For the latest amateur classical music listings in and around Portsmouth, including Fareham, Petersfield, Chichester, Havant and Hayling Island

Boxgrove Choral Festival, 2-5 September 2021

The Beaufort Singers
Joseph Wicks

The Beaufort Singers are so excited to be back presenting the Boxgrove Choral Festival with a packed schedule of 7 live in-person events across 4 days at the beginning of September 2021.

Of those seven events, there will be three sung services and four concerts, all performed in the stunning Boxgrove Priory, nestled at the foot of the South Downs.

To kick things off on 2nd September, there will be a service of Choral Evensong featuring music by Gibbons, Howells, Stanford, Rachmaninov and Philip Moore. This is free to attend as are the other two services.

Friday 3rd September starts with a lunchtime Organ Recital given by Festival Director Joseph Wicks on the Priory’s fine 2-manual Hill organ. Later on, in the evening, The Beaufort Singers will present a short Renaissance Late concert performing music from the Spanish renaissance by Lobo and Victoria. This is then followed by an atmospheric candlelit service of Compline, featuring music by Owain Park, Neil Cox, Sheppard and Harris.

Next up on Saturday 4th September, we couldn’t be more excited to be presenting the hugely successful lockdown project, Isolation Songbook to what will be its first-ever live audience! Newly announced BBC New Generation Artist, the mezzo-soprano Helen Charlston, together with baritone Michael Craddock and pianist Alexander Soares will perform a selection from the songbook, a set of pieces they commissioned over lockdown in 2020 dealing with various moods and emotions brought up by the pandemic.

The Festival then culminates with the big Festival Concert. Our programme focuses on themes reflection, mourning, hope and joy, hopefully encapsulating some of the emotional whirlwind we’ve all been through during the last 18 months. From funeral music by Howells to ecstatic music for Easter by MacMillan, there is something for everyone in this concert.

In ending with a live-streamed Mass on the morning of Sunday 5th September, we are particularly delighted to welcome Christopher Robinson our special guest conductor to conduct the joint forces of The Beaufort Singers and Boxgrove Priory Choir in the final Te Deum by Vaughan Williams.

Tickets for the concerts and our Festival Pass can be purchased here:

Here can also be found more information about the Festival including the Covid safety regulations.

The Festival is also being filmed and will be presented to an online audience for the first time, with events premiering later in September.

We do hope you can join us for what promises to be a very special Boxgrove Choral Festival!

Trailer video link:

Rounding off Ports Fest 2021

The first weekend of July this year saw Ports Fest return to the city in the form of a three-day festival, comprising mainly of outdoor and free events to suit the current climate. Highlights included the face of the 2021 sea shanty revival, The Longest Johns, who headlined the opening concert on Friday night, and a splendidly engaging talk given specifically for Portsmouth schools by former children’s laureate Michael Rosen.

The long weekend also featured the work of many local artists, with several exhibitions and ‘open studio’ events taking place around the city, from Art Space Portsmouth, Aspex Portsmouth to Hotwalls Studios, Alice Hume’s Interactive Weaves and Portsmouth Cathedral being home to the Portsmouth Our Place exhibition. Saturday evenings show featured Duncan Sandilands who belted out the very best musical numbers alongside some of the best talent in Portsmouth.

Ports Fest hosted many workshops and performance opportunities for young people, perhaps most notably a collaboration between the London Mozart Players and various Portsmouth school choirs at the final sold-out concert on Sunday night.

The festival revolved around the theme ‘Remember, Reimagine, Reset’, and the events accordingly engaged with issues from protecting ocean wildlife with a performance by Circo Rum Ba Ba and their 50ft inflatable whale in the Guildhall Square, to remembering experiences of the pandemic through a multitude of art across the City.

Erica Smith the Festival Director “This year’s Ports Fest felt very different in lots of ways, but the vibe was incredibly powerful. We have had some amazing feedback about our events this year and so many people saying it is the first time they have been able to see live performance in so long. I am incredibly happy that we were able to go ahead and that’s with great thanks to our sponsors and partners who have supported us this year”.

Ports Fest 2022 will run between 30th June to 3rd July 2022.

Find out more about our ongoing vision at

SouthDowns Camerata Concert at St Mary’s, Liss

It’s what we’ve all been waiting for: the return of concerts to enjoy, after 15 months of restrictions.

Our resident group, SouthDowns Camerata, will perform Bach’s Brandenburg Concerto No. 3 (the Antiques Roadshow one) and Dvorak’s String Serenade at 4pm on Sunday, 18th July in St Mary’s Church, Liss.

Admission is FREE and there will be a collection as you leave.

As some Covid restrictions will still be in force, please would you RESERVE a seat by visiting the St Mary’s Church website. There’s a link  below.

The consolation of Bach at the Festival of Chichester

Pure, cathartic, reflective, they are also fantasy and adventure – and for cellist Pavlos Carvalho they have been an essential companion in life and even more so during the pandemic.

Pavlos is delighted to be returning to the Festival of Chichester once again this year to offer a concert of Bach Cello Suites. His solo recital will be in St Paul’s Church and Parish Centre on July 5 at 1pm.

As Pavlos says, the beauty and the perpetual sense of discovery that these solo cello suites bring with every performance have never ceased to capture the imagination of performers and listeners alike throughout the 300 years since they were composed.

Read more at the link below.

The sun will be shining as Ports Fest 2021 gets going

Ports Fest starts today for three days of music, art, talks, and workshops, providing something for everyone.

This year, we are delighted to be able to offer you a reduced but varied programme to suit the current climate, featuring Covid safe outdoor, online, and free events. If you are hoping to seek out some artistic and cultural stimulation this summer, we hope that Ports Fest 2021 will be your starting point today!

The festival kicks off today with several events for Portsmouth schools, including an online live talk from former children’s laureate Michael Rosen, and an opportunity for pupils to grapple with our theme by debating whether we should reset to normality after COVID-19. In the evening, we will welcome Slapstick Picnic to the beautiful gardens of Portsmouth Museum for a reimagining of The Importance of Being Earnest, as well as host the face of the 2021 sea shanty revival, The Longest Johns, for the start of our outdoors concerts.

Saturday morning will see Art Space Portsmouth opening their 33 artists’ studios and renowned gallery, after which visitors might like to wander over to Portsmouth Cathedral for their annual ‘Seafood on the Green’ rustic picnic lunch and also pop inside to the exhibition by local school children, who have been creating giant 3D jigsaw pieces of their community for Portsmouth Our Place. Circo Rum Ba Ba will take over the Guildhall Square with an enormous inflatable sperm whale for their interactive theatre production about protecting the seas and resetting the planet.

Saturday evening will see a musical extravaganza, featuring Duncan Sandilands from vocal quartet G4 as both host and performer.

Ports Fest 2021 will go out with a bang on Sunday evening, with the London Mozart Players closing our concert series, and an open-air film screening of the documentary Drop City.

More details of all these, and many, many more events can be found on our website We cannot wait to see you there! Tickets are selling fast, and we can’t guarantee on the door ticket sales so to pre book or call our box office on 0333 666 3366.

Ports Fest 2021 will run between Friday 2nd and Sunday 4th July.

Find out more about Ports Fest 2021 at


Exciting Festival of Chichester music series at the University

After the most frustrating and difficult of years, musicians at the University of Chichester will be getting the showcase they deserve as a new festival within the festival at this year’s Festival of Chichester.

The University of Chichester Conservatoire Summer season will bring together around 200 music students to give them some of the performance opportunities they have missed out on during the pandemic.

It is being organised by the University of Chichester’s head of orchestral studies Crispin Ward.

Events will be under the Giant Festival Canopy with the audience on the University’s Festival Field. Tickets through the Festival of Chichester.

Relates to:
Piers Adams with Orbita Baroque Orchestra, Sat 27 June
Acis and Galatea, Tues 30 June
Bond is Back: The Spectre Orchestra Play Bond, Fri 2 July

Read more at the link below.

Battleship Potemkin – the greatest film ever made?

Battleship Potemkin will be screened, in full, at the University’s Chichester Campus, in the Showroom on 25 June (was to be 5 March) at 7:30pm with a short introduction by Crispin Ward. The orchestral soundtrack uses a virtual orchestra of computer samples.

In 1925 Sergei Eisenstein was commissioned to produce a film celebrating the 20 years anniversary of the 1905 pre-revolution in Russia. His masterpiece, Battleship Potemkin, has become a cinematographic icon and remains one of the most influential films ever made.

The story follows the sailors of the Battleship Potemkin and their mutiny against the cruel captain and his sadistic officers. One of the most famous scenes, the massacre in Odesa, during which the baby carriage tumbles down the steps, has been much quoted by subsequent film-makers.

Eisenstein developed his theories of montage during the shooting of Potemkin, which are still to be seen in film making technique today. The quick-moving shots create a rhythm and tension that catapult the action forward and even today the exhilaration and excitement can be felt despite the fact it is shot in black and white, with no sound.

Crispin Ward, Senior Lecturer in Orchestral Studies at the University of Chichester Conservatoire, has had an obsession with the film for 30 years. He suggested a screening as part of the 1996 Southwark Festival on HMS Belfast. Even then he wanted a new musical score to be produced. Eisenstein himself had suggested that a new score might be produced every 20 years or so to keep the film fresh. “I have never been satisfied with the music put to Potemkin. The premier, at the Bolshoi Theatre in Moscow, was shown to Tchaikovsky and Beethoven.”
For the Berlin premiere in 1926 a bespoke score for small orchestra was commissioned and Edmund Meisel wrote an ambitious and effective accompaniment. Later offerings by various other composers, including a patchwork of the music of Shostakovich, have had varying degrees of success.

Over the past 25 years, Crispin has built a strong musical relationship with Eastern Europe, conducting in Russia, Ukraine and Moldova on many occasions. He believes that his in-depth knowledge of East European orchestral music puts him in a strong position to understand what is needed in the composition of a new and innovative score for this masterpiece.

The Organ Project: Organ Recital Series – Anthony Froggatt

Our 2021 monthly Organ Recital series continues with a LIVE recital given by Anthony Froggatt on 1 July.

Anthony Froggatt is a former Organist and Master of the Choristers at Portsmouth Cathedral, having previously started his cathedral career as Sub-Organist at Guildford Cathedral. At Portsmouth, over a period of thirteen years, he made many television and radio broadcasts with the choir and several highly acclaimed recordings.

He has given recitals in many British cathedrals, including St. Paul’s, St. Alban’s, Southwark, Coventry and York Minster, and is a percussionist with Southern Pro Musica. He has examined in many countries worldwide for ABRSM, most recently to Singapore and the USA. In 2000 and 2007 he directed the choir at Magdalen College, Oxford, as Acting Organist.

He has recorded two popular albums of organ and violin music with the Japanese violinist, Fuminori Shinozaki, on the Akane label. The first, Resonate Eternally, in Chichester Cathedral, and the second, Flourish Eternally, in Magdalen College Chapel, Oxford.

Please do join us in-person at St Mary’s Church, Portsea, and enjoy the opportunity to hear Anthony perform on our temporary digital organ, installed to support worship and recitals during the historic restoration of our 1889 J.W. Walker & Sons pipe organ.

Book your FREE ticket online now:

Ports Fest 2021 Goes Live on 2-4 July – It’s Time to Remember, Reimagine, Reset

From 2– 4 July, Ports Fest will invite audiences to Remember, Reimagine, Reset with a festival of music, art, talks, and workshops, providing something for everyone.

Ports Fest is Portsmouth’s most established annual curated multi-arts festival. This year, we are delighted to be able to offer you a reduced but varied programme to suit the current climate, featuring outdoor, online, and free events. If you are hoping to seek out some artistic and cultural stimulation this summer, we hope that Ports Fest 2021 will be your starting point!

The festival kicks off on Friday 2nd July with several events for Portsmouth schools, including an online live talk from former children’s laureate Michael Rosen, and an opportunity for pupils to grapple with our theme of Remember, Reimagine, Reset by debating whether we should reset to normality after COVID-19. In the evening, we will welcome Slapstick Picnic to the beautiful gardens of Portsmouth Museum for a reimagining of The Importance of Being Earnest, as well as host the face of the 2021 sea shanty revival, The Longest Johns, for a concert in the PGS Quad.

Saturday morning will see Art Space Portsmouth opening their 33 artists’ studios and renowned gallery, after which visitors might like to wander over to Portsmouth Cathedral for their annual ‘Seafood on the Green’ rustic picnic lunch. In the afternoon, the author and journalist Will Self will be giving a live talk, whilst Circo Rum Ba Ba will take over the Guildhall Square with an enormous inflatable sperm whale for their interactive theatre production about protecting the seas and resetting the planet. Saturday evening will see a musical extravaganza, featuring Duncan Sandilands from vocal quartet G4 as both host and performer.

On Sunday, visitors might like to make the most of our many events running throughout the festival, such as the thought-provoking exhibition, In Search of Chemozoa at Aspex Gallery. Later, television presenter Michaela Strachan will join us live from South Africa to talk about her work spanning over three decades.

Ports Fest 2021 will go out with a bang on Sunday evening, with the London Mozart Players closing our concert series, and an open-air film screening of the documentary Drop City.

More details of all these, and many, many more events can be found on our website, We can’t wait to see you there!

Tickets go on sale Monday 24 May.

Read a review of Ports Fest.

Chichester Music Society: Tanya Ursova (piano) & Anna Gorbachyova (soprano)

I am delighted to confirm that our next event with Anna Gorbachyova-Ogilvie (soprano) and Tanya Ursova (piano) will be going ahead as planned on Wednesday 9th June at 7.30pm.

As previously advised, arrangements have been made to live stream the concert in the University Chapel. The event will take place before a socially distanced audience in line with current UK Government regulations. Current regulations mean that all those intending to come to the concert will need to book in advance. Members will be given priority and should email Elizabeth Brooks (or phone her using the mobile number below) as soon as possible. Friends and visitors may book seats at £15 and payment in advance will be required using direct bank transfer wherever possible. It will not be possible to purchase tickets at the door. Seats may be limited and will be allocated on a ‘first come, first served’ basis.

To reserve seats/purchase tickets please contact:

Elizabeth Brooks (Membership Secretary)
Phone: 07973 410407

Once again the livestream will be carried by the University’s in-house system, ‘Chiplayer’. Click on the link below and it will take you straight to the livestream. If you click into the link before the livestream starts you will be taken to the site and it will say “this page will refresh when the webcast starts”. The concert will begin at 7.30 and once you have linked onto the site, no further action is required.

I do hope that you will enjoy this live-streamed event, which will be recorded and be available on ‘chiplayer’ for the following 4 weeks.

Chantry Quire: There is Sweet Music – cancelled


Celebrating the return to live performance with a programme of madrigals, motets and partsongs, from Byrd and Morley, via Finzi and Vaughan Williams to Skempton and MacMillan.

Saturday 3rd July, 7.30 pm

St Mary’s Church, Causeway, Horsham RH12 1HE

Tickets £12; programmes free. Book online via, or email or phone 01243 779707 to reserve.

Chantry Quire is looking to recruit two basses in time for this concert.

Angelina Kopyrina: Rachmaninov Lecture Recital

Angelina Kopyrina presents a lecture-recital on Rachmaninov’s first piano sonata in D minor, op.28, its history, background and influences on Thursday 13 May 2021 at 7.30pm.

She plays Rachmaninov’s Piano Sonatas on Tuesday 11 May.

Click the link below then.

Portsmouth Chamber Music Series: a virtual May festival

We end our rather sorry 2020-21 chamber music season on a slightly brighter note!

You may know that our concerts are made possible by Sheffield-based Music in the Round, which each year hosts a May Festival. This year, for the usual reason, it has to be a virtual one, but this has allowed us to team up with them and offer our Doric Quartet concert as part of it. It will be a different (shorter) programme, but will be ‘live’ from the Guildhall, at 7pm (note early starting time) on Wednesday 12th May. It will be free to watch, though donations are encouraged.
Those unable to watch it ‘live’ will be able to watch any time up until the end of May.

For more information, please see the link below, and for the whole festival programme, all of which you can watch, please open this document (0.2 MB PDF): 70 MitR May Festival

We are still hoping that our postponed Ensemble 360 concert scheduled for Monday 14th June, will be able to go ahead not just ‘live’, but with lots of you in attendance. We are fortunate that the very large size of the auditorium means that social distancing is easy to organise. Tickets will be unreserved at the point of booking, but I will subsequently allocate seating together with the box office staff.

For booking and programme details please see below. The box office is open for in-person bookings, or you can phone 023 9387 0200.

Angela Zanders: a new online “Music in England” course

Angela Zanders (B.Mus., L.T.C.L.) is setting up a new online music appreciation course entitled ‘Music in England’ starting on 19 April 2021.

I have been lecturing in Music Appreciation for over 30 years and take great pleasure in bringing classical music alive for those with little or no knowledge of it, setting composers and musical performances in their historical context and reading contemporary accounts of musical life and personalities. My aim is to provide greater knowledge and appreciation of the music people enjoy listening to, and I use PowerPoint slides as well as audio and video examples to illustrate my talks.

My new course, ‘Music in England’, will trace the music of both native and foreign composers over the centuries, highlighting the different sacred and secular contexts in which music was composed, produced and performed.

The course takes place on zoom over 10 weeks on a Monday afternoon or a Wednesday morning and is open to anyone who is interested to know more on the subject. Please see the flyer below for more details of dates and fees and please do not hesitate to contact me with any queries.

Angela Zanders Music in England course

Mondays 16.00 – 17.30 GMT
April 19th, 26th; May 10th, 17th, 24th; June 7th, 14th, 21st, 28th; July 5th


Wednesdays 10.00 – 11.30 GMT
April 21st, 28th; May 12th, 19th, 26th; June 9th, 16th, 23rd, 30th; July 7th

PCU presents Covid Island Discs

Read a review.

Join us on Zoom – Tuesday 30 March 2021, 7.30pm
Guest: Jonathan Wilcocks
Interviewed by: David Gostick

For Zoom details please email:

In these troubled times, there is one place Covid-19 hasn’t reached – the island that’s the Island of Desert Island Discs. So, with no permission from the BBC, we’re going to send off our esteemed former conductor Jonathan Willcocks into even greater isolation, and see what discs he would take with him. Through the magic of Zoom he will talk with his successor, David Gostick, about his musical life, and share some treasured recordings. All are welcome.

If you are not a member and would like to make a donation (suggested amount £5) in support of this event and of the PCU, please use the bank details below
Sort 40-52-40
AC 00004433
With the reference “DesertIslandDiscs”

If you would like to join the PCU mailing list to hear about all our future musical events please e-mail Your information will be held securely and not shared with other organisations. You will receive the next annual concert brochure and invitations for any events organised by PCU.

Pianist Maria Luc offers Chichester Cathedral recital

Maria Luc, who usually plays regularly at Chichester Cathedral, has come back to record the last concert of Chichester Cathedral’s lunchtime concert series after almost a year of silence.

Maria is delighted to be back in the cathedral with a programme of the complete Chopin Preludes Op.28 on a Yamaha grand piano on Tuesday 23 March at 1300.

“Although the concert is online, the video depicts the wonderful interiors of the Cathedral. The video will also be able to view after the premiere alongside previous concerts on the Chichester Cathedral Live YouTube Channel.”

Read more at the link below.

The Organ Project: Organ Recital Series – Chris Milburn

Our 2021 monthly Organ Recital series continues with a LIVE virtual recital given by Chris Milburn on 15 April.

Chris Milburn first played an organ at the age of 8 and was hooked, first playing for a church service at 9. He was the full time church organist for St Bridget’s, Brean, by the age of 10. Chris continued in this role until going to university.

Chris was lucky enough to later learn on Wells Cathedral Organ, quickly finding that you could bribe vergers (with cake) to lock you in the cathedral for an hour or so in the evening. Chris continued to play whilst at university and found it was a great source of Sunday lunches with the church locals!

Chris spent his industrial year at ARE Portsdown and joined the choir of St Mary’s Church, Portsea. He also played for several services and most of the weddings during that year, and still gets invited to play for the odd service which is a great privilege. Chris is looking forward to entertaining a remote crowd with an unconventional repertoire at this organ recital!

Please do join us online LIVE and enjoy the opportunity to hear an alternative soundscape from our temporary digital organ, installed to support worship during the interregnum of our J.W. Walker & Sons pipe organ.

Watch the recital online at 7.30pm on 15 April.
Don’t forget to view our restoration photo gallery online here *updated weekly*:


Chantry Quire Passiontide Meditation 30 March 2021

For several years now the Chantry Quire has performed an annual Passiontide Meditation – a programme of music and thought-provoking readings – in Boxgrove Priory.

The concert has been sponsored by Rathbones, which has enabled us to give the proceeds to support the Aldingbourne Trust, a local charity that does remarkable work with young disabled people; over the years the choir has raised over £5000 for the Trust.  As those of you who have attended previous performances will recall, we have always included a short presentation from a member of Aldingbourne’s staff, and from one of their young clients themselves, to remind us what it’s all about. We feel a special connection with the Trust as the mother of two of our singers was instrumental in setting it up.

But of course Covid-19 has changed everything.  We had to cancel last year’s concert, and we won’t be able to perform this year’s either – or not in the normal way.   We did, however, want to honour our commitment both to Aldingbourne and to Boxgrove.  So our musical director, Peter Allwood, came up with the idea of performing a rather shorter programme of music and readings, which we would all record separately at home, and then have combined – by technical wizardry – into a single video concert.

We are giving it our best efforts: learning the music, following the guide tracks pre-recorded by a group of four young soloists at the beginning of their careers so as to get our timing exactly right, and then recording ourselves at home.  It feels very strange, but it is still wonderful to get back singing together, even if virtually.

This all costs money, of course – the soloists, the musical director and the video producer all need to be paid.  So we appealed to everyone we could think of for help, and the response was amazing!  In fact, we have raised more than we needed, from more than 30 different sponsors – local companies, friends and family, choir members past and present …   We are so grateful to everyone who has helped to make our video dream a reality.

The video will actually be launched at 6pm on the Tuesday of Holy Week, 30th March.  You will be able to access it via the Chantry Quire website, so do please watch it, either then or later – it will remain freely available.  It will include a short introduction from Aldingbourne, and viewers will of course be warmly encouraged to make a generous donation to the Trust.  You may even spot – among the postage-stamp-sized faces – a few faces you recognise!

Chichester Cathedral lunchtime concerts resume

At 1pm on Tuesday 23rd February, Chichester Cathedral’s weekly lunchtime concert series will resume, online, for five weeks. Details of programmes and performers can be found on the cathedral website or by downloading the Chichester Cathedral spring 2021 lunchtime programme.

Each concert will be preceded by a short talk on the programme led by the Cathedral’s assistant organist Tim Ravalde. You can register for these by following this link: Register for pre-concert talks on Zoom.

Future concerts:
Tuesday 23 February, 1.00pm – Charles Harrison, organ – watch this on YouTube
Tuesday 2 March 2021, 1.00pm – Tim Ravalde, organ – watch this on YouTube
Tuesday 9 March 2021, 1.00pm – David Alexander, piano – watch the pre-concert talk and watch the recital
Tuesday 16 March 2021, 1.00pm – Louise Salmond Smith, recorder, and Charles Harrison, piano – watch the pre-concert talk by Louise and watch the recital
Tuesday 23 March 2021, 1.00pm – Maria Luc, piano

Tim says, “We look forward to welcoming our community and beyond back to the Cathedral’s Nave for the irreplaceable experience of enjoying live music in person. Until then, we invite you to join us online for music by Bach, Beethoven, Chopin, Debussy, Franck, Handel, Liszt, Mendelssohn, Telemann, Widor and more.”

The Organ Project: Organ Recital Series – Brian Moles

Our 2021 monthly Organ Recital series continues with a recital given by Brian Moles on March 4th, which will premiere on our YouTube channel at 19.30.

Brian Moles is Director of Music at St Mary’s Church, Portsea. His work as an accompanist covers a variety of fields, from classical to popular; accompanying solo recitals through to forming and leading bands in shows for theatre in all different genres. As an organist and recitalist, he is often in demand, most recently playing at Durham Cathedral. His work as a composer and arranger is widespread, with a variety of works for sacred and non-sacred genres, performing across the UK and abroad.

Our J.W. Walker & Sons pipe organ is currently being restored by Nicholson & Co. Ltd, and we hope to celebrate its re-dedication in late 2021. We still have some way to go on our fundraising; please consider sponsoring a pipe:


This recital will use the New English Hymnal as a starting point. Churches like St Mary’s, Portsea, would normally resound to the strains of great and glorious hymnody during the church year, with congregations and choir in chorus with the organ, singing the great songs of old throughout the seasons. Unfortunately that isn’t possible at present, so Brian Moles presents a different way of approaching these familiar tunes and melodies.

As with the New English Hymnal, this recital takes us on a journey from Advent, through Christmas and Epiphany, into Lent, Passiontide and Easter.

St Richard Singers: Virtual Come & Sing Stainer’s Crucifixion

Here we are in a New Year with new challenges, almost a full year after we entered the first national lockdown! Things are definitely looking up now with vaccines available and some of you possibly having received a first dose. Unfortunately, in-person gatherings and concert performances appear still some way off. However, we have a treat for you this Lent.

Last year we planned a ‘Come & Sing’ with Stainer’s Crucifixion at the end of March. It had to be called off to everyone’s disappointment just a few weeks before the event. Having sampled the possibilities, and indeed opportunities, which virtual music-making has to offer with our Christmas Carols project (now up on our very own YouTube channel), we would like to invite you to our first Virtual Come & Sing Stainer’s Crucifixion.

If you wish to be part of this project, and enjoy singing a few familiar pieces of great music, please head to our website for more information and payment details.

For £5 you can join SRS for this Virtual Performance of some pieces from Stainer’s ever-popular work in your own time and at your own pace. Please encourage others to join in, as we are no longer limited by time and space.

The edited “performance” will be released online on Palm Sunday, 28 March, exactly a year after the original planned event would have taken place. Once your payment has been received (BACS or cheque) the resources and instructions will be made available to you. Any profits will go to Parkinson’s Disease Association.

Think of the finished product as a TV programme that features yourself which you can re-play and re-play, and which will thrill & impress family & friends the world over.

If you have any question prior to booking, please use the contact form on our website. Please also revisit our website for further updates regarding the Festival of Chichester 2021.

We hope to “see” you at our virtual Come & Sing. Stay Safe and Keep Singing!

Read about Sachin Gunga, MD of St Richard Singers.

Live online music appreciation course: exploring the music of Brahms – 13 February 2021

With Roy Stratford.

Johannes Brahms stands outside the mainstream of the Romantic movement. His music is a fascinating combination of traditional forms and powerful, romantic harmony, often creating a profound emotional effect in his chamber music repertoire.

In many ways, Johannes Brahms stands outside the mainstream of the Romantic Movement. His interests lay far more in abstract music, sonatas, symphonies, variations and concertos rather than opera or program music, although he did, of course, compose many wonderful Lieder.

His music is a fascinating combination of traditional forms and powerful, romantic harmony, the often-profound emotional effect that his music exerts perhaps arises from the tension between these two forces. On this course you will look at the huge range of his output with particular emphasis on his extraordinary contribution to chamber music.

Roy Stratford was very lucky to have had a music teacher at school who had been a student of the great Austrian modernist composer Anton Webern and who inspired in him a great love of music and a particular interest in the Austro-Germanic tradition from Bach to Stockhausen. He went on to study music at Reading University and then the Royal College of Music ( conducting with Norman del Mar) and has since developed a very varied musical career as pianist, conductor, composer and lecturer.

Visit the link below for the exact timings and costs.

Festival of Chichester: The Festive Jazz Café

Each December, the Festival of Chichester puts on an exciting evening of jazz and readings to celebrate the Christmas season and to raise much-needed funds to kickstart next summer’s festival. All the performers are giving their services free so if you enjoy the festive fun, please consider making a small donation.

This year, it is going virtual.

You can enjoy online fantastic jazz from The Dream Duo, Julian Marc Stringle (vocals and clarinet) with Dominic Ashworth (guitar) plus stimulating Greek-influenced jazzy sounds from Pavlos Carvalho with Rebetiki Serenata.

Guest poet is Romani writer Raine Geoghegan, plus dramatized readings from A Christmas Carol by Gareth Williams – film/TV/stage actor and ex-singer with the million-selling group The Flying Pickets….remember Only You? That’s Gareth! Also featuring actress Paula Tinker with festive readings.

Come back to the page linked below on Friday 11th December for a 7.30pm première. All the performances will be available to view throughout the rest of December.

Freelance Musician Mums launch Musical Advent Calendar

Freelance musician mothers have come together to create a uniquely beautiful, socially-distanced musical gift featuring exclusive content and spreading seasonal joy. Gift a musical advent calendar to a friend and get yours for free while also supporting freelance musicians.

Advent is a magical time, full of lights, decorations, bakery, anticipation … and yes, music! In this time we would usually hear seasonal music everywhere, played by buskers in the street, in every shop we enter, in the schools’ nativity plays and in pantomimes, the choir and carol concerts as well as the big seasonal favourites like Messiah and the Nutcracker Ballet. This year it will be different. But while you might not be able to go to the music, we think the music should still happen – directly into your home.

A collective of freelance musicians have come together to create a musical advent calendar that you can purchase for yourself and a friend for £24.99. Once you have obtained your membership, every day a video clip of music will become available behind the day’s window and will remain there to be viewed for 3 months. You will find everything from carol arrangements over fun 1920’s Christmas tunes to excerpts from the big Christmas oratorios. Musicians featured include an award-winning concert pianist, a West End star, a Royal Opera House soprano, instrumentalists from some of the UK’s leading orchestras, new and established ensembles and a few fun surprises.

For musicians, this is usually the busiest season of the year, but most work calendars have been wiped clean since March for the foreseeable future. The idea was born within the supportive community of musician mums who in the best times face the daily challenge of combining flexible work with family, and in times like this are often less eligible for financial support due to maternity leaves and missed incomes. So for us, this is a way to keep connecting to our audiences and keep sharing the joy we usually associate with Christmas while also providing a small income for all performers involved. By purchasing the calendar as a gift which will then automatically become available for yourself too, you are supporting musicians through this time of crisis.

Head to to get a sneak preview of December 1st, find out more about the performing musicians in the blog and to purchase your membership.

Whether you gift this to a child learning an instrument or your parents or friends whom you can’t visit right now, this gift is guaranteed to spread joy and fun for the whole of December and beyond, and will be a beautiful – and environmentally friendly! – gesture to make your loved ones feel your care every day even across wider distances.

Thank you so much for your support. Happy Christmas to you all!

Lunchtime live recital by Karen Kingsley at St Thomas’ Cathedral

Watch Karen playing on St Thomas’ Cathedral’s Facebook page, see link below.

Karen’s programme consists of two piano sonatas by Ludwig van Beethoven. Firstly, his Sonata in F minor, Op. 2 no. 1 (Allegro – Adagio – Menuetto and Trio – Prestissimo). Secondly, his Sonata in E, Op. 109 (Vivace ma non troppo – Adagio espressivo – Prestissimo – Andante Molto cantabile ed espressivo).

Chichester Music Society: David Owen Norris: ‘A path of his own discovery’: Beethoven at the piano

Wed 9 Dec 2020 7:30pm, Chapel of the Ascension, Bishop Otter Campus, University of Chichester. Links below.

David Owen Norris is a pianist, composer and broadcaster. He won the Prize of the City of Geneva in the Geneva Competition, and the Accompanist’s Prize at Leeds; and since his appointment to the prestigious Gilmore Artist Award, has performed all across the world, with four appearances in the BBC Proms, concert tours of Europe, Australia and North America, including performances at Sydney Opera House, the Kennedy Centre, Lincoln Centre, Ravinia Festival Chicago, the South Bank Centre etc. and a discography of 60 commercial CDs including his own Piano Concerto with the BBC Concert Orchestra, and his oratorio Prayerbook. His other compositions include a Symphony, a Piano Sonata, the oratorio Turning Points, and the multi-media tribute to the passing seasons, HengeMusic.

His Chord of the Week programmes on BBC2 television were a popular feature of the Proms for six years. His Perfect Pianists is often shown on BBC4. He has contributed to programmes on Parry, Vaughan Williams, Mendelssohn & Elgar, including ninety minutes on BBC2 dedicated to Elgar’s Piano Concerto, with a full, filmed performance with the BBCSO. His first TV presentation, The Real Thing? from 1990, was hailed by the Daily Telegraph as ‘the most literate and probing programme on music for many years’, and his most recent Chord of the Week was reviewed by the Observer as ‘the most consistently intelligent three minutes you’ll watch on this or any other television this year’. The Beethoven 9 app for which he wrote the book and the analyses won the Best Music App Award.

His many radio presentations have included the Playlist series on Radio 4, and In Tune and The Works on radio 3, where he made his 28th appearance on Building a Library last December. Recordings recently released include Mozart on fortepiano for Hyperion, featured in the New York Times, and the complete Chamber Music of Grace Williams, which was a Guardian CD of the Week. He will shortly conclude his complete survey of Sir Arthur Sullivan’s songs on Chandos.

In this evening’s lecture/recital David Owen Norris begins by tracing the development of Beethoven’s stylistic traits from the variations: triple-time Adagios, such a metrical minefield for performers throughout his work; the ridiculous jokes, the baffling dynamic shifts, the exploitation of each end of the keyboard, even the boldness of tonality – all is here in embryo.

He then turns his attention to Beethoven’s two most remarkable sonatas composed before deafness put an end to his performing career: the Sonate Pathétique, Op. 13 (1799) and the Fantasy-Sonata Op.27 No.2 (1802 – the Moonlight Sonata). Op.13 shows us how Beethoven’s pianism came out of his harpsichord playing – the first edition describes it as being ‘for harpsichord or pianoforte’, and Beethoven arranged many of its details with that in mind. The Moonlight, from the same year as the Heiligenstadt Testament, Beethoven’s open letter of despair to the world, can be read as a personal response to the onset of deafness – it is dedicated to the pupil he had hitherto hoped to marry.

Preview: Chichester Music Society: Martino Tirimo & Atsuko Kawakami Piano Duo: ‘The Dance in Music’

Wednesday 11 November via livestream – concert details.

Due to the Covid crisis, the concert on 11th November with the Rosamunde Trio has had to be postponed as two of their members have not been able to travel from the US. However, we are delighted that Martino Tirimo (the Trio’s pianist and leader) and his brilliant student Atsuko Kawakami will be giving a recital for piano duo instead. The pair will be playing a very attractive programme of music entitled ‘The Dance in Music’, and includes music by Brahms (St. Anthony Variations) and Tchaikovsky (Nutcracker Suite).

Martino has asked that this evening’s concert be dedicated to the memory of our late Treasurer, Chris Coote. Chris had known Martino for many years through the masterclasses at Morley College and had invited him to perform for CMS with the Rosamunde Trio.

Regarded by both critics and fellow artists as one of today’s most distinguished musicians, Martino Tirimo’s career started early. From age eight he was performing Concertos and at twelve conducted seven complete performances of ‘La Traviata’, with οrchestra and soloists from La Scala, Milano. Born in Cyprus into a musical family, he first studied piano and violin with his father, a distinguished violinist and opera conductor. After winning the Liszt Scholarship to the Royal Academy of Music in London, he studied there and graduated with the highest honours, winning all prizes. He completed his studies in Vienna and finally with Gordon Green, whom he regarded as his greatest mentor. Victories at the international competitions in Munich and Geneva launched his international career.

In 2010 alone, he gave more than 100 concerts including the complete works of Chopin at London’s Kings Place, described by critics as “a colossal feat”. His playing is often compared to that of Schnabel, Arrau, Rubinstein and other great pianists. He has performed all over the world with most major orchestras such as the Vienna Philharmonic, Dresden Staatskapelle, Leipzig Gewandhaus, Cleveland Orchestra, London Symphony, Philharmonia and numerous others and has worked with such conductors as Barbirolli, Boult, Bychkov, Marriner, Masur, Norrington, Rattle and Kurt Sanderling.

His numerous recordings for EMI, Warner, BMG, Nimbus and other companies include the complete works of Mozart, Debussy, Janacek, Schubert’s 21 Sonatas and the Concertos of Brahms, Chopin, Mozart, Rachmaninov and Tippett (with composer conducting), with London Philharmonic, Philharmonia, BBC Philharmonic and Prague Chamber orchestras. In 1995 he won a Gold Disc for his Rachmaninov Concerto No.2 and ‘Paganini’ Rhapsody, one of EMI’s best-sellers.

As conductor he worked closely with the Dresden Philharmonic over many years, and also worked with orchestras such as the English Chamber, Academy of St. Martin in the Fields and Prague Chamber. His compositions include the film score for the ‘Odyssey’. In 2002 he founded the Rosamunde Trio, which has since concertized widely in Europe and the US. He also works with talented young pianists and twelve of his students have won first prizes at international competitions. Moreover, he is in demand for masterclasses worldwide, most recently at festivals in Japan, China, the USA and Italy.

His enormous repertoire embraces 80 Concertos and nearly the entire major solo works of the great composers. He is particularly famous for his Schubert interpretations, having given the first-ever cycle of all the Sonatas at London’s South Bank and many other series at Wigmore Hall and Kings Place, devoted to all the composer’s major works. His edition of the 21 Sonatas in three volumes is published by Wiener Urtext Edition.

Other notable events include many series devoted to Mozart’s complete piano works, Beethoven’s 32 Sonatas and all of Chopin’s and Debussy’s works. With the Rosamunde Trio he has performed all the Mozart, Beethoven, Mendelssohn, Brahms, Dvorak and Shostakovich Piano Trios. In 2016, engagements included a five-concert festival in London comprising all the great Piano Quintets, in collaboration with five distinguished String Quartets. Of numerous festival appearances, memorable was his Beethoven Concerto No.4 during the Olympic period in Athens with the Vienna Philharmonic. At that time, he also had the honour of running with the Olympic torch, perhaps the first classical musician to do so. In recent years his tours have also included concerts in Asia, notably China and Japan. In 2011 he was awarded the Nemitsas Foundation Prize for Excellence in the Arts and Sciences.

In October 2019 Hänssler Classic released the first-ever complete recording of Beethoven’s entire Piano Solo Works on the modern piano. The boxed set of 16 CDs, all of which he recorded at the Leipzig Gewandhaus, comprises more than 20 hours of music and includes many fine pieces which are little-known and rarely-played, like the many elegant Dances. Gramophone has already welcomed it as “a major recorded achievement” and the French magazine Artamag as “a unique collection” and singled out “a staggering Hammerklavier”.

The Spectator, in an article comparing all recordings of the Beethoven Sonatas, concluded that “one new cycle sweeps all before it” and that this is “surely the greatest recorded achievement of this anniversary year.”

The Daily Telegraph has characterized him as “a pianist of vision” and “an inspiring poet of the piano” and ‘Musical Opinion’ described him as “a true giant of the keyboard”. In Music and Vision, critic Bill Newman simply wrote: “Tirimo’s playing belongs to a past generation of ‘greats’. Listening to him, I conjure up aural images of Solomon, Arrau, Kempff, Schnabel and Rubinstein. Throughout the evening, one was consistently aware that this supreme musician placed himself entirely at the service of the composer.”

In the last few years Atsuko Kawakami has been making a name for herself as a brilliant pianist of great sensitivity. Born in Sapporo, Japan, she started learning the piano at the age of three when she entered the Yamaha Music School. As a child she won several first and other prizes at the prestigious PTNA (Piano Teachers National Association) Competitions in Japan.

In 1999 she entered the Tokyo College of Music and during her studies she also took part in a number of masterclasses in Europe, including at the Salzburg Mozarteum and the Nice Academy. She later graduated with honours and a PGDip from the Royal Academy of Music, where she studied with Diana Ketler and also Clifford Benson in chamber music. She completed her studies with Martino Tirimo at Trinity Laban Conservatoire of Music and Dance, again graduating with distinction.

In chamber music she has performed with a number of distinguished violists, cellists, flautists, clarinettists and singers, giving numerous concerts. In 2008 she was a finalist at the Khurau International Flute and Piano competition in Ulzen, Germany, and since then has performed with several different flautists in the UK and Japan.

In the last few years she has also performed extensively as solo pianist, both in her native Japan and England, in a wide variety of repertoire from Scarlatti to Takemitsu. She took part in the Beethoven 32 Piano Sonatas project at St.Barnabas in London, and recent concerts included recitals at Kings Place, Royal Birmingham Conservatoire, London School of Economics, Steinway Hall, Yamaha Chapell Hall, St. James’s Piccadilly, Cheltenham Town Hall, Kendall Town Hall and for many other music clubs in the UK. In 2014, at St. Sepulchre-without-Newgate in London, she performed the Schumann Piano Concerto with exceptional success.

She has particular empathy with the music of Scriabin, Prokofiev and Ravel and her recent performances of works like Albéniz’s ‘Iberia’ and Ravel’s ‘La Valse’ have stimulated great audience excitement. Also, since 2016 she has given a great number of two-piano and four-hand concerts with Martino Tirimo, including one at the Aegean Arts International Festival, Parnassos Hall in Athens, Kypria International Festival in Cyprus, Kings Place in London, Royal Birmingham Conservatoire, and at the opening concert of the 2019 Brahms Festival in Trinity Laban Conservatoire of Music in London. The Arts Desk has described her as “a first-class musician”.


Still chance to catch Petworth Festival Autumn Special online

Petworth Festival rose to the challenge of the toughest of times to pull off a hugely successful autumn special.

“Somehow we made it happen and boy was it good”, says artistic director Stewart Collins. The live part of the festival concluded last Sunday night. “At any point over the last six months we could have had the rug pulled from underneath us as we went in and out of various levels of lockdown or Covid-based restriction, but remarkably we have been able to stage and stream all 26 of our events problem-free and received the most gratifying amount of support and appreciation as a result.

Read more at the link below.

London Mozart Players Ensemble set to open 2020 Petworth Festival

The curtain rises on this autumn’s special edition of the Petworth Festival with a celebration of Beethoven’s 250th anniversary.

Howard Shelley directs the London Mozart Players Ensemble in a performance of Beethoven’s Piano Concerto No 3 on Friday, October 16 at 8pm. The concert opens with the opening Adagio-Allegro assai from Haydn’s 94th Surprise Symphony.

Events will happen live to small invited audiences of sponsors and friends – but will be streamed, giving the public the chance to buy tickets and attend the events online.

Read more at the link below.

SouthDowns Camerata concert for Help Musicians UK

The Spirit of Music Festival is extremely pleased to put on a live concert for you this Saturday 17th October at 4pm in St Mary’s Liss. The SouthDowns Camerata will perform gems of the string orchestra repertoire, including Elgar’s String Serenade, Mozart Divertimento in F, and Bach’s glorious violin concerto in E major.

The concert will comply with all current Covid-safe regulations. The audience will be seated in a socially distanced way, in household groups up to 6 people, and guests over 11 years of age are expected to wear facemasks at all times when in the building. The seats will be sanitised and people will be advised to use the provided hand sanitiser at entry and exit from the building. The orchestra will perform in an equally socially distanced way, and are allowed to remove their facemasks when playing. They will keep distanced from the audience.

Anyone experiencing possibly COVID-related symptoms (i.e. temperature, new persistent cough or loss of taste+smell), and anyone tested recently positive or awaiting a test result must not attend this event.

Due to social distancing, there will be only about max. 60 spaces available, so you must book via the following booking system, indicating the number of places required:

Bookings can be made here.

You won’t need to pay for your ticket, instead we would like to ask you to make a donation to Help Musicians UK in aid of the many musicians in financial need during the Coronavirus crisis. We’d like to suggest a minimum of £5 per adult, but you can choose to give more. Thank you for your generosity. Your kindness will help getting musicians through this crisis so they can perform for you again.

You can donate to my JustGiving page by clicking here. Donating through JustGiving is simple, fast and totally secure. Once you donate, they’ll send your money directly to Help Musicians, so it’s the most efficient way to give.

We hope very much to see you at our concert. Should you have problems booking or if the concert is booked up, please email the Spirit of Music Festival’s address: If there is lots of interest we will consider repeating the concert. We also hope to live-stream it via our Facebook page (you don’t need to be a member of Facebook to be able to view it).

Thanks for supporting our cause in keeping music alive. It’s a huge privilege for the SouthDowns Camerata to return to a live audience, but we know many events and venues can not reopen to reduced audience numbers, meaning the majority of musicians in the UK is out of work or on very reduced working schedules – particularly freelancers who form the backbone of the industry. Making music is our life and our passion as well as our living, and it is a very viable professional sector attracting huge numbers of audiences and economic value in good times – that’s why we don’t want musicians to retrain and leave the profession but to be able to bridge these times in order to play to you again soon. Help Musicians UK works directly with musicians in financial, medical or mental need. In addition to giving please consider writing to your MP about the importance music has to you.

Update 15 October:

Following the overwhelming response and quick booking up of our 4pm concert we have decided to offer a repeat of the concert at 6pm on the same day (Saturday, 17th October) – provided that enough people (a minimum of 30) book.  It seems to be the way concerts are currently done the on the continent too. We just can’t stop playing! 🙂

To book a FREE place (essential) the link is as follows:

Again, there will be a maximum of 50 people admitted, so please book swiftly to avoid disappointment.

Experience the J.W. Walker & Sons organ in St Mary’s Church, Portsea, for one last time before restoration commences

At 7pm on Tuesday October 13, we will introduce you to The Organ Project, take you on a live video tour of the inside of the organ, present our plans for restoration and demonstrate this unique, awe-inspiring instrument.

Hosted by expert consultant, Dr William McVicker, Andrew Caskie of Nicholsons & Co. Ltd, Vicar of St Mary’s Church, Bob White, and project manager, Matt Dixon, we will guide you through our final Restoration Policy and present the current condition of the instrument, via a 12ft screen, console cameras and projector.

Interspersed with performances by Andrew and William, this Open Evening will encourage discussion about the what, why and how of our approach to restoring this fine 1889 instrument.

To book your free ticket, please visit Eventbrite here:

Also on Noticeboard here.

“Beethoven the Revolutionary” with Angela Zanders

This year we are celebrating the 250th anniversary of Beethoven’s birth and I shall be giving a lecture-recital on ‘Beethoven the Revolutionary’ on 14th October at 7.30pm for the Chichester Music Society, held at the Chapel of the Ascension, Chichester University.

The event will be live-streamed so that you can watch it free of charge on your PC or another device. Read more on the concert page below.

If you wish to attend, tickets must be purchased in advance – details are available on the CMS website.


University of Chichester Conservatoire: download your copy of “Showcase”

The University of Chichester Conservatoire has one of the largest and liveliest music departments in the UK with a community of over 400 student performers. Our facilities include computerised recording and media studios, well-equipped practice rooms and an acoustically superb performance venue.

Please see 31 Showcase October 2020 to January 2021 (a 12 MB download) as well as the concerts page.

The Organ Project at St Mary’s Portsea: join us for the last opportunity to hear the organ in concert before late 2021!

Join us for the last opportunity to hear the organ in concert before late 2021!

We will be closing our 2020 FREE monthly Organ Recital series with the fantastic John Sharples, ARCO, on the 1st October at 7.30pm, at St Mary’s Church, Portsea. Later in October, the organ will be removed for complete restoration – don’t miss the last chance to hear it before late 2021!

Previously an organist at Lambeth Palace, John Sharples is currently an Assistant Organist at Arundel Cathedral and has prepared a really exciting programme, including Elgar, Fasch and The Cat Suite (Prelude, Cats at play, Catnap and Toc-cat-a) by Denis Bedard.

Please do join us for a safe, socially distanced concert and enjoy the last opportunity to listen to our fantastic J.W. Walker & Sons pipe organ before historic restoration. Our console cameras and large screen will be installed for a close up of the performance.

View the full recital programme and book your free tickets online here:, or call the Project Manager, Matt Dixon on 02393 190998.

Concert page here.


Bognor’s 60 Minutes of Classical Music promises COVID-safe return

Bognor’s 60 Minutes of Classical Music returns to the studio room at The Regis Centre on Friday, October 2 at 7.30pm – its first outing since the start of March.

Full COVID safety measures will be in place, and if all goes well, there should be further concerts in November and in December.

The series has been devised by Roger Clayden who will perform on cello, joined by Christopher Taylor on piano, for a programme which will include Bach, Frank, Elgar, Von Weber, Rachmaninov and Handel.

Read more at the link below.

The Doric Quartet set to open 2020-21 Chichester Chamber Concerts

The Doric Quartet open the 2020-21 Chichester Chamber Concerts series which will go ahead in extraordinary times (Thursday, Oct 1, 7.30pm).

Concerts will be once a month until March in the Assembly Room, but seats will be limited to approximately 40 (against a usual capacity of around 170), with tickets available from Chichester Festival Theatre. But to help accommodate the usual demand, the concerts will also be live-streamed on YouTube, with online viewers asked to make a donation.

Read more at the link below.

Soprano Erin Alexander to sing for Chichester Music Society

Chichester Music Society (formerly Funtington Music Group) welcome back Erin Alexander (soprano) with Nick Miller (piano) for a show which was to have been their first under their new name in June.

Erin and Nick will present On A High Note, the story of soprano Graziella Sciutti. The singer was a contemporary of Maria Callas and helped pioneer the movement of opera singers becoming actors. Erin will sing the arias by Mozart, Verdi, and Rossini which made Sciutti’s career.

The recital will be in Chichester University’s Chapel of the Ascension on Tuesday, September 29 at 7.30pm.

Read more at the link below.

If you click through to the concert page, you can read details about how to access the livestream of this concert.

Read a review.

Chichester Music Society: livestream of Pavlos Carvalho playing Bach Cello Suites on 9 September

Please see a previous news item about this concert.

Arrangements have been made to live stream our concert with Pavlos Carvalho on Wednesday 9th September at 7.30pm in the University Chapel.

On this occasion the live stream will be carried by the University’s in-house system, ‘Chiplayer’. Click on the link below and it will take you straight to the livestream. If you click into the link before the live stream starts you will be taken to the site and it will say “this page will refresh when the webcast starts”. The concert will begin at 7.30 pm and once you have linked onto the site, no further action is required.

I do hope that you will enjoy this live-streamed event. This will be the first time we have attempted to live stream our events so it will be a bit of a learning process all round, please bear with us!

A seminar on Vivaldi held by Julia Bishop

Julia Bishop is holding another one of her popular Zoom seminars on Wednesday 9 September from 11.00 am to 12.00 noon.

This time she will take us on a trip to the Venice of Vivaldi’s day, to explore the places where the legendary and prolific composer wrote so many of his great works. We’ll hear of the female foundlings whom he taught to play and nurtured to perform his exciting pieces. Born in 1678 in Italy, Antonio Vivaldi was a virtuoso of the violin but composed brilliant Baroque music for other instruments including the mandolin, bassoon, oboe and flute, to name but a few.

Julia is a fountain of knowledge about the life and works of the ginger-haired cleric. A fine soloist and orchestral violinist, Julia Bishop was the co-founder of Red Priest, a band which took Vivaldi’s music to the outer limits and back again. She will outline his successes and low points of his career. She will explain why he died in penury in Vienna in 1741. Her talk will be of acute interest to all musicians, not only for string players.

It costs a mere £8 to take part in this forthcoming seminar. Contact Julia via or by texting 07521 897422. Nearer the time she will send you an invitation and give details of how to pay by bank transfer or cheque.

Petworth Festival – free online concert to celebrate what should have been the 42nd Petworth Festival

With the 42nd Festival due to have opened on Tuesday 14 July, the Petworth Festival team are proud to announce an online event that will run throughout the festival fortnight, at the end of which a further announcement will be made about the extended 2020 Petworth Festival Special which will take place in October to include the 10th Anniversary Literary Week.

Between 7.30pm on Tuesday 14 July and midnight on Saturday 1 August, at any point you will be able to catch an online mini-concert that is being specially recorded in St Mary’s Church, a three-part celebration that features two remarkable sets of students from the Royal Academy of Music and one of the festival’s all-time favourite performers, the piano genius, Harry the Piano. Each will give sparkling, short performances to remind us all of the wonderful chemistry between live music and the festival’s beautiful ‘home’ venue.

The concert will be made available free of charge, but as Festival Artistic Director Stewart Collins makes clear, ‘there is of course no such thing as a free lunch – or in this case, a completely free concert. It will come as no surprise to anyone to hear that the cancellation of the summer’s festival has come at a very significant cost, and that whilst many of our wonderful supporters and sponsors have ensured that the damage isn’t fatal, we do urgently need to raise funds to minimise the impact both this year and into the future. We sadly had to cancel the biggest planned expansion of events aimed at the wider community this summer, but hopefully a successful appeal alongside July’s online event will ensure that we can resuscitate plans in 2021.’

You can log on to watch the summer special through the festival’s website,

Further info on the performers:
Further information:
Harry the Piano
Harry Rylance
Voreios Trio

Great events still to come in the Virtual Festival of Chichester

Plenty of highlights remain to come as this year’s Virtual Festival of Chichester enters its fourth week.

The day’s events will be added at 7pm ready for enjoying at the traditional 7.30pm event time. Festival events will then stay online all summer.

Go to

Read more below.

Petersfield Orchestra: Inside the Band!

Find out how an orchestra works and plays together and even how it thinks! Is it a harmonious collective? How do the individual strands mesh? Join Piers, Robin & some special guests from inside Petersfield Orchestra.

Watch via the link below.

Petersfield Orchestra: Robin Browning and Piers Burton-Page on Beethoven

Piers & Robin from Petersfield Orchestra delve into the life and works of one of the greatest composers in this, Beethoven’s birthday year.

Join the discussion All about Beethoven today (Friday 12 June) at 7.30pm by clicking the link below, where they’ll try to answer questions such as “Why do the even numbered symphonies get such a bad rap?” and “why are the violins where the cellos used to be?” Bring your sketchbooks, ear-trumpets and a large glass of wine – see you then!

You can join them either on the night or catch-up later (the video will remain on the website).

You don’t need to be a member of Facebook, just click on the link below and it will take you straight there. Towards the end of their discussion they will respond to some of the comments from you, the audience. Please, join them for a lively debate!

Click the link at the bottom of this notice at 7.30pm, or afterwards.


Festival of Chichester 2020 will offer busy online programme of delights

A busy online programme will put the 2020 Festival of Chichester back on the summer calendar.

Here’s the line-up from where you can access the events page.

The festival won’t be happening for real, but a significant proportion of the festival fun is now set to go ahead virtually.

The Festival of Chichester has been an increasingly popular month-long June-July fixture in and around the city since its debut in 2013, every year attracting thousands of people to more than 200 events right across the arts and community spectrum. But, on a sad day in March, amid the worsening coronavirus pandemic, the festival’s organising committee concluded they had no choice but to cancel this summer’s festival – for the sake of the safety of performers and audiences alike.

The Virtual Festival of Chichester will launch on June 13 as Chichester celebrates music, literature, talks, art, theatre and more. The plan is that for every day of what would have been the festival, a new event will be posted on its website ready for audiences to enjoy from Saturday, June 13 to Sunday, July 12 at 7pm, so that they can look forward to something new each day.

The performers

A huge range of events has been lined up, beginning with the jazz band which would have launched the festival on Cathedral Green, the Stardust Sussex Syncapators, who will perform jazzy versions of The Isle of Capri and I Get the Blues to kick off the virtual festival. There are some spectacular concerts arranged, including a video of cellist Emily Burridge performing in Chartres Cathedral – which highlights the twinning link between the cities – and from Kings Place, the lively Greek band Plastikes Karekles.

This will be just one of three contributions from festival regular, Pavlos Carvalho, who will also be performing a mix of Cypriot and Greek tunes and songs with a select band of virtuoso musical friends. In addition, Pavlos will be performing one of Bach’s celebrated Solo Cello Sonatas. Another regular, cellist Ben Rogerson, will also be performing solo with a different Bach piece as well as joining up with the Minerva Ensemble for the Gadfly and other pieces. The Cathedral will be represented by the Choristers singing a Litany by Peter Hurford plus a Remote Artview of some of the Cathedral’s treasures.

All That Malarkey are one of the regular highlights each summer and they are returning virtually to the city to sing an enjoyable Beach Boys medley. An alternative take on cabaret will be presented by performer Dawn Gracie, whose lively shows always attract attention. Jazz and blues guitarists Rob Johnston and Geoff Robb have exciting selections to share, including Geoff’s self-penned Music of Trees. Classical guitarist Linda Kelsall-Barnett, who delighted audiences with her Cathedral performance last year, will return with a new recording for audiences to enjoy.

Chichester regularly welcomes top-class international pianists to the festival and 2020 is no exception. Reiko Fujisawa is performing a Beethoven tribute in his 250th anniversary year, while Russian maestro Victor Ryabchikov celebrates the music of Tchaikovsky with the Seasons. Ensemble Reza were one of the big hits of the 2019 festival and they are returning with a wonderful Brahms Sextet.

Song is celebrated across the genres with contributions from indie/folk singer Tobiah with We Are Angels, soprano Tamzin Barnett and bluesy Ruby Tyger and the Revelators, who sold out their festival gig last year. Poetry and books will be represented by local author John Haynes, the winner of the prestigious Costa Poetry Prize, together with stimulating new poetry posted online by Chichester Poetry.

The artist responsible for the Keats sculpture in Eastgate, is featuring two new projects – his monumental Nelson and Murray sculpture as well as a brand new piece inspired by Major Tom Moore’s heroic fundraising effort collecting money for the NHS to fight the pandemic by a sponsored walk round his garden.

Read more at the link below.

Petersfield Orchestra: Robin Browning and Piers Burton-Page on the Concerto

Robin and Piers will be holding the third in their series of weekly discussions this Friday evening (5 June) at 7.30pm. This week it’s all about one of the key components in any programme: the concerto. Joined by special guest – pianist Valentina Seferinova – they’ll explore the role of the conductor and orchestra, discuss some favourite pieces and top soloists, and investigate how soloist and orchestra navigate the subtle terrain of some of the most challenging works in the repertoire.

Last week’s event drew a number of interesting comments, which may be viewed here.

You are invited to join them – on the night or catch-up later (the video will remain on the website).

You don’t need to be a member of Facebook, just click on the link below and it will take you straight there. Towards the end of their discussion they will respond to some of the comments from you, the audience. Please, join them for a lively debate!

Click the link at the bottom of this notice at 7.30pm, or afterwards.



Richard Dewland – An Organ Recital for Lockdown with a difference!

Join Richard playing on the organ on the St Faith’s Church Lee YouTube Channel on Saturday 30th May 2020 at 7.30pm. It will be available to view afterwards.

The programme includes music by Buxtehude, Bach, Gigoût and Widor.


Petersfield Orchestra: Robin Browning and Piers Burton-Page on Facebook Live

Robin and Piers will be holding the second is their series of weekly discussions this Friday evening (29 May) at 7.30pm. They will range far and wide over the topic of: ‘The Future of Music after Lockdown’ for about 45minutes. You are invited to join them – on the night or catch-up later (the video will remain on the website).

You don’t need to be a member of Facebook, just click on the link below and it will take you straight there. Towards the end of their discussion they will respond to some of the comments from you, the audience. Please, join them for a lively debate!

Click the link at the bottom of this notice at 7.30pm, or afterwards.

Last week’s discussion

Robin has produced a Spotify playlist based on last week’s discussion for you to explore – if you have Spotify. If you don’t have Spotify, have a search on the Internet for the recordings.

Just click on this link to open the playlist.

A message from Robin:

As we chat at about a million miles an hour, here’s a simple playlist of some of the music we mention each week. All recordings have been curated by Robin – Piers may disagree (!)

Some works are quite self-explanatory here, so I won’t mention them. But a few aren’t…

Malcolm Arnold – Carnival of Animals: this is a superb sidekick to the more famous Saint-Saëns. I performed the two pieces one after another in concert with an illustrator called James Mayhew (I do a number of gigs with him, check him out on Facebook and on the Interweb). All of these animals are hilarious – as you’d expect from Kornold, but especially the Cows. I can’t help but see Bessie strutting her stuff on the dance floor under a shiny glitterball – but perhaps that’s me.

Holst Oration: it WAS this piece I meant, Piers, not the Frank Bridge Invocation (also an amazing work). Steven Isserlis wasn’t available on Spotify, so here’s the almost-as-brilliant Raphael Wallfisch

Brian Eno – An Ending (Ascent): such a gorgeous piece. Sit back, pop on the headphones, maybe open the wine, close your eyes and drift. Written for a documentary celebrating the Apollo moon-landings (I think 30 years after, but I could be wrong). Bliss.

With most tracks, these are merely a selection from larger works, which are easy enough to find on Spotify with a quick search. If you click on the album artwork, it’ll often bring up the complete album. And if you want to listen in order, do it on the desktop app or website, rather than smartphone app – Spotify does like to shuffle things around (and ruin my perfectly-curated playing order).

Havant Symphony Orchestra: Paddington Winners!

Back in March, just before lockdown, Havant Symphony Orchestra had a wonderful afternoon performing to a sell-out crowd of youngsters and accompanying adults from Havant and surrounding areas for their first ‘Family Concert’.

The orchestra, conducted by their Music Director, Jonathan Butcher, and student conductor, Avi Taler, performed a wide range of music from Grieg’s ‘In the Hall of the Mountain King’ to John Williams’ music for ‘Harry Potter’ and ‘The Empire Strikes Back’.

The focus of the concert was a performance of a piece by Herbert Chappell and Michael Bond called ‘Paddington Bear’s First Concert’ and this theme was evident throughout with ‘Paddington’ handing out marmalade sandwiches in the foyer and the orchestra bringing their own bears (and other animals!) to sit with them on stage!

Read more at the link below.

A free online festival of music from Music in the Round

Following some cancelled concerts due to the pandemic lockdown, our music partner, Music in the Round, is organising a free online festival of music from some of the world’s finest musicians.

Sheffield Chamber Music Festival at home (#SCMFhome) will feature more than a dozen specially curated performances, talks and family events, all launching on the Music in the Round YouTube channel over two days on Friday 15 and Saturday 16 May.

Click the link below to find out more.

Members evening coming up at Bognor Regis Music Club

The next concert at the Bognor Regis Music Club on Saturday, March 14 at 7pm is being organised by club member Barbara Leech.

It takes the form of a members’ musical evening and will comprise vocal and instrumental items performed by club members. Those taking part are singers Barbara Cotton, Jenny Chislett, Rebecca Grove, Nicola Hancock, Barbara Leech, John Luck, Stephanie Peat, Louise Russell, Angela Stephens, and John Wyatt plus pianists Jack Adams, Alison Blenkinsop, Chris Coote, Rosemary Osmon, Sylvia Rota and Ann Sparrow.

A highlight of the evening will be a performance of club member Rex Latter’s Rustic Suite played by Colin Hartree on oboe accompanied by the composer.

Club chairman Chris Coote said: “Our music club is unusual in that we hold members’ evenings during the year when club members can perform to a sympathetic audience, and I am pleased that Barbara Leech has put together such a varied programme for us. For some of the members this will be their first time of performing at the club and we look forward to hearing them and trust they will enjoy and benefit from the experience”

The concert is at the Club’s concert room, 2 Sudley Road. Entry at the door is £6 for members, £8 for visitors, and £4 for students. New members and visitors are especially welcome.

More details from Chris Coote (01243 773276), Helen Woods (01243 861620), or from the website

The Parnassius Piano Duo offer Chichester concert

The Parnassius Piano Duo will play Sherwood and Rachmaninov when Funtington Music Group welcomes them to Chichester University Chapel on Wednesday, March 11 at 7.30pm.

FMG chairman Chris Hough said: “Simon Callaghan and Hiroaki Takenouchi will be talking about and performing two wonderful pieces by Sherwood and Rachmaninov. Simon Callaghan last appeared at FMG in 2018 when he gave a brilliant lecture/recital on the life and music of Sir William Sterndale Bennett.”

Read more at the links below.

Boxgrove Priory to host première of Sussex cantata

Music director Amy Bebbington and composer Nathan James are collaborating as the world première of a Sussex cantata inspired by a Sussex landmark heads to Boxgrove Priory.

Entitled On Windover Hill; the music of the Long Man of Wilmington, the piece will be performed by the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra and the Harlequin Chamber Choir on Saturday, March 7 at 7.45pm.

Read more at the links below, and a review here.

Preview: Portsmouth Baroque Choir – Spring Concert of Viennese music


The Church of the Resurrection in Drayton is the venue for our Spring Concert of Viennese music on Saturday, March 28th at 7:30pm when we shall be joined by soprano Anna Gould and accompanied by the Dolce String Quartet together with a wind and brass ensemble.

The main works we shall be performing are Te Deum and Missa Sancti Nicolai by Haydn, and Exsultate Jubilate by Mozart. We shall also be singing Non Nobis Domine by Haydn together with Regina Caeli and Veni, Sancte Spiritus by Mozart.

Singing Sensation with the Solent Symphony Orchestra on 7 March

Don’t miss the fabulous soprano Lucy Cronin who will be singing the six songs of the Second Series of Canteloube’s Chants d’Auvergne with the Solent Symphony Orchestra this Saturday at Portsmouth Cathedral.

Lucy was a Choral Scholar at Trinity College, Cambridge, where she studied French and German. She sings with a number of consort groups and choirs; recent and forthcoming engagements are with Oxford Bach Soloists, Sansara and London Choral Sinfonia, and alongside ensembles including The English Concert, Philharmonia Orchestra and London Contemporary Orchestra.

Lucy has performed as soprano soloist at distinguished venues such as St Martin-in-the-Fields, St John’s Smith Square and GLive Concert Hall, and as far afield as Kazakhstan Central Concert Hall. Her opera roles include Vita Mondana Rappresentatione di Anima, et di Corpo, Belinda Dido and Aeneas, and Britney Timberbrit (Jacob Cooper, European première).

Lucy last sang with the SSO back in 2017 when she performed the hauntingly beautiful solo at the end of Vaughan Williams Pastoral Symphony to great acclaim. The 2nd series of Chants d’Auvergne features some beautiful but rarely performed music, so this is an opportunity not to be missed.

Read a review.

Preview: Renaissance Choir – “Italian Renaissance Masters”


Italian Renaissance Masters will be performed in Petersfield on Saturday 4 April and Havant on Saturday 25 April.

Why Renaissance?

We are named The Renaissance Choir because we believe 15th – 17th century Europe was the birthplace of the most beautiful music ever written. Like devoted gardeners, it is our raison d’être to keep these most exquisite blooms alive, long after their seeds were first sown.

This artistic flowering took place across the whole of Europe: in music, painting, sculpture and literature. In our series of Renaissance Masters concerts we transport our audiences back in time, displaying the greatest music and paintings of the Renaissance.

Italian choral treasures

Last year’s well-received concerts in Petersfield and Havant featured Spain. This year, we perform Italian Renaissance Masters, our third programme in the series where we explore European music and painting from Renaissance times. It features Tomás Luis de Victoria’s masterwork Officium Defunctorum (1605), written for the funeral of Maria of Austria, daughter of Emperor Charles V. Considered “one of the greatest musical minds ever”, Victoria knows how to “build entire worlds with sounds”, according to the Belgian conductor Philippe Herreweghe.

In 2016 the choir sang works by Giovanni Pierluigi da Palestrina in his birthplace and eponym in Italy. This was a moving experience for choir members – almost like a pilgrimage – not least because Palestrina’s music is rarely heard, even in the city which bears his name. The President of the Palestrina Foundation said, “This is an exceptional choir of the highest quality”. We will perform the Kyrie from his Missa Papae Marcelli in April among other treasures.

Some of the music we will be singing is in 8, 10 and even 16 parts (à8, à10 and à16 written below), which demonstrates the choir’s strength.

Contrasts from Zoe Barnett

The concerts will also feature the distinguished guitarist, Zoe Barnett. Hugely popular at our Spanish concerts last year, Zoe will offer a palate cleanser to the rich choral polyphony. She will also help us create a vibrant Italian street-scene, including drinking songs, madrigals, and singers turning into animals! Such is the versatility of the Renaissance Choir that we even perform pop music (albeit from 500 years ago!).

This delectable dip into the mysteries of the Italian Renaissance finds the choir stretching itself to the limits, with music in no fewer than ten parts and a piece written for four choirs. A hallmark of our concerts is to surround our audience with singers; we love to sing like this and we hope you will love it too.

Full programme

Works for choir:
Victoria – Officium Defunctorum
– Assumpta est Maria à6
– Kyrie from Missa Papae Marcelli
– Regina Coeli Laetare à8
Scarlatti – Excerpts from Stabat Mater à10
Caldara – Crucifixus à16
Corteccia – Bacco, Bacco
Banchieri – Contrapunto bestiale alle mente
Micha(el) Pesentus – Dal lecto me levava
Verdelot – Divini occhi sereni
Willaert – Sempre mi ride sta

Works for guitar to be confirmed

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