Roddy Williams and Iain Burnside perform Schubert’s Die Schöne Müllerin at Open Norwich

Roddy Williams flyer

Open Norwich is launching a new ambition of hosting classical music concerts as a development of their existing music offer and to kick it off,  leading baritone Roddy Williams and top accompanist Iain Burnside are performing the first concert on 20 November with Schubert’s Die Schöne Müllerin.

More information and a link to tickets here – http://opennorwich.org.uk/whats-on/gigs-events/roderick-williams/

They will be supported by Norfolk County Youth Orchestra and a composition group from Norwich Music Club.

Coming up! Chamber Music Weekend

From Norfolk & Norwich Chamber Music

A Happy New Year to all and welcome to our first John Innes concerts in 2016. We start with a weekend of music devised by the brilliant young Belgian cellist David Cohen, who has assembled an impressive team of fellow musicians from Canada, Russia and the UK. Of particular interest is the final Sunday afternoon concert featuring the  Michael Nyman Quartet written especially for the Smith Quartet. David Higgins, who has been commissioned to write a especially for this concert, is one of the most exciting and innovative young composers  who has already notched up compositions for BBC Proms. Gordon Crosse’s new cello sonata also written for David Cohen, will get two performances (15th & 17th)– two world premieres in a weekend cannot be bad!  The weekend finishes with  Schubert’s glorious string quintet, which many consider to be amongst the finest pieces of chamber music ever written. Hope to see you sometime over the weekend. Roger

P.S. Both the Ibragimova concerts on 8th & 22nd January are fully reserved  so please don’t come along unless you are on the list! All other chapel concerts are fine for space just turn up and pay n the door!

 Chamber Music Weekend

Cello Con Brio “Magical Journeys”
David Cohen & friends

Cello Con Brio “Magical Journeys”
The Chapel, Park Lane
Friday 15th January 2016, 7:30pm

David Cohen – cello
Bach: Solo Suite No.1 in G
Gordon Crosse: Sonata No. 1 for solo cello – World Premiere
Gaspar Cassadó; Suite for solo cello

David Cohen website016

Cello Con Brio “Magical Journeys”
John Innes Centre
Saturday 16th at 7.30pm

David Cohen – cello Katya Apekisheva – piano Corinne Chapelle – violin

Pre-concert discussion with David Cohen at 6:30pm

  • Brahms: Piano Sonata No.3 in F minor, Op.5
  • Brahms: Sonata for Violin and Piano No.1, Op.78
  • Arensky: Piano Trio No.1, Op.32

 

John Innes Centre
Sunday 17th at 11.30pm
David Cohen – cello Katya Apekisheva – piano

  Schnittke: Suite in the Old Style

  • Beethoven: Cello Variations “Ein Mädchen oder Weibchen”, Op.66
  • Stravinsky: Suite Italienne
  • Paganini: Moise Variations on one string

 

John Innes Centre
Sunday 17th at 3pm
David Cohen & Smith Quartet

Nyman: String Quartet No.5 “Let’s not make a song and dance out of this”

  • Gordon Crosse: Sonata No.1 for solo cello
  • Gavin Higgins: ‘Howl’ for solo cello and string quartet

Schubert: String Quintet in C

Two concerts Fauré Quartet

The highly regarded Fauré Piano Quartet from Berlin, visit Norwich this weekend for two concerts, each with a very attractive programme.
John Innes Saturday 12th at 7.30pm and
the Chapel in Park lane Norwich on Sunday 13th at 12 noon.

Saturday 12th December 2015, 7:30pm
John Innes Centre
Fauré Piano Quartet
Pre-concert discussion at 6.30pm
Tickets Prelude 01603 628319

  • Programme:
  • Mozart: Piano Quartet in G minor, K478
  • Fauré: Piano Quartet in C minor, Op.15
  • Brahms: Piano Quartet in C minor, Op.60
  • Fauré Piano Quartet:
  • Erika Geldsetzer violin
  • Sascha Frömbling viola
  • Konstantin Heidrich cello
  • Dirk Mommertz piano

“The Fauré Quartet is right up there with the best ensembles you can listen to today.” (Harald Eggebrecht, Süddeutsche Zeitung)

Sunday 13th December 2015, 12:00 noon
The Chapel, Park Lane
Fauré Quartet
Tickets £12 on the door

  • Programme:
  • Mozart: Piano Quartet No.1, K478
  • Mussorgsky arr. Gruzman: Pictures at an Exhibition

Fauré Quartet website

January/February Singing Courses – The Voice Project

January/February Singing Courses – The Voice Project

Open Voices – Men’s Voices
20/27 Jan + 03/10 Feb – 19:30 – 21:30
The Chapel, Park Lane, Norwich
Course Leader: Jon Baker
This four-week course offers an opportunity to sing and learn more about the voice. We will explore many different styles of vocal music, sing in unison and simple harmony, work on breathing and use exercises which help to develop range, tone and confidence. The course is suitable for those who are new to singing as well as those with more experience.

Open Voices – Tuning In
21/28 Jan + 04/11 Feb – 10:30am – 12:30pm
Inner Space, St. Benedict’s, Norwich
Course Leader: Sian Croose
These sessions look at the connections between singing and mindfulness,  joining up voice, mind and body. Simple meditation techniques, vocal warm ups and a close look at how to build musical confidence and make more of a connection with your singing voice – exploring melody, harmony and rhythm though a range of inspiring songs and improvisations.

Open Voices – Singing from Scratch
20/27 Jan + 03/10 Feb – 19:30 – 21:30
The Friends Meeting House, Norwich
Course Leader: Sian Croose
Open to all – four weeks of singing – melodies, harmonies and rhythms of the world. Great for beginners or experienced singers who want to sing a range of uplifting vocal music, taught expertly from scratch.

For further information and to book visit http://www.voiceproject.co.uk/events.html

State of Play – opportunity for music educators

 

ImageImage

STATE OF PLAY 

Starting tonight Wednesday 8 January 2014

A gathering of musician educators who are working with young people and interested in sharing and developing their skills.

CME invites musician educators who work with young people to a series of free training/networking/sharing events taking place on Wednesdays 6-9pm at The Birdcage in Norwich from January to March 2014. Participants can attend all 6 events, or drop into the ones most relevant to their interests/needs.

 

Each of these informal and focused sessions will be a blend of discussion, guest presentations and practical activity on a particular theme, followed by action planning. Music will be at the heart of activity and there will usually be some form of live performance – an opportunity for a young band showcase, an experiment or other activity related to the main theme. The last hour of the event will be an opportunity to network and socialise.

 

Sessions will be hosted by CME and chaired by MARK HOWE, Freelance Community Music Practitioner, who has worked with CME for many years, specialising in band skills, engagement, tutor training and junk instrumentation. It is hoped that this series of sessions will inform the wider dialogue about community and voluntary sector arts based practice (this is what goes on here and why)!

Dates, times and session content here:  http://www.cme.org.uk/blog/post.asp?id=5

Sessions are free, but please book your place in advance at http://www.cme.org.uk/booking-form/ (select State of Play). Once we have your details we will contact you to find out which sessions you wish to attend.

For more information please call Clara on 01603 283379 or 07752346662 or email clara.wiseman@cme.org.uk

These sessions are funded by the National Foundation for Youth Music.

Concerts in December

We are into a new month and there are lots of concerts leading up to Christmas. For a full list download the pdf or have a look at the at a glance list here. You can also find out more details on the individual music organisation websites by following links here

If you have any questions please email info@theshiftnorwich.org.uk

Happy Birthday Benjamin Britten

Happy 100th Birthday to Britten, written by Michael Nutt for the EDP

Next month sees the 100th anniversary of the birth of Lowestoft-born composer, Benjamin Britten, and the climax to over a year of musical celebrations around the world. I have been privileged to coordinate the local celebrations, Familiar Fields (the name is taken from a line in Peter Grimes), which has seen almost 300 performances of Britten’s music across Suffolk and Norfolk since September 2012.

Britten was born on 22nd November 2013 – the patron saint of music, St Cecilia’s Day. He was still alive when I was a young horn-player in the Norfolk Youth Orchestra and I was still a music student when he died aged only 63 in 1976. But he loomed large in the musical world I was eagerly discovering as a young musician, all the more so because of his deep-seated roots in nearbyAldeburgh.

And he seems such a strangely familiar figure to me still, the abundant photos from his extensive archive somehow chiming with my own black and white memories of the 60s and early 70s. A major figure of British music celebrated around the world, both as composer and performer, a beacon of the East Anglian cultural community, creator of Snape Maltings Concert Hall and the Aldeburgh Festival.

Yet he has always been regarded as a rather controversial character. He lived with his life-long partner, the tenor Peter Pears (for whom he wrote so much of his music) at a time when homosexuality was positively suppressed, and, a firm pacifist, he was famously a conscientious objector during the Second Word War. His precocious talent and artistic success also provoked jealousy and resentment among contemporaries and many erstwhile acquaintances found themselves excluded from his select circle of intimate friends.

Remnants of this resentment and animosity perversely somehow persist in some quarters today and yet his legacy – so wonderfully showcased by the centenary celebrations over the past year or so – stands any scrutiny. If anyone chooses to question his convictions for example, then look no further than the War Requiem, his remarkable protest against the futility and tragedy of human conflict.

Written for the consecration of the new Coventry Cathedral (built in 1963 alongside the shell of the original cathedral destroyed in the Blitz), its setting of the war poetry of Wilfred Owen struck such a chord at its premiere that a staggering 200,000 copies of the first recording were sold in a year. Its emotional impact remains as powerful today.

The role of great art, it seems to me, is to awe and to move us, but it must also challenge and discomfit us, make us think and ask questions. Britten’s music does all this. Yes, some of his music may seem challenging to the casual listener, perhaps a little strident or difficult on the ear even. But if there is a reason for that at times, there is also so much more that is really approachable. Britten’s music can be lyrical and sensuous, uplifting and life-affirming – try my Top 10 below and see for yourself.

Britten didn’t enjoy the esoteric circles of cultural life in London; he preferred the tranquillity and home-comforts of his beloved Aldeburgh. And as a composer he didn’t live in an ivory tower. He wanted his music to be ‘useful’ – “I would rather my music used than write masterpieces that are not used”, he said. His vast output for young people and for amateur musicians – people of East Anglia whose community he shared – reflects that wish. (Reminiscences of people who took part in some of those early performances and thoughts of others recently coming to his music for the first time are captured in a new audio-visual exhibition showing at the Forum in Norwich from 18th November to 7th

As much as in his great works for the opera stage or the concert hall, his true legacy lies in the children’s songs ‘Friday Afternoons’ or his children’s opera Noye’s Fludde, both of which are delighting schoolchildren and their audiences in performances next month. Britten was a great man as well as a great composer. I urge you to seize the opportunity to enjoy the final few weeks of his remarkable centenary year and listen to his music with open ears.

A Top 10 of Britten’s Music

1. Young Persons Guide to the Orchestra – Perhaps the most popular of Britten’s works, his introduction to the instruments of the orchestra is a set of variations on a theme by Henry Purcell, a composer he much admired. It features in a special Family Concert by the BBC Symphony Orchestra at Snape Maltings on 23 November.

2. Serenade for Tenor, Horn and Strings – try the Nocturne, a setting of words by Tennyson, including the line ‘Blow bugle blow, Set the wild echoes flying’ which features on the Royal Mint’s new commemorative 50p coin marking the centenary. Hear it played by Britten Sinfonia with tenor Mark Padmore and horn player Stephen Bell at the Theatre Royal Norwich on 17 November.

3. Four Sea Interludes from Peter Grimes – Depicting the changing moods of the sea around Aldeburgh, these orchestral interludes reflect the ever-present force in the story of Peter Grimes and his fishing community. ‘Sunday Morning’ is a good place to start. Hear all four played live by the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra in a special centenary tribute concert at the Marina Theatre, Lowestoft on 29 November

4. War Requiem – Britten’s intensely moving anti-war masterpiece. The Dies Irae or ‘Day of Wrath’ will knock your head off! You can hear it live at St Andrews Hall Norwich on 9 November when Norwich Philharmonic Orchestra & Chorus are joined by three soloists, two conductors plus the Academy of St Thomas, UEA Choir and Norwich Cathedral choristers.

5. A Hymn to the Virgin – One of his best-loved pieces for unaccompanied choir, written when Britten was still at Gresham’s and supposed to be resting while ill. It is performed in a St Cecilia’s Day Concert at Gresham’s School Chapel, Holt on Britten’s 100th

6. Friday Afternoons – Written for his schoolmaster brother’s school, this delightful set of 12 songs have been the focus of a major national educational project this year and they will be performed by school children on the anniversary date, Friday 22nd and locally at St Andrews Hall, Norwich and Jubilee Hall, Aldeburgh.

7. Three Divertimenti – Britten wrote a huge amount of chamber music for all kinds of different combinations of instruments. This piece for string quartet is a light-hearted early work which the Carducci Quartet play live at the John Innes Centre on 23 November.

8. Noye’s Fludde – Although there are parts for professional musicians and adult voices, this Chester Miracle Play is performed almost entirely by children to enchanting effect. Judge for yourself with performances by local school children conducted by Britten scholar Paul Kildea in St Margaret’s Church, Lowestoft, on 21, 22 and 23 November.

9. Violin Concerto – Given a superb performance by Lorraine McAslan with Academy of St Thomas in Norwich earlier this year, this work combines sparkling virtuosity with an elegiac sorrow that reflects Britten’s despair at the onset of war in Europe.

10. Funeral Blues – This is one of four Cabaret Songs which Britten wrote for the soprano Hedli Anderson, a setting of W. H Auden’s poem ‘Stop all the clocks, cut off the telephone’, famously used in the film ‘Four Weddings and A Funeral’.

For extensive clips of Britten’s music go to http://www.britten100.org/new-to-britten/the-music

Other performance highlights in Norfolk*

Friday 15 November – a lecture by the composer’s nephew John Britten and a concert of Britten’s school compositions, ‘A Joy to Us All’, at Big School, Gresham’s School, Holt

Mon 18 Nov-Fri 14 Dec – ‘Britten at the Forum’ – a major new audio visual presentation of people’s memories and experiences of Britten with a programme of supporting events, The Forum, Norwich.

Tues 19 November – ‘Into your satisfaction’ A presentation of Britten’s diaries and letters at the Auden Theatre, Gresham’s School, Holt

Wed 20 November – BBC Radio 3 Choral Evensong from Norwich Cathedral featuring Britten’s choral music

Saturday 23 November – Hymn to St Peter (written for St Peter Mancroft Church in Norwich) in a concert by North Norfolk Chorale at the Auden Theatre, Gresham’s School, Holt

Saturday 23 November – Mont Juic Suite – Wymondham Symphony Orchestra at Wymondham Abbey

(* There is also a major centenary weekend of events in and around Aldeburgh as well as performances at St Edmundsbury Cathedral and elsewhere in Suffolk – go to http://www.familiarfields.org for details)

Viva Voce singing and performance workshop

Saturday 29 June 2.30pm registration, 3pm rehearsal, 7.30pm concert
St Peter Mancroft Church, Norwich
Come and Sing
Mendelssohn Hear My Prayer
Handel Messiah Part III

Tickets to sing £6 inc scores, audience tickets £6
Singers must book in advance
To register interest email emma.woolfenden@googlemail.com

Sistema in Norwich concert Friday 5 July at Epic

Friday 5 July 7.30pm
Epic Studios, 114 Magdalen Street, Norwich NR3 1JD. ​

This concert is part of the new Young Norfolk Arts Festival 28 Jube-7th July – other events listed on a website here

A world first! At 7.30pm on Friday 5 July in Norwich, two Sistema orchestras will perform simultaneously through a live web stream.  Using state-of-the-art facilities at Epic Studios, the Sistema Norwich Martineau Orchestra will perform alongside children from Liverpool (over an internet link) and Lambeth. The programme includes pieces to commemorate Benjamin Britten’s centenary year. The Martineau Orchestra will be joined by a Quartet from the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra. ​This is a concert not to miss!​

Tickets are free but you have to book to reserve a seat. Book via this link which will take you to an Eventbrite booking page. If you book a seat and then can’t come, please release the booking or let us know so that someone else can come.

Sistema in Norwich is an independent programme inspired by the Venezuelan El Sistema approach, changing lives through music. Sistema in Norwich is a social change music education programme managed by Norwich & Norfolk Community Arts

The new Music in Norwich autumn 2012 – spring 2013 calendar is here!

music in norwich programme cover

A roundup of classical, world and jazz music in Norwich from September 2012 to April 2013

Music in Norwich

For a quick guide to January’s concerts, click here.

The Music in Norwich calendar is published twice a year – April and September. It is a comprehensive listing of classical music and jazz in and around Norwich. The calendar is produced by a partnership comprising: Britten Sinfonia, Norfolk and Norwich Festival, Norwich Theatre Royal, Norwich Philharmonic, Norwich Pops Orchestra, Norfolk and Norwich Chamber Music Society, St Peter Mancroft, Mozart Orchestra, Keswick Hall Choir, Norfolk County Youth Orchestra, Norwich Music Group, The Jay Singers, UEA School of Music, The Bach Players in Norwich, Viva Voce Singers, The Eaton Concert Series and Academy of St Thomas.

Look for the latest edition in the listings spinner racks, Norwich Tourist Information Centre and at major venues in the city. Each edition is a handy pocket-size to keep for six months of listings and also available as a download from this and members’ sites.

Download the Music in Norwich pdf through the link below

Music_in_Norwich Autumn 2012/13

Music in Norwich is a membership organisation coordinated by
The Shift Norwich www.theshiftnorwich.org.uk and Saffron Marketing.
Design and production is by Marion Catlin of Design Shift Norwich.