Tamesis Issue 189 February 2007


Iím looking forward to seeing lots of you (more than sixty Iím told) at the Dutch church next weekend for the Andrew Carwood workshop. Unfort unately Michael Reynor has had to ask me to let you know that the District Line between Earls Court and Whitechapel and also the whole of the Circle Line will be closed on Saturday 3rd March, so there will be no access to Mansion House station. The Northern Line through Charing Cross will also be closed but according to Transport for London the Central and Metropolitan lines are still running.

Donít forget to let the Michael know if you canít get to the workshop, which is now full. There was a waiting list for the Peter Syrus day at Ickenham, but two people simply failed to turn up so it wasnít possible to give their places to anyone else.

Iím sorry Tamesis is so late this month. I didnít realise in time that the copy date last week was during half term, when I planned to be away. Iíve decided to postpone next monthís copy date to the third Monday (19th March) to leave a reasonable gap between issues, and I donít intend to produce Tamesis in April at all because it would be due out during Easter. The copy date for May will be Monday 7th (the bank holiday) so that I can get Tamesis out as early as possible.

You will see from the front cover that we have arranged some more events. We are hosting the National Early Music Association day this year, which usually includes a workshop, a lecture and a concert. Simon Hill is organising a baroque orchestra day in the autumn or early next year, and there may also be a workshop for voices and instruments on 7th October in conjunction with the Wooburn festival. I hope to be able to give you more information about all these next month.

Victoria Helby

Chairmanís Chat

I find that I have signed up for Forum workshops on three successive Saturdays: following TVEMF's workshop of music by Cipriano de Rore and Andrea Gabrieli I am going to SWEMF's "Ad fugam" in Challock, and finally there is the music of Hieronymus Praetorius at the Dutch Church. If the others are as good as the day with Peter Syrus (and with tutors David Allinson and Andrew Carwood this could well be the case), then I shall be delighted. His organisation of the music was exemplary - we even had our names written against our line on our scores or parts, and were presented with a summary of the composers' lives for reference. The music was largely unfamiliar, though our Secretary pointed out to me that I must have previously taken part in Quem vidistis, pastores by Andrea Gabrieli, but playing the top line on cornett is a different experience from singing a slow-moving inner part as I did this time. I found the Maria stabat particularly moving and Peter's favourite, Ave regina caelorum by Rore, was stunning. Peter joked that anyone who found they had one of the long-note cantus-firmus-like parts in the three pieces which featured them should apply for their money back. Well as it happens I found myself in that situation but enjoyed the experience very much, so TVEMF's funds will not suffer on that account. Incidentally I gather that The Andrew Carwood workshop is fully booked unless you are a tenor!

Hugh Rosenbaum has instigated what he hopes will be an ongoing custom of circulating CDs of early music which, whilst perhaps not worth a place in ones permanent collection, might be of interest to others. I am minded to try to organise a circle of people who pass CDs around, say once a month, so if you are interested please get in touch with me, by email or other means.

David Fletcher

Penny Vinson also wrote to express her appreciation of the Ickenham day with Peter Syrus: This was a very well organised day, despite the need for re-arrangements of forces between many of the pieces tackled. Very enjoyable, with excellent opportunities to sing a wide variety of lines in the various choirs demanded by the music. I was very impressed too. Although due to lack of voice on the day I had to play the recorder rather than sing as Peter had arranged for me, it never took him more than about half a minute to find something suitable for me to play. Victoria

Opportunities to make music

Calling all viol players Do you fancy a week of music making in the Lake District 21-27 July? The NWEMF summer school of renaissance music takes place each year in St Martinís College (formerly the Charlotte Mason College) in Ambleside. This will be its 26th year. The summer school has become very popular and has had a waiting list for the last couple of years. However, numbers have become a bit unbalanced. We would really like a few more viol players - hence this notice. The summer school offers a wonderful friendly week of renaissance music making with well-informed, enthusiastic tutors. The flexibility of the afternoon sessions means that you can tailor the week to your own preferences. The more viol players there are, the greater the flexibility. Why not give it a try?

Viol consort coaching is under the direction of Elizabeth Dodd with input from Peter Syrus, Clive Walkley, Margaret Westlake and the lutenist Hugh Cherry. The summer school is open to voices, viols and wind instruments, and there is the opportunity to do more than one of these at different times of the day. The timetable is: viol consorts (or choir or wind band) in the first morning session and then, after coffee, a mixed consort with a different tutor each day working on their particular specialist repertoire. Afternoon activities are entirely optional and include: try-a-lute, try-a-viol, one-to-a- part singing, self-organised playing, lectures, workshops, or walks in the surrounding Lake District. The evenings are mostly spent on a large multi-choir renaissance piece, followed by trips to the pub and informal late-night playing and singing. See accounts and photos of previous years and information and booking forms for the 2007 course on the NWEMF website http://www.nwemf.org.uk/Summer%20School.htm

Food is good and there are many options for accommodation (eg full-board; half- board; non-resident; en suite or not). Indicative cost: last year the course fee plus half board en suite accommodation in a single room worked out at £440 for the week. Student bursaries are available. Some people prefer to book non-College accommodation, which can work out cheaper, but is likely to mean a bit more walking up and down hills, a certain amount of which is necessary anyway. Hope to see you there. (A consumerís opinion is available if required from Ruth Harris)

March at the Handel House Museum

Harpsichord Delights Thursday 1 March, 6.30 to 7.30pm Mercedes Romero performs a selection of keyboard works by Bull, Frescobaldi, Sweelinck, J.S Bach, C.P.E. Bach, Buxtehude and Scarlatti. Tickets: £9.00, £7.50 concessions

Nuns and Courtesans (SOLD OUT) Thursday 8 March, 6.30 to 7.30pm

Les Clavecinistes Tuesday 13th March, 6.30 to 7.30pm Ludmilla Tschakalova, renowned Belgian harpsichordist returns to the Handel House to perform a cross- section of French harpsichord repertoire, to include Louis Couperin, J-H d'Anglebert, FranÁois Couperin and others. £7

Ireland's Enchantment (SOLD OUT) Thursday 15 March, 6.30 to 7.30pm

Clockwise Baroque (SOLD OUT) Thursday 22 March, 6.30 to 7.30pm

Handelís Watering-can Music Sunday 25 March 2pm-3pm and repeated 3.15pm-4.15pm Handelís Water Music performed as youíve never heard it before! In this event participants will learn how to play the rarest of baroque instruments, the watering- can, under the expert tuition of renowned natural trumpeter Ruth Ross. The workshop will end in an informal performance of Handelís Water Music specially arranged by Handel House Composer-in-Residence Mark Bowden. No previous experience of playing the watering-can necessary! Suitable for children aged 5 plus. Free for 16 years and under/ free with adult admission (£5)

Hardly Handel: RCM Junior Department Composersí Concert Thursday 29th March, 6.30 to 7.30pm Bridget Cunningham (harpsichord) and students from the Royal College of Music Junior Department perform new works inspired by the sounds of the magnificent Handel House harpsichord. Tickets: £9.00, £7.50 concessions

Useful Information: 1. Handel House booking line: 020 7399 1953. 2. Handel House is open Tues-Sat 10am-6pm (with late night Thursday until 8pm); Sun 12pm-6pm. Closed on Mondays (including Bank Holidays). General admission £5.00 / £4.50 concessions / £2 for young visitors (ages 16 and under). 3. Handel House is located at 25 Brook Street, Mayfair, London, W1K 4HB. Entrance in Lancashire Court. (Nearest tube: Bond Street / Oxford Circus). Tel: 020 7495 1685. www.handelhouse.org