Hastings Philharmonic

Peasmarsh Festival fans should hotfoot it to St Mary in the Castle in Hastings on 14 April to see Richard Lester as soloist for the Elgar Cello Concerto with the Hastings Philharmonic Orchestra. Professor Lester is well known and loved in this part of East Sussex for his tireless work as co-artistic director of the popular annual Peasmarsh Chamber Music Festival. He is also a Professor of the cello at the Royal College of Music and a virtuoso welcomed at the most famous music venues all over the World as soloist and member of award-winning chamber music ensembles, such as the Florestan Trio, Domus, Hausmusik and the London Haydn Quartet.

The Elgar Cello Concerto was not always as popular as it is today; from the 1960s it became a regular at the proms capturing the audiences’ imagination through the  Jacqueline du Pre/ Daniel Barenboim partnership. Later on a Julian Lloyd Webber’s performance further enhanced its popularity.  However the cello concerto’s premiere in 1920 was a considered a bit of a disaster and a pointer towards a decline in Elgar’s reputation in his latter years.

Nevertheless the town of Hastings kept faith with Elgar, who was a prime guest of honour at the inaugural festival for the purpose-built White Rock Pavilion in 1927. The Hastings Municipal Orchestra produced two memorable performances of Elgar’s Cello Concerto at the White Rock Pavilion in the 1930s:  in 1937 with Pablo Casals as soloist and in 1931 with his pupil Gaspar Cassado. Hastings loved the cello, judging by the popularity of Paul Tortelier’s visits  in 1952 and 1953 when he joined in Hastings music festivals but not, this time, with Elgar’s music.

The Hastings Philharmonic wishes to play a part in restoring Hastings’ reputation as a centre of excellence for classical music, something that has been reinforced especially by the growing reputation of the Hastings International Piano Concerto Competition. This first link between the Peasmarsh Festival and Hastings Philharmonic will make this concert a milestone event and the Hastings Philharmonic Orchestra performance of Tchaikovsky’s popular 5th Symphony at the same concert will add to the attraction of this much anticipated occasion.

Richard Lester – Cello
Marcio da Silva – Conductor
Cello Concerto Elgar
Symphony no.5 Tchaikovsky

At St Mary in the Castle, Pelham Crescent, Hastings,  7pm, Saturday 14th April

Tickets     £22.50/£17.50  https://www.musicglue.com/hastings-philharmonic/events/2018-04-14-tchaikovsky-and-elgar-st-mary-in-the-castle



The Master Piano Recital

SATURDAY 14th APRIL 2018 – 7.30pm
24 Cambridge Road – Hastings TN34 1DJ


Celebrating Extraordinary Pianists

Anton Lyakhovsky is a spectacular pianist. He was born in St. Petersburg, Russia. He studied at the Special Music High School for Gifted Children and then at the Rimsky-Korsakov State Conservatory.

Anton continued his postgraduate studies with John Bingham at Trinity College of Music, and as a postgraduate at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama, where he obtained his Master’s Degree. During his time he won many prizes at international piano competitions, including the Emmanuel Durlet International Competition (Belgium), the International London Piano, the Young Concert Artist International Audition (New York), the “Virtuosi of the year 2000” Festival (St. Petersburg), the Jaques Samuel Intercollegiate Piano Competition (London), the 4th International Prokofiev Competition (St. Petersburg).He also won the Grand Prix at the Jazeps Vitols International Piano Competition (Latvia) as well as a special prize as favourite pianist of the Latvian National Symphony Orchestra. Anton has won many prestigious scholarships including the Tillet Trust, Myra Hess Trust, and Leverhulme Trust.
He has performed at world-class venues, including the Purcell Room, Wigmore Hall, Barbican Hall, the Bösendorfer UK, the Great Hall of the St. Petersburg Philharmonic, Schleswig Holstein Music Festival, amongst many others.
Anton is regularly invited to be a member of the Jury for International Piano Competitions and in August 2018 Anton has been invited to be on the Panel of the 62nd Ferruccio Busoni International Piano Competition.
The European Piano Teachers Association regularly invites Anton to read lectures on piano performance and to lead masterclasses.  He has performed extensively across Europe and America and has a large number of Piano Concertos in his repertoire.

He has appeared as a soloist with several orchestras, including the St. Petersburg Philharmonic Orchestra, Tchaikovsky Symphony Orchestra, Latvian National Symphony Orchestra St. Petersburg State Symphony Orchestra “Klassika”, Mariinsky Young Philharmonic Orchestra, St. Petersburg Radio and Television Orchestra and many others


The Great Piano Recital

FRIDAY 13th APRIL 2018 – 7.30pm
24 Cambridge Road – Hastings TN34 1DJ


Celebrating Extraordinary Pianists

Nicholas McCarthy, who was born without his right hand is starting this fantastic new Series. He is the first left-hand-only pianist to graduate from the Royal College of Music in its 130-year history! You’ll be amazed to see him perform. Only £15. Under 16’s free of charge when accompanied by an adult.

‘The violin will take you’ International Interview Concert

Kamila Bydlowska (Poland) violin
Varvara Tarasova (Russia) piano
St Paul’s Worthing on Easter Day
(1 April) at 4pm – doors 3.30pm)

(Simpler Easter joys after the intense season of Passions, Requiems, Masses and Oratorios)

‘The violin will take you’ is a musical foreign destination tour of Spanish rhythms and aromas; of exotic night music and tarantella dancing that’s half-Polish, half-Iberian, half-Middle Eastern; of authentic Argentine tangoing; of full-blown German Romanticism; and blues-jazz from America’s 1920s Deep South. Four continents . . .

In the above order it’s de Falla’s Andalusian Serenade, Szymanovski’s Nocturne And Tarantella, one of Piazzolla’s Tango Etudes, Robert Schumann’s tossed and torn First Violin Sonata, and Frolov’s showpiece Concert Fantasy on Themes from Gershwin’s Porgy and Bess. Some is duo, some solo.

Plus the amusement, insight and extra surprises for which Worthing’s International Interview Concerts are already cherished. The interviewing both illuminates the music and the lives, minds and hearts of young musician role models such as these. Unexpected questions also spring from the audience.

Some surprises are musical. Varvara Tarasova in her 2016 solo piano appearance at these concerts, suddenly got up and sang an opera love aria as her second encore.  Other stimulating elements which enmesh audience and performers include the action close-up seating format In The Round and the cafe concert ambience.

Tarasova’s debut CD of Brahms and Schumann on Champs Hill, first admired by Gramophone, has now just been lauded in America by Fanfare who compares it equally to the work of seasoned recording artistes. This is rare, by serious reviewers.

Bydlowska comes from the Nigel Kennedy school of versatility and wide personal musical horizons. She plays classical concertos and chamber music, contemporary acoustic-electronic, jazz, and has a Tango band, La Tango Terra Quartetto. Combined, Bydlowska and Tarasova have an armoury to excite. Formerly at the Royal College of Music, now London-based, both are already international artistes playing on several other continents.

Tarasova reveals: “These Interview Concerts are a wonderful opportunity to communicate to the public, not only though music but friendly conversation. I performed solo in 2016 and was in the audience for the last one, in November. I’d never been to that type of concert with such a relaxing informal atmosphere. I wished for it to last longer. It was extraordinary.”

See the St Paul’s Worthing website blog:


Tickets include concession for adult & young people in tandem, and Under-19s for £1

All available from the venue in person or online at seetickets.com

Other links:


https://www.facebook.com/varvara.tarasova.piano  (including Fanfare review of her CD)


Brighton Philharmonic Orchestra

The Brighton Phil’s season draws to a close on Sunday 25 March when Conductor Laureate Barry Wordsworth returns for a memorable concert full of brilliant music to celebrate his 70th birthday with the orchestra and loyal Brighton Dome audience.

The concert opens with the Karelia Suite by Sibelius – written very early in his career as a commission it is based on folk tunes from South East Finland, and Sibelius noted that he wanted it to sound like folk music. It has become one of his most popular works and includes the exhilarating ‘Alla Marcia’.

The virtuosic piano duo Stephen Worbey & Kevin Farrell join the orchestra to perform Malcolm Arnold’s Piano Concerto Op.104 – on this occasion for four hands on one piano. It was a BBC Proms commission for the three-handed piano duo Cyril Smith and Phyllis Sellick (Steven Worbey’s teacher) and was first performed by them with huge success at the Proms in 1969. The concerto is typically Arnold at his very best, from dark and tragic in the first movement, through a melting romantic melody in the slow movement, to a glorious Rumba in the last movement, full of wit and unashamedly popular.

For this concert Barry Wordsworth wanted to include ballet music, which has been such a great part of his conducting life, and he has compiled a short suite from Delibes’ comic ballet Coppélia. The orchestra will play Prelude, Valse and Czardas – these are brilliantly orchestrated and based on dance tunes Delibes found in his native northern France.

Finally Worbey & Farrell rejoin the orchestra to perform Saint-Saëns’ Carnival of the Animals, a hugely entertaining composition that conjures up a musical parade of creatures using instrumental groups and orchestral soloists, as well as four hands on one piano, with imagination and insight. In this performance the narration will be brought up to date with modern-day cultural references by Worbey & Farrell. As Barry Wordsworth writes in the programme for this concert: “I cannot wait to perform for you all with Steven Worbey and Kevin Farrell. This will be fun, and will provide an excuse for celebration at the end of another wonderful season.”

Tickets from £12-£38 (50% discount for students/Under 18s) are available from Brighton Dome Ticket Office in Church Street, (01273) 709709 and online: www.brightondome.org

Discounted parking for Brighton Phil concert attendees can be found in NCP Church Street, a couple of minutes’ walk from the Dome, costing just £6 between 1pm & 6pm.

On the morning of this, the final concert of the season, the orchestra will be holding its annual free Open Rehearsal for Children in Brighton Dome Concert Hall, 10.15-11am – an exciting introduction to classical music and the instruments of the orchestra using extracts from Carnival of the Animals and Coppélia. As part of the orchestra’s Education Programme interactive workshops are being held in local schools this term and the Open Rehearsal is the culmination of the work done there.Places for the rehearsal are free but must be booked in advance via Brighton Dome Ticket Office.

STOP PRESS: The Brighton Phil is deeply saddened to have learned of the recent death of D V Newbold, CBE, a long-standing and passionate supporter and generous sponsor of the orchestra, who has sponsored this concert, which we will be dedicating to his memory.

International Composers Festival – Hastings 2018

Polo Piatti has announced

We are absolutely thrilled to inform you that the International Composers Festival will receive an unprecedented Grant for the Arts from the Arts Council Of England.

Thanks to the sheer tenacity of Sandra Goodsell, our Director of Operations, we have managed to secure this important step in the history of the festival.

The Arts Council’s decision represents a clear recognition of the increasing importance and popularity of the International Composers Festival and will definitely help ease some of our financial pressures.

Although it will help us greatly, we still need to work very hard to secure further support and make sure we achieve significant ticket sales, as the grant represents only a part of our general expenditure.

Still, the great news makes us even more determined to make this year’s festival the biggest and best yet!


Aysen Ulucan – Violin
Cristian Ladislau-Andris – Viola
Marcio da Silva – Conductor

  Flacubal 95 (World Premiere) O’Meara
  Sinfonia Concertante Mozart
  Symphony no.40  Mozart

This programme will include the world premiere of Philip O’Meara’s
new piece inspired by Mozart’s Symphony no.40. This follows on from
the great success of O’Meara’s piece ‘No Man!’ inspired by
Beethoven’s 9th Symphony, which was debuted by the Hastings
Philharmonic Choir & Orchestra last season.

The evening will also include Mozart’s much-loved Sinfonia
Concertante. The gifted violinist Aysen Ulucan, will be joined by
Romanian viola player Cristian Ladislau-Andris, to perform this
successful cross-over between a symphony and a concerto; a
masterpiece written by Mozart in 1779.

Brighton Philharmonic Orchestra

Regular guest conductor Stephen Bell joins the Brighton Phil for their penultimate Sunday afternoon concert of the season at Brighton Dome and introduces the programme:

“Hugely powerful Russian emotions in our next concert ranging from an overture by the grand old man of Russian Romantics to one of the first examples of programme music with the brilliantly orchestrated Night on a Bare Mountain. The ever popular Fourth Symphony by Tchaikovsky is a vivid journey in itself, from the tense opening motif from the horns and bassoons, right through to the unbridled joy of the F major final pages.

In between, we’re joined by my long-time Hallé colleague and London Brass member, the award winning trumpeter Gareth Small, for a performance of the Arutunian Trumpet Concerto – a perfect vehicle to show off the technical and lyrical qualities of the instrument in a work that seems to draw on many strands of Russian influences and is a perfectly crafted and brilliant showpiece.”

Gareth Small, Principal Trumpet of the Hallé Orchestra, wants to reassure those unfamiliar with Armenian composer Alexander Arutunian’s show-stopping Trumpet Concerto (written in 1950) that they are in for a treat:

“I’m delighted to be back in Brighton Dome to play the Arutunian Trumpet Concerto. Don’t be put off if you haven’t heard of the composer. This magnificent piece is fizzing with interesting harmonies, timbres, melodies and textures, for orchestra and soloist which all come together to create this absolutely brilliant trumpet concerto. It is certainly one of my favourites as it highlights and accentuates the best parts of trumpet playing – range, stamina, technical prowess and tone. I hope you enjoy this piece as much as I do!”

The programme also includes Glinka’s characteristically Russian sounding overture from A Life for the Tsar which displays the heroic nobility suggested by the opera’s story of a young Russian peasant who saves the Tsar from a group of Polish kidnappers. More familiar to many will be Mussorgsky’s demonic tone poem Night on a Bare Mountain which depicts a witches’ Sabbath in music of quite terrifying power and energy (and was used in the penultimate scene of Walt Disney’s Fantasia).

Tickets from £12-£38 (50% discount for students/Under 18s) are available from Brighton Dome Ticket Office in Church Street, (01273) 709709 and online: www.brightondome.org

The Brighton Phil’s season finale will take place on Sunday 25 March when Conductor Laureate Barry Wordsworth returns to celebrate his 70th birthday with the orchestra, joined by virtuosic piano duo Worbey & Farrell who will perform Carnival of the Animals. That morning sees the popular FREE Open Rehearsal for Children (10.15-11am) for which places can be booked via Brighton Dome Ticket Office.





Love and Despair

Two intensely moving pieces by Beethoven and Schubert. International soloist Ay?en Ulucan and prize-winning pianist Francis Rayner bring you Beethoven’s Violin Sonata, in C Minor. Schubert’s epic song cycle ‘Winterreise’ performed by baritone Marcio da Silva completes this reflective programme. Beethoven’s Violin Sonata op.30 No.2 was completed during a period of anguish in the composer’s most grim tonality: C minor. Schubert’s darkest and most intense song cycle, ‘Winterreise’, was written towards the end of his short life. Setting poems by Wilhelm Mu?ller, the work explores feelings of love, doubt and loss.

Saturday 10 February 2018,  7pm
Christ Church, Silchester Road, St Leonards-on-Sea
TN38 0JB

Tickets at: https://www.musicglue.com/hastings-philharmonic/events/2018-02-10-love-and-despair-christchurch

Valentines Opera breakfast

Arias by Mozart, Verdi, Puccini, Massenet, Wagner and Bizet. A Hastings Philharmonic event; get a hot drink and a freshly baked pastry with your ticket. Marcio da Silva – Baritone, Sophie Pullen – Soprano Simone Tavoni – Piano

Sunday 18 February 2018 10.30am
St Mary in the Castle, 7 Pelham Crescent, Hastings TN34 3AF  

Tickets: £15 (includes breakfast items)
Monteverdi 1610 Vespers


Sarah Parkin, Helen May – Soprano
Jake Barlow – Alto
Kieran White, Philip O’Meara – Tenor
Alexander McMillan – Bass
Marcio da Silva – Conductor
Vespro della Beata Vergine – Monteverdi Monteverdi’s most ambitious choral piece. This programme is a full-scale Baroque explosion, with period instruments, a lute, organ, double chorus and soloists. Written in 1610, this piece was monumental in scale, calling for up to 10 vocal parts in some movements, not to mention six soloists and an orchestra. The Vespers are a prime representation of Monteverdi’s genius.
Saturday 24 February 2018,  7pm
Christ Church, Silchester Road, St Leonards-on-Sea
TN38 0JB

Tickets at: https://www.musicglue.com/hastings-philharmonic/events/2018-02-24-monteverdi-vespers-christchurch