Twelfth Night Concert: Friday 6 January 2017
The regular Twelfth Night Concert took place in the lovely Victorian setting of the Normansfield Theatre in Teddington. The evening was a charity event and raised around £1600 for local charities.
During the evening CBR's grandson Dan Rootham sang the rarely-heard op 19 "The Ballad of Kingslea Mere" (1905), accompanied by Pam Kent.
Normansfield Theatre, Teddington
Afternoon concert: Sunday 19 March 2017
The London Military Band conducted by Alan Shellard performed a wide range of works by traditional masters such as Elgar, Sousa, Lehar and Grainger. Guest vocalist Emily Dankworth sang "Fragile" (Sting) and "Can't help lovin' dat man" (from "Showboat" by Jerome Kern, arr. Alec Dankworth).
The concert took place in the Wilde Theatre at South Hill Park Arts Centre, Bracknell.
And the connection with Cyril Rootham? Conductor and composer Alistair Jones recently typeset CBR's "March for Military Band" (1933). Alan Shellard then made a special arrangement to match the instrumentation of the London Military Band, and for this piece only Alistair took over the baton from Alan Shellard to conduct CBR's March: probably its first outing for about eighty years!
Our playlist now includes this first recording of CBR's Op.89 "March for Military Band".
South Hill Park, Bracknell RG12 7PA
Lunchtime choral concert: Friday 18 November 2016
The Treasury Singers performed in the beautiful setting of St Margaret's Church, Westminster (beside Westminster Abbey). Their programme included Cyril Rootham's two opus 5 songs (1898):
You can download the full concert programme, with helpful notes by their conductor William Ormerod.
And you can also hear a recording of these two performances on our Listen page:
St Margaret's Church, Westminster
Chamber concert: Monday 20 June 2016
As part of the Festival of Chichester, the Anemos Wind Quintet was joined by Ruth McGibben (viola) and Kate Ham (harp) for a recital on 20 June 2016 in St John's Chapel, Chichester. Their programme included:
- Cyril Rootham "Septet for Viola, Flute, Oboe, Clarinet, Bassoon, Horn and Harp" opus 83
- Mikhail Ivanov-Ippolitov "An Evening in Georgia" opus 71
Composed in 1930, Cyril Rootham's op 83 "Septet" was dedicated to the American patron of the arts Elizabeth Sprague Coolidge (1864-1953). The Septet was last performed in the Master's Lodge at St John's College Cambridge in 2012, so this was a rare oppotunity to hear it live.
Anemos Wind Quintet with Viola and Harp - left to right:
Ruth McGibben (viola), Helen Walton (flute), Lucinda Willets (oboe), Richard Moore (bassoon),
Bridget Batholomew (horn), Robert Blanken (clarinet) and Kate Ham (harp)
Organ recital: Saturday 3 May 2014
Organist Marilyn Harper gave a recital on Saturday 3 May at St George's Cathedral, Southwark. Her programme included:
- Johann Sebastian Bach: Fantasia & Fugue in G minor BWV 542
- Cyril Rootham "Epinikion" (Song of Victory) opus 28
- Denis Bédard: Suite pour Orgue
Composed in 1906, "Epinikion" was very popular during Rootham's lifetime, so this was a great chance to hear it live.
The Cathedral occupies an historic site close to the Imperial War Museum, a few minutes walk from London's South Bank and the Thames, Westminster Bridge, the London Eye, and landmarks such as St Thomas' Hospital and Waterloo Station. Largely destroyed during the Second World War, it was painstakingly restored and was eventually reopened in 1958 in a ceremony by Bishop Cowderoy.
Easter 2011 saw the partial restoration of the 1958 John Compton organ which featured in this recital.
St George's RC Cathedral,
Westminster Bridge Road, Southwark,
London SE1 7HY (map
Interior of St George's RC Cathedral
Choral concert: Saturday 17 May 2014
At St Nicolas Church Cranleigh on Saturday 17 May, Cantilena (conductor Jenny Hansell) presented a concert of music with a floral theme celebrating Cranleigh in Bloom.
And their concert also included this charming song for soprano and alto voices by Cyril Rootham:
- Opus 92: "Guy's Cliffe at Night" (1935)
More details? You can hear a rehearsal recording of Cantilena performing "Guy's Cliffe at Night", on the Listen page.
St Nicholas, Cranleigh
Photo © Stephen Halloran
chamber choir for female voices
Choral concert: Saturday 7 June 2014
On Saturday 7 June in the Chapel of St Mary's University College, Strawberry Hill, Ember Choral Society and Hampton Choral Society presented their summer concert:
- Rootham "For the Fallen"
- Vaughan Williams "A Sea Symphony"
On the sombre anniversary of the start of the First World War, this concert was the first chance to hear Rootham's setting of Binyon's 1914 poem "For the Fallen" since the Chiswick Choir gave a performance in 2011.
And what better work to accompany it than Vaughan Williams' uplifting setting of Walt Whitman's beautiful poetry? In a way this concert was a historic reunion for the two composers: Rootham conducted the very first performance of Vaughan Williams' opera "The Poisoned Kiss" in 1936.
The concert played to a packed venue: the lovely chapel at St Mary's College. Conductor John Sutton led Ember Choral Society, Hampton Choral Society, the VfH Sinfonia and soloists Helen Bailey (soprano) and Andrew de Silva (bass) in a memorable concert of great English choral music.
St Mary's University College,
Waldegrave Road, Strawberry Hill,
Twickenham TW1 4SX
Chapel of St Mary's University College
"Evensong: English Cathedral Organists In Song" at the Wigmore Hall: Sunday 15 June 2014
Countertenor Iestyn Davies, praised by the Independent as "Ferrier's nearest contemporary male equivalent", gave a recital at the Wigmore Hall with Malcolm Martineau (piano).
The concert spanned works from the Restoration Chapel Royal to songs by Herbert Howells and his close friend Ivor Gurney, who met during their youth at Gloucester Cathedral. Songs The concert also included two of Cyril Rootham's Siegfried Sassoon songs (op 58), and the poignant "A Supplication" (op 30) which is dedicated to CBR's wife-to-be Rosamond Margaret Lucas.
- Opus 30: "A Supplication" (1909)
- Opus 58: "Idyll" (1919-20)
- Opus 58: "Everyone Sang" (1919-20)
The Wigmore Hall
36 Wigmore Street
London W1U 2BP
Photo: Marco Borggreve
Ripieno Choir "The Flight of Song": Saturday 21 June 2014
The Ripieno Choir's mixed Supper Party programme featured music by Howard Skempton, one of today's leading composers of choral music. His unusual setting of words by Longfellow - partly spoken - gives the concert its title.
And happily for us, the Ripieno Choir also included in their concert at the Menuhin Hall three part-songs by Cyril Rootham. The concert was recorded, and you can now hear these songs on our Listen page:
- Opus 16: "A Shepherd in a Glade" (1904)
- Opus 87: "Daybreak at Sea" (1933)
- Opus 94: "Hark, where Poseidon's White Racing Horses" (1936)
The Menuhin Hall,
The Yehudi Menuhin School,
Stoke d'Abernon, Surrey KT11 3QQ
The Mezin Piano Trio: Tuesday 4 November 2014
As part of the ever-popular Lunchtime Concerts at Chichester Cathedral, the Mezin Piano Trio gave a concert in Chichester Cathedral on 4 November.
Their concert included Cyril Rootham's opus 85 "Trio for Violin, Violoncello and Pianoforte". This work dates from 1935, and the concert was a very welcome opportunity to hear this rarely-heard piece. The composer's grandson Dan Rootham was there, to hear the work for the first time.
Before a near-capacity audience of around 500, Mezin Piano Trio members Anthony McCarthy (piano), Richard Smith (violin) and Yvonne-Marie Parsons (cello) concluded their concert with an early Beethoven work: his Piano Trio in G (opus 1 no 2).