Newspaper article Evening Chronicle (Newcastle, England)

Abbey's Musical Feast

Newspaper article Evening Chronicle (Newcastle, England)

Abbey's Musical Feast

Article excerpt

RISING stars of classical music enter the spotlight at this year's Hexham Abbey Festival.

The event has been much expanded this autumn to include other art forms - film, exhibitions, theatre, jazz and poetry among them - but up-andcoming classical musicians are brought to the fore courtesy of the Young Artist Platform initiated by festival director Graham Coatman.

This involves lunchtime concerts, several involving performers from the region, and celebrating this year's various anniversaries of three classical composers, Schumann, Chopin and Barber. The performances are in the Abbey from 1pm and admission to each is pounds 6. The first Young Artist Platform on Monday September 27 at 1pm sees Graham Coatman accompanying baritone Phil Wilcox in lieder and English songs that include Brahms' Four Serious Songs, Butterworth's cycle A Shropshire Lad, songs by Schumann and folksong arrangements by Britten.

Pianist Simon Passmore, whose performance at last year's festival won high praise, returns on Wednesday September 29 for a 1pm Platform recital to include Chopin's Ballade No 1 in G minor, Op.23; Ravel's Gaspard de la nuit, Grieg's Holberg Suite and music by Percy Grainger.

Musicians' magazine The Strad remarked on the "great expressive range and impressive authority" of the playing of Polish cellist Evva Mizerska, and there will be a chance to judge for yourself when she performs with her duo partner, pianist Emma Abbat, in the Abbey at 8pm on September 29. Their programme includes Chopin and Barber's Cello Sonatas as well as pieces by contemporary English and Polish composers.

ACCOLADE born oboist Br ittlebank Finzi's Five Bagatelles are the featured work in a 1pm Platform recital by clarinettist Jennifer Lloyd-Wilkinson, accompanied by Gerald Coatman, on September 30, and Hexhamborn oboist Jennifer Brittlebank is joined by Simon Passmore for the Friday spot for Schumann's Drei Romanzen, Tomasi's Evocations, the Sonate by Poulenc and Barber's Canzonetta. Jennifer won the Royal College of Music's accolade of Rising Star 2010 and has studied with international oboist Nicholas Daniel. She has performed at the BBC Proms, with the training orchestra for Stuttgart State Opera, and soon heads east to test for the post of principal cor anglais player with the Hong Kong Philharmonic Orchestra. …

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