Reviews: James Walker Remembered

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Byline: Christopher Morley

With the death after a short illness last Friday of James Walker, the Midlands has lost one of its most valued, respected and admired musicians.

Based in Stratford-upon-Avon, he was equally renowned as both pianist and composer. In the latter capacity, he frequently provided scores for productions by the Royal Shakespeare Company; in the former he was particularly admired for his gifts as an accompanist.

'We had a wonderful relationship,' said the internationally-acclaimed violinist Rimma Sushanskaya. 'He was a wonderful musician as well as a wonderful person. He was a very secluded, private man.'

David Curtis, violist with the Coull String Quartet and music director of the Orchestra of the Swan, added his own tribute. 'He was such a nice man and such a fantastic accompanist.

'He was so sensitive to whatever you were doing. Life's too short to work with unpleasant people and too short for the people who really do give something, as James did. …