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Michael White’s music news: Haydn at St Dominic’s; Sir James MacMillan; Crouch End Festival Chorus

28 March, 2019 — By Michael White

Sir James MacMillan – Kings Place, April 3

HAYDN’s Seven Last Words from the Cross sounds like a choral piece but is actually an extended string quartet, with each movement an instrumental reflection on one of the statements attributed by the church to the dying Christ as he was crucified.  It’s music that comes into its own as Easter approaches. And this weekend it gets a performance in the grand space of St Dominic’s Priory, Belsize Park, given by the Bach Players. 7.30pm, Saturday March 30, St Dominic’s, Southampton Road, NW5. £12.50, under-18s free; students £5, 07814 368045, thebachplayers.org.uk/diary

WHEN it comes to elite professional chamber-choirs, nothing beats The Sixteen who have been going for an astonishing 40 years and still sound immaculate – as they will next week when their annual Choral Pilgrimage tour hits Kings Place with music old and new, including a brand new piece by Sir James MacMillan, commissioned to mark his 60th birthday. 7.30pm, Wednesday March 3, Kings Place, York Way. From £29.50, 020 7520 1490, www.kingsplace.co.uk

AND in a week heavy with choral singing, you might want to catch the Crouch End Festival Chorus give the first performance since the 19th century of Hubert Parry’s oratorio Judith: a piece totally forgotten except for a single tune that church congregations know as “Dear Lord and Father of Mankind”, although in Parry’s original setting it has inter­est­ingly different words. 7.30pm, Wednesday April 3, Festival Hall, Southbank Centre, SE1 8XX. From £15, 020 3879 9555, www.southbankcentre.co.uk

 

FRIDAY MARCH 29

• Danilo Mascetti – young Italian pianist from the Royal College of Music, playing some of Liszt’s brilliant if over-the-top transcriptions of Schubert songs. Plus Ravel’s magical Miroirs. 1pm, free, Regent Hall, Oxford Street, W1C 2DJ.

• Tchaikovsky features in a Keats Library fund­raiser, with his music played by the Sumatra Quartet and his letters read by actor Lee Montague. 7.30pm, £10. Keats Library, 10 Keats Grove, Hampstead, NW3 2RR, 020 7431 1266, www.wegottickets.com

• Beethoven’s 9th Symphony, complete with Ode to Joy – played by a specially assembled orchestra and chorus of European musicians on what they was going to be the UK’s leaving day. Except it isn’t. 7.30pm, £5-£40, St John’s Smith Square, SW1P 3HA, 020 7222 1061, www.sjss.org.uk.

 

SATURDAY MARCH 30

• Royal Free Music Society Choir & Hampstead Sinfonietta with Bach cantatas alongside works by Vivaldi and Boyce. 7.30pm, £12, £6 unwaged/full-time students, under-16s free, on door or Ticketsource.co.uk/rfms, St Mark’s, Primrose Hill, NW1 7TN.

• Veteran Argentine pianist Alberto Portugheis and younger colleague Bobby Chen play music for two keyboards by Debussy, Brahms and (unusually) Walton. 7pm, £17 waged, £12 part-waged, £7 unwaged (limited number), West London Buddhist Centre, 45a Porchester Road, W2 5DP, 020 7727 9382, http://westlondonbuddhistcentre.com/calendar

• Brent Symphony Orchestra play Elgar’s Cello Concerto. 7.30pm, tickets on door £10, cons £8, under-18s £5, St Martin’s, Mortimer Road, Kensal Rise, NW10 5SN, 07530 904584, www.brentso.org.uk

• Concerto for Comedian and Orchestra: intriguing piece composed by stand-up Vikki Stone for herself and the London Musical Theatre Orchestra. 7.30pm, from £9.50, Kings Place, York Way, N1 9AG. 020 7520 1490, www.kingsplace.co.uk

 

SUNDAY MARCH 31

• String trios by Schubert, Beethoven and the late Stephen Dodgson, played by Karolos Ensemble. 6.30pm, £12, 8 to 25-year-olds free, courtesy of Cavatina Music Trust, Conway Hall, Red Lion Square, Holborn, WC1R 4RL, 020 7405 1818, conwayhall.org.uk/

 

TUESDAY APRIL 2

• Britten Sinfonia in music by one-time Hampstead and St Johns Wood resident Arthur Bliss. 6.30pm, £16, students £5, Royal Overseas League, Park Place, St James’s, SW1A 1LR, 020 7408 0214, www.rosl.org.uk/events

 

WEDNESDAY APRIL 3

• Andy Dickens Quintet deliver lunchtime jazz, 020 7437 7013/020 8647 2114. 12.30pm, £8, Spice of Life, 6 Moor St, W1D 5NA, 020 7437 7013, www.spiceoflifesoho.com

• Vando Jam – jazz night hosted by saxophonist Rachel Cohen and her Quartet, with jam session for invited instrumentalists and singers. 8pm, £8/£5, Spice of Life, 6 Moor St, W1D 5NA, 020 7437 7013, www.spiceoflifesoho.com

 

THURSDAY APRIL 4

• Shostakovich’s Leningrad Symphony – so-called because it was written and performed when that city was under siege in the Second World War. Played here in more peaceable circumstances by the Philharmonia Orchestra. 7.30pm, Royal Festival Hall, Southbank Centre, Belvedere Road, SE1 8XX, 020 3879 9555, www.southbankcentre.co.uk

• Eric Lu, the young Chinese-American pianist who won last year’s Leeds Competition, makes his must-hear London recital debut. Bach, Chopin, Handel. 7.30pm, £20, students £5. LSO St Luke’s, 161 Old Street, EC1V 9NG, https://lso.co.uk/

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