Music in our Church

This page brings together news about our programme of lunchtime music recitals and evening concerts.

Lunchtime Recital Friday 6th May 2022 at 12.30 pm – Piano and Violin – Anna Le Hair & Arwen Newband

Programme:

Schubert Sonata in A major D 664

  1. Allegro moderato
  2. Andante
  3. Allegro

Kreisler Variations on Corelli’s La Folia

Rebecca Clarke – Midsummer Moon

 Not necessarily in that order!

Anna Le Hair is a pianist and piano teacher based in Tring, Hertfordshire. Anna gained an honours degree in music at Edinburgh University where she studied piano with Colin Kingsley, and harmony with Kenneth Leighton. Her postgraduate studies were at the Royal College of Music, London, where her professors included Peter Element and Hubert Dawkes.
Since then, Anna has enjoyed a busy and varied career as a performer, teacher, accompanist, adjudicator, conductor and ABRSM examiner. She gives regular performances both as a soloist and with her regular duo partners, and also as a chamber musician, playing in many venues in Britain and abroad. Anna has performed at many festivals in Britain, most recently in Kings Lynn, and including the Edinburgh Fringe and Buxton, where she was nominated for the title of ‘Performer of the Fringe’. She has also recently played at festivals in Spain and Croatia.  In February 2014, she gave a recital tour in New Zealand with her duo partner, the violinist Arwen Newband. The Icknield Trio (Anna, Arwen and Sarah) opened the Piano Trio Society’s Festival in Notting Hill last year, and are performing this summer in the St Lawrence Jewry summer Festival in the City of London.

Arwen Newband started to learn the violin at the age of 6. A New Zealander, she attended Auckland University where she studied with Mary O’Brien. She freelanced  with the Auckland Philharmonia  before gaining a scholarship which enabled her to study with Emanuel Hurwitz in London. She then embarked on a career which has included freelancing with various English orchestras as well as performing as a soloist and chamber musician.  She has performed concertos by Beethoven, Brahms, Dvorak, Khachaturian, Mozart, Bach and Vivaldi and has given many chamber music concerts, recently forming a duo with pianist Anna Le Hair, with whom she has recently returned from a Recital tour of New Zealand. She is also a  committed teacher, enjoying bringing the challenges of music to children (and adults) of all ages and abilities.

Lunchtime Recital Friday 1st April 2022 at 12.30 pm – Cello Recital: Molly Parsons-Gurr

Stainer’s Crucifixion by the Good Friday Choir – Friday the 15th April 2022, at 19.00

Lunchtime Recital by Michael Broadway – Friday 4th March at 12.30

Michael Broadway – Pianola

        Programme                                                                              

                                                   *************************

Michael Broadway has made a study of Pianola performance for over thirty years, and has played at the Purcell Room, the Barbican, St Paul’s Cathedral, Guildford Cathedral,  St John’s Smith Square and  Symphony Hall Birmingham, as well as broadcasting on Radio 3, Radio 4 and BBC1. Concerts abroad include Rome, Prague, Budapest, and in Venice for La Biennale di Venezia.

This afternoon he is playing his Orchestrelle Company ‘Push-Up’ Pianola of 1914, coupled to the church’s piano. Many would think this no different from listening to a CD; simply switch it on and it plays. Reproducing pianos such as the Duo-Art or the Ampico certainly do this, as they are operated by an electric motor, but the music rolls for those instruments have been recorded by a pianist, and therefore contain all dynamic and tempo changes encoded into the paper music roll.

Here we have something different. The rolls being played today were made as direct transcriptions of the musical score, note for note on to graph paper in a mathematical and mechanical way, and require the intervention of a player to coax a musical performance from the bare notes. If the roll were simply set going, all that would result would be an  a tempo rendition played at the same volume throughout, and the use of the pedals and levers on the instrument assist the player in avoiding this. Thus it is possible to explore the entire dynamic range of the piano being played, as well as subtle nuances of  tempo rubato.

Today’s performance, as with all live music, will be unique; in the hands (and feet) of another player, the same music could sound completely different.

For more information please visit http://www.pianola-part.freeuk.com                                                                                                                                                 

Lunchtime Recital by Gina Kruger – Friday 4th February 2022
at 12.30

Gina Kruger’s Recital Programme for 4th February 2022

Gabriel Fauré  1845-1924

 Faurè was eventually admired as the most important composer of his time in France.  He was influenced and encouraged by Saint-Saens. Eventually, Faurè devoted summers to composition as his duties, as an organist, and as Director of the Paris Conservatoire, left little creative time during the academic year.

  • Nocturne  In E- flat (Op.36 Number 4)
  • Impromptu  (Op.34 Number 3)

Debussy 1862-1918

One of the most influential composers of the 20th century, Debussy took inspiration from Eastern music, and stretched the harmonic boundaries of Western classical music with innovative use of harmonies and colours.  He did not see himself as an ‘Impressionist’ but aligned himself with the Symbolist poets. The first, well known work below is from Suite Bergamasque, after a poem by Paul Verlaine:

  • Clair de Lune
from Preludes:
  • La fille aux cheveux de lin   inspired by a poem by Leconte de Lisle
  • Ondine    The legend of the water-nymph, and her powers to seek revenge
  • Ce qu’a vu le vent d’Ouest  An impression of the violent wind, which was revolutionary writing  for the piano in  Debussy’s time. The title is inspired by a Hans Christian Andersen fairy tale “The Garden of Paradise”
  • Les Collines  d’Anacapri      Inspired by the village in Capri, with bells echoing through the hills

from Image:

  • Poisson D’Or  from an image of a fish on a Japanese lacquer panel

from Children’s Corner: (Pieceswritten for Debussy’s daughter Chou Chou).

  • Snow is Dancing

Olivier Messiaen  1908-1992

The organist and ornithologist who, continuing Debussy’s shift from conventional harmonic and melodic models, influenced scores of composers through his own musical language and his teaching, and saw music in colours. Integrating chant, new scale patterns, bird song, whilst using new rhythmic devices, Messiaen’s music, much loved (sometimes criticised), continues to mystify  audiences– as its foundations suggest it should .

  • X.  Regard de l’Esprit de Joie from Vingt Regard sur L’Enfant-Jesus    Contemplation of the Holy Spirit…a dance.

We were pleased to welcome Stephen Jones and his harpsichord back to kick off our Autumn series of Friday Lunchtime Recitals. In November we welcomed organist Ivan Linford.

Our next Lunchtime recital is on the 3rd December at 12.30 when we welcome back Gina Kruger with her colleague Orpheus Leander Papafilippou.

Our Covid-19 protocol for people wishing to come to the church for the recital

Although we have an event protocol in place to minimise Covid-19 infection risks we cannot guarantee your safety, but like many venues are trying to balance safety with ambiance. We are maintaining social distancing and mask wearing (please!) and would ask you to sanitise your hands, sign in and provide your contact telephone number.

Retiring Collection: There will be a plate inside the church for you to express your appreciation.

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