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Saturday 4th November 2017

A Scandinavian Serenade


Our string players will serenade you with music from Scandinavia

that was composed between 1869 and 1937.  

The Nordic Melodies written in 1869, include a ‘Cow Call’ and ‘Peasant Dance’ that were later transcribed by Grieg for the piano.  Composed in 1884 to celebrate the 200th anniversary of the birth of the Danish-Norwegian playwright, Ludvig Holberg, Grieg’s Holberg Suite is based on eighteenth century dance forms.  Moving on six years, the Little Suite for Strings, composed in 1890 when Nielsen was 22, is one of his most performed works.  Written for a small chamber orchestra, the middle movement opens with a graceful waltz that becomes more energetic and like a Viennese waltz as the movement progresses.   

Music from the twentieth century is represented by the very popular Serenade by Wirén (1937) and Atterberg’s Suite for Violin, Viola and Strings (1917).  Our two soloists are the Leader of the Orchestra, Philippa Barton, and the Leader of the Viola section, Hilary Cheek.  Audiences may recall the very memorable and well-received performance of Mozart’s Sinfonia Concertante for Violin and Viola that Philippa and Hilary gave with the Orchestra in 2014.

Philippa’s solo performances have included Beethoven, Tchaikovsky, Mendelssohn, Bruch, Bach, Mozart and Vivaldi concerti, Vaughan Williams’ Lark Ascending, Chausson’s Poeme and Brahms’ Concerto for Violin and Cello.  Philippa also leads the Kings Chamber Orchestra, the Cornerstone Chamber Orchestra in Milton Keynes and the Essex and Norfolk Symphony Orchestras.   She attempts to balance all this with a busy teaching practice and a fabulous family!

Hilary plays with the Colne Philharmonic, Southend Symphony, the Kingfisher Sinfonietta and leads the violas for both Essex and Colchester Symphony Orchestras. Her orchestral training includes four years in the National Youth Orchestra when she played under inspirational conductors in some of the top concert halls in the country. In any spare time Hilary can be found in her garden, on the allotment, cleaning out the chickens or, when it’s cold and wet, patchworking.