Ella Taylor, the young soprano, at present a Sheffield University music undergraduate, gives the first in a new series of weekly University Lunchtime Concerts at Firth Hall, Western Bank, Thursday (February 26), 1.10pm – free, donations welcome.
Emily Chaplais, young Sheffield-based freelance violinist gives the Sheffield Cathedral Lunchtime Recital, Thursday (February 26), 1.15pm – free, donations welcome.
BLOCK4, recorder quartet of Emily Bannister, Lucy Carr, Katie Cowling and Rosie Land who use a full range of recorders from soprano to contra-bass and only formed in 2012 but, in 2014, became the first recorder group ever to win the Royal Overseas League Ensemble competition due to its innovative approach to contemporary consort music which includes that of the present day as well as from Renaissance and Baroque times. Here they perform music ranging from Byrd and Guarrero to Chiel Meyerling and Dick Koomans who are active today at the monthly Sheffield Music Club concert as Shirley House, adjacent St Andrew’s Psalter Lane Church, Friday, 7.30pm – £10, £8 concessions, £3 students.
Brahms German Requiem, the performance, in public, of the day-long workshop-cum-rehearsal on February 14 lead by three much-experienced local choral directors, Peter Taylor, Robert Webb and Carol Bowns, in the work’s piano duet version and sung in German. Two former university music students, Marianne Kelly and Heather Sargeson are the pianists and the soloists, baritone Niall Hoskin and soprano Suzanne Fischer, are worth taking note of at Firth Hall, Western Bank, Saturday, 6pm – £8, £4 concessions. Tickets available from http://singsoc.weebly.com/ticket-bookings.html
Trevor Pinnock, the world famous harpsichord player (and conductor) comes to town to perform Handel – Chaconne in G and Great Suite No 8 in G minor (in F minor actually, No 7 is in G minor); Bach: Chromatic Fantasy & Fugue and Six Short Preludes; CPE Bach – Württemberg Sonata No 5; and Haydn – Sonata in G Hob XVI/27. Sheffield University Concert Season at Firth Hall, Western Bank, Sunday, 7pm – £10, £7 concessions, £4 under 26, students. See ‘Pinnock plays Haydn’ under FEATURES
Elias String Quartet, Sara Bitlloch, Donald Grant: violins; Martin Saving: viola; Marie Bitlloch: cello, complete their highly praised survey of the Beethoven string quartet cycle with performances of Op 16 No 6; Op 59 No 2 Razumovsky; and finishing with last (No 16), Op 135. Music in the Round at Upper Chapel, Norfolk Street, Tuesday, 7.30pm – £16.50, £11 concessions, £5 students, under 18s.
Music in the Round mini-festival weekend of concerts and events at the Crucible Studio celebrating the composer.
Weekend pass to all events (except backstage tours): £60, £42 disabled, unemployed, £12 students, under 18s. Tickets for all individual concerts and events also available.
See ‘Exploring Haydn’ under FEATURES.
Haydn Schools’ Concert, a 50-minute ‘meet the composer’ interactive introduction to Haydn for pupils and their teachers from the personable young Benyounes Quartet which plays extracts from his string quartets reflecting among other things, his wit and humour, his warmth and love of dance with creative response to the music positively encouraged; Friday, 1.30pm – £3, accompanying teachers free.
Benyounes Quartet, rapidly rising in repute foursome: Zara Benyounes, Emily Holland: violins; Tetsuumi Nagada: viola; Kim Vaughan: cello, play the quartets Op 17 No 6 (No 20 in Haydn’s string quartet output); Op 54 No 2 (No 42); Op 50 No 5 – Dream (No 40 and the ‘Prussian quartets’); and Op 76 No 1 (No 60); Friday, 7.15pm – £16.50, £11 disabled, unemployed, £5 students, under 18s.
Backstage Tour, described as a ‘family-friendly’ 50-minute, engagingly led look behind the scenes at the Crucible Theatre, including the dressing rooms, rehearsal space and seeing the Studio from an unusual angle. Plus glimpsing members of Ensemble 360 rehearsing Haydn's music; Saturday, 10.15am and 11.30am – £6, £3 students, under 18s.
Ensemble 360, primarily Benjamin Nabarro, Claudia Ajmone-Marsan: violins; Ruth Gibson: viola; Gemma Rosefield: cello; Tim Horton: piano, opens its four-concert contribution to the weekend with the first of three Haydn piano trios, in E major Hob XV/28 which is actually No 44 (written in 1797) of the forty-five he penned: No’s 1 –17 between 1760 –71; No’s 18 –45 between 1784 –97. Naomi Atherton: horn, joins the proceedings for a performance of a Haydn Divertimento in E flat for horn, violin and cello, before they end with the String Quartet Op 76 No 4 Sunrise. Saturday, 1.30pm – £11, £7.50 disabled, unemployed, £5 students, under 18s.
(Re)Discovering Haydn - Simon Keefe and David Wyn Jones, head of music respectively, at Sheffield University and Cardiff University, pool their extensive knowledge for 75 minutes to examine the age Haydn lived in and his relationship with Mozart. Saturday, 3pm – £5.
Emperor Quartet - another university professor, Julian Horton from Durham, joins Ensemble 360’s string quartet for a 50-minute examination of Haydn’s Op 76 No 3, the famed Emperor quartet. Saturday, 5pm – £5.
Ensemble 360 - in all its complete glory, Op 76 No 3, the Emperor quartet, followed by another Haydn piano trio, in F sharp minor Hob XV/26 (No 40, penned in 1795); then some Michael Haydn, the composer’s Salzburg-based younger brother and no mean composer himself: Divertimento in D for horn, viola and cello, before ending with No 5 of the opus 76 string quartets. Saturday, 7.15pm – £16.50, £11 disabled, unemployed, £5 students, under 18s.
Haydn’s Forgotten Quartets - David Wyn Jones stays overnight to introduce a performance of Haydn’s Symphony No 86 in a string quartet arrangement which after much detective work over a long period of time, he is almost certain is by the composer along with string quartet versions of two other Paris Symphonies, No’s 84 and 85, all three being published together in Vienna in September 1788. Before it is the String Quartet Op 2 No 1 by the extraordinarily popular and prolific in his time, Ignaz Pleyel (1757-1831), a pupil of Haydn who would later take French nationality to appease post-Revolution sensibilities in France. Sunday, 11.30am – £11, £7.50 disabled, unemployed, £5 students, under 18s.
Ensemble 360 - the last Haydn piano trio being performed, in C major Hob XV/27 (No 43 from 1797) and the composer’s Piano Sonata in E flat Hob XVI/49 (No 59 of the 62 he penned) separating the last two of the mini-festival’s excursion through the opus 76 string quartets, No 2 Fifths; and No 6. Sunday, 3pm – £11, £7.50 disabled, unemployed, £5 students, under 18s.
Madama Butterfly, Puccini’s positively indestructible opera is going the rounds again, courtesy Chisinau National Opera under the umbrella of Ellen Kent’s Opera and Ballet International. Sung in Italian with English surtitles, at Buxton Opera House, Sunday, 7.30pm – £33, £36, discounts available. 0845 12 72190
Top Hat, stage adaptation of the most successful (if not necessarily best) Fred Astaire-Ginger Rogers film from 1935, unveiled in 2011 and currently on a 47-week tour drops off in the city for a couple of weeks so don the White Tie and Tails, too (along with other Irving Berlin hits) and go Cheek to Cheek to Face the Music and Dance at the Lyceum Theatre, Tuesday, February 24 to Saturday, March 7 (except Sunday-Monday, March 1-2), 7.45pm – £29 –£39 (Tuesday-Thursday), £32 –£42 (Friday-Saturday); plus matinees, Wednesday (February 25), Thursdays, Tuesday (March 3), 2pm – £27 –£37; and Saturdays, 3pm – £32 –£42.
Lunchtime Singing, monthly, 45-minute workshops on the City Hall stage (though not always) led by Val Regan and Andrea Small, Thursday (March 5), 1pm – £6. Also, March 26; May 7; June 4; July 2; September 3; October 1; November 5; December 3.
Sheffield Cello Day, 4strings88keys event for cellists of all ages and ability taking in masterclasses and study sessions to diploma level, plus Alexander technique and activities for groups and individuals. Gemma Rosefield and Thomas Carroll are the principal tutors with Sarah Huson-Whyte catering for children, grades 4 –6; plus, further professional cellists for adults and children. High Storrs School, S11 7LH, Saturday, March 29, 9.30am–5pm – juniors: 9.30am-3pm; adults: 9.30am-5pm. Fees: £55 adults; £20 students, school age, with free admission to recital by Gemma Rosefield/ Thomas Carroll recital post-5pm. Further details and application forms at www.4strings88keys.org
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 with a singer/ songwriter and guitarist helping out of this occasion. Crucible Studio, Saturday, April 4, 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. To find out more or to book go to www.musicintheround.co.uk Alternatively, contact Fraser Wilson, 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.