journey was an "Exodus from death".

Lona Kozik reflected the mood of Lotte's poem in Felix Mendelssohn's "Gondola Song", from "Songs without Words".

Jane recited her own poem "Children's Pictures, Theresienstadt".

Despite being a forced-labour and extermination camp, Theresienstadt was presented to representatives of the Danish and International Red Cross organisations as a model Jewish ghetto. A prisoner, Kurt Gerron, was employed to make a propaganda movie following their visit.

This elaborate deception was undertaken two weeks after the allied invasion of Normandy in June 1944. The prisoners involved in the visit and film, including Gerron, were subsequently deported to Auschwitz.

Jane described the pictures drawn by children at Theresienstadt. Initially they showed family life, then fantasies, then the shocking scenes of brutality and incarceration, but finally images of hope.

Following on from the idea of a child's natural expression through art, Sam Richards played Arnold Shoenburg's "Six Little Piano Pieces" which he wrote in 1913, and intended to be free from symbols, context and logic . . . "expression and nothing more". These six miniatures are delightfully expressive - and unconstrained by classical conventions, just as advertised.

Lutheran Pastor Martin Niemöller's recurring challenge to German intellectuals following the war, for their inaction in the face of the oppression and persecution of minorities, was summarised in poetic form. Jane read "First they came for the Jews" ( " . . . and I did not speak out because I am not a Jew." ) In the poem (and many post-war lectures), Niemöller lists the other groups abandoned by those who could have helped them. Finally, "Then they came for me - and there was no one left to speak for me."

This familiar plea for solidarity was followed by "Andante Cantabile in B minor" by Sergei Rachmaninov. Elie's gentle performance of this short but lingering movement gave time to reflect on our own failings when presented with the opportunity to protect others.

"Shema" by Primo Levi presses home the need for everyone who lives in security and warmth to consider the plight of the disenfranchised - and the ultimate cost of not doing so.

Luciano Berio's "Wasserklavier" was Elie's sound equivalent to Primo Levi, it's gentle trickling sound now suggesting the icy damp and discomfort of incarceration.

The poem "An Eternal Window" by Yehuda Amichai is a brief and simple testimony to loss, which belies his involvement in many modern conflicts. He escaped the Holocaust, having moved with his family to Palestine in 1935, but fought with the British Army against Germany, He was also a soldier in the Israeli War of Independence, the Sinai War and the Yom Kippur War. He returned to Germany to try to understand how so much suffering had been allowed to happen. His poems are now internationally acclaimed.

Lona played an equally modern work by American Jewish composer Philip Glass (whose family emigrated from Lithuania). Philip was born in 1937 and developed his very distinctive style in post-war America. At that time, racial oppression was still a problem for many Americans, and the consequences of poorly applied principles of integration are reflected in the haunting anthem to ill-conceived social engineering 'Pruit Igoe' for orchestra and choir.

Restricted to solo piano, Lona played Philip's equally famous and emotive "Opening Piece" from "Glassworks". The corruscating ripples of sound subtly convey deep and affecting emotions, a beautiful interlude.

Jane moved to a poem by Russian poet Anna Akhmatova. Anna witnessed the siege of Leningrad by German forces and also suffered surveillance and censorship under Stalin. Her poem "With the Lads in the Gutter" reminded us of equally brutal conditions in other countries - including the Soviet Union.

James Agee's "Sure on this Shining Night" was first read by Jane and then sung in Samuel Barber's musical arrangement by Claudio Alvarez-Calderon. The words reflect loneliness and sadness, especially when all hope is gone. Claudia's sung version was even more desolate in its beauty.

Jane had one last poem to share - "My father carries me across a field" by George Szirtes. George was born in Hungary after the Second World War, but was also a victim of deportation and concentration camps - following the 1956 Budapest uprising. The poem describes an attempted escape at night, from the perspective of a confused and terrified child, which was a common experience throughout German occupied territory during the war as well.

Elie ended the concert as he began it, with a Jewish song played on his clarinet. This time however he played "Mir Lebn Eibik" (We shall live forever) which was played by Jewish victims to their German tormentors in the Vilna Ghetto in 1943. The song was later used in Joshua Sobol's stage play "Ghetto" relating the experience of the Lithuanian Jews of Vilnius.

Elie Fruchter played his own transcription for clarinet.

With so many poems, reminiscences, and piano pieces, it was a masterpiece of timing for Elie to bring his final clarinet solo to a subtle and engaging conclusion at precisely two minutes to midday - leaving just time for a brief appeal for contributions towards the Holocaust Educational Trust.

Follow the link to find out more about the Trust - and how to contribute to its work.

Sunday, 25 January 2015

Exeter University Chapel Choir: Director & Singers join Classical Journey on Phonic FM Tuesday 20 January 2015

Exeter University Chapel Choir
Director: Michael Graham
Sopranos: Jess Brown & Kitty Bishop
Bass: Simon Clark

This Tuesday Phonic FM welcomed Exeter Cathedral choral scholar, Michael Graham, and three university students to the studio to discuss their work with the University of Exeter Chapel Choir during the "Classical Journey". (A recording of the programme is available via "MixCloud".)

Since coming to Exeter as a scholar, Michael has sung in the Cathedral choir, the Buckfast Abbey Choir, Matt Cann's "Antiphon" choir and directed his own choir "Exodus".

In 2012, Jess Brown was just starting her studies for a masters degree in astrophysics. She also had a music scholarship, and re-animated the Chapel Choir at the University to bring together other students to sing in services and concerts. Michael was the natural choice to direct the choir.

Many students with music scholarships have since joined the choir. Last year PhD student Simon Clark (atmospheric physics) joined as a bass. One of the more recent additions is Kitty Bishop, who began her undergraduate studies in German and Spanish last September. The choir now has twenty members - five sopranos, five altos, five tenors and five basses.

The choir sing evensong, accompanied by Buckfast Abbey Organ Scholar Phillip Broadhouse, at 5pm every Wednesday in the Mary Harris Memorial Chapel on the Streatham Campus (next to Roborough Studios). For Ash Wednesday (18 February) Michael and the Choir are preparing Gregorio Allegri's 1630 setting of "Miserere Mei, Deus" (Have mercy on me, o God) and the "Missa Papae Marcelli" by Giovanni Pierluigi da Palestrina, composed for Pope Marcellus II in 1562.

(Last year's performance of the Allegri at Exeter Cathedral was particularly memorable, with Andrew Millington playing the organ, and Jess and Simon singing in those exquisite solo sections.)

The Chapel Choir also sing for a Sunday morning service at the Chapel every alternate week. The next Sunday service at Mary Harris Chapel will be on Sunday 1 February. (On the intervening Sundays, Michael can be heard singing in the Exeter Cathedral Choir.) The Choir will also sing evensong in the Chapel at 6pm on Sunday 1 February in a special service for Candlemass.

Last year for Candlemass, the Chapel Choir performed Gustav Holst's "Nunc Dimittis" (Nunc dimittis servum tuum, Domine: Now you dismiss your servant, o Lord), composed for Compline at Westminster Abbey in 1915, and the "Missa in Tempore Pascali" (Easter Mass) composed for the Choir of Guildford Cathedral by their Director of Music, Philip Moore, in 1979. (The current Director of Music at Exeter Cathedral, Andrew Millington, took over from Philip Moore at Guildford in 1983.)

This year Candlemass will be celebrated in the Mary Harris Chapel with the Choir singing very modern sacred music. Jonathan Dove's "Missa Brevis" (Short Mass) was commissioned for the Cathedral Organists' Association in 2009, while Paweł Łukaszewski's version of "Nunc Dimittis" was composed in 2007 - for the conductor of the Holst Singers, Stephen Layton.

On the second Sunday of each month the Chapel Choir sing in a Holy Ground Service at the Cathedral, led by the Canon Chancellor, Anna Norman-Walker. The next Holy Ground Service will be on Sunday 8 February. The service (Holy Communion) is at 7pm, followed by a talk by a guest speaker in the Chapter House at 8pm.

On the "Classical Journey"  we listened to some recordings of the Choir at past events.

Simon Clark introduced the Choir's performance of Anton Bruchner's 1861 setting of the offertorium prayer "Ave Maria",  performed during their last year's tour - of Topsham (St Margaret's Church), Bristol (The Lord Mayor's Chapel, College Green) and Bath (YMCA & Bath Abbey).

Jess Brown introduced an English translation of "Magnificat" (Magnificat anima mea Dominum: My Soul doth magnify the Lord) from Philip Stopford's 'Evening Canticles' written for the Choir of St Anne's Cathedral Belfast, when he was their Musical Director (2003-2010).

Michael Graham introduced a 30 second extract from another version of the "Magnificat" - which can be heard on the University Chapel Choir Website - or by searching 'YouTube'. It forms part of Charles Villiers Stanford's 'Evening Service in A' which was commissioned in 1880 by John Stainer, organist at St Paul's Cathedral, for the annual Festival of  the Sons of the Clergy.

The Chapel Choir will perform the Stanford Magnificat at Exeter Cathedral as part of a special evensong for the Exeter & District Organists' Association at 5pm on Tuesday 17 February - to demonstrate the newly refurbished 1665 John Loosemoore organ (brought up to specification, once again, by Harrison & Harrison in Durham) - and the great choirs of Exeter.

At the Organists' Association evensong, the Chapel Choir will also sing another choral work by Charles Villiers Stanford - "For lo, I raise up" [ . . . that bitter and hasty nation ] composed in 1914 and based on the words of the Book of Habakkuk in Hebrew Scripture - as a response to the impending horror of war.

Simon Clark reminded us of the stunning performance of George Friderick Handel's 1741 oratorio "Messiah" by the Chapel Choir at the Mary Harris Chapel on St Cecilia's Day (Saturday 22 November) accompanied by Fiona McLean-Buechel's 'South West Camera' string orchestra, Laurence Blyth playing harpsichord, Abi Ellison playing tympani and Claude Lamon playing piccolo trumpet.

The concert was repeated on Monday 8 December at St James's Church in Exeter with Matt Cann playing harpsichord. Fiona McLean Buechel was joined by Joel Munday and Flora Farquharson from Camerata (first & second violin & viola) and Edward Woodhouse and Melanie Lester played 'cello and double bass respectively - not forgetting Claude Lamon, who returned with his trumpet.

Simon, Kitty and Jess all had solo parts to sing in the oratorio, Simon sang "For behold, darkness shall cover the Earth", Kitty sang "But who may abide the day of his coming?" and Jess was joined by Chloe Price and Emily Cobb for the recitatives from the Luke Gospel regarding the shepherds in the fields - ending with Jess singing, " . . . And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host . . . " - a spectacular twenty seconds' worth.

Kitty Bishop introduced a recording of the Chapel Choir at Mary Harris Chapel on 22 November singing a chorus from the "Messiah" - the words of the Book of Malachi, describing the Hebrew God as refining humanity like precious metals, "And He shall purify the sons of Levi".

Kitty also introduced a very different recording, made during  their visit to the Lord Mayor's Chapel in Bristol last year. Pretty, gentle, quiet and therapeutic -  "O nata lux de lumine" (O light born of light) from Morten Lauridsen's "Lux Aeterna" (Eternal Light).

After a brief reminder from Michael about all the musical events involving the Chapel Choir which are coming up in February and March (see below), there was a unanimous vote for a further recording from the St Cecilia's Day concert at Mary Harris: Handel's setting of the words of St John the Divine, in the Book of Revelation - "Hallelujah! For the Lord God omnipotent reigneth."
Exeter University Chapel Choir
Exeter University Chapel Choir
Mary Harris Memorial Chapel
Sunday 1 February 6pm
Jonathan Dove: Missa Brevis
Paweł Łukaszewski: Nunc Dimittis
Director: Michael Graham
Organist: David Davies
An Anglican church service
- no charge to attend

Exeter University Chapel Choir
Exeter University Chapel Choir
Exeter Cathedral
Tuesday 17 February 5pm
Charles Villiers Stanford: "Magnificat"
(from Opus 12 - 'Evening Service in A')
Charles Villiers Stanford: "For lo, I raise up"
Director: Michael Graham
Organist: David Davies
An Anglican church service - no charge to attend

Exeter University Chapel Choir
Exeter University Chapel Choir
Mary Harris Memorial Chapel
Wednesday 18 February 5pm
Gregorio Allegri: "Miserere Mei, Deus"
Giovanni da Palestrina: "Missa Papae Marcelli"
Director: Michael Graham
Organist: David Davies
An Anglican church service
- no charge to attend
Exeter University Chapel Choir
Hope Hall, Hope Road, Heavitree
(behind the Wonford Inn)

Friday 27 February 8pm
Director: Michael Graham
Piano: David Davies
Tickets: £5
Exeter University Chapel Choir
Michael Graham
Exeter University Chapel Choir
1. Mary Harris Memorial Chapel
(Exeter University Streatham Campus)
Sunday 15 March 11am
Director: Michael Graham
Organist: David Davies
(An Anglican Church Service - no charge to attend)
2. St Paul's Church Honiton
(Parish Church, Honiton High Street)
Sunday 15 March 3.30pm
(Birthday celebration for the Administrator
 of the Exeter University Chaplaincy, Wendy Randall)
Director: Michael Graham
Organist: David Davies
Hubert Parry: "I was Glad"
Charles Wood: "O Thou the Central Orb"
(Ticket details TBC)


Monday, 19 January 2015

EMG Symphony Orchestra donates £500 to Exeter Leukaemia Fund - A Message from Ellen Stratton

EMG Symphony Orchestra’s Chair, Rachel Wieck, with trumpeter Tony Hindley, Britten narrator Alistair Ganley and oboist Kate Osborne, presents Jordan Anderton of Exeter Leukaemia Fund (ELF) with a cheque for £500 following the Orchestra’s November concert at the Great Hall. 

EMGSO is delighted to be able to make this additional donation to ELF, thanks to strong ticket sales for the November concert.  This donation, combined with the bucket collection taken by the charity at the end of the concert brings the total raised for ELF from this event to over £1,000.  EMGSO Chair Rachel Wieck said “EMG is delighted that the ticket sales for this concert have enabled us to contribute additional funds to such a worthwhile local charity.  We hope that ticket sales for our forthcoming concerts will enable us to make similar donations to our partner charities in the future”.

EMG Symphony Orchestra’s next concert will take place on Saturday 11 April in Exeter Cathedral.  For more information about this event and to buy tickets, please go to The Orchestra Website.

For information about ELF, please visit The ELF Website

Sunday, 18 January 2015

Appassionata! Alex Knight & Suki Trussler together Third & Final Guitar & Flute Duo Recital for 2014 at Tati Dennehy's 'Jellyfish' Exhibition Buckfastleigh Tuesday 23 December 2014

Alex Knight & Suki Trussler
Appassionata Duo - Guitarist & Flautist

Nathilde Overrein Rapp
Norwegian Film Director

Founder of Jellyfish Productions

Jellyfish Studio
In September 2012 a new musical duo appeared in concert in Budleigh and Sheldon. Alex Knight and Suki Trussler put on a two concerts of guitar and flute duets which were very popular. Then came the sad news. Suki and her husband Nick were already committed to a long term project in Berlin, founding a new music school.

Now, two years later, the project is complete and Suki and Ian are back in England - living in Buckfastleigh. Suki has returned and rehearsals with Alex, who lives in Totnes. Their repertoire now includes many additional baroque and romantic duets.

Nick, it just so happens, is a recording engineer in addition to his many teaching and management qualifications. He makes many recordings for his education company "Solutions4Content". It was a simple matter for Nick to get together with Alex and Suki at the end of last year to create their first album of music.

Beautiful Artwork by Tati Dennehy
To hear clips, or order a copy of any of Alex or Suki's albums, there is a Website for "Alex Knight & Suki Trussler", and a new "Appassionata Duo" website under construction.

The duo's first return concert was at St Edmund's, Kingsbridge, on Friday 19 December, and repeated at St Marychurch, Torquay, on Saturday 20 December.

St Marychurch Church has an impressive acoustic, particularly suited to their music, and it is a pity the concert was not recorded. The seasonal pressures meant many people missed both concerts and everyone hoped there might be one more chance to hear the duo.

Room for one more . . .
The good news was that Suki had made a new friend in Buckfastleigh - and another chance to play for her very appreciative fans.

Next the Buckfastleigh Town Hall, a single room has been taken over by Norwegian film producer Nathilde Overrein Rapp. The small space is filled with sculptures and paintings by local artists and open to the public 12-6pm Tuesday-Friday and 4-8pm on Saturdays. A plaque and metal sculpture at the gate let you know you've arrived - at "Jellyfish Productions".

Inside there is enough space for an audience of about fifty people, and on the evening of Tuesday 23 December the hall was packed. Nathilde's publicity in Buckfastleigh had brought in many fans, and there was standing room only for the late arrivals.

In the intimate space, guests crowded round to share Nathilde's food and drink and to admire the many artworks on display in the studio. Despite the crush, not one table was nudged nor any sculpture dislodged.

Suki plays alto flute under Tati's Christmas fairy
With everyone in place, some sitting on a bed, some among the coats at the door, Alex and Suki began with Vivaldi's Concerto in D. After one movement Suki had to admit that, far from being cold on that dark December night, the room was becoming over-warm from the press of people. All heating had to switched off and the doors opened. Everyone basked in the natural warmth of companionship and beautiful music.

Two more movements of Vivaldi gave way to Bach's "Sicilliana", and Handel's "Harmonious Blacksmith". From baroque, the duo then leapt forward to the romantic music of the nineteenth century. Two Spanish pieces by Isaac Albeniz and Enrique Granados ("Tango" and "Playera") were followed by French music by Gabriel Fauré and Jacques Ibert ("Pavane" and "Entr'Acte") separated by a special arrangement by Suki for alto flute of Christopher Gunning's theme tune for the ITV series "Agatha Christie's Poirot".

Alex plays the lute music of Robert Johnson
The Entr'Acte led naturally to an interval with more food and drink, and many positive comments about the music. After the break we were back at the beginning of the seventeenth century with Robert Johnson's "Alman" for lute, played very deftly by Alex on a modern Spanish guitar. The baroque mood continued with Domenico Scarlatti's "Flute Sonata in A", and Johann Sebastian Bach's "Prelude in C" arranged for guitar - with Charles Gounod's additional words to the "Ave Maria" sung by Suki on her flute.

In an echo of the Bach Sicilliana, the duo played Fauré's "Sicilienne" and three new compositions. "Peacock's Parade" by Totnes guitarist Chris Glassfield, followed by "Back to the Sea" and a variation on Canadian composer François Dompierre's "Tango", both by Suki herself.

Appassionata Duo
Having got the audience in the mood for tango, the duo finished with the greatest tango of all - by the king of tango himself, Argentine bandoneon master Ástor Piazzolla - his 1974 radio commission "Libertango".

Everyone was left wanting more - and hugely impressed by the extensive exhibition of art in the beautiful studio. Congratulations to Alex Knight and Suki Trussler for such spectacular music, and to Nathilde Overrein Rapp for her sensational displays of art.

There will be more "Appassionata" concerts in the spring of 2015, and "Jellyfish Productions" looks favourite as one of the venues. Any details will go straight to the "Classical Journey Concerts" blog.

Meanwhile on the "Redux Classical Journey", broadcast on Soundart Radio this Sunday, 18 January, 3-6pm, there is a chance to hear some of the fabulous music that thrilled that Buckfastleigh audience at the Jellyfish studio at Christmas. Soundart broadcasts on 102.5FM to the South Hams of Devon and can be heard by live stream by opening the Soundart Radio Website - or going directly to the Soundart Radio Player.

There will be more "Appassionata" on the regular "Classical Journey" on Phonic FM in Exeter on Tuesday 20 January 10-12am (a special programme concentrating on Exeter University Chapel Choir). 106.8FM in Exeter and online via the Phonic FM Website or Phonic FM Player.

Tati Dennehy
Tati Dennehy
Jackie Juno: poetry
Jackie Juno: paintings
Linda Hill: Etchings
Rosamund Woodhead:

Saturday, 17 January 2015

Alex West Returns for a Piano and Organ Ricital Glenorchy Lunchtime Concert Spring Series Wednesday 14 January 2015

Alex West

Alex West is a familiar figure to music lovers in Exeter. He is choirmaster at St Michaels Church, Mount Dinham, and now takes responsible for "Music@StMichaels", a series of Wenesday evening concerts, held roughly once a month at the eponymous church in the St David's Hill area of Exeter.

As well as his mathematical modelling research with the Meteriological Office, Alex is also a piano and organ scholar. His first appearance at Glenorchy, to demonstrate the piano and organ works of nineteenth century Parisian composers, was an unforgettable event. (See "Classical Journey" 27 Apr 2011.)

In addition to his own series of concerts (including many organ recitals on the newly refurbished organ at St Michael's Church) Alex still takes time to entertain us at Glenorchy. This Wednesday he played 45 minutes of delightful baroque and classical music.

His opening piece on piano was Johann Sebastian Bach's 'Toccata No 4', a delighful piece, originally for harpsichord, in four movements. The opening presto was deceptively short, but led to a restful allegro and adagio, and a playful closing fugue.

On the organ Alex went back to Bach's inspiration and mentor, the Danish composer Dietrich Buxtehude. His "Praeludium in A" ran seamlessly into more fabulous baroque music, this time from France - François Couperin's "Mass for the Convents" - selecting just six from the monumental 21 movements.

The opening was the first and second of the five movements intended to intersperse the Kyrie Eleison, "Plein Jeu" and "Fugue sur la Trompette" (using the wonderful trumpet sound of the Bevington organ). Then came the seventh and eighth of the nine movements of the Gloria, "Trio" and "Recit de Tierce". The extended "Dialogue sur les Grands Jeux" was intended to accompany the Offertoire - and allow sufficient time for the congregation to give generously. Finally Alex played the closing "Deo Gratis".

Having impressed us with his skill and delicacy on the organ, Alex concluded the concert with an entertaining piece of classical music. Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart's Piano Sonata no 13 is scored like a concerto, but with the orchestral music played by the pianist as well. The cadenza in the final allegretto grazioso gives way to - more spectacular playing by Alex himself.

A lovely concert.

To hear the live recording, tune in to Soundart Radio on Sunday 18 January at 3pm. Soundart transmits on 102.5 FM to the South Hams of Devon - but can be heard live on line, anywhere in the world, by opening the Soundart Radio Website, or going straight to the Soundart Radio Player.

Glenorchy & St Michaels concerts continue throughout the spring of 2015.

Find all the details on the "Classical Journey" concerts blog.

Bach & Mozart
on the Venables piano
Buxtehude & Couperin
on the Bevington organ

Friday, 9 January 2015

"DRUMBEAT" Latest news from Lympstone Entertainments January 2015

January 2015

Lympstone Entertainments
essential reading for those who don't want to miss the best of What's On in Lympstone


We start the New Year with our tenth season  well under way, with the sparkling echoes of Harpe Noire still ringing in our ears and another selection of Christmas poems catching the eye here and there around the village. LympEnts marches on with a full programme ahead. but there have been changes. Our 'founding fathers', John Welton and Harland Walshaw, have decided to take a less demanding share of the direction: John is already working hard on his last Village Concert (see below for news of this year's event), and will advise on musical offerings: Harland will provide his dependable wise counsel when called upon, but has shed day to day responsibilities for steering the enterprise. They both deserve our grateful thanks for all they have done to make Lympstone a more eventful village.

Sheila Stone, Brian and Jennifer Mather, Grace Packman and Emelza Henderson are the shiny new LympEnts team who, together with their helpers, will be delivering this cheering winter programme:

Tuesday 27th January at 7.30pm in the Village Hall
Encounters with Authors

We present another in our occasional series of the creator of the widely acclaimed Joe Faraday novels, local crime writer and highly entertaining speaker


talking to John Eaton-Terry about his early writing career in Portsmouth, his move to Exmouth and how he has been developing a successful police series firmly rooted in East Devon.

Copies of Graham’s books will be on sale, which he’ll be happy to sign

Entry: £5 from the LympEnts Box Office (see below), or at the door
A wine & juice bar will be open from 7pm

Sunday 8th February at 2.30pm in the Village Hall



who has made magic and science collide on the Edinburgh
Fringe for the past two years, with laughter all the way.
Expect amazing tricks inspired by astounding science.
Soft drinks and ices on sale

Adults £8, under 16s £4 (suitable for over 8s)


Saturday 28th February at 2.30pm and 7.30pm
in the Village Hall


Once again we shall let loose the multifarious talents of our fellow inhabitants in a traditional charivari of comedy, music, song and dance.

Look out for more details in the February DRUMBEAT

Matinée tickets £6, under 16s £4; evening £8 and £6

Thursday 5th March at 7.30pm
in the Village Hall

Watch this space for more news of the amazing
Rabbit Theatre’s version of Bram Stoker’s classic tale


Unless otherwise indicated (ie where payment is at the door)
tickets for all our events will be available from

The LympEnts Box Office, c/o Demelza Henderson
2 Brookfield Cottages (opposite the former Post Office)

01395 272243 or 07516 322853