The Janus Ensemble bring Stravinsky’s Soldier’s Tale to Chiddingly, September 29th 2017

The Soldier, Joseph, gives his violin to a mysterious stranger in exchange for a book promising untold wealth and wisdom. He is forced to confront questions of what is valuable and what does it really mean to be rich in life. Come and hear the results of this encounter in Stravinsky’s masterpiece which will be “played, read and danced” as part of the 2017 Chiddingly Festival.

We are delighted to welcome to the Festival the Janus Ensemble, “a terrific group of young, talented, enthusiastic players whose musicianship is exemplary” (Jonathan Cohen, conductor and former BBC presenter). Joining them to tell the story will be actors Keith Drinkel, Simon Kane and Shaun Chambers and dancer, Phoebe Horn. Children from Chiddingly and East Hoathly Schools will be performing songs they have written on the themes on the piece.

Chiddingly Village Hall, September 29th 2017

6pm Informal Introduction.     6.45pm Performance.      Bar and refreshments from 5pm.

Tickets: £5 adults, £2 children under 16, subsidised by the Wealdway Community Play Fund

Further details and tickets at:

Artwork by Clive Hicks-Jenkins

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Lewes Festival of Song, July 2017

















Lewes Festival of Song 2017 is in bloom this summer from Friday 7th to Sunday 9th July, at our venue in St. Anne’s Church, and tickets can be bought on our website or via Lewes Tourist Information Centre, 01273 483448.
The Festival Pass is a snip at £60: all concerts are £15 except for Saturday lunchtime which is £12. Under 16s are half price.

We draw on the wonderful international talents of Lewes in a big way this year, with Lewes artists Sally Matthews, Finnur Bjarnason, Paul Austin Kelly, Carol Kelly and Susannah Waters all taking part. Another highlight is a visit from equally renowned tenor Paul Nilon.

First up is Banalités on Friday 7th evening at 7.30pm, with Debussy, Ravel, Poulenc, Duparc and Fauré, performed with gallic charm by James Newby, Sophie Gallagher and Oliver Lallemant.
Among many accolades, James won the Kathleen Ferrier Award in 2016 and the Richard Tauber prize for Lieder in 2015. Sophie takes a break from singing Emmie in Albert Herring in Buxton to join us: an award-winning soprano at RCM, she sang the role first for Firenze Maggio Musicale.Oliver is Director of Music at Holy Trinity, Sloane Square and a polymath musician.

The second concert is An English Garland on Saturday 8th at 1pm. Emma Stannard and Keval Shah perform fresh English songs to include Britten, Finzi, Quilter and Bridge, for a summer afternoon.
Emma makes a return visit to LFoS fresh from completing her Royal Academy opera course, where she won two major awards: she is singing Minerva in II ritorno d’Ulisse at the Grange Festival this summer. Keval and Emma won the Audrey Strange award in the 2016 Royal Overseas League competition. Keval won all the major music prizes at Cambridge university, and the Elena Gerhardt Lieder Prize at the Royal Academy: he has performed at the Oxford and Leeds Lieder Festivals.

We travel to Scandinavia on Saturday evening at 7.30pm, unable to resist the trend towards Nordic Noir. Husband and wife team Sally Matthews and Finnur Bjarnason sing Scandinavian songs including Sibelius, Grieg, Rautavarra and Nielson.
Sally has sung major roles at all the main opera houses, given recitals at the most prestigious concert venues and sung with the world’s most acclaimed conductors. Icelandic-born tenor Finnur has a string of major roles to his name for Komisches Opera in Berlin, the Châtelet in Paris and the Staatsoper in Munich, to name but a few. He has made many recordings of songs by Mendelssohn, Schumann and Jón Leifs. A Lewes-based husband and wife team, they are accompanied by Nancy Cooley, Artistic Director of this festival: a winner of the Walther Grüner accompanist’s prize, she is an experienced song recitalist and chamber musician and coaches at the Royal College of Music.

The Sunday lunchtime recital at 1pm is Schubert’s Die Schöne Müllerin. This tender depiction of a young man’s journey artlessly honours the folk-simplicity of Müller’s poems in music of the deepest profundity and humanity. Richard Wigmore will be setting the scene and guiding us into the cycle in his introduction.
Paul Nilon is one of Europe’s leading lyric tenors. This season he sings Monteverdi’s Ulisse for The Grange Festival, Peter Grimes and Winterreise at Dartington, takes the title role in Death in Venice in Berlin and gives a recital with Nancy at the Buxton Festival. Richard is a writer, broadcaster and lecturer specialising in Romantic and Classical chamber music, and in Lieder.

The journeying theme continues, and the festival ends, on Sunday 9th July at 7.30pm, with Two tales, two turning points, featuring a staged performance by Susannah Waters of Janacek’s unique cycle Diary of One Who Disappeared, preceded by Mahler’s Four Songs of a Wayfaring Journeyman and some of Janacek’s piano miniatures, On an Overgrown Path. Paul Austin Kelly and Marcia Bellamy head up the casts, Carol Kelly and Yoko Ono accompany, Nancy Cooley performs the solos.

Since her debut at the Deutsche Oper in Berlin Marcia has sung in opera, oratorios and music theatre in the U.S., Canada and throughout Europe. Locally she sang in The Finnish prisoner by Orlando Gough, directed by Susannah. Yoko is much in demand across the world as a solo pianist and chamber musician, and teaches at the Royal College of Music. Paul has sung leading tenor roles in opera houses including La Scala, Royal Opera House and Glyndebourne. On the concert stage, his repertoire ranges from Britten to Berg. Lewes based, he and his wife Carol gave a recital for the Nicholas Yonge Society last year. Carol is a frequent recitalist and repetiteur with a prestigious background leading training programmes here and abroad. Susannah’s recent work includes Imago for Glyndebourne Opera, and Birtwistle’s Down by the Greenwood Side and Being Both for the Brighton Festival: the latter was also performed at the 2016 proms.

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Corelli Ensemble – Seaford, 5th Feb. 4pm

Ella Rundle
(Photo- Robert Piwk)

Corelli Ensemble Concert with Ella Rundle, cello.
Sunday 5th February at 4pm
Cross Way Church, Steyne Road, Seaford BN25 1HT

Come and enjoy the beautiful sounds of the cello, played by the amazingly talented Ella Rundle. Ella will be performing Vivaldi’s best loved cello concerto in B minor in the Corelli Ensemble’s first concert in Seaford of 2017. The Corelli Ensemble will also be performing great pieces of music by English composers, some well known and some lesser known, but still fabulous music! The emotionally powerful Chaconne by Purcell will be paired with concertos by Handel and Stanley, featuring solos by musical director, Maeve Jenkinson and cellist, Sarah Davison. Continuing the Corelli Ensemble’s “Festival of Finzi” the programme will also include a performance of Finzi‘s Prelude for String Orchestra.

The concert will last an hour, perfect for both young and old, and afterwards the audience is warmly invited to join the performers for refreshments. Join us for an afternoon of wonderful music, live with the Corelli Ensemble.

Tickets can be pre-reserved from our website for a special price of £10 before noon on the day of the concert. Alternatively you can simply reply to this email. Ticket bought on the door are priced £12. Children are Free.

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Christmas services for Trinity’s 3 churches

Here are the listings for all the Christmas services across Trinity Church, Lewes – which is now one church organization with three sites.

Please note the following key to the 3 Lewes church sites:
SJ = Trinity St Johns Sub Castro

SO = Trinity Southover

SM = Trinity South Malling

TRINITY Church Christmas Services
Sun 11th SJ 3pm Christingle
Sun 11th SM 6:30pm Carol Service
Sun 18th SO 10am Family Nativity
Sun 18th SJ 11:15am Family Nativity
Sun 18th SO 4pm Carol Service
Sun 18th SJ 4:30pm Communion with Carols
Sun 18th SO 6:30pm Carol Service
Sat 24th SM 3:30pm Young Families Crib Service
Sat 24th SO 3:30pm Toddler Crib Service
Sat 24th SJ 6pm Family Crib Service
Sat 24th SM 11pm Midnight Communion
Sat 24th SO 11pm Midnight Communion
Sun 25th SM 9:30am Christmas Day Family Service
Sun 25th SO 10am Christmas Day Family Service
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Classical Music Round-Up for November 2016 – Lewes, East Sussex

November is often a dark and brooding month, summer just a fond memory as we slouch resignedly towards winter. But soprano Briony Lambert and pianist Nicholas Houghton are presenting a recital of 20th Century songs that could go a long way towards helping you mitigate the month’s melancholia. Benjamin Britten’s Folksong Arrangements interestingly were written entirely while he was on a visit to America between 1939 and 1942. They might more accurately be described as compositions rather than arrangements, as the piano provides not an accompaniment to the song but another voice entirely. Evening, Morning, Night, also by Britten is a short song cycle originally written as incidental music for a play. Samuel Barber’s Hermit Songs, written during the 1950s, are settings of thoughts and observations by Irish monks from medieval times. These texts were, more often than not, private marginalia and were not meant to see the light of day––some profane, some deeply religious. Barber’s music is at once brilliant, melodic and accessible.
Sun 6, 3pm, St Michael’s Church, free with retiring collection

Since Brahms wrote Ein Deutsches Requiem for the living, not the dead, it’s perhaps an uplifting work to immerse yourself in at this time of year. The Brighton Festival Chorus will perform this great masterpiece along with another of Brahms’ choral works, Schicksalslied (Song of Destiny), a setting of a poem by Friedrich Hölderlin, one of Germany’s finest Romantic poets. Though much shorter than the Requiem, it is considered by many to be its equal in sheer musical brilliance. The soloists will be soprano Sarah Tynan and baritone Leigh Melrose and the Brighton Philharmonic Orchestra conducted by James Morgan.
Sun 6, 2:45pm, Brighton Dome, £12-37,

The Corelli Ensemble continues its “Festival of Finzi” with the Corelli Suite for strings in D minor, Bach’s Oboe Concerto (featuring soloist Owen Dennis), Finzi’s Romance for String Orchestra and Saint-Saens Rondo Cappriccioso which will feature solo violinist, Maeve Jenkinson.
Sun 6, 4pm, Cross Way Church, Seaford, £10-12,

20th century British a cappella choral works are on the bill for the Esterhazy Chamber Choir, offering Herbert Howell’s Requiem, Hubert Parry‘s Songs of Farewell, and music of the late John Tavener, including the Song for Athene, which featured in the funeral service of Diana, Princess of Wales. Their conductor will be Richard Dawson.
Sat 19, 7:30pm, St Michaels Church, £10-12, under 16s free,

Musicians of All Saints, conducted by Andrew Sherwood, will perform Vivaldi’s Concerto in A minor (solo bassoonist Ian Glen), a premiere performance of Ian Morgan Williams’ Some Easy Music, Barry Mills Nocturnal Landscapes and Bright Morning Star for Violin and Strings, (violinist Christopher Phipps) and Tchaikovsky’s Serenade for Strings.
Sat 19, 7:45pm, All Saints Centre, £12 & 9, children free

As a final note, we’re pleased to hear that the Lewes Chamber Music Festival have given us their dates for 2017–– they are 23, 24 & 25 of June. There will also be an LCMF Christmas Concert on 16 December at St Michael’s Church.

Paul Austin Kelly

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1st July, Town Hall – South Downs Youth Orchestra

(Photo by Ron Hill)

East Sussex Youth Orchestra (Photo by Ron Hill)

East Sussex MUSIC Concert

South Downs Youth Orchestra
Leader: Tess Angus
Conductor: Malcolm Warnes
Overture to Prince Igor – Alexander Borodin
Concerto for Trumpet – Alexander Arutiunian – Solist: Harry Plant (ESAM student in his final year)
Scherezade Op 35 – Nicolai Rimsky-Korsakov
Friday 1st. July 2016,  7:30pm

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2 July – Eastbourne Choral Society perform Puccini’s Messa di Gloria

messa di posterJoin the Eastbourne Choral Society, and director John Hancorn, for a glorious evening of music, including Puccini’s Messa di Gloria, and Poulenc’s Gloria
The choir will be ably accompanied by the Eastbourne Sinfonia, and joined by soloists Rachel Shouksmith (soprano), Paul Austin Kelly (tenor) and Geoffrey Moses (bass).

Saturday, 2 July – 7:30pm

Tickets: £12, available from Tourist Information Centre or at the door

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Foundry Gallery has its last concert––The Phoenix Cantata

The Everyman Ensemble

The Everyman Ensemble

The Phoenix Cantata – Written and composed by Helen Glavin

An evening of music from the large scale choral work originally inspired by the
Phoenix Ironworks in Lewes. Local choirs The Everyman Ensemble – musical
director John Hancorn, the Paddock Singers – musical director Ruth Kerr,
violinist Susan Moate and soloists will perform selected evocative pieces
introduced by composer Helen Glavin. The Cantata pays tribute to the
Ironworks and the people who worked there.

Friday July 1 8pm – Tickets £10/£8
Tickets from Lewes Tourist Information Office or on the door.


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Glorious Baroque Concertos with the Corelli Ensemble

Maeve Jenkinson

Maeve Jenkinson

On Sunday 8th May at St Pancras Church in Lewes, the Corelli Ensemble will be performing a wonderful concert of Baroque concertos, including Albinoni‘s hauntingly beautiful Oboe concerto. The concert begins at 4pm.

Maeve Jenkinson, Musical Director of the Corelli Ensemble, will play the gorgeous E major violin concerto by Bach, and there will be a spotlight on the viola as Stephen Giles and Simon Smith team up to perform Telemann‘s Concerto for Two Violas. Finally, all the members of the Corelli Ensemble will be soloists in Bach‘s magnificent Brandenburg concerto no. 3.

Tickets on the door are priced at £12. However, to book an advanced ticket of £10 please email or visit . Under 18’s are free! At our recent concert in Seaford we unfortunately sold out of tickets the day before the concert, so please reserve your tickets now to avoid disappointment. Advanced tickets must be booked before 12noon on the day of the concert.

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More on the Lewes Festival of Song, 2016

Soprano Mary Plazas

Soprano Mary Plazas

Lewes Festival of Song 2016 comes into bloom again from Friday 1st to Sunday 3rd July at St. Anne’s Church in Lewes.

There are five concerts and many different genres. Russian, American and English songs, Spanish Canciones and French chansons. Well -loved repertoire from England at the beginning of the twentieth century, and a contemporary American song-cycle. Acclaimed recitalists and highly talented younger artists. An à cappella choir, songs accompanied by strings, and three voice and piano duos.

Friday 1st July at 6pm – ‘Strings in the earth and air’
Three young singers on the brink of their careers from the Royal College of Music collaborate with the wonderful string players of Ensemble Reza in a programme of Holst, Vaughan Williams, Barber, Rebecca Clarke and Butterworth, including Dover Beach and On Wenlock Edge.

Alice Privett & Chad Vindin (picture by Robert Piwko)

Alice Privett & Chad Vindin
(picture by Robert Piwko)

Saturday 2nd July at noon – ‘Despite and still’
Accomplished duo and finalists at last year’s Kathleen Ferrier competition, soprano Alice Privett and pianist Chad Vindin ( a Fellow at the RCM), perform a richly coloured French and American programme of Messiaen, Ravel, Barber and John Harbison.

a voice of velvet and steel’, ‘exquisitely tender, silky phrasing

Saturday 2nd July at 7.30pm – ‘None but the lonely heart’
Latvian-born baritone Pauls Putnins ( of Jonathan Miller’s La Bohème, ENO; performances for GFO and Garsington and well-known to local audiences), is

Pauls Putnins (credit Hanya Chlala)

Pauls Putnins (credit Hanya Chlala)

accompanied by myself. We present an all-Russian programme, with songs by Tchaikovsky, Borodin and Rachmaninov, a set of C20th songs by Sviridov and a plunge into the depths with Mussorgsky’s extraordinary ballads ‘Songs and dances of death’.

‘beautifully mellifluous voice’ ‘dramatically compelling’ ‘distinctive – his voice shone’

Sunday 3rd July at 3pm – ‘à cappella flowers and birds’
Conductor John Hancorn and his chamber choir The Baroque Collective Singers  step out of the box to sing unaccompanied choral masterpieces by Britten, Poulenc, Hindemith, Elgar and Parry.

Sunday 3rd July at 6pm – ‘a green chill upon the heat’

Soprano Mary Plazas (leading roles include Butterfly at ENO and Donizetti at Buxton) is accompanied by myself. We warm ourselves by the Mediterranean with Canciones by Spanish composers Obradors and De Falla, and fly west and north with Copland’s settings of extraordinary poems by Emily Dickinson and Britten’s song – cycle On this island.

‘golden voiced’, arrestingly expressive’, ‘remarkable’ ‘ravishing solo’

More details will be on my Facebook page, in publicity around Lewes, and on the St. Anne’s website. Tickets will be available at Lewes Tourist Office.

It will be lovely to see you there!
Nancy Cooley
Artistic Director

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