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14-16 May 2010

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The year 2010 marks the 50th anniversary of the death of the English composer, Rutland Boughton. Like many composers Boughton suffered an eclipse in fortune after his death and his reputation, once as great as that of Elgar and Vaughan Williams, is now at a low ebb. Founder of the original Glastonbury Festivals, which ran from 1914-1926, he is also the composer of the phenomenally successful opera The Immortal Hour which Elgar called ‘a work of genius’. It still holds the world record for the number of consecutive performances of any serious opera written by an English composer - 216 in 1922 and then a further 160 in 1923 . There have been many laudable efforts to promote the composer’s music after his death through live performances, CD recordings and the publication of Michael Hurd’s biography The Immortal Hour (revised and republished in 1993 as Rutland Boughton and the Glastonbury Festivals). With 2010 approaching, however, it became evident to members of The Rutland Boughton Music Trust that a renewed effort should be undertaken in that year to promote Boughton’s music.

Some events have already taken place but during the rest of this year there will be further concerts and exhibitions and also illustrated talks by Ian Boughton, the composer’s grandson, and Paul Adrian Rooke, Music Adviser to the Trust. The most concentrated of these events will be a weekend festival in Hitchin of songs, sonatas, string quartets, an overture, a concert and a symphony by Rutland Boughton. This will take place from the evening of Friday 14 May 2010 until the evening of Sunday 16 May 2010. All events will take place in St Mary’s Church, Hitchin. The weekend will begin with an illustrated talk at 6.00 pm. on Friday 14 May. This will, be given by Paul Adrian Rooke and is entitled The Life and Music of Rutland Boughton. At noon on Saturday 15 May Louise Mott (Mezzo Soprano), accompanied by Alexander Taylor (Pianoforte), will give a recital of Boughton’s songs and at 2.30 pm there will be an Open Rehearsal in preparation for the evening Commemorative Concert. The concert itself will be given at 7.30 pm by Hitchin Symphony Orchestra, conducted by Paul Adrian Rooke, and will consist of the world premiere performance of Boughton’s Overture to the Cycle of Arthurian Music Dramas, his Concerto for Trumpet and Orchestra and Symphony No.2 (Deirdre – A Celtic Symphony). On Sunday at 3.00 pm The Astaria Quartet (Leader: Shulah Oliver) will perform Boughton’s two string quartets: No.1 in A major (On Greek Folk Songs) and No.2 in F major (From the Welsh Hills). Finally, at 8.00 pm, Shulah Oliver will play Boughton’s Violin Sonata and Harriet Jeffrey will perform his ‘Cello Sonata, each with Simon Marlow (Pianoforte).

For details of other events taking place in


please visit the
'Events' page
on the Trust’s web site

For further details of

The Rutland Boughton Commemorative Concert
to be given by Hitchin Symphony Orchestra

please visit the orchestra’s web site:


FRIDAY 14 - SUNDAY 16 MAY 2010

Artistic Director: Paul Adrian Rooke

All events will take place in
St Mary’s Church (Hitchin)

Event 1: Friday 14 May 2010 - 6.00-8.00 pm
* An Illustrated Talk: The Life and Music of Rutland Boughton given by Paul Adrian Rooke

Event 2: Saturday 15 May 2010 - 12.00-1.00 pm
* A Song recital given by Louise Mott (Mezzo Soprano) accompanied by Alexander Taylor (Pianoforte)

Event 3: Saturday 15 May 2010 - 2.30-5.30 pm
* An Open Rehearsal in preparation for the evening's Commemorative Concert

Event 4: Saturday 15 May 2010 - 7.30-9.30 pm
* The Rutland Boughton Commemorative Concert given by Hitchin Symphony Orchestra (Leader: Janet Hicks) with David Hilton (Trumpet) conducted by Paul Adrian Rooke

Event 5: Sunday 16 May 2010 - 3.00-4.00 pm
* A recital of Boughton's two String Quartets given by The Astaria Quartet (Leader: Shulah Oliver)

Event 6: Sunday 16 May 2010 - 8.00-9.00 pm
* The Violoncello Sonata and the Violin Sonata performed by Harriet Jeffrey ('Cello), Shulah Oliver (Violin) and Simon Marlow (Pianofote)

Click here for details of admission and ticket prices

Friday 14 May 2010

6.00 - 8.00 pm

Event 1

An Illustrated Talk

The Life and Music of Rutland Boughton

given by Paul Adrian Rooke

Paul Adrian Rooke writes: 'My love affair with the music of Rutland Boughton began in 2001. At the end of a concert which I had been conducting, Ian Boughton, the composer’s grandson, approached me and asked if I had heard any of his grandfather’s music. Being a typical product of English academic music training (Cambridge degree), I had not, of course! So the next week a CD of Boughton’s Oboe Concerto and Symphony No. 3 (CDH55019) dropped through my letter-box and I put it on to play. It was love at first hearing. I was knocked out in particular by the slow movement of the concerto and the noble climax of the last movement of the symphony.' In 2003 Paul was able to programme these two works in a concert given by Hitchin Symphony Orchestra and he also undertook to transcribe onto computer Boughton's operatic masterpiece The Queen of Cornwall and to make a full score and set of instrumental parts. Since then he has edited and transcribed a number of Boughton's works, including the Reunion Variations for Orchestra, the two string quartets and Oliver Cromwell, Boughton's first symphony - a character portrait - the world premiere of which Paul conducted with Hitchin Symphony Orchestra and Ian Boughton (Baritone) in 2005 and which was later recorded by the BBC Concert Orchestra with Roderick Williams (Baritone) conducted by Vernon Handley (Dutton Epoch: CDLX 7185). He also prepared the Songs of the English, three of which were also recorded on the Dutton Epoch label (CDLX 7199). Most recently he has been transcribing and editing three of Boughton's early symphonic poems for another Dutton recording with the Royal Scottish National Orchestra conducted by Martin Yates. This will take place in Glasgow in June.

All these efforts led to his being appointed Music Adviser to The Rutland Boughton Music Trust on the death of the previous Music Adviser, Michael Hurd. During his life Michael had done so much to promote interest in Boughton's music, partticularly with the publication of his biography of the composer, The Immortal Hour (revised and republished in 1993 as Rutland Boughton and the Glastonbury Festivals) but also with the preparation of the composer's music for performance and, with the Trust, he was able to arrange the promotion of commercial recordings of Boughton's operas and orchestral works.

Paul is thus eminently qualified to talk about Rutland Boughton and his music and he is particularly proud that, with the performance on Saturday 15 May 2010 during The 2010 Rutland Boughton Festival, of which he is Artistic Director, he will be the only person ever to have conducted - and Hitchin Symphony Orchestra will be the only orchestra ever to have played - all three of Boughton's symphonies!

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Saturday 15 May 2010

12.00 - 1.00 pm

Event 2

Recital 1: Songs by Rutland Boughton

Louise Mott (Mezzo Soprano)
Alexander Taylor (Pianoforte)


Five Celtic Love Songs

Three Songs Op.39

Symbol Songs

Standing Beyond Time
(from Four Songs Op.24)

A Song of Giving
A Song of Taking
(from Songs of Womanhood Op.33)

Fly, Messenger, Fly
(from Four Songs Op.24)

Click here for a the texts of the songs

Louise Mott

Louise Mott studied at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama and at the Royal College of Music, where she won the Lies Askonas Competition, before completing her training at the National Opera Studio.

Louise made her débuts at English National Opera as Bradamante in Alcina, at Welsh National Opera as Annio in La Clemenza di Tito and at Opera North as Annina in Der Rosenkavalier, followed by Fidalma in Il Matrimonio Segreto. She sang Ariodante for English Touring Opera and Mme Larina in Eugene Onegin for Scottish Opera on Tour. For the Early Opera Company she has sung Edith in Alfred by Thomas Arne, Agrippina, Ruggiero in Alcina, Ariodante, Sesto in Giulio Cesare, Orlando, Rosmira in Partenope, Melissa in Amadigi, Serse and Dido in Dido and Aeneas.

Contemporary opera performances include Ion by Param Vir, God's Liar by John Casken and Marguerite in Hey Persephone! by Deidre Gribbin for Almeida Opera, Marlinchen in The Juniper Tree by Roderick Watkins at the Muffathalle in Munich, Emerald in Boys and Girls Come Out to Play by Robin Holloway and Blind Mary in The Martyrdom of St Magnus for the The Opera Group and at the Oslo Kammermusik Festival, Wife/Doreen/Sphinx II/Waitress I in Greek by Mark-Anthony Turnage with The London Sinfonietta, Penelope in Linen from Smyrna by Edward Rushton for The Opera Group and Penelope in Odysseus Unwound and Angela in Push by David Bruce for Tête à Tête.

Louise made her BBC Proms début in Vaughan Williams' Serenade to Music. She has sung with the Philharmonia Orchestra, the City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra, Northern Sinfonia, the Hallé Orchestra, the Ulster Orchestra, Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra, the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra, Birmingham Contemporary Music Group, the Endymion Ensemble and the Hebrides Ensemble. Louise's concert repertoire includes most of the standard repertoire, as well as Kindertotenlieder, Lieder eines fahrenden Gesellen, the Rückert Lieder, Wesendonck Lieder, Twice Through the Heart by Mark-Anthony Turnage, Schoenberg's Pierrot Lunaire and Alexander Goehr's Sing, Ariel. Her recordings include Marthe/Schuld/Maria Aegyptica in Schumann's Scenes from Goethe's Faust under Philippe Herreweghe for Harmonia Mundi, Songs of Rutland Boughton for BMS (The British Music Society), Cordula Wagner in Edward Rushton's The Shops for NMC and Edward Dudley Hughe's The Sybil of Cumae for London Independent Records.

Among Louise's most recent engagements have been Martyrdom of St Magnus and Kindertotenlieder with the Hebrides Ensemble at the St Magnus Festival, Second Lady in The Magic Flute for Opera Project and Cordula Wagner in Rushton's The Shops for The Opera Group at the Bregenz Festival and in the Linbury Studio Theatre at The Royal Opera House, Covent Garden. Engagements for 2009 included Mme Larina in Eugene Onegin for Haddo House Operatic Society, Marcella in Alban by Tom Wiggall at St Albans Abbey, Marcellina in The Marriage of Figaro for Opera Project, Katarina Schratt in Mayerling for The Royal Ballet at The Royal Opera House. Future engagements include Meg Page in Falstaff for Diva Opera in the UK and on tour in Europe and Mozart's Requiem and Solemn Vespers for The Bach Choir and the Orchestra of the Age of Enlightment at the Royal Festival Hall.

Agent: Mark Kendall Artists Management Ltd.
56 St. Anselm's Road
West Sussex
BN14 7EN

Tel: +44 (0)1903 233 229
Mobile: + 44 (0)7525 916 598
email: markkendallartists@mac.com

Alexander Taylor

Alexander Taylor’s pianistic talent was first acknowledged at the age of 15 when he was invited to record the soundtrack for John Schlesinger's film Madame Sousatzka. He subsequently studied at Edinburgh University, graduating in 1995 with first class honours in music. Post-graduate studies followed at the Royal College of Music in London with Irina Zaritskaya. After 3 years, Alexander left the College having won all the major prizes, including the Chappell Gold Medal, the highest award for pianoforte. A long list of prizes at important national and international competitions led to recital engagements at major London concert halls, throughout the UK, and at significant venues in Europe and Japan. Alexander has appeared as soloist with, amongst others, the BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra, BBC Concert Orchestra, Royal Scottish National Orchestra and Scottish Chamber Orchestra, working with conductors such as Sir Charles Mackerras, Joseph Swensen, Christopher Warren-Green, Barry Wordsworth and Douglas Boyd. He has performed at many significant festivals, including Flanders, Schleswig-Holstein, Mecklenburg-Vorpommern, St. Magnus, Bath, Brighton and Aldeburgh, where he gave the premiere of a newly discovered piece by Benjamin Britten in 2001. He has also worked closely with some of the UK's most talented young chamber musicians, including the Belcea Quartet, violinist Matthew Trusler, pianists Huw Watkins and Gretel Dowdeswell, the Marais Ensemble and principal players from the Chamber Orchestra of Europe. For several years he was pianist in residence for Steven Isserlis' International Musicians' Seminar at Prussia Cove, Cornwall.

After 5 years on the road, Alexander decided to develop his career in other directions, whilst continuing to perform regular concerts. He worked for several years in production for BBC Radio 3 and currently holds the post of Director of Programming for Kristiansand Symphony Orchestra in Norway.

Song Texts

Five Celtic Love Songs

Green Branches

Wave, wave, green branches, wave me far away
To where the forest deepens, and the hill winds, sleeping, stay:
Where Peace doth fold her twilight wings, and through the heart of day
There goes the rumour of passing hours grown faint and grey.

Wave, wave, green branches, my heart like a bird doth hover
Above the nesting-place your green gloom-shadows cover:
0 come to my nesting heart, come close, come close, bend over,
Joy of my heart, my life, my prince, my lover!

Alona* [The Daughter of the Sun]

Thou art the daughter of the Sun,
Even as the Sun in a green place,
The light that is upon thy face!
When thou art gone there is dusk on my ways,

Thy soul is of sun-fire wrought in clay,
The white warm clay that hath for name,
Alona - and for word of fame,
[Eilidh]** and is for me a Flame
To burn against the Eternal Day,

The hills know thee, and the green woods,
And the wide sea, and the blue loch, and the stream:
On thy brow, Daughter of the Sun, is agleam
The mystery of Dream, -

The fires of the Sun that burn thee,
O, heart of my heart, are in me!
Thy fire burns, thy flame killeth, they sea
Of light blazeth continually –
Is there no rest in joy, no rest, no rest for me
Whom rapture slayeth utterly.
[Alona, Alona!]

* An anglicised form of an old Gaelic word signifying ‘exquisitely beautiful’.
** Substituted here, in Boughton’s setting, is the word: Ethlenn.

Pulse of my Heart [Tragic Lullaby]

Are these your eyes, Ian,
That gaze into mine?
Is this smile, this laugh,

Heart of me, dear,
O pulse of my heart,
This is our child, our child –
And … we apart!

Wrought of thy life, Ian,
Wrought in my womb,
Never to feel thy kiss! –
Ah! Bitter doom!

Live, live, thou laughing boy,
We meet againl
Here do we part, we twain:
I to my death-sweet pain,
Thou to thy span of joy.

Hush, Hush: within thine eyes
His eyes I see.
Sure, Death is Paradise
If so my soul can be,
Ian, with the!

Shule, Shule, Shule, Agrah! ***

His face was glad as dawn to me,
His breath was sweet as dusk to me,
His eyes were burning flames to me,
Shule, Shule, Shule, agrah!

The broad noon-day was night to me,
The full-moon night was dark to me,
The stars whirled arid the poles span
The hour God took him far from me.

Perhaps he dreams in heaven now
Perhaps he doth in worship bow,
A white flame round his foam-white brow
[Shule, Shule, Shule, agrah!]

I laugh to think of him like this
Who once found all his joy and bliss
Against my heart, against my kiss,
Shule, Shule, Shule, agrah!

Star of my joy, art still the same
Now thou hast gotten a new name?
Pulse of my heart, my Blood, my Flame,
Shule, Shule, Shule, agrah!

*** Move, move, move to me, my Heart’s Love!

(This song is linked to the next without a break.)

Lord of my Life [My Grief]

He laid his dear face next to mine,
His eyes aflame burned close to mine,
His heart to mine, his lips to mine,
O he was mine, all mine, all mine.

Drunk with old wine of love I was,
Drunk as the wild bee in the grass;
[Yea, as the wild bee in the grass;]****
Drunk, [drunk], with wine of love I was!

His lips of life to me were fief,
Before him I was but a leaf,
Blown by the wind, a shaken leaf,
Yea, as the sickle reaps the sheaf.
My Grief!
He reaped me as a gathered sheaf!

His to be gathered, his the bliss,
But not a greater bliss than this!
All of the empty world to miss
For wild redemption of his kiss!
My Grief!

For hell was lost, though heaven was brief
Sphered in the universe of thy kiss -
So cries to thee thy fallen leaf;
Thy gathered sheaf,
Lord of my life, my Pride, my Chief,
My Grief! [My Grief!]

**** Substituted here, in Boughton’s setting, is the line:
Singing his honey-mad sweet bass.

Fiona Macleod (from From the Hills of Dream)

Three Songs Op.39

The Lake of Beauty

Let your mind be quiet, realising the beauty of the world,
and the immense, the boundless treasures that it holds in store.
All that you have within you, all that your heart desires,
all that your Nature so specially fits you for - that, or the
counterpart of it, waits embedded in the great Whole, for you.
It will surely come to you.
Yet equally surely not one moment before its appointed time [will it come].
All your crying and fever and reaching out of hands will make no difference.

[Therefore do not begin that game at all.
Do not recklessly] spill the waters of your mind in this direction and in that,
lest you become like a spring lost and dissipated in the desert.
But draw them together into a little compass, and hold them still, so still;
And let them become clear, so clear - so limpid, so mirror-like;
At last the mountains and the sky shall glass themselves in peaceful beauty,
And the antelope shall descend to drink, and to gaze at his reflected image,
and the lion to quench his thirst,
Aid Love himself shall come and bend over, and catch his own likeness in you.

Child of the Lonely Heart

Child of the lonely heart,
0 clinging supplicating soul,
Through thy chamber, thy prison, thy palace, the body, solitary roaming,
The great world through the windows sadly, questioningly exploring. –

O love, love, love,
At thy feet,
By thy side,
My hand if only resting in thine:
See, I am so little, I ask so little –
If thou wilt take this overflowing cup
Into thy great ocean.

[O love, love, love
Thee alone,
Always only thee: I find nothing beautiful but thee.
Lo! when I look forth, what is it all?
These lines of houses,
This sad interminable sky,
This gay life – which is my pretext – but underneath I am sick, sick at heart
For one touch of true love.]

O love, love, love,
Since I was a little child, and till I die, the same.
Nothing I reserve –
I am so little [and] I ask so little:
If thou wilt take this overflowing cup
Into thy great ocean.

Child of the lonely heart,
0 clinging supplicating soul,
Through thy chamber, thy prison, thy palace –
Ah! children, through the world, through the ages,
[by thousands and thousands, by millions and millions,]
Unaware, unwhispered – in your own great fellowship uninitiate –
Blindly yearning, [tentatively] questioning[ly darkly exploring],
Through the great Mother-heart eternally ascending!

The Triumph of Civilization

On the outskirts of a great city,
A street of fashionable mansions [well withdrawn from all the noise and bustle];
And in the street - the only figure there - in the middle of the road, in the bitter wind,
Red-nosed, thin-shawled, with ankles bare and old boots,
A woman bent and haggard, croaking a dismal song.

And the great windows stare upon her wretchedness,
and stare across the road upon each other,
With big, fool eyes;
But not a door is opened, not a face is seen,
Nor form of life down all the dreary street,
[To certify the existence of humanity -]
Other than hers.

Edward Carpenter (from Towards Democracy)

Symbol Songs

Mother Mary

My heart is in the meadow-lands,
Mother Mary;
I love the gentle trees in Spring,
Green and airy,
Mother Mary.

My rosary hangs
Upon the bowers
Of little pinkish purple flowers:
The thorn is there
To pierce my soul,
O Mother Mary!
And cowslips bloom
And cowslips bow,
Thy son to avow,
O Mother Mary.

My heart is my Communing Cup,
O Mother Mary;
‘Tis filled with love
And God’s desire,
‘Tis filled with joy
And holy fire
For thy dear Son and thee,
Mother Mary.


The honeysuckle falls
A roseate shower
While love doth call me,
O’er and o’er,
On the self-same chord
I have heard before:
But a fathom of doubt
Keeps him from me,
A fathom of hell.
What liberty
Has my song, my heart,
Whilst his kisses bind strong?

What hope has my joy
With voices that wail,
‘Thou dost to another belong!’
It were rest, great pain! –
Instead of this thing
That haunteth me
Like a breath, a sigh –
Nowhere the wound,
Yet alway the cry.

The honeysuckle falls,
A roseate shower,
Ah me!
‘Twixt its love and mine
What a fine degree, -
Yet mine is alone
Like a whitened flower,
Whilst day and night
Bees come to its bower,
Thirsting, yea;
As he may come, he may,
But the doubt between
That is death to the dream!

Blue in the Woods

Ghost gloom,
And one small azure bloom
Hanging upon a stem so fine:
It seems it knows
The delicate head
Upon its finger,
And would persuade it
Not to linger,
But fly away
So free, so flail.
Upon the gentle April gale!

0 let me nearer,
Let me see
Into thy heart,
O wingèd thing;
For all around
Is ghostly gloom –
Thou art the only azure bloom!

Fierce Love Song

I will smite thee as with a scimitar,
For it is music that I draw,
And thou art dead, Belovèd,
To life’s elastic, golden, glowing hour.

I will strike thee to snapping
And pluck thy only cord,
I will twice, thrice pluck thee forcibly
To stretch thy only string,
For thy nature is too homely,
I will teach thee how to sing.

I will smite thee as a timbrel
And clash thee with fine noise;
Perchance thou wilt awaken,
To love’s lovely paradise.
I will hurt thee and will heal thee,
I will love thee coarse and fine,
I will wrap dull clouds about thee
Till my lightnings make thee mine.

I will rest thee then beside me
On the hill-tops of pure joy,
Thou wilt weep and turn from me,
Then turn sweetly to adore.

Then I shall seal thee sacred
Upon that lonely peak
Where only Love’s immortals
With God and each may speak.

The New Madonna

The new Madonna comes to me
In power,
Not passivity;
She is a Greek,
And in the dance
Her God doth seek.
The new Madonna comes to me
In joy,
Not pain’s tranquillity,
For she is borne
On that fine wave
That doth inspire
And lift us higher;
In her all Nature rises up
To greet its God
With him familiarly to sup.

‘Twas long ago
The Madonna maid
Stole into Heaven
Half afraid;
‘Tis now, oh now
She cometh light
With the stars of knowledge
On her brow,
And God within her claspèd hand.
She doth not tread
A dreaded way,
But summons the Christ-child

She doth not weep
Nor turn right pale
When the angel saith
To her ‘All Hail!’

She cometh glorious
As Heaven’s Queen,
She hath risen up
From her fear-dream
To ecstasy
Which is certainty.
The new Madonna comes to me
In power,
Not passivity;
She is a Greek,
And in the dance
Her God doth seek.

Mary Richardson

[From Four Songs Op.24]

[Standing Beyond Time]

Standing beyond Time,
As the Earth to the bodies of all men gives footing and free passage,
yet draws them to itself with final overmastering force, and is their bodies –
So I their souls.

I am the ground of thy soul;
And I am that which draws thee unbeknown – veiled Eros, Visitor of thy long night-time;
And I that give thee form from ancient ages,
Thin own – yet in due time to return to Me
Standing beyond Time.

Edward Carpenter (from Towards Democracy)

[From Songs of Womanhood Op.33]

A Song of Giving

I make lament that I so little have to give;
But all that I possess I offer you
To be your love.

If God made me beautiful as dawn or star-shine,
Sister of the Sun,
With mind of purest fire, and heart all burning flame,
To you I’d bring it, and I’d lay it at your feet,
To be your love.

The sum of all my being:
A heart, a soul, a body, and a mind,
Are yours, and ever will be yours,
And if my life could add one span to yours,
I’d bring it, and I’d lay it at your feet,
To be your love.

A Song of Taking

The seedlings rare you gave me –
They have opened in my soul
With marvellous luxuriance;
They put forth blossoms so sweet.

The love divine you give me –
0, it opens in my soul
With wonder that I never knew before!
Safe in my keeping I will guard it all my life.

I take from you your life, and love, and happiness -
The vision that God gave you and the Power –
All is mine, my vast and hoarded treasure.
0, may I use it well!

Christina Walshe

[From Four Songs Op.24]

[Fly, Messenger, Fly!]

Fly, messenger! through the streets of the cities ankle-plumed Mercury fly!
Swift sinewy runner with arm held up on high!
Naked along the wind, thy beautiful feet
Glancing over the mountains, under the sun,
By meadows and watersides, - into the great towns like a devouring flame,
Through slums and vapors, - and dismal suburban streets,
With startling of innumerable eyes - fly, messenger, fly!

Joy, joy, the glad news!
For he whom we wait is risen!
He is descended among his children –
He is come to dwell on Earth!

Edward Carpenter (from Towards Democracy)

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Saturday 15 May 2010

2.30 - 5.30 pm

Event 3

Open Rehearsal

Hitchin Symphony Orchestra (Leader: Janet Hicks), conducted by Paul Adrian Rooke, will be joined by soloist David Hilton (Trumpet) for a rehearsal of the three works in tonight's Commemorative Concert (see Event 4 below) . They will start with Boughton's Concerto for Trumpet and Orchestra, then move on to the Overture to the Cycle of Arthurian Music Dramas which was written in 1936 but has never been performed before today. The rehearsal will end with Boughton's Symphony No. 2, subtitled Deirdre. This is described by the composer as 'A Celtic Symphony'.

For more information about these works
please go to Event 4

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Saturday 15 May 2010
7.30 - 9.30 pm

Event 4

A Commemorative Concert
to mark the 50th anniversary of the death of
Rutland Boughton (1878 -1960)

Hitchin Symphony Orchestra
Conductor: Paul Adrian Rooke

Overture to the Cycle of Arthurian Music Dramas
(World première)

Concerto for Trumpet and Orchestra
Soloist: David Hilton

Symphony No. 2
A Celtic Symphony


Overture to the Cycle of Arthurian Music Dramas

‘Rutland Boughton worked at the five dramas of his Arthurian cycle on and off for nearly forty years. It began as a Wagnerian epic, developed through a conventional tale of kings and queens and unhappy lovers, sidetracked brilliantly into the moving personal story of Elaine the Lily Maid, and ended as a political tract with strong religious overtones. In the sense that it embraces every aspect of his personal development it is the consummation of Boughton’s life-work.’ (Michael Hurd: ‘Rutland Boughton and the Glastonbury Festivals’, OUP, 1993, p. 302.) He began work on the cycle in January 1908, at the age of 30, with The Birth of Arthur, which he finished the next year. The Round Table followed, composed in 1915-16. The third part, The Lily Maid, was composed in 1933-4 and the final two parts, Galahad and Avalon, were composed in 1943-4 and 1944-5 respectively in Kilcot, near Newent in Herefordshire. Boughton lived in Kiloct from 1927 until his death in 1960 and produced there some of his finest works, including his 2nd and 3rd symphonies, a number of pieces for the oboe, some chamber music and orchestral works.

Much influenced by the theories and practices of Wagner, Boughton set out to create a new form of opera, which he later called ‘choral drama’. In 1911 he left Birmingham and moved to Glastonbury where, together with his partner, Christina Walshe, and the young poet Reginald Buckley, author of Arthur of Britain, he sought to establish a national festival of drama. His intention was to create at Glastonbury, the alleged resting place of King Arthur and a place steeped in legend, a kind of English Bayreuth. The first Glastonbury* Festival, however, opening the day after war broke out in 1914, began not with the project of the Arthurian cycle but with Boughton’s new choral drama, The Immortal Hour. The Birth of Arthur was not given at Glastonbury until 16 August 1920 and was actually preceded there by the second part of the cycle, The Round Table, on 14 August 1916. The Lily Maid received its first performance in Stroud on 10 September 1934. Galahad and Avalon remain unperformed to this day.

The Overture to the Cycle of Arthurian music dramas was composed in October and November 1936. It, too, has remained unperformed until now. So far three Arthurian themes have been identified in the overture. They all originate from Act 2 of The Round Table. The first does not appear complete until some 30 bars have elapsed but all the music until then is derived from it. Michael Hurd defines it as ‘Knights’ chorus’ and adds ‘Once again in the island of Britain’. It is first heard in full on four unison horns and is then followed by a vigorous passage for strings and a more delicate one for solo clarinet and harp with strings. These themes are developed until a central quiet passage is reached. Here we have ‘Merlin’s vision of England (peace)’, beautifully scored for harp and divisi strings. The music then gradually resumes its vigour and the previous themes return. The pace now quickens and a new theme is heard, ‘Proclaim a new and glorious guest’. The overture finally heads for a rousing and jubilant conclusion.

* Before finally settling on Glastonbury, there was some suggestion that Letchworth Garden City was deemed a suitable location for the festival project – the Arts and Crafts Movement was significant at that time. Considering the nature of the Glastonbury Festivals today, one wonders what might have happened to Letchworth had Glastonbury not been favoured …

Concerto for Trumpet and Orchestra

i: Poco adagio – Allegretto – Allegro – Largo sostenuto – Allegretto - Allegro
ii: Lento espressivo – Allegro con spirito – Lento (Cadenza) – Largo

Composed in August and September 1943 in Kilcot, Gloucestershire, where Boughton spent his later years, this concerto is dedicated to his youngest son, Brian, who was studying Trumpet at The Royal College of Music under Ernest Hall. The work seems to have been written with no particular soloist or performance in mind but the composer was no doubt rather put out when both Ernest Hall and George Eskdale declared it too difficult to play. Boughton seems to have run it through on the piano with the young William Overton and then to have put it to one side. It was never performed during his lifetime, the first performances being given by John Wallace with the Fife Sinfonia on 23 and 24 September 1989 – nearly 50 years later. John Wallace subsequently recorded the work on the Sanctuary Classics label (White Line CDWH2159) in 2006 with the BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra conducted by Simon Wright.

As usual with Boughton, conventional forms are used in an unconventional way. For a start, there are two movements (rather than three), each containing a series of contrasting sections and moods and both having some musical material in common (the central Largo sostenuto of the first movement reappearing as the final section of the second).

The first movement is a sonata form structure with a slow introduction, but Boughton replaces the customary Development section with a second slow introduction (Largo sostenuto). Thus the two halves of the sonata form structure reflect each other:

Slow Introduction 1 → Exposition
Slow Introduction 2 → Recapitulation

And the Exposition and the Recapitulation both end with references to the opening introduction (Poco adagio), the Exposition allowing it to peter out, the Recapitulation glorifying it in a brief exaltation.

The second movement, too, begins with a slow introduction (Lento espressivo). The melodic gist of this recurs as parentheses to the soloist’s cadenza, this leading to the final apotheosis of the work.


Movement I:

a. Introduction 1: Poco adagio
an extended, dark, emotionally profound section; a sombre, arching melody predominates, accompanied by pronounced dotted rhythms and the rocking thirds which grow organically from them; the soloist is silent;
b. Transition: Allegretto
with the entry of the soloist a lighter mood is introduced, but the dotted rhythm persists;
c. Exposition: Allegro
i. first subject
an extrovert, fanfaric episode;
ii. second subject
a regularly phrased, slightly anguished (chromatic) episode;
d. Codetta:
a brief reference to the Poco adagio introduction peters out with the rocking thirds;
e. Introduction 2: Largo sostenuto
Boughton at his diatonically melodic best; the material is played twice with a brief interlude, first by the soloist then by the trombones and lower strings with superb, elaborate decorations on the upper strings and solo trumpet – a prime example of what I call Boughton’s ‘lyrical counterpoint’;
f. Transition:
an acceleration into the Allegretto wherein the dotted rhythm is now absent;
g. Recapitulation:
first and second subjects increasingly elaborated by the soloist;
h. Coda:
the final apotheosis of the Poco adagio introduction;

Movement II:

a. Introduction: Lento espressivo
as in Movement I, an extended, dark, sombre and emotionally profound section;
b. Transition: Più mosso
this time the soloist does not have to wait so long before entering;
c. Allegro con spirito
this would be a rondo structure if it went on long enough; as it is, the Cadenza intervenes;
d. Lento
various references to the slow introduction are interspersed with solo flourishes;
e. Largo
the central Largo (sostenuto) of Movement I returns briefly but ardently and a final – and arrestingly majestic – detour to the flattened supertonic key (G flat) serves only to emphasise the finality of the reference to the main theme and the return to the work’s tonic key.

The work is overtly virtuosic and the spotlight – apart from during each movement’s opening introduction – remains firmly on the soloist. But Boughton is such a consummate master of the orchestra that the orchestral players have much to enjoy and much musical interest to impart to the overall quality and success of the work – and a very fine work it is, a true ‘Concerto for Trumpet and Orchestra’.

Symphony No. 2 (‘Deirdre’) – A Celtic Symphony

i: The Young Girl: The Old King or The Young Lover - Allegro vivace
ii: Moonlight Idyll: Deirdre and Naisi - Adagio molto – Più mosso
iii: Love and Death - Allegro moderato

Boughton’s Symphony No.2 began life as a ballet. Michael Hurd writes: ‘ The ballet came about when Terence Gray, the founder and director of the Cambridge Festival Theatre, sent Boughton a volume of ‘dance dramas’ and asked him to write music for one of them: ‘The one on Deirdre made the strongest appeal and I set about it. When I had made the first sketch he brought Ninette de Valois down to hear it. She spoke enthusiastically at the time, but I thought he responded to it somewhat chillingly.’ At all events, nothing more was heard and Boughton decided to cut his losses and turn the whole thing into a purely orchestral work that, with a little stretch of the imagination, might reasonably pass as a symphony. To do this he simply removed some 67 bars, most of which were concerned with a scene-setting commentary by a ‘Bard’. The result was a thirty-six minute work that relied heavily on a ‘programme’ – a work that was not quite a symphonic poem, and certainly not a symphony in the usual sense of the word. Boughton suggested it might best be thought of as ‘A music drama without action’, but pointed out that the underlying conception was symphonic in the wider sense.’ (Michael Hurd: ‘Rutland Boughton and the Glastonbury festivals’, OUP, 1993, p.198.) The original ballet was completed on 17 March 1926 and the symphony finished the following year. The first performance was given by the Bournemouth Municipal Orchestra on 15 January 1933 – two days after Boughton’s 55th birthday – conducted by the composer. The symphony was later broadcast on 20 January 1939 and the following article by Rutland Boughton appeared in The Listener:

‘The dramatic conception which informs this work has dictated its structure. There are three movements: the first, allegro, a slow movement, and a finale. In the finale is merged what would generally be called the scherzo. However, though there are defiance and even joy, there is no jest in the manner of Deirdre’s death.

Within these movements the themes pursue their own musical logic and are related in certain formal proportions. There is deliberate choice and contrast of theme, but that choice has no connection with the usual first and second subjects of symphonic form. So also there is calculated balance of section with section; but that balance is not decided according to the usual plan of statement, free fantasia and recapitulation. However, I believe that if any listener will take up an attitude without preconception or prejudice in the matter of form, what might seem formally heterodox will not be noticed, and the dramatic values of the music will be found to have their own natural shape. This is not to signify any depreciation for the acknowledged form of great symphonies. With them I am not here concerned. This work might have been called a cycle of symphonic poems; but the uses of the symphonic poem have been too definitely associated with realistic details to serve as a title for this work. A better alternative sub-title might be ‘A music-drama without action’.

The Music and its story
First movement: The young girl – the old king – and the young lover.
Deirdre is wild as the mountain where she has her home. She cares much for the beasts, the winds, the skies, the flowers, and the mystery of the stars and the tarns, and is indifferent to the fate which, she has been told, is in store for her. For King Conochar has willed that Deirdre shall be his queen. Her music as the expression of free virginal hill-life is stated and fully developed, chiefly by strings and woodwind. Conochar’s music is introduced by trumpets. With the coming of the king there came also the three young sons of Usna, and when Deirdre’s eyes fall upon Naisi it is he who enters her heart. The first timid phrase of what becomes the love-tune is heard on oboe and violas with a dark background of trombones. The conflict arising in Deirdre’s heart in her fear of the king and her passion for Naisi constitutes the middle section of the first movement. She makes her choice; and the last section is devoted to a happy dance rhythm developed chiefly in transformed themes of Deirdre and her love – until the closing bars sound a new theme as of a shadow in the background stalking their happiness.

Second movement: Moonlight Idyll.
The lovers have run away together, and this is the music of their consummated joy. A smaller orchestra is used. The strings are much sub-divided – into solo quartet with two lines of tutti in each of the four upper parts. The cloud which shadowed the joy of the first movement passes also over the peace of this one.

Finale: Love and Death, with a dance of death-defiance.
This is the longest movement, and less simple in its dramatico-emotional development. Deirdre may love Naisi, but Conochar has power over their lives. Music as of an adverse power opens the movement. A feeling persists that the power may be used tyrannically. (This being a ‘Deidre’ symphony, its moods are developed continuously from her point of view- until the last few bars, when she no longer has a point of view.)

Foiled Tyrant
When the tyrannous music has been fully stated it is followed by Deirdre’s counter-music: first, a soft coaxing appeal, which fails; then, conscious of the certainty of death, a weak sobbing reaction. But an innate sense of her right to her own life and to Naisi arouses the flood of her love and an assertion of her own full womanhood. That asserted, it strives with the tyranny which is more crudely and emphatically proclaimed. With ever fiercer exaltation Deidre faces her doom by the side of her lover – finally leaving the tyrant only the clay of the beauty he was unable to win.

Having read this note the listener is asked to put it aside that no confusion may result in any accidental association of its details with sections to which they do not refer. The music is dramatic in so far as it refers to aspects of human emotion and conflict’ but the musical method pursued follows its own laws and has affinity with the lyrical rather than the realistic uses of music in stage works.’

The symphony is dedicated ‘To Kathleen’, Boughton’s third partner.

For those who, like me, are not entirely versed in Celtic (Irish) mythology, the following article taken from ‘Wikipedia’, whilst being treated with the customary ‘pinch of salt’, may be of some interest:

Deirdre or Derdriu
is the foremost tragic heroine in Irish Mythology. Her story is part of the Ulster Cycle. Deirdre was the daughter of the royal storyteller Fedlimid mac Daill. When she was born, Cathbad the druid prophesied that she would be very beautiful, with curly golden-brown hair and mesmerising grey-green eyes, but that kings and lords would go to war over her, and Ulster’s three greatest warriors would be forced into exile for her sake. Conchobar mac Nessa, king of Ulster, decided to have her brought up in seclusion by Leabharcham, an old woman, and marry her when he was old enough. However, she met, fell in love with, and eloped with Naoise, a handsome young Black Irish warrior, hunter and singer, accompanied by his two brothers – the sons of Uisnech. They fled to Scotland, but wherever they went the local king would try to kill Naoise and his brothers so he could have Deirdre. Eventually they ended up on a remote island, where Conchobar tracked them down. He sent Fergus mac Róich to them with a message of safe conduct home, but on the way back to Emain Macha Fergus was waylaid, forced by his personal geis (curse) to accept any offer of hospitality. He sent them on to Emain Macha with his son to protect them. After they had arrived, Conchobar sent Leabharcham to spy on Deirdre, to see whether or not she had lost her beauty in her long years of travel. Leabharcham, trying still to protect Deirdre from a marriage to Conchobar, told him she had lost all her beauty. However, Conchobar had sent another spy, Trendhorn, who told him that Deirdre was as beautiful as ever, although not before having his eye put out by a silver chess piece, thrown by Naoise. The next day, Naoise and his brothers, Ardan and Ainle, faced Conchobar outside Emain Macha, aided by a few Red Branch Knights, before Conchobar evoked their oath of loyalty to him and had Deirdre dragged to his side. At this point, Éogan mac Durthacht threw a spear, killing Naoise, and his brothers were killed shortly after. Fergus and his men arrived immediately after this. He was outraged by this betrayal of his word, and went into exile in Connacht, and fought against Ulster for Ailill and Medb in Táin Bó Cúailnge (the Cattle Raid of Cooley). Frustrated by Deirdre's lack of love for him, Conchobar offered her to Éogan mac Durthacht, the man who'd murdered Naoise. She committed suicide by leaning out of her chariot and dashing her head against a rock. In some versions of the story, she died of grief.

So now you know! But I prefer the ‘dashing her head against a rock version’ – it’s so much more ‘I’ll do anything to avoid marrying you, you old king’!

David Hilton (Trumpet)

Born in Worcester in 1979, David first became interested in the trumpet at the age of 9. After several years learning with Duncan Connor, David gained a place at the Junior Guildhall School of Music and with the National Youth Orchestra of Great Britain. He went on to the Guildhall School of Music and Drama as a full time student, studying with Paul Cosh and Paul Beniston. While at the college he won through to the final in the Brass section of the BBC 'Young Musician of the Year' competition in 1998 and then gained a place with the European Union Youth Orchestra.

In 2001 David graduated with a First Class Honours degree and has since enjoyed a varied freelance career, ranging from solo and chamber music to performing with many of the country's finest orchestras, such as The London Philharmonic Orchestra, The BBC Symphony Orchestra, The London Symphony Orchestra and The Halle Orchestra. David is continuing his freelance career and is currently Principal Trumpet with The Glyndebourne Touring Opera Orchestra.

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Sunday 16 May 2010

3.00 - 4.00 pm

Event 5

Recital 2: String Quartets

String Quartet No.1 in A major (‘On Greek Folk Songs’)

String Quartet No.2 in F major (‘From the Welsh Hills’)

The Astaria Quartet

Shulah Oliver - Violin (Leader)
Kelly McCusker- Violin
Kate Bickerdike - Viola
Sean Gilde - Violoncello


Each of Boughton’s two string quartets was written in 1923 when the composer was enjoying great success in London with his music drama The Immortal Hour. Each also reflects Boughton’s exuberant mood at his recent dramatic success and the union with his third partner, Kathleen. The two quartets were first performed at a series of three chamber music concerts which he presented in The Aeolian Hall, London, in 1923, the ‘Greek’ Quartet on 12 October and the ‘Welsh’ on 19 October. Offering a hostage to fortune, Boughton advertised the concerts thus:

These concerts are NOT FOR HIGH-BROWS but for the
general musical public who still believe in the common-chord and
an occasional tune.

And he compounded this by adding that there were to be

NO FREE TICKETS even for 'the profession'.

The critics were mixed in their reaction, so he presented for a second performance on 26 October the quartet which they had most disliked - the ‘Greek’. The performances seem to have left something to be desired and the fact that he insisted that the audience hear the works for the first time in a darkened auditorium, with the players behind a screen, did not add to the success of the occasion.

Boughton was right to stress that the quartets were for those who 'still believe in the common-chord and an occasional tune'. Each quartet is chock-full of both and now that the dust has settled over the more outlandishly advanced movements of 20th century music we can treasure these quartets for the melodious and harmonious things that they are.

String Quartet No.1 in A major
('On Greek Folk Songs')

i: Apollonian: Bold and strong with swinging rhythm
ii: Dionysian: Quick with strong accents
iii: Threnody: Slow, with heavy crush-notes on the beat
iv: Aphrodisian: Slow - gradually quicker

At the end of the full score of the first quartet the composer inscribed, ‘London, June-July, 1923’. Boughton’s brief programme note for the performance on 26 October explains the ‘Greek’ title succinctly: ‘The Summer School at Glastonbury last year was devoted to the study of Greek drama. One of the stage-productions was The Trachiniae of Sophocles, in the English version of Plumtre. The choruses were sung to adaptations of Greek Folk Songs, unaccompanied. Those tunes haunted me, till last summer I managed to lay their ghosts by using some of them in the making of this quartet. It is fashioned in the conventional form, so the listener need not be bothered with a pedantic analysis. The sub-titles of the movements have been added as key-words to their preponderant emotion; they have no further meaning or value.’

In the two performance of The Trachiniae which were given at Glastonbury in the summer of 1922, Sheerman Hand played the part of Herakles. Michael Hurd states that ‘The third movement … is by way of being a memorial to Sheerman Hand, whose untimely death (suicide?) in September 1922 had deprived Boughton of a friend and trusted administrator.’

The players at the first performance of the quartet were Constance Izard, Désirée Ames, James Lockyer and Marjorie Edes.

The first movement (Apollonian) is a sonata form structure with two very melodic subjects. The first of these is stated at the outset in unison but soon submits itself to a brief fugato while the second is rather more terpsichorean. The development section begins in a somewhat subdued manner but quickly moves into a passage of increasing vitality. The recapitulation of each subject is rather disguised and will be caught only by an attentive ear. The coda winds the music to a calm stillness. The second movement (Dionysian) begins with jaunty dactyls, soon assuming a more dotted rhythm. This is a genuine dance movement. The ending is emphatic. The third movement (Threnody) is a fitting lamentation, its grief not over-emotional but stated reservedly. The fourth movement (Aphrodisian) starts gently in mood and pace, as if unwilling to break the mood and pace of the previous movement. Whilst the pace soon quickens, the mood remains somewhat gentle throughout its length, eventually leading to a still quiet close and some ethereal harmonics played by the First Violin.

[The Apollonian and Dionysian is a philosophical and literary concept or dichotomy based on certain features of ancient Greek mythology. In Greek mythology, Apollo and Dionysus are both sons of Zeus. Apollo is the god of the Sun, music and poetry while Dionysus is the god of wine, ecstasy and intoxication. In the modern literary usage of the concept, the contrast between Apollo and Dionysus symbolises principles of wholeness versus individualism, light versus darkness, civilisation versus primal nature. A threnody is a song of lamentation, specifically a lament for the dead. Aphrodite was the Grecian Venus, and aphrodisian anything devoted to sensual love.]

String Quartet No.2 in F major
('From the Welsh Hills')

i: Landscape (from the valleys) – Purple and Grey
ii: Landscape (from the summit) – Green and Gold: Slow and Quiet
iii: Satire: Very Quick
iv: Song of the Hills: Slow

The second quartet, composed on holiday in Beddgelert during August 1923, also contains material with the character of folk song but is more of a programmatic reaction to the Welsh landscape, coloured by his love for Kathleen.

The first movement is a sonata form structure. It begins with melismatic flourishes played by the First Violin over a chordal accompaniment. A more flowing melody then appears in the ‘Cello. The second subject is an airy succession of chords. The second movement begins with a stately melody in octaves and continues in this singing vein throughout its length. The third movement is a Rondo, the main theme busy, biting and sardonic, the second striding upwards in the ‘Cello and the third a bouncy rhythmic theme in the upper register. The development begins with a fugato on the main rondo theme, but the other two are also soon dealt with. The brief coda increases the speed and is even more biting. The fourth movement starts slowly but soon accelerates. Again a sonata form structure, the first subject appears initially in the ‘Cello and the second is lyrical, even elegiac, in tone.

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Sunday 16 May 2010
8.00 - 9.00 pm

Event 6

Recital 3: Sonatas for Strings

Violoncello Sonata

Violin Sonata in D

Harriet Jeffrey (Violoncello)
Shulah Oliver (Violin)
Simon Marlow (Pianoforte)

Harriet Jeffrey

Harriet Jeffery grew up in Winchester. From 2001–2005 she attended the Royal College of Music as a Foundation Scholar, studying 'cello with Lowri Blake and Baroque 'cello with Jennifer Ward-Clarke and Catherine Rimer. Whilst at the RCM she won the Davidoff Cello Competition and was commended in the Anna Shuttleworth Prize. In her duo with pianist Hara Kostigianni she played in various venues across London including St Mary Abbott’s Church, Kensington, St John’s, Waterloo, and Wesley’s Chapel, St Luke’s London. With RCM ensembles she played both at the College and in St George’s, Hanover Square and the Handel House Museum, with the RCM Baroque Orchestra under Adrian Butterfield, and performed at the former venue as 'cello soloist in Telemann’s concerto for violin, cello and two flutes.

More recently, she has played with the Amadeus Orchestra, including in the Sheldonian Theatre, Oxford, in China in 2007, and in 2008 in the performance of Mahler’s Symphony No.2 in The Bridgewater Hall, Manchester.

After leaving the RCM Harriet explored different career paths, working at a youth retreat centre and in music publishing. In 2008 she completed a PGCE and currently works as a peripatetic 'cello teacher in Oxford.

Harriet enjoys playing chamber music and walking in the area!

Shulah Oliver

Shulah completed her Masters Degree in Performance with Distinction at the Royal Academy of Music in September 2006, having studied violin with Howard Davis. She was awarded the Diploma of the Royal Academy of Music for her outstanding Final Recital. Her research and concert project involved the study and performance of the life and works of the British composer Eva Ruth Spalding (1882-1969). She has a passion for introducing audiences to the works of lesser-known British composers and performing their works with the hope of keeping their music alive and a part of our musical heritage. Her studies were assisted by awards from the Elmley and EMI Music Sound Foundations, Musicians’ Benevolent Fund and Winifred Disney.

Shulah graduated from the Royal College of Music with a First Class Honours Joint Principal (violin/viola) degree in 2004. She was a finalist in the Delius Prize, has received commendations in several competitions including the Wilfred Parry Prize, the Winifred Small Prize and Sir Arthur Bliss Prize and has received the John Mundy and D-Day Fund Prize Awards from the Royal Academy of Music. She was violinist of the Lichnowsky Piano Trio who were prize winners at the 2003 European Music Competition for Youth and in the Summers of 2008 and 2009 Shulah was the only violinist selected from the United Kingdom to take part in and to perform at the prestigious London Masterclasses with Gyorgy Pauk. As a soloist and ensemble member she has been invited to play in festivals such as the Paganini London Festival, Norfolk and Norwich, Peter Maxwell Davis and St. Endellion Festivals.

Shulah was a member of the European Union Youth Orchestra. As a member of orchestras including the National Youth Orchestra, she has performed at a variety of prestigious events and venues including Cheltenham International Festival, BBC Proms, Young Euro Classic, the South Bank, Concertgebouw and Royal Albert Hall and with prominent conductors such as Yan Pascal Tortelier, Bernard Haitink, Vladimir Ashkenazy, Sir Colin Davis and Sir Charles Mackerras.

She now leads The Astaria Quartet, is the violin/viola half of Duo Armande, freelances with orchestras such as the BBC National Orchestra of Wales, the English Symphony Orchestra and the Orchestra of the Swan and has been Guest Leader of several orchestras.

Simon Marlow

Simon Marlow read music at Cambridge University, studied the piano with Ivey Dickson and Lilli Raeburn and chamber music with Manoug Parikian. He gave his debut recital with the violinist Roger Garland at the Wigmore Hall. Simon makes regular concert appearances throughout the UK and Europe where he is much in demand as a chamber musician and accompanist. He has also performed in Iceland, the United States and Sri Lanka, has broadcasted and made several recordings.

Simon has worked for many years with the Medici Quartet violist, Ivo-Jan van der Werff, with whom he has recorded music by Max Reger and a CD of all the viola/piano works of Arnold Bax. In 2004 they made a round-the-world tour with concerts in New York, New Zealand and Hong Kong, where they also gave a series of master classes at the Hong Kong Academy for Performing Arts.

In addition to his musical interests, Simon worked for ten years with the Lucis Trust, an educational charity.

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Admission and Ticket Prices

Admission to each of the three Recitals is by ticket: £5

Recital 1: Saturday 15 May 2010 - 12.00-1.00 pm: Songs: Louise Mott (Mezzo Soprano) and Alexander Taylor
Recital 2: Sunday 16 May 2010 - 3.00-4.00 pm: String Quartets: The Astaria Quartet
Recital 3: Sunday 16 May 2010 - 8.00-9.00 pm: Violin Sonata and 'Cello Sonata: Shulah Oliver (Violin), Harriet Jeffrey (Violoncello) and Simon Marlow (Pianoforte)

Admission to the Commemorative Concert is by ticket: £13 (Concessions: £10; Under 16: £3)
Saturday 15 May 2010 - 7.30-9.30 pm

Admission to the Illustrated Talk is Free
Friday 14 May 2010 - 6.00-8.00 pm

Admission to the Open Rehearsal is Free for Commemorative Concert ticket holders; admission for others is by ticket: £5
Saturday 15 May 2010 - 2.30-5.30 pm

Tickets are available by telephone (01462 458614) or from Hitchin Town Centre Initiative (01462 453335)