UPLIFTING UPDATES: UK, LANZAROTE & THE CANARY ISLANDS
UK, Lanzarote,The Canary Island
collated by Norman Warwick
ROCHDALE MUSIC SOCIETY SEASON 2022.23
Patrick Hemerle: Piano
Heywood Civic Centre April 22nd
review by Graham Marshall
Here’s my Review of the Patrick Hemmerlé concert on April 22nd – a wonderful evening of paino music enjoyed by a large audience.
The French pianist, Patrick Hemmerlé, (left) who studied at the Paris Conservatoire with Billy Eidi, has made his home in England where he is currently the artistic director of Intimate Engagements, a series of concerts taking place in Clare Hall, Cambridge. On April 22nd he came to the Heywood Civic Centre at the invitation of Rochdale Music Society and brought with him a programme of music which took the audience on a journey across Europe from the early 18th century of J.S.Bach to the early 20th century of Isaac Albeniz, a journey filled with colourful and fascinating musical landscapes.
The concert began with two pieces by Bach. The first was the Chorale Prelude, “Nun komm, der Heiden heiland” (Come, Saviour of the Gentiles) in an arrangement by Busoni, which was beautifully performed with the quiet intensity that is needed to express the deeply felt yearning of the composer’s Christian faith. The second was Bach’s keyboard Fantasia in C minor BWV 906. Patrick’s brilliant control of the rapid finger work as his hands moved up and down the keyboard enabled him to bring out all the lively warmth of the composer’s generous heart.
After this auspicious start Patrick moved straight on to a what was a signal performance of all twelve of the Op. 25 Études of Chopin. These revelatory studies in pianistic technique gave him the opportunity to demonstrate his masterly accomplishment as a keyboard player. He showed himself to be more than a match for the most challenging demands of a composer whose music (such as this) was vastly expanding the technical horizons of performers of its time.
After a necessary Interval pause, the concert resumed with the three pieces which make up the Book 1 of Iberia, the Spanish composer Isaac Albeniz’s masterwork in which he shares his deep love of the Iberian peninsula and its musical traditions of song and dance. The First Movement is an impressionist musical portrait of the whole of Spain entitled Evocaciơn. The second, El Puerto, is a lively Andalusian dance movement inspired by a visit to El Peurto de Santa Maria (the city of Port St. Mary in Cadiz).The third is entitled El Corpus en Sevilla. This elaborates a vision of the stately Corpus Christi Procession in Seville with due religious ceremonial and rasping marching band. A contrasting soulful chant begins to overwhelm the band and together turn the music into a tarentella which reaches a dramatic climax, after which it subsides into a tranquil Coda. Patrick’s beautifully controlled performance throughout left audience longing for more.
To end the concert Patrick played the three movements of Venice and Naples by Liszt, which were written in 1849 and published as a supplement to works from what the composer called his Years of Pilgrimage – times when, as he travelled across Europe, he was developing his personality as a composer as well as a concert pianist. The music of all three movements is based on well-known Italian songs and dances and is elaborated with vividly imaginative harmonic and textural features. Patrick measured up to the extraordinarily severe demands made on him by these challenging works, carried the audience with him, and was fittingly rewarded with a standing ovation when finally lifted his hands from the keyboard. He then treated us to an encore: a finely balanced account of Chopin’s Nocturne in F minor, which reminded us of how impressively Patrick had dealt with not only the liveliest and very loudest passages in his programme but also its quietest and most gentle moments.
CLARE HAMMOND forthcoming concert for Rochdale Music Society
The next recital in the Rochdale Music Society 2022 / 3 series will be given by pianist Clare Hammond on Saturday 13th May at 7.30 pm in Heywood Civic Centre.
Acclaimed as a “pianist of extraordinary gifts” (Gramophone) and “immense power” (The Times), Clare Hammond is recognised for the virtuosity and authority of her performances.
In 2016, she won the Royal Philharmonic Society’s ‘Young Artist Award’ in recognition of outstanding achievement. Recent highlights include Grieg Piano Concerto with the City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra, Moussa and Carwithen with the BBC Symphony Orchestra and BBC Concert Orchestra, Panufnik with the Warsaw Philharmonic Orchestra, and recitals at the Aldeburgh Festival, Palazzetto Bru Zane in Venice (broadcast on RAI 3), Husum Festival in Germany, and in Denmark and Norway with Henning Kraggerud.
This season she looks forward to performing Grace Williams’ Sinfonia Concertante with Jac van Steen and BBC National Orchestra of Wales, Rachmaninoff Paganini Variations with the BBC Symphony Orchestra and Lionel Bringuier, works by Piers Hellawell and Samy Moussa with the Ulster Orchestra and Jamie Phillips, and recitals at the Wigmore Hall, London’s National Gallery, Lammermuir Festival and Festival Baroque de Pontoise, among others. She brings Ghosts and Whispers, a performance piece for piano and film with composer John Woolrich and animators the Quay Brothers, to Fundación Juan March and to the Barbican, and continues her collaboration with actor and writer Tama Matheson.
Contemporary music is at the core of Clare’s work. She has given over 50 world premieres, including those of major works by Arlene Sierra, Robert Saxton and Michael Berkeley, and her discography includes world premiere recordings of over twenty works. In 2019, she gave the world premiere of Kenneth Hesketh’s Uncoiling the River with Martyn Brabbins and the BBC National Orchestra of Wales, and a further performance with the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic and Vasily Petrenko. In 2022, she premiered Graham Fitkin’s new piano quartet with Fitkin, Ruth Wall and Kathryn Stott at the Aldeburgh Festival, and opened the Southbank Centre’s 22/23 season at the Queen Elizabeth Hall with the work.
Clare has recorded six discs for BIS, most recently releasing an album of Etudes by visionary French composer Hélène de Montgeroult. A disc of 20th- and 21st-century variations was released in 2021, and received extensive critical approval for Clare’s “shimmering pianism and lightly-worn virtuosity” (BBC Music Magazine) and “artistry of the highest order” (Musical Opinion), while Crescendo (Belgium) hailed her as “one of the most exploratory pianistic personalities of our time”. She previously recorded a disc of Etudes by Unsuk Chin, Nicolai Kapustin, Sergei Lyapunov and Karol Szymanowski which won her an Opus d’Or from Opus HD Magazine and 5 diapasons from Diapason.
Community engagement forms an increasingly important part of Clare’s work. Since 2017, she has performed to over 11,600 schoolchildren in partnership with Gloucestershire Music and Wye Valley Music in Schools. She frequently gives children’s concerts and masterclasses at festivals in the UK and France, and runs an ongoing series of recitals at prisons.
Clare completed a BA at Cambridge University, where she obtained a double first in music, and undertook postgraduate study with Ronan O’Hora at the Guildhall School of Music & Drama and with Professor Rhian Samuel at City University London. She completed a doctorate on 20th-century left-hand piano concertos in 2012. In 2014 Clare was paired with French pianist Anne Queffélec on the Philip Langridge Mentoring Scheme run by the RPS.
Clare is grateful for the support of the RVW Trust, Hinrichsen Foundation, John S Cohen Foundation, Arts Council England, Scops Arts Trust, Golsoncott Foundation, Gemma Classical Music Trust, Fidelio Charitable Trust, Help Musicians UK, Stradivari Trust, Ambache Charitable Trust, British Korean Society, Chandos Memorial Trust, Vernon Ellis Foundation, Polish Cultural Institute, British Council, and the Britten-Pears Foundation.
MANCHESTER FOLK FESTIVAL 2023
Meanwhile, this year´s Manchester Folk Festival 2023 is rapidly taking shape in Salford´s neighbouring city. (see left)
Manchester Folk Festival is an urban multi-venue festival based in Manchester’s Northern Quarter. The festival brings together a diverse range of artists who represent the broad definition of contemporary folk music. Discover the best new and established folk and acoustic music across a variety of Manchester’s iconic music venues. From intimate spaces to festival stages, there’s something for everyone.
Plan and enjoy your own festival line-up with a festival wristband. Gain full access to every gig from Thursday to Saturday, including the late-night festival bar, workshops and sessions.
A limited number of Festival Wristbands are now on sale for £90 (+£7.20 booking fee).
Still residing as BBC Radio 2 Folk Singer of the Year, Ríoghnach Connolly’s taste for musical adventure is eclectic. Along with her companion players, Honeyfeet, they collectively drive a broad terrain of musical textures from esoteric protest songs to foot-tapping and floor-thumping dance rhythms.
Martin Carthy: A Special Evening of Song & Conversation with Jon Wilks is an extra-special chance to hear master craftsman Martin Carthy perform and reminisce on his illustrious career in folk song to date, with musical interludes and conversation with his talented friend, musician and journalist, Jon Wilks (Tradfolk).
As established solo artists, Bryony & Alice are no strangers to the folk scene. As a powerful new duo, they have taken the folk scene by storm. Their debut duo album, ‘A Year Too Late and a Month Too Soon’, released in 2022, features interpretations of treasured old songs and has garnered 5 star reviews, and live radio performances including Radio 4’s Woman’s Hour.
Sam Lee plays a unique role in the British music scene. He’s an acclaimed, award-winning inventive singer, a folk song collector, conservationist and promoter of live events as founder/director of The Nest Collective. He has won a BBC Radio 2 Folk Award for Best Traditional Track, and was short-listed for a Mercury Music Prize.
Americana Nominated Artist of The Year 2023 Lady Nade is continuing her rise as a multi-award winning eclectic Folk and Americana singer-songwriter. Her third album ‘Willing’ entered both the official Folk and Americana charts on its release. Her songs carry messages of love, loss, hope, relationships, friendships and the positive connection between music, well-being.
THE RIBBLE VALLEY JAZZ & BLUES FESTIVAL
|Ribble Valley Jazz And Blues Festivañ 2023 hosts a Saturday Night Party on 29th April (see right) Throughout the day from 10.30am there’s lots and lots of amazing music headlined by TC at The Grand. Don’t dare miss this! Bristol, London, Lancaster, York, Leeds, Newcastle. then Clitheroe!|
Then get an invite to the after-show party with Obeka at the Old School Rooms.
PIER 8, BAR AND RESTAURANT, LOWRY, SALFORD
Among those attending the launch of Pier Eight in Salford, the heartland of the late poet LD Lowry and the theatre thedy named aftr him, were BBC Breakfast’s Naga Muchetty and Charlie Stayt who soaked up the sunshine on the south facing terrace overlooking the Manchester Ship Canal.
The stylish décor of the restaurant extends out on to the Waterside Terrace, its south facing position making it the perfect place to soak up the sun. The new bar menu includes a variety of small plates, burgers, salad jars and bar snacks.
Pier Eight showcases the wonderful producers on its door step by including a variety of local suppliers across its menus. The launch was attended by Four Sis4ers distillery and Seven Brothers brewery who showcased their locally crafter beers and vast array of gin’s.
Mike Lee, Pier Eight’s manager said “We’re excited to be showcasing great local suppliers, it really is a celebration of the region’s best. I can’t wait to welcome residents and visitors of Salford Quays to our new terrace, summer is the perfect time to pop over for a G&T on our little sun trap.”
Guests at the launch where treated to a tour of Pier Eight’s secret roof garden where borage, nasturtium, mint, sage, fennel and cornflower are among some of the plants being grown in recycled pots.
Britain’s Got Talent Semi-Finalist, Rob King who works at The Lowry, serenaded guests with show tunes and power ballads, creating a chilled summer atmosphere and adding a little bit extra to the al-fresco dining experience.
Oliver Thomas, executive head chef, added, “The new menu really is perfect for a lunchtime treat or a business meeting. There’s something for everyone, from small plates perfect for sharing to burgers and summery salads for when you need something a little more substantial. And when eaten in the sun on our terrace overlooking the Manchester Ship Canal, well, I couldn’t think of a better combination.”
OutStageUs suggests Mike Lee, Manager, Lowry Pier 8.
Report by Norman Warwick
Mike Lee, Manager of The Bar And Restuarant Pier 8, beside The Lowry Theatre in Salford, (see top / cover photograph) recently generated an everyone-e mail that opened with following paragraph.
Hope you don’t mind me sending an everyone email about this. Some of you may be aware that I run a theatre company outside of my Lowry life, and each year we have an event called OutStageUs
Actually, for many of us, there is nothing more pleasing than when artists and art-lovers work together to deliver news that might galvanise others. So, imagine my delight when I received the attachment below on an e-mail from Eileen Earnshaw one of my absolute favourite poets. We used to work together in Rochdale on many occasions before I retired over here seven years ago.
I noticed the long string of cc recipients attached to Eileen´s correspondence revealed that she had done sterling work in forwarding Mike´s message to other mutual friends who she know would extend its journey. These names included other generators of it all, such as the excellent writer and ukelele player and chorister that is Maureen Wilson, as well as writer and facilitator Val Chapam. All three, Eileen, Maureen and Val, will have sent it out to a high number of their colleagues in various creative writing groups. Any writer at any level is always pleased to receive any kind of prompt to write on a particular subject and will often the challenge of writing on a prescribed topic.
OutStageUs is an LGBTQ+ new writing event, with an open submission process. If you fancy yourself as a budding writer, or are a writer and have an LGBTQ+ themed script, please do consider submitting your work. We’re in search of scripts that entertain our audiences and challenge their perspectives.
Feel free to submit scripts you’ve already been working on, or create something brand new for the event. We welcome monologues, duologues, short scenes, and spoken word pieces.
Up to 10 scripts will be chosen to go through a development process and be performed at The Lowry – the selected writers will be paid
The full details and terms and conditions are on our website here:SCRIPTS
Feel free to share with friends you think might be interested!
Mike Lee (he/him) Pier Eight Manager
The Lowry, Pier 8, Salford Quays, M50 3AZ
0161 876 2058 | Twitter @Pier_Eight | Email: email@example.com
The full details and terms and conditions are on our website here:SCRIPTS
Feel free to share with friends you think might be interested! Thanks
So, the word is being spread.
Let the work begin.
26 – 28 May 2023
Deansgate Mews Festival, Manchester
Three days of music, food and drink
Great Northern Warehouse
The Deansgate Mews Festival makes a welcome return with 3 days of live music, food, drink and stalls – and free entry!
More dates here
Guests will enjoy live entertainment across the three-day festival, from over 40 different artists and bands at Lion’s Den , at Low Four, and in new space Manchester One Media. In addition there will be delicious food and drink options from five unique restaurants and bars spread across an impressive outdoor seating area.
Alongside this, there will a pop-up Gift Emporium with local Manchester brands. The stalls will be offering a range of unique and quirky gifts. In the Village Hall will be a vinyl sale.
Festival organisers are actively inviting a range of local independent businesses to showcase their products via a market stall and meet new customers face to face at this year’s festival. There is also an opportunity for those wanting to sell vinyl in the Village Hall space on The Mews.
Businesses who wish to get involved, will be charged £15 per day to host a market stall, with all fees being donated to local community charity, Forever Manchester – the only charity that raises money to fund and support community activity across Greater Manchester.
Anyone interested in taking a stall should email firstname.lastname@example.org
CLASSICAL MUSIC FROM MANCHESTER IN JUNE
The following month, Music will burst from The Bridgewater Hall from early till late for 48 fantastic hours on 24 and 25 June. The orchestras and ensembles of Manchester and The Bridgewater Hall are thrilled to announce the launch of a unique collaboration. Manchester Classical will see the Hallé, BBC Philharmonic, Manchester Camerata, Manchester Collective and a host of stellar artists come together for a breath-taking weekend of music, film, food, crafts and free foyer entertainment, all in and around The Bridgewater Hall.
There will be hour long concerts throughout the weekend on the main stage featuring dazzling orchestral music from iconic symphonic works to hypnotic minimalist masterpieces. Manchester’s world-beating music ensembles will host world-class artists for whom the boundaries between classical and contemporary, experimental and jazz are blurred.
Free performances will take place in the Barbirolli Room from groups including Psappha and Hallé choirs. Students from the RNCM will provide entertainment in the foyer of The Bridgewater Hall throughout the weekend. More details coming soon…
This will be the perfect opportunity for anyone who has never experienced the power of orchestral music, or visited The Bridgewater Hall before to experience something new and exciting. We look forward to seeing you there.
COMING SOON TO LANZAROTE
by Norman Warwick
Poems In A Time Of Change
Anto Kerins, and his wife Margaret, arrived in Lanzarote recently for their first visit to the island and have fallen in love with the place.
Anto is exhibiting a poster triptych of his poetry at the Metamorphism 2023 festival on the island in July coming titled Spring – War – Summer.
The three A2 poster panels read from left to right as follows:
- Poems for Spring
- Poems in a Time of War
- Poems for Summer
The opening poem in first panel is Time. This poem begins with the line ´Time starts now…´ lending an immediacy and urgency to the triptych. Three short verses later the poem concludes with, ´… let us begin´.
I loved the second poem, Bend the Light, partly because the light on Lanzarote is beautiful and does indeed seem to bend. The shadows and sand slipping across Timanfaya, the volcano lands, the seascapes, sunrises and sunsets all seem to mould the light.
Other poems on this panel include The First of March, and The Dunnock Sings which carries echoes of Sebastian Faulks Bird Song, or lacking thereof.
The next poem on this panel is Waterfall which seems to gurgle and tumble its way down the page. The final poem on this panel is Tick Tock, Tick Tock, which seems to return us to that opening line of the first poem.
The central panel in the triptych is Poems in a Time of War which starts with Peace Tree. This is then followed with the heart-tugging Baby Artem, which in turn is followed by Russian 1983 and The Past. These four short poems open our minds to what has been going on throughout the lifetime of my generation and which has also been unfolding before us over the past year or so in Ukraine.
Poems for Summer, the final panel opens with The Woods which, despite being set in summer and being descriptive of that season, feels to me to be strangely similar to Robert Frost´s Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening. Frost, my favourite American poet, seemed to set his eye on something disturbing on what was an otherwise idyllic evening.
The Trees Breathe and the good morning of the Dawn Chorus of birdsong tell in some ways of just one day in his final poem Endless Summer.
Given that the tryptich has been prepared during the Russian onslaught on Ukraine it is perhaps not surprising that beautiful though these works are in many ways, there are still sibilant whispers in them that something wicked this way comes.
I met Anto and Margaret on Friday 21st April past and we had a very pleasant chat in the lounge area of the Vik San Anonio Hotel in Puerta Del Carmen where they are staying for a two-week holiday.
Later that day Anto met the organisers of the Metamorphism 2023 festival, Sarah-Jane Mason and Simon Turner, to hand over the triptych. Sarah-Jane (right, a mixed media artist, creative facilitator and educator) and Simon (a landscape artist and photographer) together run the Lacuna Studios on the island. Metamorphism 2023 is the fifth annual festival they have organised under their Lacuna Festivals activities. The festivals have taken place during the month of July each year since 2019 and have included: seminars, artist’s talks, round table discussions, artist-led workshops, gallery exhibitions, online exhibitions, virtual worlds, collaboration projects, participation projects and more.
Through their artistic, educational and festival work, Sarah-Jane and Simon make a significant contribution to the world of art.
Anto Kerins is a conservationist, writer and educator. His latest book on learning is with Routledge. He has been writing poetry for a number of years. His most recent public reading was at Culture Night, Ireland 2020 with Poems for the Journey through Pandemic.
Sidetracks and Detours will update you on the Metamorphism Festival in Lanzarote as we approach the festival time of July.
MANRIQUE: THE MUSICAL
made in The Canary Islands
previewed by Norman Warwick
Don’t miss CÉSAR MANRIQUE, the musical. Discover the life and work of the legendary plastic artist and committed ecologist César Manrique (Lanzarote, 1919-1992). With a captivating theatrical script and catchy songs, this show pays tribute to Manrique’s legacy on the centenary of his birth. It also highlights his importance in contemporary Canary culture and his pioneering vision in social and environmental planning, turning his native island into an example to follow worldwide. Featuring 40 artists, this large-format musical takes the audience on a journey through the different scenarios in which Manrique developed his work, from his native island of Lanzarote to Madrid and New York.
CÉSAR MANRIQUE, the musical, is a production made in the Canary Islands that will leave an indelible mark on your heart.
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