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Music is a higher revelation than all wisdom and philosophy.  Music is the electrical soil in which the spirit lives, thinks and invents. Beethoven.  

As we come to the end of the lockdown, Churchill Music is poised to move forward cautiously to hold our concerts.  We cannot wait to get cracking and see you all again. 

First off is our Churchill Music Young Musician of the Year competition with students from Churchill Academy.  We are absolutely delighted that this is booked to go ahead on Monday June 28th at 6pm.  We hope that this will be in St. John’s Church, subject to the church and Academy regulations.  We usually hold this highlight of our CM calendar in January, so it will be particularly special to have a summer event!  It is too early to sell tickets as we watch the news avidly regarding social distancing regulations so that we can be sure that audience numbers are appropriate to keep everyone safe. We will contact you all when we know more, but please keep the date free.

Next date for your diaries will be Saturday October 2nd.  A quartet from the London Mozart Players with clarinettist, Michael Collins, no less. This will be a brilliant start to our new season.  It is of course subject to any further disruptive lockdowns.   ‘Optimism’ is our middle name!  

Did you see the BBC Young Musician of the Year final?  If not, You have truly missed something incredibly special.  Nil desperandum, here is the link https://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/m000vsfj .  I highly recommend taking an evening off to sink into some absolutely stunning musicianship from all three finalists.  My goodness the talent this year is breathtaking – the judges clearly found it very hard to pick a winner.  Particularly special for CM is the Marimba-player as our very first CM Young Musician of the Year competition was won by a phenomenal marimba player – I can still remember his ‘prayerful’ performance.   Fang Zhang, marimba,  Annemarie Federle, Horn and oboist Ewan Millar – I shall not give away the winner if case you have not heard! 

Time for the coffee concertissimo – just 15 minutes – with Daniel Barenboim performing Mozart’s Sonata K576 sometimes known as ’The Hunt’ or ’The Trumpet Sonata’ due to its hornlike opening.  An absolute gem which was written as part of a set of six sonatas for Princess Frederica Louise of Prussia in 1789.  Perfect to accompany a contemplative cup of coffee in ‘another world’.

“The eye – it cannot choose but see; we cannot bid the ear be still; our bodies feel, where’er they be, against or with our will”  William Wordsworth.    This brings to mind the talk on ‘Creative listening’ recorded by Jonathan James, PhD Music Ed, conductor writer.  Jonathan connects people to classical and jazz music to help enjoy it on a deeper level.  We are absolutely delighted that Jonathan will chair our adjudication panel for our Churchill Music Young Musician of the Year competition this year.  He certainly has the gift to inspire.

Having listened to Jonathan James, this next musician is truly phenomenal to listen to.  Augustin Hadelich performing Paganini’s Caprice No 24.  I am deeply grateful to Champion and panelist of our Churchill Young Musician competition, Adrain Trapp for introducing this incredible violinist.  Adrian’s comment was that this young violinist must surely go down as an all-time great performer.  His playing speaks for itself.  Maestro Hadelich was born in Italy in 1984 to German parents, who had a farm in rural Tuscany.  He was clearly an exceptionally talented musician at an early age.  Sadly a gas canister exploded near him causing severe injuries which put him out of action for a year and wondering if he would ever play the violin again.  It was this, he is quoted as saying, that made him really appreciate what was happening in his life, try to enjoy every moment and how important music is to him.  My goodness he is a joy to watch.  The ear simply cannot be still whilst this musician is performing!  

Now for that sundowner – a delicious Chopin Nocturne that exercises all the emotions but ends up making me feel happy and simply glad to be alive!  Daniel Barenboim performs Chopin’s Nocturne No 2 in E flat Op 9.  Composed between 1831 and 32, this nocturne is part of a set of 3 dedicated to the Belgian pianist Marie Pleyel who was considered to be one of the most admired pianists of the 1830s.  It is said that Berlioz was deeply in love with Pleyel – they were even engaged, but Pleyel broke it off and married Camille Pleyel.  Was Chopin in love with her too?  

And Finally – we have never featured the harmonica!  Huge thanks to Sarah Avery for forwarding this clip of Buddy Greene – Joueur d’harmonica incroyable. Enjoy!
Looking forward to see everyone again hopefully very soon.

Music for lockdown 31