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Ensemble 360, more precisely, Matthew Hunt: clarinet and Tim Horton: piano, play a transcription of Mozart’s Violin Sonata K380 and John Ireland’s Fantasy-Sonata in the same key, E flat, punctuating them with Gerald Barry’s Low, the composer’s programme note for the work, “It is sometimes high and sometimes low” taking the prize for the shortest programme note of all time. In reality, it would appear to be a spectacular piece. Music in the Round, at Upper Chapel, Norfolk Street, Thursday (October 23), 12.45pm – £11, £7.50 disabled, unemployed, £5 students, under 18s.
Inja Davidovic, excellent Croatian pianist with something of an obscurity, as it is advertised – ‘J. Donaldson: Sonata for the Piano Forte (Sheffield premiere)’. An educated guess would be that it is an older, rather than new-ish piece; for ‘the’ piano forte suggests fortepianos were still around and Inja does play that instrument. Chopin: Nocturne Op 27 No 2 and Scherzo No 2 are elsewhere at the Sheffield University Lunchtime Concert, Firth Hall, Western Bank, Thursday (October 23), 1.10pm – free, donations welcome.
Joshua Stephens, organ and a young musician who has been and continues to be the recipient of numerous awards and prizes, one of the most recent graduating from the RNCM with First Class degree with honours, as principal study organist. It all started as treble soloist in Sheffield Cathedral Choir under the direction of Neil Taylor who later became his first organ tutor and he returns to his former stomping ground to perform Bach – Toccata in F BWV540 and Schmücke dich, o liebe Seele BWV654; and Duruflé – Suite Op 5, at the Cathedral Lunchtime Recital, Thursday (October 23), 1.15pm – free, donations welcome.
Albion Underground, the highly accomplished voices of the pocket chamber choir start singing in the usual performance area of Peak Cavern (The Devil’s Arse) then sink to subterranean depths as they sing their way (giving Jerusalem’s dark satanic mills a new slant along the way!), via Lumbago Walk, the Great Cave, Roger Rain House and Pluto’s Dining Room to the Devil’s Staircase where God Be in my Head is sung by of exorcism. It is also as far as the public is allowed to go and Irene Healy who has the cavern history, fact and fiction, at her fingertips joins the trip to add further drama to it. Peak Cavern, Castleton, Friday, 7.30pm and 9pm – £15, numbers restricted to 40 per performance. Online only: peakcavern.co.uk
The Hallé, almost a South Yorkshire take-over of the celebrated Manchester-based orchestra with Sheffield-born composer, conductor and pianist of repute Ryan Wigglesworth, whose first experience of hearing live music was listening to the Hallé in the City Hall, returns as the orchestra’s principal guest conductor-elect from next September to direct them in Sibelius’s ‘Symphony of Independence’, the Symphony No 2, and Schumann’s Overture, Scherzo and Finale, a work he couldn’t make his mind up what to call, a symphony, suite, or a sinfonietta. In between, Rotherham-born clarinettist Lynsey Marsh (her parents still live there) brings her highly accomplished, proven artistry to bear on Mozart’s Clarinet Concerto (on a basset clarinet!) and if Doncaster-born Lyn Fletcher is in her normal place as orchestra leader, a South Yorkshire hat trick is complete! City Hall, Saturday, 7pm – £20, £18, £15, £5 students, under 18. Pre- concert talk, Trisha Cooper in conversation with Ryan Wigglersworth, 6pm.
Elias String Quartet, Sara Bitlloch, Donald Grant (violins), Martin Saving (viola), Marie Bitlloch (cello), make a quick return with the fourth instalment of their complete Beethoven string quartet cycle with performances Op 18 No 2, Op 127 and Op 59 No 1, the first Rasumovsky. Music in the Round at Upper Chapel, Norfolk Street, Tuesday, 7.30pm – £16.50, £11 disabled, unemployed, £5 students, under 18s. Post-concert Q&A, with the Elias and MitR artistic director Angus Smith.
Kathryn Tickell, after Tibetan monks and jazz reminiscences of civil rights, the Sheffield University main concert season continues its eclectic way with a visit by a musician described as the world’s foremost exponent of the Northumbrian pipes in company of her fiddle and The Slide, a suitably diverse instrumental trio of Ruth Wall: harp; Amy Thatcher: accordion and clog dancer; and Louisa Tuck: cello. Firth Hall, Western Bank, Tuesday, 7.30pm – £10, £7 concessions, £4 students, under 26. Pre-concert talk, the Department of Music’s Andrew Killick, a Northumbrian pipes player, discusses how the music of a place retains its relevance with the performers, 6.30pm.
Ensemble 360 Winds/ Polly Ives, plus piano and percussion, offer a half-term family concert built round Cinderella, Roald Dahl’s re-telling of the story, with music by quietly successful Scottish composer Rory Boyle, and some Mozart for good measure. Music in the Community. City Hall Ballroom, Wednesday, 11am – £6, £3 under 18s.
Alison York, harp, gives the Sheffield University Lunchtime Concert at Firth Hall, Western Bank, Thursday (October 30), 1.10pm – free, donations welcome.
Postponed: The Tallis Scholars, St Marie’s Cathedral, Thursday (November 7).
I Due Foscari, early-ish Verdi opera from 1844 based on a Byron play, The Two Foscari, about an ageing 15th century Venetian Doge, Francesco Foscari, torn between the duties of state and supporting his son Jacopo, on trial for alleged misdemeanours which been slowly creeping back into circulation in recent years. Placido Domingo, in baritone mode, as the elder Foscari, tenor Francesco Meli as the younger Foscari and soprano Maria Agresta as Jacopo’s wife are the principal protagonists and Antonio Pappano is the conductor in a live relay and dodgy-sounding production from the Royal Opera House, Monday, 7.15pm; at Cineworld Sheffield – £19.30, £15.50 concessions; Vue, Meadowhall – £15, £12.50 concessions (encore – recorded repeat, Sunday, November 2, 2pm); Odeon, Arundel Gate – £13, £11 concessions (encore – recorded repeat, Sunday, November 2, 2pm).
Madama Butterfly, Chisinau State Opera return with Puccini’s perennial opera, courtesy of Ellen Kent’s Opera and Ballet International. In Italian with English surtitles. City Hall, Thursday (October 30), 7.30pm – £32.50, £29, £26, £16.
The Legend of Love, 1961 ballet that made that made Azerbaijani composer Arif Malikov’s name and reckoned to be one the finest works to come out Soviet Russia. Based on legend, it recounts the tragic tale of Farhad and Shirin and gets a new season of live relays underway direct from the Bolshoi in Moscow, Sunday, 3pm; at Cineworld Sheffield – £19.30, £15.50 concessions; Showroom, Paternoster Row - £13.
Sheffield Chamber Music Weekend, Advanced Course in ensemble playing, primarily for young string players Grade 7 and above, with possible spaces for adults coached by the emergent members of the Gildas String Quartet. Applicants also welcome for a one-day (Saturday) Introduction to Playing Chamber Music Course for young people, Grades 5-7. High Storrs School, Saturday-Sunday, November 1-2. Further detail, including charges, at www.4strings88keys.org Better still now call 01909 770367, or email email@example.com
Lunchtime Singing, monthly, 45-minute workshops on the City Hall stage (though not always) led by Val Regan and Andrea Small. Thursday, November 6; Thursday, December 4 (Memorial Hall), 1pm – £6.
Music Box Workshops, hugely popular, highly interactive 45-minute Music in the Community events for children aged three to six exploring percussion and action songs led by Polly Ives. Crucible Studio, Saturday, December 6, 10.30am: three-to four-olds; 11.45am: five-to-six-years-olds; 1pm: three-to-six-year-olds – £6 participating children, accompanying adults free. Book on line at www.musicintheround.co.uk For further information contact firstname.lastname@example.org or call 0114 281 4660.
For details of Choral Evensong at Sheffield Cathedral and St John’s Church, Ranmoor, and music at daytime services, please see the respective websites of both in the ‘Who’s Doing It’ section of Classical Sheffield.