House of Monteverdi

House of Monteverdi
Spitalfields Music Festival 2017
St Leonard’s Church, Shoreditch
2 December 2017

Things have changed at Spitalfields Music, as the opening night of their annual Winter Festival demonstrated. They have traditionally concentrated on early and contemporary music and, to a certain extent, continue that focus, although the target audience now seems very different from previous years. For the first of their new-style Winter festivals, they have bought in an Artistic Curator, André de Ridder, a conductor who crosses musical borders, not least in his involvement with electronic and pop music. His concept was for a festival made up of a series of ‘mini-festivals’, combining different genres and musicians. The focus is on much younger composers and performers that hitherto. The opening mini-festival, House of Monteverdi, was a 4½ hour marathon featuring four featured young composers, together with the four members of the Hermes Experiment, who jointly composed one of their pieces. The four world premieres and two UK premieres were contrasted and alternated with (and were sometimes influenced by), extracts from Monteverdi’s Eighth Book of Madrigals – the Songs of Love and War.  Continue reading

Richard Campbell 60th Birthday Celebration

Richard Campbell 60th Birthday Celebration
Tregye Festival Players, Newe Vialles, Peter Harvey
Guildhall School of Music & Drama. 25 February 2016

RC1It was a mark of the respect that the viola da gamba player, Richard Campbell, is held that so many people came to the Guildhall School of Music & Drama to celebrate his 60th birthday. The evening also marked the presentation to the Guildhall School of a Lirone and a Bandorra from Richard’s own collection, both to be made available to any young musician for study and performance. The choice of two such unusual instruments was a nice reflection of Richard’s wide-ranging musical interests. Continue reading