Today I have been invited to a recital at Raynham Hall. I have not been there before, nor really been aware of the Hall as a concert venue but it seems that the owners of the hall, Lord and Lady Townshend are keen to use their stately home to help raise money to repair some of their works of art which are in desperate need of restoration. In particular, they are trying to raise the fund of £48,000 to restore three invaluable 17th century paintings of the children of King Charles I.
They have spent the last 5 years restoring the fine art works and decor of the hall which has been in the Townshend family since 1620. Sir Roger Townshend started the building and then in the 1720s, the 2nd Viscount Townshend commissioned William Kent who later went on to design both Holkham and Houghton Halls which are nearby – and well-recognised as treasures of Norfolk.
Kent’s design work was ornate and included elaborate carvings and mosaics, decorated doorways and lanterns most of which are intact today.
Tonight’s concert will be held in the Marble Hall of Raynham which apparently has astonishing acoustics. It is part of a series of concerts to bring world-class musicians to perform in the house so that people can experience the atmosphere created by the works which the money will help to maintain.
I am looking forward to hearing acclaimed violinist Rachel Podger who is a leading musician in the Baroque and Classical style and Maggie Cole who is also internationally acclaimed for her virtuosity on piano, fortepiano and harpsichord.
I think this will be a rare opportunity to recreate the atmosphere of an 18th century drawing room, and will possibly signal the emergence of Raynham as a distinctive concert venue – I will report back!
Tickets are £50 with proceeds going to the restoration fund and I believe are still available – the phone number is 01328 862133 if you would like to check
Marion de Mello Catlin
editor Music in Norwich
Saturday 17th September 2017 – The C18 Sound
Regular ticket holders of Raynham Recitals will remember an electrifying evening last June with Rachel Podger & Maggie Cole performing JS Bach. For the September recital Rachel & Maggie have chosen the following programme for violin & fortepiano:
CPE Bach – Sonata in C minor
W A Mozart – Sonata for violin & piano KV454 (1784)
L van Beethoven – Sonata for violin & piano No.7 in C Minor, Op.30 No.2 (1801-02)
The Saturday recital is nearly always the mega-star concert and September 17th is no exception as Rachel Podger is, as many of you know, a violinist of world class who performed JS Bach here 18 months ago with Maggie Cole in their first recital together. Maggie, famed not least for her recording of the Goldberg Variations, is a regular at Raynham and we are thrilled to have her here again with Rachel.