Review: Evening Pupils’ Recital

In a truly remarkable evening which embraced chamber music, solo performers, inter-departmental cross-collaboration, concertos (trumpets and strings), scholars, non-scholars, Shell pupils, future Marlburians and culminating in a vibrant performance of Vivaldi’s glorious A minor Double Cello Concerto, this was a recital to remember. 

I have rarely seen such a large audience as this (actually, there was barely enough room) but the Goodison Hall, despite the squash, remains an ideal venue for this forum.  The repertoire was eclectic – from Bach to Hans Zimmer, via Beethoven, Duparc and Wülzberg concentration camp internee, Erwin Schulhoff.  The performers clearly relished the challenge.

One emerging area is the String Department with new Head of Department, Hector Scott leading from the front in firstly encouraging future talent (step forward Rosie Olver (EL Sh), Sophie Smith (DA Sh), Lewis Ludlam (BH Sh) and Francesca Coles (EL Sh) and thereafter, directing the two concertos from the violin, in which George Nicholson (C3 Hu) and Ben Spink (SU Re) on trumpet, and Luke Smith (CO L6) and James Wright (C1 L6) on cello deserve special praise.

James Eyles (LI L6), Ben Parker (C1 L6), Eliza Cameron (MM L6), Florence Tuckey (EL Re), Francesca Hamilton (MO L6), Anna Laakkonen (MO L6), Shona Scott (NC L6), Lucy Hudson (EL U6) and the Saxophone Quintet all gave worthy and sincere performances and Ciara Parker-Northeast (CO U6) showed real class on recorder.

Altogether then, a fine performance.  In fact, I’d go further – utterly uplifting.

Philip Dukes
Artistic Director

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