SeatonMusic programme to suit varied tastes

Summer may be drawing to a close, but there are still some autumnal (and winter) treats in store.

One of these is the arrival of the new SeatonMusic chamber music series in Seaton Town Hall.

As ever, the programme is a feast for East Devon music lovers.

SeatonMusic is a registered charity, the mission for which is to sponsor affordable, top quality, professional, classical music performances, to commission new works and to put real energy and innovation into music education activities for the young.

Each year it stages a programme of affordably-priced chamber music concerts, with something to satisfy every taste. This year, every era from the baroque to the modern is represented with as wide a range of instrumental ensembles as can be accommodated in the Town Hall.

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The opening concert, on Thursday, October 7, features the Orchestra of St Paul’s – one of London’s finest chamber ensembles – with a mixed programme of music, including Tippet’s Little Music for Strings and Metamorphosen by Richard Strauss. Generally regarded as one of the masterpieces of the string repertoire, Metamorphosen contains Strauss’s most sustained outpouring of tragic emotion. The programme will continue with Britten’s diverting Simple Symphony and conclude with Shostakovich’s Symphony for Strings Op118a.

On November 4, the Town Hall will host the Russian born piano virtuoso Alexander Ardakov, who will play works by Mussorgsky, Schumann, Glinka, and Chopin .

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The SeatonMusic Christmas Concert is becoming something of a tradition. In the past, it has featured an early baroque Christmas entertainment and last year the performers were an unusual - and endlessly energetic - percussion ensemble. This year, the club is offering a classical saxophone and piano duo – Hannah Marcinowicz and John Reid. In 2007, Hannah gave a recital at the Royal Festival Hall and she made her Wigmore Hall debut in 2008. In that year she also gave a recital at the Purcell Room on London’s South Bank, where she premiered a new work to universal critical acclaim.

Following the success of this recital, she gave a further Wigmore Hall recital in 2009. Hannah is clearly a young artist with a brilliant future and her visit to Seaton is a concert not to be missed.

The concert on Thursday, January 20, 2011, continues the theme of introducing truly talented young musicians to the Seaton audience. The up-and-coming cello and piano duo – Nathaniel Boyd and Simon Lane - will perform music by Bach, Brahms, Schumann and Prokofiev.

On Thursday, February 17, the Anton Stadler Trio (clarinet, viola and piano) will play trios by Mozart, Schumann and Bruch, as well as music written for their solo instruments.

Haydn, Debussy and Beethoven are on the programme for the concert on Thursday, March 10. The performers are the Finzi Quartet. One of today’s leading string quartets with performances at the Wigmore Hall and Purcell Room behind them.

Finally, on April 28, the Britannic Ensemble (flute, oboe and piano) will (to quote the SeatonMusic brochure) perform “a pleasant mix of music by familiar and lesser known composers …. to close our concert season.”

The price of a season ticket to this treasure-house of the finest music is �45 (with tickets to individual concerts available on the night at �12). SeatonMusic is one of the foundations of East Devon musical life and serves East Devon’s large and active audience for classical music. Concerts are presented in an informal and welcoming atmosphere, yet preserve the highest possible musical standards. Truly “promoting musical excellence” as their motto says.

A varied programme and top quality performers – another reason to brave the darker evenings.

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