Soloists of The 12 Ensemble

Friday July 7th 2017 at 7.30pm
St Peter's Church

String Quintet in G minor, K. 516 - Mozart
Sextet from Capriccio - Strauss
Two Pieces for String Octet, Op.11 - Shostakovich
Octet, Op.20 - Mendelssohn

The 12 Ensemble is rapidly developing a reputation as London’s foremost un-conducted string orchestra. A bold, versatile and virtuosic ensemble, the group is built around a core of London’s finest and most exciting chamber musicians. Founded in 2012 the group’s youthful energy and passion for chamber music is at the heart of their music-making.
‘The performance was mesmerising… we couldn’t not listen. This was perhaps one of the most gripping performances of the Britten that I have ever heard.’ (Robert Hugill)



Exeter Cathedral Choir

Saturday July 8th 2017 at 7.30pm
St. Peter’s Church
Director - Timothy Noon.
(Organist and other soloists to be announced)

This evening contains two significant ‘firsts’. The Festival is delighted to welcome the Exeter Cathedral Choir for the first time. The choir will be made up of all the elements available to Director Timothy Noon, with the thirty-six boy and girl choristers, plus the adult lay vicars and choral scholars, coming together to create a substantial choral sound. Add to this a top harpist, percussionist and organist for the Bernstein and we have a pool of excellent local professional musicians.

Leonard Bernstein was an eclectic composer, famous for many pieces, most notable being West Side Story, Candide and On The Town. However he wrote in many forms – including three symphonies, and mass, and a ballet - with music fusing elements of jazz, Jewish music, and theatre music, with either strong social or religious themes.

The Chichester Psalms was written in 1965, commissioned by Walter Hussey for the Cathedral whose name it bears. It consists of five extracts from psalms 108, 100, 23, 131 and 133 and is sung in Hebrew; it is affirmative, energetic and rousing, yet also moving and at times serene. It is widely regarded as one of the 20th Century’s great choral pieces.

The programme will also include favourite pieces for choir and organ from five centuries of choral music, including, Parry’s Hear my words, Fauré’s Cantique de Jean Racine, and many more.



Alexandra Dariescu - Piano Recital

Monday July 10th 2017 at 7.30pm
Temple Methodist Church

Klaviersonate Nr. 6 F-Dur op. 10/2 - Ludwig van Beethoven
9 Préludes op. 103 - Gabriel Fauré
8 Préludes für Klavier (1928/29), 1. La colombe, 7. Plainte calme - Olivier Messiaen
The Nutcracker Suite (Arr. arr. Pletnev, Sutherland, Essipoff and Grainger) - Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky

Recently named as one of 30 pianists under 30 destined for a spectacular career (International Piano Magazine), Alexandra Dariescu dazzles audiences worldwide with her effortless musicality and captivating stage presence.



The Festival Orchestra

Tuesday July 11th 2017 at 7.30pm
St Peter’s Church

Festival Orchestra conducted by Nicholas Marshall
Leader Paul Mathews
Violin Giovanni Guzzo

Prometheus Overture - Beethoven
Violin Concerto, Op.64 - Mendelssohn
Rumanian Folk Dances - Bartók
Symphony in C, K.338 - Mozart
Five Country Dances - Nicholas Marshall

The Festival Orchestra has been a regular part of the Festival since its formation in 2006 by Nicholas Marshall, our Artistic Director, drawing on professional players from around the South West region.

Giovanni Guzzo has established himself as one of the most versatile and charismatic performers of his generation. At the age of 12 he became the youngest violinist to win first prize at the National Violin Competition Juan Bautista Plaza in Venezuela. He studied at the Royal Academy of Music and made his debut as soloist with the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra. A keen recitalist and chamber musician he has worked closely with some of today’s leading musicians, including Martha Argerich, Joshua Bell, Stephen Hough and Maxim Vengerov, and appears at well-known venues around the world.

‘…taking the intense difficulties [of the Sibelius Violin Concerto] with an ease which was breathtaking.’



The Marlborough Piano Quartet

Wednesday July 12th 2017 at 7.30pm
Temple Methodist Church

Anna Tilbrook - Piano
Guy Johnston - Cello
Giovanni Guzzo - Violin
Philip Dukes - Viola

Phantasy Piano Quartet - Frank Bridge
Piano Quartet in Eb, Op.47 - Schumann
Piano Quartet No.2 in G minor - Fauré

Formed as recently as 2015 the Marlborough Piano Quartet is a group of internationally renowned musicians, all of whom are accomplished soloists and ensemble players in their own right.

Pianist Anna Tilbrook and cellist Guy Johnston make a welcome return to the Festival, joined by violinist Giovanni Guzzo and violist Philip Dukes. Their repertoire is both diverse and flexible (sometimes including additional guest artists) and they are rapidly gaining a wide reputation, having already given many successful concerts in this country.



Schubert Schwanengesang, D.597

Thursday July 13th 2017 at 7.30pm
Temple Methodist Church

Roderick Williams, Baritone with Susie Allan, piano, Narrator, Jenny Agutter

The renowned baritone Roderick Williams, making a welcome return to the festival, is an exceptionally versatile artist whose intelligent musicality is admired in works from Monteverdi to Maxwell Davies. He has become a familiar presence on the operatic stage and has made something of a speciality of opera in concert. His burnished and flexible baritone is equally in demand for recitals and oratorio. He is also a successful composer.

Susie Allan studied music at Worcester College, Oxford, and piano accompaniment at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama where she won numerous awards. Other prizes include Accompanist of the Year (1993) and the Gerald Moore Award (1994).

Jenny Agutter OBE has been at the forefront of film, theatre and TV since the age of 11 years. At present she is filming for the next BBC series of Call the Midwife.



Sacconi String Quartet with Huw Watkins (piano)

Friday July 14th 2017 at 7.30pm
Temple Methodist Church

String Quartet in G, K.387 - Mozart
String Quartet - Huw Watkins
Piano Quintet No.2 op.81 - Dvořák

Formed in 2001 the four founder members of the Sacconi Quartet continue to demonstrate a shared passion for the string quartet repertoire, infectiously reaching out to audiences with their energy and enthusiasm. The quartet has enjoyed a highly successful international career, performing throughout Europe, at London’s major venues, in recordings, and in radio broadcasts.

Huw Watkins is one of Britain’s foremost composers and pianists, whose music has been widely performed throughout Europe and North America. As a pianist he is in great demand, both as a soloist and chamber player, performing regularly with his brother, the cellist Paul Watkins.

‘An exceptional ensemble…a unanimous sense of musical breath and a meticulous attention to detail.’ (Musical Opinion)

This concert is sponsored by the Exeter and District Classical Musical Trust.



Devon Opera

Saturday July 15th 2017 at 7.30pm
St. Peter’s Church

Devon Opera presents ‘Conquests of Love’ – a tale of love, passion and jealousy entwined in gems from operas to include:

Rossini's Barber of Seville,
Mozart's Cosi Fan Tutte,
Bizet's Carmen,
Puccini's La Bohème,
Donizetti's Anna Bolena,
Gounod's Faust,
Dvořák's Rusalka and Verdi's Rigoletto.

The story portrays the emotional journey of two young couples who become trapped in the confusion of a masked ball. The men have received an invitation from an old friend to an extravagant high-society gathering and desperately want to attend. However they have already promised a romantic getaway with their girlfriends! Mixing comedy and melodrama, this will be a highly entertaining evening with an element of semi-staged production.

Devon Opera is the area’s only professional opera company, bringing to you some of the country’s finest young singers and instrumentalists. They believe opera is for everybody - both opera enthusiasts, and "first timers" - to experience the pleasure of fine singing and beautiful operatic music.