Opus Theatre recitals

ANTON LYAKHOVSKY RECITAL – 9th September 2017 – 3pm

Part 1

– Arabesque Op 18 by Robert Schumann
– Piano Sonata No. 1 by Robert Schumann

Part 2

– Etudes Tableaux (selection) – Sergei Rachmaninoff
– Preludes (selection) – Sergei Rachmaninoff
– Corelli Variations– Sergei Rachmaninoff


OLIVER POOLE RECITAL – 9th September 2017 – 7pm

Part 1

– Goldberg Variations – Johann Sebastian Bach

Part 2

– Ring Cycle Transcriptions (including The Ride of the Valkyries) Richard Wagner (Arr. Louis Brassin)
– Rhapsody In Blue – George Gershwin


Opus Theatre, Robertson Street, Hastings


 24-25 Cambridge Road,
Hastings TN34 1DJ
9TH SEPTEMBER 2017 at 3PM and 7PM

The Opus Theatre is considered one of the finest concert hall in the South East, in a Grade II listed building created for the best natural acoustics.

The theatre’s centerpiece, however, is the venue’s new and very special concert grand piano, one of the most technologically advanced acoustic instruments in the world, officially baptized as the ‘Phoenix Opus’. This beautiful 9ft concert grand piano has been commissioned by Polo Piatti, the awardwinning British-Argentine composer and concert pianist, who has recently launched the 700 seats Opus Theatre in the 19th century building of the former congregational church in Hastings town centre. Polo is also Founder and Artistic Director of the International Composers Festival in the UK, as well as Founder and Artistic Director of the Hastings Sinfonia Orchestra. To celebrate the arrival of this unique instrument in its new home, the Opus Theatre is delighted to present a very special event. There will be an afternoon recital by Russian virtuoso Anton Lyakhovsy, followed by an evening recital by British prodigy Oliver Poole. Both programmes will include some of some of the most beautiful piano works by Rachmaninoff, Schumann, Wagner, Gershwin, etc. – all performed by two amazing pianists in the perfect surroundings and acoustics of the Opus Theatre. The first performance starts at 3pm and the second at 7pm. Both recitals will be video-recorded live. Tickets for this very special event are on sale from the Opus Theatre website and at the venue on the day, priced at £15 per recital or at a discounted price of £25 for both recitals.

ABOUT THIS EXTRAORDINARY PIANO The Phoenix Opus is a 9ft long grand concert piano, 1 ton in weight, constructed using the latest Phoenix technology including their fantastic carbon-fibre soundboard, fitted to a 1925 Blüthner Style XI acoustic body (widely considered as one of the very best acoustic bodies in existence). It has a WNG carbon fibre/composite action, and the world-famous Phoenix bridge technology. This makes the ‘Phoenix Opus’ not only an extraordinarily beautiful instrument, but the piano with the biggest carbon-fiber soundboard in the United Kingdom as well as and one of the most technologically advanced acoustic pianos in the planet. Read the official press release by Phoenix by clicking here. More information about the venue can be found at: www.opustheatre.co.uk

To read more about Polo Piatti please visit: www.polopiatti.com Opus Theatre – 24-25 Cambridge Road – Hastings – East Sussex TN34 1DJ

Brighton Early Music Festival 2017


“If it’s Early Music you’re looking for, then get yourself down to Brighton”   Classic FM
Brighton Early Music Festival launched its programme for 2017 on Tuesday 25th July at Angel House – a beautiful Regency venue on Brighton’s seafront.  2017 explores the origins of some of classical music’s best-loved forms, and is the Festival’s biggest ever offering with over 30 events taking place this autumn.  Festival Co-Artistic Director Deborah Roberts says “this year’s programme is a fascinating journey through the early development of the musical forms we know and love today.  The oratorio, sonata, string quartet and opera didn’t spring into being fully formed, but grew organically out of earlier models, and of course there’s also the chance to explore the rich tapestry of folk music which humans have enjoyed for centuries.”
The 2017 festival has the title ROOTS with flagship events including two new opera productions – Monteverdi’s Orfeo and Rameau’s Pygmalion which ‘bookend’ the early period of operatic development.  Orfeo will be staged at The Old Market in Hove, in a new production by Thomas Guthrie featuring a cast of specially auditioned young singers headed by tenor Rory Carver as Orfeo, while Pygmalion is a new staging by Karolina Sofulak in collaboration with baroque group Ensemble Molière.
The Festival is well known for its championing of young artists through its scheme for emerging ensembles, Early Music Live! This year, many of the groups performing at the Festival have previously taken part in the Early Music Live! scheme, including the Consone String Quartet (28th Oct); Ensemble Molière (28th & 29th Oct); The Askew Sisters (2nd Nov); Ensemble Hesperi(4th Nov); Musica Poetica (pictured, 4th Nov); Ensemble Tempus Fugit (5th Nov); Chelys Consort of Viols (10th Nov) and theLittle Baroque Company (11th Nov).  BBC Radio 3 will record the performances by the Consone Quartet and Ensemble Hesperi this year for broadcast on The Early Music Show.  This year’s Early Music Live! participants, including York Early Music International Young Artists Competition prizewinners Rumorum, will present their programmes in a special showcase on 4thNovember.
Folk enthusiasts can enjoy performances by Old Blind Dogs with singer Siobhan Miller (collaborating with L’Avventura London, 27th Oct), and The Askew Sisters (2nd Nov), and families are also catered for with OAE TOTS concerts for pre-schoolers (pre-festival, 7th Oct) and Tales in Music: The Pigeon & The Albatross with the Little Baroque Company (11th Nov).
Tickets for all festival events (£5-£28) go on sale to Friends of the Festival on Monday 21st August, and on general sale on Monday 4th September at bremf.org.uk or 01273 709709.

Funding Boost for St Nicolas, Pevensey, Restoration Project

St Nicolas & St Wilfrid’s Pevensey PCC is celebrating the news that it has received a £19,164.00 funding boost from SUEZ Communities Trust (formerly SITA Trust) for the St Nicolas Restoration Project.

The church has been in urgent need of repair for some years, and is currently being made sound and weatherproof using money from the Heritage Lottery Fund, the Sussex Historic Churches Trust and others plus local fund raising activities. To complete the restoration, interior render, which has been badly damaged by water ingress, needs to be removed and made good. SUEZ Communities Trust funding will contribute to the redecoration and rendering.

Churchwarden Simon Sargent said “We are delighted that the generous donation from SUEZ Communities Trust means that we have now reached our funding target of £255,000 and will be able to complete the restoration project. This began 10 years ago and I would like to pay tribute to the enormous contribution of our former Churchwarden, the late Owen Visick.”

Marianne Ivin of SUEZ Communities Trust added “We are very pleased to be able to help the church renovate the internal parts of the building. This much needed restoration will enable to building to be used by future generations. SUEZ Communities Trust provides grants through the Landfill Communities Fund. This important source of funding has been available since 1997 and has provided such worthy projects with more than £1.4 billion.”

All Saints Hastings Organ Concerts 2017

Concerts this summer on the 1878 Father Willis Organ

All concerts Mondays at 7.30pm

10 July                   David Humphreys, Peterborough Cathedral

17 July                   Peter Wright, Southwark Cathedral

24 July                   Scott Farrell, Rochester Cathedral

31 July                   Matthew Jorysz, Westminster Abbey

7 August              Tim Ravalde, Chichester Cathedral

14 August            Jonathan Allsopp, Westminster Cathedral

21 August            Peter King, Bath Abbey

28 August            Gordon Stewart

Tickets £10 on the door

Refreshments available at all events

Hastings Philharmonic

Monteverdi and Duruflé concert at St Clement’s Old Town, Hastings
The historic St Clements Church in the old town will be the venue for a beautiful concert of church choral music produced by Hastings Philharmonic aiming to attract lovers of plainchant harking back to the medieval origins of church music. It starts early at 5pm on Saturday 15th July.

The great crowd puller is likely to be the three Monteverdi pieces, Cantate Domino, Domine ne in furore tuo and Adoramus te, performed by the Hastings Philharmonic Chamber Choir, but the concert includes a rare opportunity to hear some beautiful 20th century music based on chant and quasi-Renaissance counterpoint. It will be an even rarer opportunity to hear a religious piece by José Maurício Nunes Garcia (1767–1830), a Brazilian classical composer, one of the greatest exponents of Classicism in the Americas whose style was strongly influenced by Viennese composers of the period, such as Mozart and Haydn.

The main work to be performed by the main Hastings Philharmonic Choir will be Maurice Duruflé’s Requiem Opus 9, which was first performed in 1947. Themes in the work come mainly from chant; there is a calmness that reflects the flowing, easy quality of its Gregorian chant origins. This is mixed with the serenity of quasi-Renaissance counterpoint, and rich harmonies influenced by Debussy and Ravel. Chant formed a large part of Duruflé’s musical upbringing as a boy chorister (1912-1918) at the cathedral in Rouen, where the services were almost entirely chanted, and his professional education was at the Paris Conservatoire, where harmonizing chant melodies was a large part of his training as an organist. Duruflé’s clear Gregorian themes are also found in his ‘Four Motets’. His music is sometimes compared with that of Vaughan Williams, who briefly studied in France but the latter’s modal melodies, counterpoint and archaic-sounding techniques were inspired by English folk music and the composers of the Tudor era, whereas Duruflé’s modal counterpoint is supported by rich, and very French, added-note harmonies. Duruflé’s wife has said that, while composing his Requiem dedicated to the memory of his father, he “cried several times” appropriately for one of the most moving religious works of the twentieth century.

Last but not least, twentieth century German composer, Franz Biebl, produced many works for children, men’s, and mixed choruses but his best known composition is his ‘Ave Maria’ which is performed here too. It might have languished in obscurity but for the ‘Glee Club’, a Cornell University choir who popularised it in America as a result of its beautiful multiple harmonisation. It’s now very popular with choirs and often performed in Germany and America. Biebl took two Marian texts – the Angelus and the Ave Maria and joined them together producing a hybrid text for his work.

The concert will feature as soloists, soprano Lin Westcott, baritone Marcio da Silva and will be accompanied by Richard Leach on organ.

Church music, Monteverdi, Duruflé and others, Saturday 15th July, early start 5pm, at St Clements Church, Swan Terrace/High St, Hastings TN34 3ES – Tickets: £15/£12.50 under 16 £5

Brighton Festival Chorus

Summer Concert: Sunrise
Brighton Festival Chorus
Brighton Festival Youth Choir
Chamber Domaine
James Morgan: conductor

Saturday 8th July 2017 at 7.30pm
Attenborough Centre for the Creative Arts, University of Sussex
Tickets:  £18.50 or £12 concession for students and under 16s
Attenborough Centre Box Office: 01273 678822

Brighton Festival Chorus (bfc) is looking forward to its 50th anniversary season with a summer concert at the Attenborough Centre for the Creative Arts. bfc has been rehearsing at the University of Sussex since 1968 when Laszlo Heltay, the University’s Director of Music, formed the Chorus. Heltay auditioned many of its founding members in the Attenborough Centre building, and so a return to this venue is a timely way to reflect on the birth of the Chorus.

The concert presents music for voices and strings. Chamber Domaine will play Elgar’s Serenade for Strings, one is his earliest and favourite works, and Barber’s well known Adagio for Strings, featured in many television shows and feature films.

Brighton Festival Youth Choir will perform Richard Rodney Bennett’s Letters to Lindbergh, featuring poems by Martin Hall that quote whimsically from letters supposedly received by Charles Lindbergh during his non-stop solo flight across the Atlantic in 1927. His correspondents include Scott of the Antarctic, the rusting hulk of the Titanic, and Walt Disney cartoon dog Pluto!

bfc will join Chamber Domaine for a performance of Vaughan Williams’ An Oxford Elegy. This piece was written between 1947 and 1949 using portions of two poems by Matthew Arnold: The Scholar Gipsy and Thyrsis. The work has a pastoral character, and is a loving and ruminative evocation of Arnold’s time and place.

The concert concludes with bfc singing Ola Gjeilo’s Sunrise Mass, first performed in 2008. Explaining Sunrise Mass, Ola Gjeilo said that he “wanted the musical development of the work to evolve from the most transparent and spacey, to something completely earthy and grounded; from nebulous and pristine to more emotional and dramatic, and eventually warm and solid – as a metaphor for human development from child to adult, or as a spiritual journey”.

The bfc Summer Concert promises to be a fitting start to the fundraising drive for its 50th anniversary season, embracing both traditional choral repertoire and more contemporary composition, inspired and influenced by both classical and popular culture.




St Nicolas Church, Pevensey

Lunch time Organ Recital Friday 9 June at 1.00pm

John Collins, an authority on early European organ music and organist at Christ Church, Worthing, will give a lunch-time recital at St. Nicolas Church, Pevensey on Friday 9 June at 1 PM. Admission is free of charge, but a retiring collection will be taken for the St Nicolas Restoration Fund.

The programme will comprise pieces from across Europe from the 16th to 18th century including toccatas, variations, sonatas, fugues and voluntaries, as well as one work by a living composer. The concert, which will last about one hour, will conclude with the Hornpipe from Handel’s Water Music.

“We are delighted to be able to welcome back John Collins, and are most grateful to him for offering to play once more for the benefit of the Restoration Fund” said Churchwarden Simon Sargent. The Fund is within some £22,000 of the £255,000 target. Restoration work, which began in March, will resume in September.

Those attending the recital are welcome to bring a sandwich lunch with them. Drinks will be available.

Contact Simon Sargent at simonsargent@btinternet.com for further information.



Don Giovanni at St Mary in the Castle

Hastings on Saturday and Sunday 3/4 June 2017

Marcio da Silva says:  Come and watch an international cast of young singers perform one of Mozart’s masterpieces this Saturday and Sunday at St. Mary in the Castle. Don Giovanni represents a mixture of several human feelings including love, lust, hate, anger, vengeance, pain, sadness and jealousy. All are taken to the extreme and are treated simultaneously with drama and comedy. That is what makes staging it such a challenge.

Finding truth in these characters takes time and here our young performers had 9 days to pull it off. This production, directed by Marcio da Silva, is both dark and funny. With modern costumes singers feel much more “naked” and vulnerable on stage and are therefore forced to reach in for true emotions in order to capture the audience’s attention.

You will see St Mary in the Castle transformed like you have never seen before. Don’t miss out on what could be an unforgettable evening. The opera will be sung in Italian with English surtitles. The chorus will be sung by members of the Hastings Philharmonic Chamber Choir and the evening will be accompanied by members of the Hastings Philharmonic Orchestra and Petra Hajduchova on the harpsichord. The Saturday performance will be conducted by Neylson Crepalde and the Sunday performance by Marcio da Silva.”

The notorious Don Giovanni is the archetypal amoral womaniser of all time and his nefarious love interests lead to drama and comedy aplenty exposing, as it does, both the human foibles and virtues to be found in the well-rounded characters. Don Giovanni lives life to the full in a never-ending pursuit of hedonism, regardless of the cost in broken hearts and destroyed lives along the way, but his victims of past relationships catch up with him as he meets his nemesis. The finale with an unrepentant Don Giovanni has stirred philosophical and artistic conjecture among many later writers including George Bernard Shaw, whose ‘Man and Superman’ includes a dramatic interlude where three of the Mozart characters: Don Giovanni, the statue of the Commendatore and Donna Anna are joined by the Devil in conversation on the nature of morality.

Mozart’s Don Giovanni 3 June – 7pm, and 4 June – 5pm – St Mary in the Castle Pelham Cres Hastings TN34 3AF Marcio Da Silva – Stage/Music Director, Monika Saunders -Set/Costumes, Neylson Crepalde – Assistant  Conductor, Laura Hensley – Assistant Stage Director
Tickets: £20 (Boxes), £17.50 (Stalls), £15.50 (Gallery) obtainable at 
Hastings Tourist information centre.