Monday December 09 2019



Village Music & Drama

Musical feast for all

Posted on March 20 2013 at 3:54:33 0 comments

Festival leaflet

Mary White gives a preview of the diverse attractions at this year’s Bromsgrove Festival.

Late April and early May is Bromsgrove Festival time. Now in its 53rd year, the programming has adapted to changing circumstances; however, we continue to bring distinguished artists to Bromsgrove.

Studying the programme you will note the appearance of Dame Felicity Lott, Patricia Routledge and Timothy West featuring in diverse events.

A recital given by Dame Felicity Lott with accompanist Sebastian Wybrew at the New Guesten Hall on April 24, A Celebration of English Song, is a concert not to be missed. Concert-goers will find that our handbook has a full account of these wonderful English songs.

At the Artrix on Friday May 3 it’s Facing the Music, which sees Patricia Routledge in conversation with Edward Seckersen. Recently better known as an actress, Patricia was also trained as a singer and had success in musical theatre on both sides of the Atlantic.

This special part of her career will be illustrated with access to some rare and treasured recordings. 

On Friday May 24, Timothy West and the Paväo String Quartet are at the Artrix in an event called Intimate Letters. The composer Janácek fell deeply in love with a much younger woman, and the affair stimulated him to produce not only a fine Quartet but also passionate love letters.

Timothy West reads Janácek’s letters in chronological order between the movements of the composer’s second quartet.

On May 11 at the Artrix there is a special Festival orchestral programme with the English Symphony Orchestra led by Michael Bochmann and conducted by Dr Donald Hunt and Dr Barry Smith.

The programme begins with Britten’s Young Persons’ Guide to the Orchestra and ends with Elgar’s Enigma Variations, making for a programme that’s a little different, ending with a familiar favourite.

In between we have Warlock’s Serenade for Strings and Capriol Suite, plus Worcestershire composer Julius Harrison’s Bredon Hill.

The concert will be preceded by a free talk by Dr Smith, who has written a “definitive book” on the composer Warlock.

On Sunday April 28 at the Artrix we have the return of 4 Girls, 4 Harps. The quartet was first formed in 2000; they offer an evening of glamour, lively chat and most importantly beautiful music by composers from Handel to Bernstein.

2013 marks 100 years since the birth of Benjamin Britten, and two interesting films will be shown at the Artrix on April 27.

Both are films made by Tony Palmer – the first, from 1979, features interesting interviews with Peter Pears and others, while his new film Nocturne was produced this year especially for the anniversary. 

The first film, commencing at 4pm, will be served with tea and cake. The second film starts at 7.15pm, with a glass of wine served in the interval.  Tony Palmer will be present to introduce both films.

Prior to these diverse events is The Bromsgrove Festival International Young Musicians’ Platform, beginning on April 18. Developed over the past 33 years, this is considered a very important part of the festival.

Applicants have to be aged between 17 and 25 and play any instrument except the organ, while singers can enter up to age 27 and must be of at least Conservatoire entrance level.

The Platform runs over four days, with three finalists selected for the exciting Finalists’ Concert which is on Sunday April 21 at 7pm in the New Guesten Hall, Avoncroft.
We welcome the public to the early rounds on Thursday April 18, continuing on April 19 and 20 (9.30am to 6pm) with the semi-finals on the Sunday morning (9.30 am to 1.00 pm).

Entrance to the early rounds is free of charge. You will hear music from outstanding violinists, cellists, pianists and singers, and brilliantly-played instruments such as the saxophone and even a marimba.

Even in these difficult economic times we hope you find an event or events that you will not wish to miss.

Bookings may be made by post to the Bromsgrove Festival Office, The Oaks, Rowney Green, Alvechurch, B48 7QR, or via answerphone to 07824 859572.

Tickets are available at the Artrix booking office either in person, by telephone 01527 577330 or on their website

Further details of programmes may be seen on the Festival website

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