Gwent Chamber Orchestra
This was the final concert of our 2018 season and we were delighted, once again, to welcome the Gwent Chamber Orchestra to give it. This popular event is always very well attended and this year was no exception - we could not have seated many more in the church! The audience were more than rewarded with an exhilarating programme of music:
Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart - Symphony No. 1 in E♭ and, the highlight of the evening, a brilliant performance of his Sinfonia Concertante in E♭ , with the soloists the Leader and Conductor of the Orchestra, Julia Watkins (violin) and Stephen Broom (viola).
Peter Warlock - Capriol Suite
Joseph Haydn - Symphony No. 34 in D minor.
Our Artist in Residence, Philippine Sowerby, is very well known for her beautiful wooden sculptures and jigsaws and did us proud with a lovely and varied collection of works, which caused a great deal of interest and admiration. All in all, it was an excellent evening and our heartfelt thanks are due to all who made it such a success.
Zoltan Ensemble concert
Our concert from the Ensemble proved well-worth the wait (re-arranged from a date in March when there were deep snow drifts in the lane up to the church).
Lowri Porter (violin), Roz Gladstone (cello) and Nancy Johnson (viola) were joined by David Chadwick (violin). The programme began with Haydn String quartet Op. 76, no. 1 in G major, then Webern's lyrical Langsamer Satz. Lowri gave some background and re-assurance on this "non-scary" work—composed during a hiking trip with his wife-to-be. No caution needed; some of our most moving moments this year have been from 20th/21st century composers. And this beautiful work was no exception.
A skilled and energetic Beethoven String quartet, Op. 59 no. 2 in E minor brought this brilliant evening to a close.
Our Artist-in-residence Jane Bennett showed a selection of sea and landscape oil paintings, together with prints created from gelatine plates.
Trio Volant concert (JULY 2018)
We had a fine concert from Trio Volant, an interesting and varied programme, including Mozart and a Beethoven rare foray into woodwind work-Trio in C, op 87. Then there was a dazzling Trio by Polish-born, US refugee and post-war French citizen Alexandre Tansman—the 1st movement 'Dialogue' really demonstrated the church acoustic. The final piece was Cecelia McDowall's 'Century Dances'—which has five dances themed from 18th century Allemande via Tango to the contemporary Last Dance; the first occasion on which FCM concert-goers have been exorted 'If you did bring glow-sticks, now's your chance'. We missed out there… could have sold them during the interval.
Our next concert
Saturday, March 9th, 2019, 7:30pm
Sadly we have to report that the Severn Ensemble are now unable to perform at our first concert on 9th March, due to the illness of two members. We are grateful to them for letting us know at the earliest opportunity and wish them a speedy recovery.
We are delighted that Ruth Watson, the oboist, has been able to step in at short notice with Chamber Quoram—comprised of herself, Wendy Quinlan: flute and Jeremy Fisher: piano. All have played in Cwmdu before and we know we can look forward to an evening of excellent music. The programme will include The Fantasy on William Tell (after Rossini), a Trio by Madeleine Dring and some solo items. The full programme will be available shortly.
Artist-in-residence: Hannah Firmin — illustrator & printmaker. Well known for her book illustrations of, amongst others 'The No. 1 Ladies Detective' series.
Other local concerts
Friday, 8 February at 7.30 pm Richard Booth’s Bookshop, Hay-on-Wye
Robin Michael - cello (details)
Regular concerts and workshops (details).
BBC National Orchestra of Wales
Composition:Wales Open Workshop 14:00 Mon 18 Feb 2019 BBC Hoddinott Hall, Cardiff (details).
Watery Fun and Tragic Love. Roger Norrington conducts the London Philharmonic in two great classics of the English Baroque.
The community-owned Farmers Arms pub adjacent to the church is now offering a pre-concert menu, for details see https://www.cwmdu-music.org.uk/the-farmers-arms.
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If you'd like to promote our next concert, you can download a poster (A4 PDF) to print.
Support of the Church fabric
In 2017 St. Michael & All Angels, a Grade 2* listed building, received £800 in fees for our four concerts. In addition we will be able to donate a further £2500, for use in maintenance of the church fabric.