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Village Music & Drama

Highlights of Bromsgrove Festival 2011

Posted on March 19 2011 at 9:47:51 0 comments

Michael Bochmann, Jane Leslie MacKenzie, David Watkins

Bromsgrove Festival presents its 51st programme, wishing to offer concerts to appeal to varied musical interests. You may wish to come to something familiar, but it is also an opportunity to experience the unknown, writes Mary White.

The opening concert features David Fanshawe’s African Sanctus conducted by Donald Hunt. The composer explored and recorded African music. Having been moved by differing emotional expressions in tribal music, he imposed some of his own composition to complete a fascinating work.

Lasting only 55 minutes, it is preceded by African songs with the Elgar Chorale and Bromsgrove School Chapel Choir conducted by Jonathan Kingston.

Sunday May 8 sees the return of Tenebrae, brilliant singers who move around St John’s Church by candlelight creating something very special – when they came in 2004 they received a standing ovation.

The final concert is also in St John’s Church and will be a truly Festive Celebration with the English Symphony Orchestra and soprano Naomi Harvey conducted by Donald Hunt. The programme begins with Mozart and Haydn and then after the interval moves on to Strauss, Lehar, Coates, Fanshawe and Elgar.

In between these concerts there will be a variety of other interests – including the wind quintet of the London Nash Ensemble with pianist Ian Brown, and for jazz enthusiasts, Terry Lightfoot featuring The Wonderful World of Louis Armstrong. 

In the delightful Grafton Manor Chapel, violinist Michael Bochmann with soprano and harpist perform music by Mozart, Purcell, Vivaldi and more. The concert commences at 7.45pm, but from 6.45pm there is an opportunity to view the gardens and have a glass of wine.

There is the return of an afternoon concert with Michael Law at the piano singing songs of the 30s (with inclusive tea and cake in the interval). And there’s a different Festival experience on Friday May 6: An Audience with Jonathan Miller, the famous author, opera director and film producer, who will answer audience questions.

You will hopefully be tempted by some of this – not forgetting the Young Musicians’ Platform which commences Wednesday April 27 and ends with an exciting concert by the finalists on the evening of Sunday May 1.


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