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

‘Early Romanticism in Music’ course with Angela Zanders

Pianist and lecturer Angela Zanders will be presenting another of her popular courses in Music Appreciation at the New Park Centre, Chichester, starting in January 2020, entitled ‘Early Romanticism in Music’.

The 10-week course, which takes place on Mondays 1.30pm – 3.30pm and starts on 13th January will explore the lives and music of such well-known composers as Schubert, Mendelssohn, Chopin and Schumann, as well as less familiar, but nevertheless significant ones.

Using PowerPoint slides and videos as well as demonstrating at the piano, Angela will introduce the historical background to the early Romantic period with its relationship to the changes brought about to European society by the French and Industrial Revolutions and the influence of literature and art.

“I love to bring classical music alive for people and to instil in them a desire to listen to familiar music in a new way and from a new perspective, as well as introducing music they may not have heard before,” said Angela. “At the beginning of the 19th century there was a magnificent flowering of music which, like the work of the great poets of the day, was characterised by an outpouring of emotion about love, loss, the beauty of nature and a yearning for the ‘ideal’. Despite his retiring personality and tragic circumstances, Schubert’s songs revealed him to be a master of sublime melody while Chopin, suffering from consumption and living far from his beloved Poland, produced piano music of intense beauty and emotion which introduced techniques in piano playing never heard before. Each composer of the period had a special significance, including ones whose music may not be very familiar to some.”

Please contact Angela for more details at email: or tel: 07582 537123. The cost of the course is £100.

– 10 Week Course on Mondays
– 1.30pm – 3.30pm with a coffee break
– Fee: £100
– January 13th, 20th, 27th; February 3rd, 10th, 24th; March 2nd, 9th, 16th, 23rd

Preview: Vaughan Williams, Elgar and Holst by the Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra

The Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra come to the Portsmouth Guildhall for a concert of music by Vaughan Williams, Elgar & Holst on Thursday 21 November.

The Planets remains by far Holst’s most popular work. Indeed, its popularity came to distress him during his lifetime. He may have achieved, in later years, things that were more profound and more deeply personal in their expression, but The Planets is the first fully effective statement of his maturity; its conception has a boldness, excitement and epic sweep that remain immediately impressive after a hundred hearings. It is one of the 20th century’s great colouristic showpieces.

Vaughan Williams once said that the work was “the perfect equilibrium” of Holst’s nature – the melodic, precise and structured, combined with the mystic and unexplainable. Among the earliest evidence of Vaughan Williams weaving the threads of English folk music into the fabric of his creativity were the three Norfolk Rhapsodies into which he incorporated several melodies from the region. The opening of the first evokes the sky and space of East Anglia and soon a solo viola quotes the tragic and beautiful song The Captain’s Apprentice which dominates the score and gives it a haunting quality.

Elgar’s ebullient concert overture has everything that is most admired about his music – wonderful melody, nobility of expression and moving passion. Written whilst on holiday in the Italian Riviera, it was inspired by the pastoral countryside and reminders of Ancient Rome.

Vaughan Williams – Norfolk Rhapsody No.1
Elgar – In the South
Holst – The Planets

Conductor: David Hill (pictured)

Portsmouth Cathedral Choir and the Renaissance Choir join forces in aid of Rowans Hospice

Rowans Hospice, in conjunction with Portsmouth Cathedral Choir and The Renaissance Choir, is hosting a Christmas Concert by Candlelight on Saturday 7 December to celebrate 25 years of the Hospice and raise money for its Silver Jubilee Appeal – an ambitious capital appeal to raise funds to redevelop the hospice building to ensure it is fit for future care.

The concert programme will include beautifully written music from the 17th to the 21st century and carols to celebrate the festive season. The feast of seasonal music will include Renaissance music by Lassus, pieces from “The Messiah”, settings by Willcocks and Leighton, as well as modern works by composers such as Rutter and Chilcott. There will be old favourites including “Hark the Herald” and “Carol of the Bells”.

Limited tickets are still available for this concert from the Rowans Silver Jubilee website. Tickets start from just £10.00 and all money raised by this event will go to supporting the renovation of Rowans Hospice.

Rowans Hospice Silver Jubilee Appeal is an ambitious capital appeal project in 3 phases that will improve the overall experience for patients, families and carers. Phase 1 of the project will involve a complete renovation of the hospice building including bringing patients rooms up to date with modern technology and design elements and improving communal areas. This work will ensure that the hospice can continue to deliver outstanding care for the next 25 years and beyond.

For more information please visit
For information about our appeal, please visit

Preview: “A Christmas Carol” with the Portsmouth Choral Union

Why not get into the Christmas Spirit by coming along to Portsmouth Choral Union’s Christmas Concert on Saturday 14 December 2019 at St. Mary’s Church, Portsea?

In addition to Carols Old and New, and Carols for everyone, we will perform Jonathan Rathbone’s amazing ‘Mr Fezziwig’s Christmas Party’. This festive work, narrated by St. Mary’s very own Canon Bob White, will appeal to audiences both young and old.

In it, Mr Fezziwig – a character from Charles Dickens’s ‘A Christmas Carol’ – is instructing a young Scrooge and his fellow apprentice Dick, to ready the premises for their annual Christmas Party. They enjoy music and dancing and when finally the joyous evening comes to a close, the older and more familiar Scrooge, is forced to reflect on his own ethics and behaviour as an employer.

Preview: “Requiem in a Day” with Matthew Coleridge

Come and sing Matthew Coleridge’s intensely beautiful and deeply moving Requiem in a choral workshop at Portsmouth’s historic ‘Cathedral of the Sea’ on Saturday 8 February 2020. In the evening, we’ll give a concert performance, conducted by the composer.

This melodic and quietly powerful music, which weaves flowing choral melodies with soaring cello lines to form rich tapestries of sound, was hailed by the late Sir Neville Marriner as “a valuable addition to the 21st century choral repertoire.”

We’ll begin the day’s workshop in the oldest part of the Cathedral – the medieval Chapel of St Thomas – learning the Requiem with Matthew and David Price (Master of the Choristers) at the piano. After lunch we’ll move into the Nave for rehearsals with our soloists.

Before our evening performance, there will be a chance to hear the Cathedral Choir sing choral Evensong.

Book now for an unforgettable day of music-making in the beautiful acoustics of this intimate cathedral. See for further info.


A glorious piece to sing… a lot of us were in tears by the end of it
Teresa Stubbs – Buckfast Abbey workshop 2019

Details of the day

09:00 singer registration and distribution of music (music hire is included in the workshop fee).
09:30 morning rehearsals. Matthew will guide us through his Requiem, accompanied by David Price at the piano. There will be a mid-morning refreshments break, and some short sectional rehearsals.
12:15 break for lunch.
13:45 – 16:45 afternoon rehearsal, with cellist Sarah Gait and soprano Emily Hicks, and David Price at the organ. We’ll also be joined by a percussionist.
19:00 – 20:00 concert performance. You’ll sing Matthew’s Requiem in an atmospheric concert in the beautifully lit cathedral. Also in the programme will be Arvo Pärt’s exquisite Spiegel im Spiegel for cello and organ, and Sarah will perform an improvisation on the cello.

Anthony Gritten at Holy Trinity, Gosport

We are thrilled to be welcoming Anthony Gritten (Royal Academy of Music) to our recital series with a programme at 1pm on Monday 18 November that is designed to please and impress. This is Anthony’s first appearance at Holy Trinity and we are excited to hear him play. Join us for half an hour of wonderful music to start your week in relaxation and peace. . . Free entrance to the public with retiring collection . . . Bring your lunch and enjoy a unique start to your week . . . See you there!

To access Anthony’s programme, please follow the link below:

Preview: Shopwyke Singers’ 25th Anniversary Concert with Orchestra

The Shopwyke Singers celebrate their quarter of a century with a special concert at Boxgrove Priory on Sunday, November 24 at 7pm.

They will be joined by The Little London Ensemble – formed specially for the occasion – for a programme featuring Monteverdi – Beatus Vir; Handel – Zadok the Priest; and Schubert – Mass in G.

The Shopwyke Singers is a chamber choir based at Westbourne House School, which was founded by Alex Dichmont, the school’s director of music, initially as a group for parents and staff.

It has since welcomed numerous singers from outside the school community.

Read more on the Chichester Observer website.

Preview of “Classical Favourites” by the Portsmouth Festival Choir

Portsmouth Festival Choir will be presenting an evening of classical favourites at 7.30 on Saturday 23rd November, at the Church of the Resurrection Drayton.

The Choir will be singing two works by Gabriel Fauré – the beautiful Requiem and the Cantique de Jean Racine, followed by Mendelssohn’s Hymn of Praise. This ‘symphonic cantata’ is part of the composer’s Symphony No 2, but is often performed as a separate work. It includes the Lutheran chorale ‘Nun Danket’ (Now thank we all our God).

The concert will be conducted by Ben Lathbury and accompanied by Mark Dancer with soloists Kiera Smitheram and Jon Grave.

Tickets are £12 (£10 concessions), under-18s and students free. They are available from, from choir members or on the night on the door.

Read more at the link below.

Your Chance to Sing World Music

Top choir director Rosa Malone (on the extreme right hand side of the image) is returning to Petersfield to host a one-off World Music workshop which will be open to everyone.

Rosa, who was raised in Petersfield and studied at Trinity College of Music, has been directing choirs in Greece for six years, and specialises in making choral singing fun, inspirational and open to all people, regardless of their experience. In addition to regular choir practices, Rosa runs singing retreats in the Greek Islands, holds online singing tutorials and regular workshops.

In the workshop in Petersfield, she will be teaching adults and children of all abilities to sing songs from around the world, including some Christmas songs, in an informal day during which singers can bring and share lunch and enjoy the music together in a relaxed atmosphere. Rosa said, “People always gain confidence during these workshops and they go away feeling energised and uplifted. It’s just what we need in the dark days of November and the start of the busy Christmas period. We have songs from Macedonia, Ghana, Brazil and many other places, all presented in a way which is easy to pick up without the need to read music.”

The session will be held in the United Reformed Church Hall in College Street, Petersfield on Saturday, 23rd November between 10am and 4pm and further details can be found at Alternatively visit:

Gain confidence and ease in your vocal abilities whilst embarking on a musical voyage across the globe. Discover music from Brazil, Ghana, Macedonia and beyond! A fun and energising workshop.

Tea and coffee provided. Please bring a plate of food for sharing and we will enjoy a buffet lunch together.

£25 on the door, £5 for children old enough to take part. (Children must be accompanied by a participating adult.)

All welcome, no experience necessary. 10am-4pm.

Petersfield URC Church Hall
College St
GU31 4AG

Preview: The Funtington Music Group: The Ruisi Quartet

The Funtington Music Group is delighted to welcome back the award-winning Ruisi Quartet to its next meeting. This vibrant and exciting ensemble last visited FMG in 2017 when they played at our Summer Buffet Concert. This is a wonderful opportunity to hear these young musicians, who are rapidly becoming an international success!

Winners of the Royal Philharmonic Society award for Young British String Players, the critically- acclaimed Ruisi Quartet has established a reputation as a charismatic and expressive young ensemble that is emerging as one of the leading British string quartets of its generation. Based in London, the group have given concerts at many leading venues, including the Wigmore Hall, Kings Place, Royal Albert Hall and Conway Hall, plus appearances in Scotland, Spain, Germany and Austria. Dedicated to continually exploring and developing, the group have studied with a wide-range of leading musicians.

This concert is a super opportunity to hear these brilliant young musicians in Chichester!

University of Chichester Chapel, 7.30pm on Wednesday 13th November
Concert £15. Tickets available at the door or from Elizabeth Brooks 01243 378900.

“We Will Remember” concert at St Peter’s Church Selsey with The London Chamber Ensemble

A special concert will be given at St Peter’s Church Selsey at 4pm on Remembrance Sunday given by The London Chamber Ensemble under its Director Peter Fisher.

Peter Fisher is not new to Selsey. He has performed here to great acclaim, first in a private recital and then in a large concert with international harpist, Gabriella Dal’Ollio.

I went to Southampton last year to hear this same concert based on music of the period 1914-18. It was so wonderful that we persuaded Peter to bring the London Chamber Ensemble to perform in the Parish Church, under the auspices of the newly formed Selsey Music Group. The centrepiece is a specially commissioned work called “No Man’s Land” composed by Clive Jenkins, who will be introducing each of the four WW1 poems which he set to music. Much of the programme is very familiar and it ends with a sing-song to lighten the mood.

Doors open at 3.30pm. Tickets £10 (include Tea in the interval) are available from Ticketsource or on the door.

Local Piano Circle to perform at Bognor Music Club

The next concert at the Bognor Regis Music Club on Saturday 9th November at 7pm will be given by the Pallant Piano Group, a circle of local pianists who come together to play to each other and who are mentored by Terry Allbright and Angela Zanders, both local performers and tutors at Chichester University.

The Pallant Piano Group was formed some seven years ago and meets at Music Club chairman Chris Coote’s house in Tangmere.

Performers taking part include Jack Adams, Alison Blenkinsop, Diana Bollam, Chris Coote, Neil Franks, Huw Griffiths, Catherine Harry, Camilla Hessenberg, Jack Izatt, Jan Lewis, Yuriko Luc, Rosemary Osmon, Alex Palmer, Carole Rogers, Louise Russell, Gilly Slot, Ian White, Fiona Willsher and Mark Zarb-Adami. Many different composers will be represented including Mozart, Haydn, Galuppi, Paradies, Chopin, Schumann, Mendelssohn, Liszt, Bizet, Parry, Scriabin, Debussy, Elgar, Poulenc, and Eric Coates. Of special interest will be the Estampie from the Robertsbridge Codex, dating from 1360 and one of the earliest compositions for keyboard.

Music Club Chairman Chris Coote said: “We are delighted to welcome members of the Pallant Piano Group who are bringing a varied programme of short pieces they have been preparing in recent months. The Group benefits enormously from the expert tuition brought to us by Terry Allbright and Angela Zanders.“

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

Chichester Singers celebrate three of the greatest English composers

The Chichester Singers promise the music of three of the greatest English composers of the 20th century – Elgar, Vaughan Williams and Tippett – in their Chichester Cathedral concert on Saturday, November 9.

As musical director Jonathan Willcocks (pictured) says: “Composers and all artists produce their works, and it is then the distillation of time which then results in whether history will regard them as great composers or whether history will rather neglect them.

“But I think these three Elgar, Vaughan Williams and Tippett – along with Britten, Walton and Holst – after 100 years are the really established, major figures.”

Read more at the link below.

Preview of the gemini consort “A celebration of Christmas” concert

The gemini consort will present a Christmas programme of gentle lullabies and exuberant, joyful carols on Saturday, 7 December at 7.30 in St Peter’s Church.

The now all-female choir of 11 singers will perform works from the 14th century to the present day. The well-known Stille Nacht (Silent night), written by Gruber, will be sung in its original form accompanied by chorister, Lucy Humphris, on guitar. She will also be playing her arrangement for trumpet of one Respighi’s delightful Ancient Airs and Dances.

The evening will also feature This endris night, written this year by the young, exciting Canadian composer, Sarah Quartel.

Another contemporary carol is Ave Maria by Cecilia McDowall, whose music is fresh and immediately communicative.

The audience will also hear familiar carols such as The Sussex Carol and In dulci jubilo.

The choral pieces, vocal solos and duets will be interspersed with music for recorder, flute and piano.

Admission to the concert is free and the retiring collection will be given to The Rosemary Foundation. The gemini consort have so far raised £18,000 for this very worthy cause.

The Busch Trio return to Chichester Chamber Concerts series

The Busch Trio are looking forward to a return trip to Chichester as the next guests in the Chichester Chamber Concerts series.

They will be in concert on Thursday, November 7 at 7.30pm in The Assembly Room in the Chichester Council House in North Street (tickets from the CFT).

Read more at the link below.

Preview of Portsmouth Baroque Choir’s concert, “The Passing of the Year”

Portsmouth Baroque Choir’s next concert falls on the eve of Remembrance Sunday and appropriately includes a number of works with a remembrance theme. These include a selection of Parry’s Songs of farewell, written in 1918 towards the end of Parry’s life. Also included are a part-song by Elgar, They are at rest, set to words by John Henry Newman, who was canonized in October, and Parry’s Crossing the bar.

Ian Schofield was the choir’s conductor for some twelve years, and to mark his 70th Birthday we are including his Stream of life, written in 2015 for the Renaissance Choir. Ian has written a piano accompaniment especially for this concert.

The second half consists of two main works: Humphrey Clucas’s Songs of farewell uses different texts to the Parry settings. Written in 1996 for the Vasari Singers, Portsmouth Baroque Choir gave one of the earliest performances of this work in 1998. We conclude with Jonathan Dove’s The passing of the year, a song cycle written in 2000 that is becoming increasingly popular with choirs, and which has been released on CD four times. The choir sang this in the summer of 2018 and enjoyed it so much they wanted to sing it again.

The Schofield, Clucas and Dove works will be accompanied by ever-popular Karen Kingsley, who also contributes short piano solos by Elgar and Parry.

The concert is on Saturday 9th November at 7:30 pm in St. James’ Church, Emsworth.

Preview: Côr Godre’r Garth at Holy Trinity, Gosport

Imagine 50 beautiful Welsh voices raised in song – Welsh song – and you will already be half way to capturing the joy that we anticipate sharing at Holy Trinity this Sunday, 3rd November at 3.30pm.

Join us for a memorable concert; for an hour of emotional engagement with the music; and for a great afternoon with this Eisteddfod winning Welsh choir – all the way from Pontypridd to sing for us!

Côr Godre’r Garth, directed by Steffan Watkins, last sang for us at Holy Trinity in October 2016 and we are still talking about it . . . We look forward to seeing you on Sunday and making wonderful memories together.

Preview: Chichester Voices’ concert “Requiem Aeternam”

Chichester Voices’ next concert is entitled REQUIEM AERTERNUM, featuring both the beautiful Faure Requiem and hugely popular The Armed Man suite by Karl Jenkins.

It will be performed at St Mary the Virgin, Burpham, Arundel, BN18 9RR on Sat November 2nd at 7.30pm. The choir will be directed by Andrew Naylor, with Richard Allum at the organ.

The concert is in aid of Action for Child Trauma International which provides communities with the tools and training needed to treat traumatised children.

The Festive Jazz Café 2019 – A special gala event in aid of the 2020 Festival of Chichester

Acting and Singing Star at Festive Gala

A special seasonal treat of words, music and complimentary mince pies is heading Chichester’s way when the Festive Jazz Café takes off in the atmospheric setting of historic St John’s Chapel on Wednesday, 11th December.

The event is in aid of next year’s Festival of Chichester and a scintillating cast of performers will take the stage with a package of seasonal delights.

Headline guest is Mark Wynter, actor and 60s singing icon, who had a number of top twenty hits to his name. Mark has appeared extensively on screen and stage, including Phantom of the Opera, Cats, Sweet Charity and a recent starring role in the West End with Dreamboats and Petticoats.

Chichester audiences will remember Mark for his starring role as Henry V in Chichester Festival Theatre’s production of the Shakespeare classic. Mark is currently on a major tour of the Hitchcock thriller, The Lady Vanishes. He will be performing seasonal readings from favourite writers.

There’s mellow jazz from the eight-piece jazz band, the much-loved Sussex based Jazz Smugglers. Expect all your favourite jazz standards from singer Maria Ball and the band. Jazzy versions of Christmas songs and carols are also on the menu.

Poet Maggie Sawkins, the winner of the Ted Hughes Award, will be reading some of her recent inspiring poetry. Maggie’s lively performance style is always a hit with audiences.

Performing alongside Gareth and David is Emily Rose Smith, whose credits include Goblin Market for Andrew Lloyd Webber’s Sydmonton festival, Canaries Sometimes Sing (London and Antibes), Dr Faustus with Sam West and Chekhov in the Festival of Chichester.

Festival Co-ordinator Barry Smith said, ‘We’re absolutely delighted to have the support of these fantastic performers who all have Chichester connections and have appeared in our Festival. Audiences can be sure of having a great time and getting the Christmas season underway in swinging style as well as helping support next year’s Festival. All proceeds will go towards the 2020 Festival so it’s an opportunity for people to enjoy themselves knowing they are also supporting further treats next summer.’

Festive Jazz Café, Wednesday Dec 11th 2019, 7.30pm, St John’s Chapel, St John’s Street, Chichester. Tickets £12 (students £10) from The Novium/TIC, Tower Street, Chichester, PO19 1QH. 01243 816525

Image: Maria Ball and Mark Wynter

The 2020 Petersfield Musical Festival launches

The next Petersfield Musical Festival runs from Friday 13 to Saturday 21 March 2020. Read more in the Petersfield Musical Festival Newsletter_31_Autumn_2019.

The Petersfield Musical Festival 2020 Programme (1 MB) contains brief resumés of all the events. Tickets are available from 3 February.

For more than a century, the Festival has promoted music-making in and around Petersfield. It now provides a varied programme of choral, orchestral, family and youth concerts, smaller-scale recitals and guest performances. Over 600 local singers and instrumentalists of all ages share the platform with visiting musicians of national and international standing.

Join the Festival as an independent singer!

The first combined rehearsals under Festival Conductor Paul Spicer are on Friday 8 and Saturday 9 November See the newsletter for full details of the choral programme.

Enjoy priority booking as a Friend of the Festival

Friends of the Festival are valued supporters who receive early information and have priority booking for the Festival. Friends donating £50 or more per year receive a discount on tickets they purchase. You can download a Friends application form here.

Do you know a young composer?

The Festival has held five biennial Festivals of Young Composers, under the auspices of its Michael Hurd Memorial Fund. Every time we have been impressed by the quality and effectiveness of the works by our young composers, and delighted by the enthusiastic reception they have received from our expert adjudicators and appreciative audiences! The sixth event in the series was launched in the summer, with classes in three age groups: 14 and under, 17 and under, and 19 and under.

Scores must be submitted by Monday 9 December and performed at the live adjudication day on Saturday 1 February at Petersfield United Reformed Church Hall, College Street, Petersfield GU31 4AG. All the pieces are discussed by the adjudicators in front of the audience, and the winners and runners-up in each age class receive a cash prize to further their musical development. The winning compositions will be performed again at the Festival’s Youth Concert on Monday 16 March.

You can download the entry form and guidelines here.

Preview: Portsmouth Chamber Music Series: the Esmé Quartet

Come and hear the German-based Korean Esmé Quartet play on Monday 28 October as part of the Portsmouth Chamber Music Series.

Praised for their warm sound and powerful stage presence, the Esmé Quartet was formed at the Hochschule für Musik und Tanz in Cologne, Germany by four Korean musicians that were long ago acquainted with each other as friends.

They shared common interests and passions in music, the arts, and life. After working together for a trial period by playing together as a quartet, they were quickly awarded the first prize in the annual internal Hochschule Köln’s Chamber Music Competition. Since then, the members decided to work together on a permanent basis, and devoted their energy and passion into transforming their musical and interpretive goals into a working reality.

Each of the players has credentials as a soloist, so the Esmé Quartet brings together four strong musical personalities with a shared background who now form a cohesive, close-knit unit that is passionately dedicated to the string quartet repertoire. The ensemble takes its name from an Old French word meaning ‘loved‘ or ‘esteemed‘.

Now in its sixteenth season, the Portsmouth Chamber Music Series brings world-class musicians to the city. In partnership with Music in the Round and the Guildhall Trust, we present the finest music in informal surroundings where you are never more than a few metres from the performers.

Preview of “Advent Inspirations” by the Chichester Chorale

We are delighted to announce that we will be welcoming Martin Baker, Master of Music at Westminster Cathedral, to perform alongside the Chichester Chorale for our December concert on Saturday 7th December 2019 in St George’s Church, Whyke, Chichester.

Renowned for his improvisation, we are delighted that Martin will be joining us to improvise on each of the seven ‘O’ Advent Antiphons during our concert ‘Advent Inspirations’.

Martin is in frequent demand as a recitalist all of the world, and before becoming Master of Music at Westminster Cathedral held positions at both St Paul’s Cathedral and Westminster Abbey.

The programme includes music by William Byrd, Giovanni Pierluigi da Palestrina, Robert Ramsey, James MacMillan, Benjamin Britten, Josef Rheinberger & John Tavener.

University’s new public lecture series opens with acclaimed cellist

The first in a new series of public lectures starting at the University of Chichester will be given by an internationally-acclaimed cellist and teacher.

Laura Ritchie, Professor of Learning and Teaching in music, will be speaking on Friday 18 October about her pioneering methods of unlocking her students’ potential, for which she has been recognised with a UK National Teaching Fellowship.

This free event, which starts at 6pm, is hosted in the University’s Chapel, on its Bishop Otter campus in Chichester, where Professor Ritchie will speak and also perform the Kodaly Cello Sonata.

The University lecturer said: “I believe in pushing the boundaries of learning for my students and myself, and advocate experiential teaching. In this lecture, I will explain the premise of my teaching practice, and encourage audience members to adopt a new perspective for their own learning.”

Professor Ritchie, who leads Chichester’s popular Encore Community Orchestra, trained as a classical cellist at the Royal College of Music in London. She now coordinates the University’s degrees in Music and Teaching and the MA in Performance, while continuing her research into the psychology of music and the impact of students’ self-beliefs on learning and performing.

The lecture will last around 45 minutes and will follow immediately with a 30-minute performance by Professor Ritchie of the Kodaly Sonata for Solo Cello.

Car parking on campus is free after 5pm, and tea and coffee is available from 5.30pm.Tickets are free but should be booked in advance from Any voluntary retiring donations collected will contribute to Laura’s special projects with staff, students, and the community.

For more about Professor Laura Ritchie and her work at the University of Chichester go to

Event details:

Professor Laura Ritchie’s inaugural lecture, Learning out loud
6pm, Friday 18 October
The Chapel, University of Chichester, Bishop Otter campus, PO19 6PE
Free tickets available at

Laura’s blog:

The Renaissance Choir explores the close relationship between the music of W. A. Mozart and M. Haydn

In its forthcoming concert entitled “Vespers”, the Emsworth-based Renaissance Choir presents two complementary works from the Classical period.

The Choir will be performing at St Peter’s Church in Petersfield on Saturday 26 October 2019 at 7:30pm.

Michael Haydn wrote his Requiem in C in 1771. Just like Mozart’s Requiem, the music sobs, it’s angry, defiant and expresses love. Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart was present at its first three performances and is believed to have been strongly influenced by it in the composition of his own Requiem in D.

A decade later, Mozart wrote Vesperae solennes de Confessore, the fifth movement of which, Laudate Dominum – is an exquisite and much-loved setting for soprano solo and chorus. The beautiful tranquillity of this movement contrasts with the bold exuberance of much of the rest of the work.

St Peter’s resident organist Mark Dancer will accompany the choir.

Musicians from The Consort of Twelve play Baroque chamber music

Musicians from The Consort of Twelve are offering a concert on Saturday 19 October at St Peter and St Mary, Fishbourne in aid of church funds.

Sophie Middleditch – Recorder, Ada Witczyk – Baroque Violin, Lynden Cranham – Baroque Cello, David Pollock – Harpsichord will play Baroque chamber music on period instruments, including works by Handel, Telemann and Quantz.

The venue has given members of the Consort much support in terms of rehearsal space over the years. The players say that this is a way of thanking the church.

Visit concert page.

String Soundworld – preview of Havant Chamber Orchestra’s October concert

Havant Chamber Orchestra begin their 2019-20 season away from the Ferneham Hall for the first time in many years. Just down the road from Ferneham at the United Reformed Church in Fareham, they present a delicious mix of beautiful music for string orchestra with the added bonus of an oboe concerto by Albinoni, performed by HCO’s principal oboe Lucinda Willits, on Saturday 19 October.

Ahead of the concert, Stella Scott asked Music Director Robin Browning for his thoughts on the programme.

SS: For our upcoming HCO concert we’re going for a strings concert. This was decided mainly for practical reasons, but does it have any artistic merit do you think? Do you enjoy the string sound or do you find it a bit limited?

RB: It’s not limited in the slightest! Quite apart from consisting of some of the greatest repertoire written for any combination of instruments, ever, the soundworld combines two inter-related properties. On the one hand, it’s the most homogenised group of instruments in the standard orchestra. In other words, all of them produce similar sounds in a similar way, more so than any other group. Yet alongside this pleasing quality, there exists a vast variety of colour and expressive possibility. Souvenir de Florence explores both of these qualities in real depth – the concurrently blended yet extremely varied sound – to a potently dramatic level.

SS: The programme contains quite a wide range of styles with Albinoni standing out amongst more romantic composers. As a violinist yourself, do you think the baroque style is more difficult than the romantic for string players? How tricky is it to do both in one concert?

RB: It can be pretty tricky for players of all standards to switch from one playing style and another. For a string player, if one plays baroque music with an attention to historical practice, it is a totally different way of approaching the instrument and the sound compared to, say, the string sound in Tchaikovsky. And that’s before one makes choices about ‘authentic’ bows, strings, and tuning. In HCO we don’t go as far as the latter, but we do aim to perform any baroque music with an awareness of good style, meaning we must all remember to press the “reset” button when working on more romantic repertoire. Playing baroque music isn’t any more or less challenging than romantic or contemporary repertoire, but to play it well does require an open mind and awareness that takes time during rehearsal.

SS: Have you worked a lot with Lucinda, our oboe soloist?

RB: Yes, I’ve worked with Lucinda many times over the years, primarily as an orchestral principal (and also very fine Cor Anglais player). She’s a superb, musical and refined player, and collaborates very well with those around her. I’m really looking forward to working with her as a soloist on such a subtle and beautiful concerto. Accompanying an oboe soloist is always a tricky thing for any conductor, too, because one has to be hyper-aware of how they’re breathing and how much space they may sometimes need to produce that incredible sound. Lucinda will be brilliant, and I can’t wait to hear it.

SS: The major work in the programme is the Souvenir de Florence by Tchaikovsky which is really chamber music for string sextet. Do you think it will work well in this arrangement?

RB: It’s a true masterpiece. Going back to my opening point, about string repertoire in general, it sits in amongst a multitude of other great string works. There is something about how a composer approaches the sound of a string group that lends works to being re-scored for larger forces, without distorting the original in any way – in fact sometimes adding to it. Souvenir de Florence could be a case in point. Personally, I prefer the sextet version of Schoenberg’s Verklärte Nacht, and I don’t think Mahler’s famous scaling-up of Schubert’s Death and the Maiden quartet works as well as the original. But this Tchaikovsky works, to my mind, equally well in both versions. It’s such a superb piece of virtuoso string-writing, how could it NOT work?! Tchaikovsky’s palette is often crying out for a large canvas, and here he paints with such vivid texture that there should be no doubt for the listener!

Preview of Portsmouth Choral Union: “Salzburg Splendour”

For the first concert of their new season, Portsmouth Choral Union will be presenting a programme entitled ‘Salzburg Splendour’, featuring works both familiar and unfamiliar.

Mozart’s ‘Solemn Vespers’ are, despite their title, anything but solemn. They are full of captivating melodies, energetic rhythms and include the justifiably well known ‘Laudate Dominum’ – a haunting soprano solo with discreet choral accompaniment.

Alongside the Mozart will be the Requiem by Haydn, but not the better known Joseph Haydn – famous for over one hundred symphonies and his oratorio ‘The Creation’. This is the work of his brother Michael Haydn, and for anyone hearing it for the first time, they may be forgiven for thinking it strongly influenced by Mozart’s much better-known setting of the same text. However, this work composed some twenty years earlier – and well known to Mozart – was, in fact, a strong influence on him when composing his own Requiem. If you like Mozart’s Requiem you will really enjoy Michael Haydn’s setting of the same text.

This concert, accompanied by Southern Pro Musica and directed by David Gostick, will be held at St. Mary’s Church, Portsea on Saturday 16th November at 7.30pm.

‘A Cappella’ fund-raiser for cancer sufferers

Petersfield’s a cappella singers, The Free Radicals, will be entertaining the crowds with well-known songs and clever harmonies in a bid to raise funds for charities which support cancer sufferers and their families. The Radicals’ leader, Steve Sargent, said, “We were all struck by the tragedy earlier this year when the wife of one of our singers died from melanoma at the age of 33, leaving a 3-year-old daughter. Some support is available for patients and their families, but it’s massively under-funded and we decided to raise some money for the on-going work.”

The Free Radicals are well known in the area for singing enjoyable and light music, as well as top-class church music, and the entertaining songs will be in full swing at this event, supported by solo and instrumental interludes.

The concert will be held in the newly refurbished Barrow Hill Barn, Ramsdean GU32 1RW at 7:30pm on Saturday, 19th October and admission will be free. There will be refreshments and a retiring collection for the charity work.

Chichester Singers: concert notes 2019/20

It is sunny and warm, England’s cricketers are playing Australia for the Ashes and so it must be time to think ahead to the depths of winter, when we will be at the heart of The Chichester Singers” 2019-2020 season.

But you won’t have to wait that long to enjoy great choral music as, from September when we begin rehearsals, we will immediately be in at the deep end with a terrific programme of English music. A Child of Our Time by Michael Tippett is recognised as being one of the truly great choral works of the 20th century – inspired by the persecution of the Jewish population by Nazi Germany, it is a moving lament for oppressed people generally with a strong pacifist message of ultimate understanding and reconciliation. This powerful work is partnered by Vaughan Williams’s uplifting choral piece Toward the Unknown Region, and Southern Pro Musica will complete the programme with the very popular Elgar–Enigma Variations.

We have in recent seasons successfully presented concerts in mid-January, rather than jostle for audiences in the busy pre-Christmas period, and Saturday 18th January will see us in the Cathedral with another classical/20th century programme.

Two tuneful Haydn choral works (the ‘Little Organ’ Mass and Insanae et Vanae Curae) and a Mozart orchestral Divertimento form the first half of the concert, followed by Britten–St. Nicolas (the 4th century St Nicolas of Myra, being the original Santa Claus, is an appropriate subject given the close proximity of this concert to the festive season).

We continue the theme of pairing works by great Masters of the past with contemporary composers for our March 2020 Cathedral concert. From the baroque period we will have the much-loved Vivaldi–Gloria, together with J.S.Bach–Suite no. 1, and then we will revisit Elis Pehkonen–Russian Requiem, which the choir very much enjoyed performing back in 1992. This powerful work combines English and Latin texts, but the choir will also have the challenge of mastering some Russian words too! Despite his Finnish ancestry, Elis Pehkonen is actually English and lives in Gloucestershire, and we very much hope that he will be able to attend our performance.

Every three years, the Chichester Singers embark on an overseas tour, and there is already much excitement about our planned trip to Portugal in May 2020, when we will give two concerts and – if past tours are anything to go by – enjoy much social eating, drinking and general merry-making. The repertoire for this tour will be drawn principally from our March and June 2020 Cathedral concerts as, a few short weeks after we return, we have our final Cathedral concert of the season.

This will be focused firmly on the 19th-century Romantic repertoire, with Bruckner-Mass in E minor as the major choral work. Unusually, the orchestral accompaniment for this piece is just wind and brass, and so an ideal partner piece for SPM will be the beautiful Dvorak– Serenade in D minor which, in the first half of the concert, will be partnered by the opportunity for the choir to sing some unaccompanied part-songs and motets.

What a varied and exciting feast of music we have in store in the coming season.

Mozart Concertos at St. Peter’s Church

The Spirit of Music Festival continues its exciting series of concerts at St. Peter’s Church, Petersfield on Saturday 12th October at 7.30pm with an evening devoted to the concertos of Mozart.

Pianist Angela Zanders will be teaming up with the SouthDowns Camerata and its leader Sara Deborah Timossi for performances of three of Mozart’s concertos, including the early Piano Concerto in D Major K107 and the famous Piano Concerto in D Minor K466, composed when Mozart was at the height of his career. Sara Deborah Timossi will be the soloist in the first movement of the Violin Concerto no.5 in A Major K219, and during the first half of the concert Angela will explain the significance of each of the concertos within Mozart’s output, representing, as they do, three different stages of his maturity.

“Mozart began composing at a very young age and the first concerto we will be performing is, in fact, an arrangement of a keyboard sonata by Johann Christian Bach whom Mozart met in London when he was a child. His lifelong love of opera and astounding ability to vividly depict in music the everyday situations and human emotions of the characters increasingly made itself felt in his concertos”, explained Angela. “From the simple repartee between soloist and string orchestra in the early concertos he gradually developed the form into a full-scale drama between soloist and a greatly enlarged orchestra in his later years, exploring the colours and timbres of wind instruments almost as if they were characters in the unfolding story.”

Entry to the concert is free with a retiring collection and refreshments will be served in the interval.

Strong line-up of performers for Chichester Chamber Concerts’ 15th season

A strong line-up of performers will help the Chichester Chamber Concerts series celebrate its 15th season this autumn and winter.

Tickets are now on sale for the new season which will run at the series’ usual home, the Assembly Room from October 2019 to March 2020, six concerts featuring The Esmé Quartet, Busch Trio, Rowland/Kudritskaya Duo, Van Kuijk Quartet, Spiritato! and Trinity Ensemble.

The Chichester Chamber Concerts are the Assembly Room, North Street, Chichester once a month on a Thursday starting at 7.30pm.

The first in the series is the Esmé Quartet on Thursday 3 October.

Read more at the link below.

Chichester Cathedral’s free lunchtime concerts resume

Chichester Cathedral’s free lunchtime concerts restart on September 10 after the summer break.

The concerts take place on Tuesdays at 1.10pm during term time in the setting of the Cathedral Nave and feature a wealth of renowned local, national and international musicians. Each performance lasts approximately 50 minutes, and visitors are welcome to come and go as they please.

Image: Timothy Ravalde

Read more at the link below.

Sachin Gunga appointed as the new Music Director of St Richard Singers

St Richard Singers are delighted to announce the appointment of Sachin Gunga as their new Music Director from September 2019.

We are looking forward to working with Sachin. The first concert under his direction is on Monday 16th December, where we will perform a well-known carol by Gustav Holst in a new arrangement by Sachin. It will also include the Vivaldi Magnificat, Charpentier’s Noëls sur les instruments, plus seasonal music and congregational carols.

Born in Derby, Sachin Gunga trained as a chorister in Derby Cathedral Choir and studied organ under Dr. Tom Corfield. He went on to read Classics at Trinity Hall, Cambridge, followed by a Master’s degree in Music at the Birmingham Conservatoire, under Henry Fairs and David Saint. He subsequently held organ scholarships at Truro and Wells Cathedrals, completing his ARCO diploma in 2011.

Sachin’s first Assistant Organist position was at Llandaff Cathedral in Cardiff, where he also made his first appearance as an organist on Songs of Praise. He spent ten months at Lincoln Cathedral as Acting Assistant Director of Music, before becoming Assistant Director of Music at Wakefield Cathedral in February 2015.

Whilst in Yorkshire he was also Musical Director of St Peter’s Consort. Under his direction, this local chamber choir performed numerous works by contemporary composers such as Eric Whitacre, Jonathan Dove and James MacMillan, alongside more traditional choral repertoire.

Sachin moved to Portsmouth in January 2018, where he now holds the twofold position of Sub-Organist at Portsmouth Cathedral and School Organist of The Portsmouth Grammar School. He accompanies the Cathedral Choirs for their weekly services, in addition to concerts and tours, and has also appeared with them on BBC Radio 3 and 4. Soon after his arrival in Portsmouth, the Choir recorded a new CD of Christmas music, Verbum Caro Factum Est (Herald), for which he was accompanist.

Sachin still enjoys singing and maintains a keen interest in languages.

West Meon Music Festival, 13-15 September

The Festival was founded by The Primrose Piano Quartet, and is now in its 9th year. It takes place over the weekend of 13th – 15th September, and we have another lovely programme of chamber music this year, taking place mostly in the acoustically excellent West Meon church.

The Friday & Saturday evening concerts are both candlelit, and beautifully atmospheric, and the Sunday concerts are a particularly wonderful showcase for the individual talents of the Primrose Piano Quartet. This year for the first time the well-known actor & local resident Nicholas Jones will be narrating Edgar Allen Poe’s The Mask of the Red Death, accompanying Caplet’s piece of the same name.

We have an exceptionally gifted young harpist, Gabriella Jones, playing in East Meon’s ‘rising stars’ concert on the Saturday afternoon. She recently played a lunchtime at Winchester Cathedral to an extremely enthusiastic audience of 200 – according to one “spy” he had never heard quite so much cheering and whistling in that place!

Ticket prices range from £12 – £20, with students just £5 and accompanied children £1. Festival passes are available and are £75 in the centre aisle and £65 in the side aisles, and a Sunday pass for the 2 concerts is £28 for all areas. The evening concerts include a glass of wine, and refreshments are served at all the concerts.

More information is available on the website

Voices for Hospices Choir massed Come and Sing Mendelssohn’s Elijah in Winchester Cathedral October 12th 2019

Come and support or sing with us!

Our concert on Saturday 12 October will be supporting all seven Hampshire based Hospices: Countess of Brecknock, Countess Mountbatten, Naomi House and Jacksplace, Oakhaven, Rowans, St Michael’s and the soon to be opened Winchester Hospice.

We will have over 500 singers raising the roof of Winchester Cathedral, together with orchestra, soloists and our conductor. Every singer and audience member pay £25 each for the pleasure of attending the concert! The Dean the Very Rev Catherine Ogle will open the concert proceedings. The Lord Lieutenant of Hampshire and the Mayor of Winchester and Lawrie McMenemy will head our list of VIP’s.

We were honoured to be awarded the Mayor of Winchester’s Community Award for 2018/19

We have been made Charity Concert of Winchester Cathedral for 2019. A huge honour.

Lawrie McMenemy has graciously agreed to be our Patron. He has supported our Voices for Hospices Choir Concerts over the last 9 years.

World-renowned Bass-Baritone Sir Thomas Allen is singing the title role of Mendelssohn’s Elijah. He is giving his services for free, as are many of the other soloists, orchestra and the organising committee of the Voices for Hospices Choir team. We have a Winchester Cathedral Chorister singing the “Youth” solo in the performance of Elijah.

We have just been awarded £2000 in the Tesco Bags of Help Scheme.

All ticket money and donations on the day go to our Hampshire Hospices, which means that all the setup concert costs need to be raised through our own fundraising efforts. We have been helped in this by grants from eight HCC Councillors, a Barn Dance, An Island Garden Visit, A Bridge Afternoon, raffles and auctions and of course Tesco’s Bags of Help. We are also having a Choral Workshop in September, to rehearse the choruses from Elijah being sung in the Cathedral. All info is available from

We aim to make this concert an exciting and memorable performance for both singers and audience alike and raising much need funds and awareness of the wonderful work our Hospices give freely to all Hampshire residents.

“Lunchtime Live!” returns to Portsmouth Cathedral through the autumn

“Lunchtime Live!” is a series of solo and ensemble recitals on Thursdays through the autumn. Light refreshments are on sale from 12.30pm. Recitals begin at 1.10pm. Please see this page for further details.

Thu, 12 Sep – Isabel Nisbet (contralto) & Rhidian Jones (piano)
Thu, 19 Sep – Louise Salmond Smith (recorder) & David Butler (organ)
Thu, 26 Sep – Liz Peskett (viola) & Richard Allum (piano)
Thu, 3 Oct – Michal Szostak (organ)
Thu, 10 Oct – Musicians from the Portsmouth Grammar School
Thu, 17 Oct – Kurt Rampton (organ)
Thu, 7 Nov – Stuart Raeburn & David Elwin (tenor & piano)
Thu, 14 Nov – Olive Murray (soprano)
Thu, 21 Nov – Alastair Savage (violin)
Thu, 28 Nov – Peter Gould (organ)

From orchestral blockbusters to intimate string sounds, the Havant Orchestras have something for everyone!

It’s always exciting to be looking ahead to a new season and the Havant Orchestras are very much looking forward to presenting another seven concerts across Havant and Fareham in 2019-20. This time we have a selection of seriously tempting programmes including blockbuster symphonic classics of giant proportions and more intimate, delicate, music to soothe and relax you!

HSO’s season begins with our fund-raising concert at Hayling Island Community Centre on September 21st. This features our outgoing student conductor, Stefano Boccacci. Stefano brings with him the talented young viola soloist Nia Thomas from the Royal Welsh School of Music and Drama and the concert includes deliciously romantic music by Sibelius, Bruch, Weber and Schumann. An evening at the seaside that HSO looks forward to every year!

We are very fortunate to have the Hall at Oaklands School in Waterlooville available for concerts by the Havant Symphony Orchestra (HSO). It is a very large hall with a grand piano which enables HSO to perform some large-scale music which would otherwise not be heard live in the area. Numbering around 50 musicians at its regular size, HSO can readily be expanded to provide the forces needed for a work such as the Symphony no. 1 by Mahler which features huge wind and brass sections bringing the orchestra’s total to over 80 players! This piece will feature in the concert by HSO on December 7th, along with music by Berlioz and Sibelius, and the fun ‘Variations on a Nursery Song’ for piano and orchestra by the Hungarian Ernst Dohnányi. The soloist in this piece will be Florian Mitrea, who studied at the Royal Academy of Music in London and has now embarked on an international solo career.

On 21st March 2020, the violin takes centre stage as we feature 20-year old Charlie Lovell-Jones who is already a soloist with major orchestras whilst still studying at Oxford University! Charlie will play the Violin Concerto by Elgar – a work of great passion and beauty in Elgar’s typically English style. Also in this programme will be some ghoulish fairy-tale telling in the form of Grieg’s ‘Peer Gynt’ Suite (including the famous ‘Morning’ and ‘In the Hall of the Mountain King’) and Dvořák’s ‘The Noon Witch’!

To end the season, on 11th July 2020, HSO pulls out all the stops to bring you an unmissable 20th-century icon, Stravinsky’s spectacular ballet music ‘The Firebird’, along with music by Smetana and Bizet and an appearance from a talented pupil from the Yehudi Menuhin School of Music. We don’t know their identity yet – it’s a secret! – but he or she will play the Cello Concerto in A minor by Saint-Saëns.

Our smaller ensemble, Havant Chamber Orchestra (HCO), will this season be visiting three different venues in the Fareham area. They begin with a lovely intimate evening for strings on October 19th at the United Reformed Church in Osborn Road South. HCO’s principal oboe, Lucinda Willits, will join the strings for a lively concerto by Italian master Albinoni. The concert will also include the ‘Souvenir de Florence’ by Tchaikovsky as well as the famous Adagio by Samuel Barber.

On February 8th 2020 HCO will be in Fareham again, this time with the full orchestra at Holy Trinity Church in West Street and we are delighted to be performing with Petersfield-based Russian cellist, Mikhail Lezdkan. Mikhail will play three pieces with us – the famous ‘Rococo Variations’ by Tchaikovsky and two delightful shorter pieces by Tchaikovsky and Glazunov. Music by Mozart and Haydn completes this easy-listening evening!

To round off our HCO season, on 16th May 2020, we are planning a departure in two ways – firstly, we will be just up the road from Fareham, this time at Wickham Community Centre, and secondly, our Musical Director, Robin Browning, will present an exploration of classical music’s most iconic composer, Beethoven. 2020 marks the 250th anniversary of Beethoven’s birth. Robin’s presentation will celebrate this by offering an insight into the great man’s life and work, featuring a full performance of his famous ‘Pastoral Symphony’ – the sixth of his nine amazing symphonies.

Full details of all our concerts, including ticketing information, are available on our website at Season tickets are available for the three HSO concerts at Oaklands, the three HCO concerts, or for all six and these offer substantial discounts on ticket prices.

Do come and join us this season for some perfect evenings of the world’s greatest music – we look forward to seeing you at a concert soon!

Portsmouth Chamber Music Series 2019-20

Now in its sixteenth season, the Portsmouth Chamber Music Series brings world-class musicians to the city. In partnership with Music in the Round and the Guildhall Trust, we present the finest music in informal surroundings where you are never more than a few metres from the performers. The coming year marks the 250th anniversary of Beethoven’s birth, and so you will see most of the concerts include a nod in that direction. A 20% discount is available to those who book the whole series.

All concerts are in the Portsmouth Guildhall and start at 7.30pm.

Click the link below to view the concerts in the series.

Monday 30 September – Trio Shaham Erez Wallfisch
Monday 28 October – Esmé Quartet
Monday 27 January – Ensemble 360
Monday 24 February – Trio Martinů
Monday 23 March – Pražák Quartet
Monday 4 May – Martin Roscoe

Tickets are available from the Portsmouth Guildhall on 0844 453 9028.

Bob Chilcott Workshop – Saturday 14 September

Whether you are young or old, an experienced chorister or new to choral singing, enjoy an exciting range of new and known repertoire and brush up your vocal technique under the inspiring direction of Bob Chilcott, in the glorious acoustic of Portsmouth Cathedral on 14 September.

Under 18s must be supervised; not suitable for children under 8.

Doors open at 09:45 for a 10:30 start. The finish will be at 16:30.

Entry Fee: RSCM members £13, under 18s free; non-RSCM members £20, under 18s £9.

The 2019/20 Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra Season at the Guildhall, Portsmouth

Once again our concerts this season bring you the very finest breadth of thrilling orchestral music with a range of world-class conductors and soloists. We launch the season with a true Latin Fiesta with Carlos Miguel Prieto at the helm and BSO’s Artist-in-Residence, the extraordinary Venezuelan pianist Gabriela Montero playing her own Latin Concerto. We return to Britain in November with David Hill conducting Vaughan Williams, Elgar and Holst’s The Planets.

Much loved BSO favourite Kees Bakels returns to the season with the unique sound world of Berlioz in his showpiece for orchestra, Symphonie fantastique alongside Rachmaninov’s Rhapsody on a Theme of Paganini. Ion Marin’s conducting of the music of Mahler has been one of the highlights of recent years and we are delighted that he will be bringing the monumental Symphony No.1 together with more Rachmaninov – this time his most popular work, the Second Piano Concerto.

Marta Gardolińska, who has been a sensation in her first year as BSO’s Young Conductor-in Association, brings three programmes chosen to display her extraordinary talents. I know Portsmouth audiences are going to love seeing her perform with the BSO.

Through our brand-new website there are ever more ways to connect with the BSO. If you want to find out what’s on near you, book tickets or learn more about the amazing BSO team and our work empowering communities across the region, go to

From Scheherazade and the tales of The Arabian Nights to the music of John Williams and Hans Zimmer or the New World Symphony to the Last Night of the Christmas Proms, we aim to show that the live orchestral experience is for everyone. We look forward to welcoming you once again to another compelling season of music making.

Download the season brochure: Portsmouth_complete_brochure_final.

See our page for concerts through 2020.

New 10-week course in September: “Beethoven and the Age of Revolution”

Using visual presentations, music videos and live demonstrations at the piano I shall be exploring the life and music of Beethoven, whose work represents the enormous changes taking place throughout Europe at the turn of the 19th century as a result of the Enlightenment and the French Revolution.

The music of Beethoven’s contemporaries, including Mozart, Haydn and many other lesser-known composers of the time will also be discussed as we explore the artistic traits affected by the changing times, leading directly to the birth of Romanticism.

Download the poster for further info: Chichester Beethoven

Boxgrove Choral Festival, 26-29 August

The Beaufort Singers are delighted to be returning to Boxgrove Priory for the second Boxgrove Choral Festival.

The choir formed at Cambridge University a few years ago under the direction of Joseph Wicks, who is currently Assistant Director of Music at Truro Cathedral and a former Senior Organ Scholar of St John´s College, Cambridge. They have performed a number of stunning concerts, tackling repertoire such as Tippett’s ‘Five Negro Spirituals’, Rachmaninov’s ‘Vespers’ and Sir James MacMillan’s ‘Seven Last Words on the Cross’. Last August, a video recording of Owain Park’s ‘Phos Hilaron’, which was filmed at Boxgrove Priory, received over 50,000 views on Classic FM’s Facebook channel. Watch it here:

Joseph is looking forward to embarking on another exciting and ambitious musical venture with this wonderful group of young professional singers. The Festival promises to be a real treat in the stunning surroundings and glorious acoustic of Boxgrove Priory.

Monday 26th August at Boxgrove Priory
Choral Evensong, 5.30 – 6.30pm
Free admission with a retiring collection
The Boxgrove Choral Festival 2019 kicks off with a service of Choral Evensong showcasing the music of Holst, Leighton, Owain Park and Tavener, as well as that of Neil Cox whose specially commissioned work for this year will be heard at the Festival Concert.

Renaissance Late, 8.30 – 9.00pm
Free admission with a retiring collection
Media Vita is John Sheppard’s stunning six-part meditation on life, death, faith, and doubt. Taking texts from the New Testament and the Book of Common Prayer, this masterpiece of English polyphony is rarely performed due to its expansive scope. Come and hear it in a devotional performance at the end of the first day of the 2019 Festival.

Tuesday 27th August at Boxgrove Priory
Lunchtime Recital (Hugh Cutting and Piers Kennedy), 1.00 – 1.50pm
Tickets: £8, £5 (students, under 18s), available here:
Join countertenor Hugh Cutting and pianist Piers Kennedy for a recital of a wide variety of song from Dowland, Handel and Purcell to Britten, Dvorak and some of Piers’ own compositions. Hugh has just finished his year as a Lay Clerk at St John’s College, Cambridge, and will be going to the Royal College of Music in September to pursue his postgraduate vocal studies.

Come and Sing at Boxgrove, 2.15 – 4.30pm
Free admission
We are delighted to be hosting an afternoon of music-making for local children in School Years 2-6! Participation is free, and there will be a short performance for family & friends at 4.15pm. Please visit to register your place. Places are limited, so please book early to avoid disappointment!

Concert (Lower Voices of The Beaufort Singers), 7.00 – 8.30pm
Tickets: £10, £5 (students, under 18s), available here:
Join the altos, tenors and basses of The Beaufort Singers for a concert of music for lower voices, featuring music from the Renaissance right through to the present day, and in many languages from Russian to Cornish. Highlights include Biebl’s ‘Ave Maria’, Finzi’s ‘Thou didst delight mine eyes’ and Tallis’ ‘Lamentations of Jeremiah’.

Wednesday 28th August at Boxgrove Priory
Lunchtime Recital (Joseph Wicks), 1.00 – 1.50pm
Tickets: £8, £5 (students, under 18s), available here:
Festival Director Joseph Wicks performs an organ recital on the beautiful 1875 two-manual organ by William Hill, featuring works by Bach, Brahms and Elgar. Joseph has just finished two years as Assistant Director of Music at Truro Cathedral.

Concert (Winchester Consort), 7.00 – 8.30pm
Tickets: £12, £5 (students, under 18s), available here:
Guest ensemble, the Winchester Consort, directed by George Richford, present a programme entitled Incomparable Art: Hubert Parry and his British legacy. They will perform Parry’s exquisite ‘Songs of Farewell’ in addition to Stanford’s ‘Magnificat’, and Howells’ ‘Requiem’.

Compline, 9.15 – 10.00pm
Free admission
The most magical of offices. Come and take part by holding a candle in this atmospheric service of Sung Compline, sung to plainchant and including some gems of the 20th and 21st centuries, including Owain Park’s ‘Phos Hilaron’.

Thursday 29th August at Boxgrove Priory
Festival Concert (The Beaufort Singers), 7.30 – 8.30pm
Tickets: £15, £5 (students, under 18s), available here:
The culmination of the Boxgrove Choral Festival 2019 featuring music predominantly from the British Isles to include Britten’s haunting ‘Hymn to the Virgin’, Howells’ rarely-performed unaccompanied work, ‘Salve Regina’ and Tippett’s ‘Five Negro Spirituals’. This concert will also feature a Festival Commission and World Premiere by Neil Cox, former Director of Music at Lancing College.

To book tickets, please visit our website, email or ring 07809 229292. It is also possible to buy a Festival Pass which grants you access to all of our events; these cost £40 and are also available online.

Read about the 2018 Festival.

A Victorian Musical Celebration: “All jubilant with song”

Thursday 5th September, 7.30pm
Blessed Mary Church, Upham, SO32 1JH
£10 including refreshments
Tickets from Parish Office:
01489 892197

Ann Dent, mezzo-soprano
Richard Dewland, pianist & organ solo
Andrew Cleary, choral director & organ solo

The Combined Choirs of Blessed Mary, Upham and St Peter’s Church, Bishop’s Waltham, & Guests

Although dubbed ‘the Land without Music’, Britain during the late 1800s underwent a musical renaissance. The drawing-room piano became central to domestic entertainment for the middle classes, and music in the Church of England reached new heights.

This period concert combines favourite choir anthems alongside first live performances of forgotten Victorian sheet songs fresh from the archives.

Proceeds will support Blessed Mary Church to fund Evensong at 6.30pm on the second Sunday of each month.

Petworth Festival launches on Tuesday 16 July

Petworth Festival has a long history of working with the finest artists and performers across the genres, but from the outset, classical music has formed the core of the annual Summer event. The 2019 programme, running from Tuesday 16 July to Saturday 3 August, once again boasts a top-drawer line up of performers, all regulars on the biggest platforms of the world.

The diverse array of soloists includes ‘the hottest guitarist in the world’ Miloš Karadaglić; violinists Viktoria Mullova and Tamsin Waley-Cohen; and pianists Imogen Cooper and Barry Douglas; ensembles appearing include the Brodsky Quartet with guest cellist Laura van der Heijden; stellar vocal ensemble I Fagiolini with a programme in celebration of the life and work of Leonardo da Vinci; Chineke!, the young ensemble that features black and ethnic minority classical musicians, and the ensemble Counterpoise who, in a major coup for the festival, appear with one of the greatest opera singers of recent generations, bass-baritone Sir John Tomlinson.

Champion of the dynamic and brave world of left-hand alone repertoire Nicholas McCarthy is the only one-handed pianist to graduate from the Royal College of Music in its 130-year history. In a double-bill, harpist Oliver Wass, the first harpist to win the Guildhall Gold Medal, the Guildhall’s most prestigious prize, will play the first half of their concert with Nicholas performing the second half in St Mary’s Church, Petworth on 30 July.

For details of all the events please visit

Solent choir all at sea…

For its next concert, the Solent Male Voice Choir is all at sea – and before anyone makes the obvious comment it should be explained that musical director Geoff Porter has chosen an aquatic theme and an island setting for the show.

And when the audience assembles for some Sea Fever on July 27 at St.Mary’s Church, Hayling Island it will find he has recruited a “mermaid” – soprano Jane Marett – and many of the songs will concentrate on water and wetness.

The title song, based on John Masefield’s famous poem, was a fairly obvious choice and Bridge Over Troubled Water, another. The Bahamas folk song Sloop John B is a suitably nautical calypso and who could resist the imagery of Raindrops Keep Fallin’ On My Head.

Undaunted, Geoff switches his attention to rivers and to messing about in, cruising down and to swinging together (with their backs between their knees) for the Eton Boating Song.

It promises to be a lively evening from a choir in excellent form after a recent recruiting effort (no press gang involved) produced a number of able new hands.

Musical Director Geoff is optimistic about what waits beyond the horizon for his crew – “My assistant Hugh Thomas and l have welcomed some enthusiastic newcomers and everyone is enjoying the music. A highlight we are relishing in the autumn is recording a charity CD for Shelter with other choirs at the London Coliseum.”

The good ship Sea Fever will get underway at 1930 hours on Saturday, July 27. tickets £8 on the door.

“Recorder Delight” at St Peter’s Church, Petersfield on July 20th

The Solent Chamber Orchestra is delighted to be returning to St Peter’s Church after a very successful concert last summer in support of the Rosemary Foundation.

The concert will be held on Saturday 20 July at 7.30pm, opening and closing with works by Beethoven – the ‘Rondino’ for Wind Octet and the glorious Symphony No 7. In between the audience will be treated to a rare performance of Telemann’s Suite in A minor featuring recorder player Jennie Flatman.

Jennie started playing the recorder at the age of 6 like many children, at primary school. Jennie later took recorder lessons with Jeanne Dolmetsch and she performed as part of the Dolmetsch ensemble on a number of occasions. After that, Jennie went on to study recorder at Birmingham Conservatoire and later at the University College, Chichester (now Chichester University) graduating in music in 2003. Jennie then went on to gain her PGCE in 2006. Since that time, Jennie has been teaching clarinet, saxophone and recorder peripatetically in many local schools and privately, as well as performing as a local soloist and playing within many different ensembles. Jennie is a founder member of Solent Baroque, a new and exciting chamber ensemble based in Hampshire. In addition to this, Jennie plays clarinet and saxophone in various local bands and orchestras, and as part of the Ensemble Concertante Clarinet Quartet.

Jennie is also a local representative for Trinity College music exams, and if this isn’t enough, she has two young children and a husband to keep her busy!

Tickets are available from: / pre book 01730 601074 (answer machine) or on the door (please note: cash / cheque only) £15.00 / £5.00 student / Kids for a quid.

See concert page.

The Southern Cathedrals Festival in Chichester

A rich and varied musical programme is the promise at Chichester Cathedral this summer as it hosts the annual Southern Cathedrals Festival from July 18-21.

For a full list of festival events and information on how to buy tickets, visit the Cathedral website or the Southern Cathedral Festival Website at

Message from the organisers:

We are delighted to invite you to the Southern Cathedrals Festival, and to an exciting programme of events, performances and services held in Chichester Cathedral and other iconic venues around the city centre.

The 400th anniversary of Heinrich Schutz’s Psalmen Davids falls this year. Pieces from this exquisite collection feature in two of the concerts, and a wealth of psalm settings, old and new, are explored throughout the Festival.

Three choral concerts take their place in the programme alongside four services (one recorded for broadcast by the BBC), recitals of songs and organ music, a performance by the superb West Sussex Youth Wind Orchestra, and evening entertainment in the Deanery marquee.

The Festival culminates in a performance of one of the greatest achievements of Western music, J S Bach’s St John Passion, in which the choirs are joined by an exciting line-up of soloists, and the acclaimed period-instrument orchestra Florilegium.

The Festival is a rich celebration of the friendship between our three cathedrals. We look forward to welcoming our extended family of audience members, worshippers, patrons, and musicians, and to sharing the Festival with you.

Charles Harrison Chichester Cathedral
David Halls Salisbury Cathedral
Andrew Lumsden Winchester Cathedral

Please see this page for the actual listings.

HSO end their 2018-19 season with a flourish

Concert preview – End of season opera music from the Havant Symphony Orchestra, Sat 13 Jul 7:30pm at Oaklands School, Waterlooville.

Get swept away! HSO end their 2018-19 season with a flourish. Wagner’s arresting Overture The Mastersingers followed by the Dream Pantomime from Humperdinck’s Hansel and Gretel take us away into the dramatic world of the opera.

English composer Frank Bridge’s The Sea, written in 1911 in Eastbourne, and Richard Strauss’ Don Juan will simply sweep you off your feet!

To say we are delighted to welcome back violinist Joo Yeon Sir would be an understatement! She last entertained us with Saint-Saëns back in March 2016 but now returns with the Concerto No. 1 by Prokofiev. The composer wrote the opening theme in 1915 during a love affair. We are sure you will love this performance!

Preview: Chichester Symphony Orchestra – Festival of Chichester Concert

Saturday July 13th 7.30 p.m., St Paul’s Church Chichester

This programme will take you to the heart of Europe in the 1870s with its Nationalism, Romanticism and all you would expect of both movements. The composers are Brahms and Dvorak, and the works are linked by their representation of country and countryside, and by a host of rich melodies. The composers knew each other and were quite close in age.

The selection of Slavonic Dances (op 46 nos. 1,2 4 and 8) show off Dvorak’s ability to write original themes in the style of folk music, Czech for nos 1 and 8, Ukranian for no. 2 and Austrian for no. 4.

Brahms’ violin concerto is a big Germanic Romantic work rich in themes. The second movement is almost a folk tune, and the Rondo finale slightly Hungarian, with a ‘gypsy’ touch to it.

Dvorak 5th Symphony, strangely neglected in the concert hall, was written before the Slavonic Dances, and promoted in German and Czech. You will hear flowing melodies redolent of the outdoors and countryside.

Catherine Lawlor is the soloist in the Brahms, and Simon Wilkins conducts. Read an interview with Simon here:

Tickets are available from the Novium Box Office (01243 816525 or, from, or on the door on the night from 7p.m. £12. Students £5 and under 16’s free and welcome.

The Walton Voices join Southdowns Concert Band for Festival of Chichester

Former Chichester Cathedral chorister Jonathan Kilhams is delighted to be heading back to the cathedral with The Walton Voices which he will direct for a special concert for the Festival of Chichester.

The Walton Voices join The Southdowns Concert Band on Saturday, July 6 at 7.30pm for an evening entitled A Journey through Time and Space.

The proceeds will be donated to Dementia Support (Sage House). The compere for the evening is novelist and Cicestrian Kate Mosse. Tickets £15; children free.

Read more at the link below.

Preview: Portsmouth Baroque Choir team up with the Consort of Twelve

Portsmouth Baroque Choir’s summer concert, at St Paul’s Church, Chichester, on Sunday 7 July at 6pm, features J S Bach’s colossal Mass in B Minor. This has been called the ‘greatest musical artwork of all times and peoples’, and is also very difficult to sing! The choir are delighted to be collaborating again with the Consort of Twelve – – for this performance.

The Mass in B minor is a huge work. The setting of the Nicene Creed alone has nine separate movements; it opens with a five-part fugue based on the traditional plainchant. Another highlight is the 6-part Sanctus, described by the musicologist C S Terry as follows: ‘For glory of utterance, the Sanctus stands by itself … The movement is of overwhelming sublimity.’ It was originally composed for performance on Christmas Day 1724 at the Thomaskirche in Leipzig, where Bach is buried.

The Consort of Twelve on this occasion will include three trumpets and a ‘Baroque horn’, an unusual instrument which features in just one movement.

Preview: Zadok the Priest by the Chichester Chorale

Join the Chichester Chorale and the Chichester Chamber Ensemble for an evening of music by George Frederic Handel & Leopold Mozart in the stunning setting of Boxgrove Priory on Weds 3 July at 7.30pm.

2019 marks 260 years since the death of the German (later British) Baroque composer George Frederic Handel. We celebrate his music by performing the Coronation Anthem entitled ‘Zadok the Priest’, which was written for the Coronation of King George II in 1727, ‘The Arrival of the Queen of Sheba’ from his Oratorio Solomon, and ‘The Foundling Hospital Anthem’ also known as ‘Blessed are they that considereth the poor’ which was written for, and first performed in, The Foundling Hospital in London, and was the last piece of English Church Music that Handel composed.

2019 also marks 300 years since the birth of the German composer Leopold Mozart, father of Wolfgang Amadeus. We perform his ‘Missa Brevis in C’.

“Recorders are cool!” will be the message at Festival of Chichester concert

Hampshire Recorder Sinfonia have got a definite message as they return to the Festival of Chichester this year.
Concert: Sat 29 Jun 7:30pm, St Paul’s Church, Chichester.

“Recorders are cool and recorders are awesome!” says spokeswoman Jean Campbell. The sinfonia will be in action on Saturday, June 29 at 7.30pm in St Paul’s Church when they are promising an “astonishing” performance from 35 players on seven sizes of instrument ranging from 23cm to 2m.

Read more at the link below.

Harriet Mackenzie brings her Celoniatus Ensemble to Chichester Cathedral

Harriet Mackenzie continues the proudest of traditions at this year’s Festival of Chichester.

She has played at every single Festival of Chichester so far – with various groups including Kosmos trio, Retorica violin duo, Karolos Ensemble and with guitarist Morgan Szymanski.

This year she will be offering a programme enticingly entitled Eight Seasons and a Blackbird, on Thursday, June 27 at 7.30pm in Chichester Cathedral. She will be directing her Celoniatus Ensemble. Hand-picked by Harriet, they are an acclaimed string ensemble named after Harriet’s rare and beautiful 1730 Italian violin.

Read more at the link below and on the concert page.

Preview: St Richard Singers: “Rejoice!”

After their huge sell-out success at their Festival of Chichester concert last July, the St Richard Singers return to the Festival with REJOICE!, a concert exploring the music of celebration through the ages, on Saturday 6 July in Chichester.

As the choir approaches its 50th Anniversary, it celebrates some of the most joyful music ever composed including Haydn’s effervescent ‘The heavens are telling’, Finzi’s rousing ‘God is gone up’, and Mozart’s delightful setting of Psalm 117, “Laudate Dominum”.

The choir will be joined by four exciting and local young soloists – Charlotte Bateman (Soprano), George Haynes (Alto), Sam Leggett (Tenor) and Howard Weyman (Bass) in a performance that culminates with Britten’s iconic festival cantata ‘Rejoice in the Lamb’, which sets lines from poet Christopher Smart’s epic and eccentric work ‘Jubilate Agno’, celebrating the unique and individual way each creature rejoices in God.

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