Nov 052016
 

Seven musicians, amateur and professional, met as a group for the first time on Monday evening 31 October. By Wednesday afternoon they were performing in local nursing homes. Where could this happen? … at Benslow Music Trust, of course!

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Bill Bates, our percussionist, had made arrangements of popular standards exactly to suit the line-up. Clarinets were in the majority, with course leader Margaret Archibald joined by Craig Maxwell who featured especially on bass clarinet, Sue Young doubling on B flat and E flat alto, and Chris Timmis holding the principal clarinet part. Judy Wang had brought her flute all the way from Taiwan especially to take part in the course at Benslow, and ‘cellist Jane Richardson doubled on voice and keyboards in an ensemble that was remarkable for its flexibility.

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As always, coping with the luggage was a problem. Percussion for audience participation in the Latin American number added several bags to the total on this occasion…

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…and getting Bill’s kit from Benslow to each nursing home made it necessary to allow at least half an hour before and after each concert for setting up and taking down.

Concerts at Elmside Methodist Nursing Home, Symonds House (Leonard Cheshire Disability), St Catherine’s Nursing Home and Benslow Nursing Home completed our tour. All the care centres are now old friends, and we were given a warm welcome at each one. Thanks to Benslow’s collaboration with Everyone Matters our concerts seem now to be well established in Hitchin care homes as an annual event. “It was a brilliant experience”, wrote the Activity Coordinator after the performance at Elmside, “and we loved the way everyone interacted with the residents”. The response from Benslow Nursing Home was simply “Thank you so much to all for a magical afternoon”.

Aug 062016
 

Margaret Archibald recalls some highlights of her day at Rutherford School where she and harpist Alexander Thomas were contributing music workshops designed to explore this year’s summer club theme of “Water”. 

It really is astonishing how much stuff I manage to take for one day of workshops!

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It was 1st August, there was no school-run traffic, and I arrived at Rutherford School with more than an hour and a half to spare to set up for a full day of workshops with harpist Alexander Thomas. This was already the second week of the school’s Summer Club, and we would spend the day working with five different groups of children all with profound and multiple learning difficulties. Somehow the time flew by as I unpacked lots of small percussion suitable for the school’s holiday project “water”, raided the music therapy percussion trolley, created a watery décor with water-blue silks and colourful umbrellas, and laid out the props and percussion ready in appropriate batches to be used for successive music items.

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Alexander Thomas arrived early too, having allowed plenty of time to drive from Dalston with his harp, the very special instrument chosen to be a new experience for the children. We were conscious that summer club should be fun and engaging, and we hoped that the chance to hear a harp and to feel its vibrations would be a thrilling experience for these wheelchair-bound children. We also wanted the support staff to have fun too, and the ratio of staff to children was mostly 1:1 so it was important that everyone was having a good time. Manoeuvring the wheelchairs really close to the harp was rather tricky, and we needed to be very careful not to damage the harp’s pedal box, but nearly every child was able to get close enough to be able to reach out with staff help and touch the pillar of the harp, feeling the strong vibrations flowing through as Alex played. One little girl, whose head we were told is nearly always down on her chest, lifted her head to gaze at Alex and his harp, and at the end of the workshop during our goodbye song she waved us her farewell.

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A favourite piece at each session was “Mists”, a dreamy and evocative piece for harp and clarinet that we elaborated with the sound of rainsticks, wind chimes and a thunder drum. First we explored the sounds that could be made with the percussion instruments, and then staff helped the children orchestrate the piece with imaginative, atmospheric sound effects. The opportunity to take part by adding additional percussion sounds and visual props to the music was noted by several members of staff as especially enjoyable for everyone, and by the end of each session we had added ‘seaweed’ (green plastic bag strips tied to coat hangers!), a plastic diver, ocean drums, pebble bag scrunchers, sea shells in a bucket, frog guiros, seed pod rattles and castanets to the list of atmospheric additions to enhance a deep ocean-scape, a pirates’ hornpipe, and the song of boatmen heaving on their oars as they pulled a heavy cargo up the river. Finally we invited a free choice of percussion so that everyone could join in our final goodbye song playing their favourite instrument.

As Alex and I were packing up our gear and gradually returning the school room to its former state, we reflected on how lucky we were to be able to play such lovely music, and to share it with these very special children who cannot share their thoughts in words but whose responses mean so much.

Jun 152016
 

Wednesday 22 June 2016 2.30 – 4.30p.m.

Lecture-Recital in the series Musical Offerings

in the Church Room

St Mark’s Church, Westmoreland Road, Bromley, BR2 0TB

Jorge’s passion for the violin and for music of the highest quality has led him to direct, conduct and lead international ensembles throughout Europe, giving stylish, authentic performances of  music from Medieval times to the 21st century.

As a soloist, Jorge has toured widely in Europe and South America playing on a 1680 Vincenzo Ruggieri made in Cremona or, as best suits the repertoire,  on a 1797 Neapolitan J&A Gagliano.

Jorge’s engagements in 2016 include guest director of Capella Cracoviensis, assistant musical director at Netherlandse Opera,  musical director and conductor of Wratislavia Cantans Festival Orchestra and Choir, and his new solo programme “Duende” at the Varazdin Baroque Evenings 2016 (Croatia).

Entry to non-subscription holders: £10 on the door

Home-made cakes, tea, coffee and biscuits will be on sale during the interval

Enquiries: Margaret Archibald, Artistic Director, Everyone Matters, 21, Stone Road, Bromley, Kent, BR2 9AX

Tel: 020 8464 1645; Mob: 07970 123105

E-mail:  margaret@everyone-matters.co.uk

Website: www.everyone-matters.co.uk

Blog: www.passporttomusic.wordpress.com

Twitter: @EM_Charity

Everyone Matters: a company limited by guarantee no. 07450130; registered charity no. 1143445

Dec 122015
 

There are two chances to catch Lesley Schatzberger’s Klezmer presentation, at Whitgift House Chapel, Croydon on Tuesday evening 15 December at 7.30p.m. and at St Mark’s Church Room, Bromley on Wednesday afternoon 16 December at 2.30p.m.

Margaret Archibald will be playing bass clarinet to support Lesley in several performance items. The customary wine and nibbles on Tuesday and afternoon tea on Wednesday will perhaps have a Christmas flavour – well, you would expect it, wouldn’t you!

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Lesley Schatzberger

Lesley Schatzberger pioneered historical performance alongside being involved in a broad range of music-making. She has played all over Europe, the USA and Japan, both as an orchestral player and chamber musician – often in Stockhausen’s chamber group. She teaches at the University of York and the Royal Northern College of Music.

Entry to non-subscription holders: £10 0n the door. Donations towards interval refreshments go towards supporting these lecture-recitals and helping to keep them on the road.

Enquiries to Margaret Archibald 020 8464 1645; 07970 123105; margaret@everyone-matters.co.uk

Nov 162015
 

Music Matters Gala Night presented by the

Shackleton Trio

Lesley Schatzberger, Ingrid Pearson and Margaret Archibald

Tuesday 17 November 2015

Whitgift House, 76, Brighton Road, South Croydon CR2 6AB

in The Chapel, 7 for 7.30 – 9.30p.m.

Music by Mozart, Stadler, Druschetzky and Abbé Vogler

on Basset Horns of the period

Entry to non-subscription holders: £20

An interval bar will serve refreshments

with Cava, Spanish wines and Tapas

Bar donations help to support our Music Matters series

Finding Whitgift House Chapel

Whitgift House stands in the grounds of Whitgift  School, but with its own gate on Brighton Road. Do not go up the hill to the school. If you are standing on the drive facing the house, you will see to the left of the house a large wrought iron gate leading through into part of the garden. The chapel is accessed by going into the garden through this gate, and then going through the very first door on your left.

Oct 302015
 

Nicoline Kraamwinkel and Rosanna Rolton, mum and daughter, charmed audiences during seven concerts over three separate days in late October. They performed “Conversation Pieces” in four nursing homes and day centres, entertained the guests at the Sanderstead Decorative and Fine Arts Society Annual Lunch, and gave two full-length lecture-recitals for “Music Matters” in Whitgift House Chapel, South Croydon and for “Musical Offerings” in St Mark’s Church, Bromley.

“We were very impressed with Nicoline and Rosanna playing the harp and violin beautifully this afternoon”, wrote the Administrator of Fairlight and Fallowfield Nursing Home in Chislehurst. “Our residents thought that the music was wonderful and thoroughly enjoyed it. In addition it was lovely how the musicians interacted with the residents in terms of them being provided with a ‘menu’ of music to choose from, and being told a little background to the pieces.”

“The music session this morning was a great success”, echoed the Activity Co-ordinator at Bertha James Day Centre in Bromley, ” and one I hope we can repeat”.

Here are the musicians in action in the Church Room at St Mark’s Church, performing music from Baroque to Tango, and sharing anecdotes with a delighted audience assembled for the second in our new series of “Musical Offerings” in Bromley:

Tea-time treats at Bromley South
Tea-time treats at Bromley South

The home-made tea loaf and chocolate cake seemed to go down well at the break, and the apple cake containing old-fashioned garden Bramleys seems to have been a particular success. In fact, a couple of large buckets of this year’s huge Bramley harvest taken to the church enabled quite a few of the audience to take apples home with them too!

Oct 182015
 

Tuesday 20 October: Nicoline Kraamwinkel violin and Rosanna Rolton harp introduce their duo programme at Whitgift House, 76, Brighton Road, South Croydon CR2 6AB in The Chapel; doors open 7 for 7.30 – 9.30p.m.

Just to whet your appetite for Tuesday’s lecture-recital of music for violin and harp, here are some pictures of Nicoline and Rosanna in action in day centres in Kingston recently:
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Nicoline Kraamwinkel, Dutch born, studied in the Hague and London. She has worked with many of the chamber orchestras in London, is a member of the London Mozart Players and works for Garsington Opera. Her performance of Brahms’ Violin Concerto in the Concertgebouw Amsterdam was televised. She is a founder member of the Chagall Piano Trio.
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Nicoline’s daughter Rosanna Rolton is an advanced student at the Royal College of Music. She is a member of the European Union Youth Orchestra with whome she has toured widely throughout Europe and has won many competitions, most recently the International Harp Competition in Italy. Rosanna is currently making her first CD and has already given many recitals including in the Royal Festival Hall and at last summer’s Three Choirs Festival, and also in Italy.
If you have to miss Tuesday at Whitgift House then you might like to catch Nicoline and Rosanna in Bromley on Wednesday 28 Octoberat 2.30p.m. for Musical Offerings in the Church Room at St Mark’s Church, Westmoreland Road, BR2 0TB when afternoon tea and home-made cakes will be served.
Entry to non-subscription holders is £10 on the door and contributions towards the refreshments help to support these lecture-recitals.
Sep 192015
 

8.30a.m. is a cruel time of day to start a rehearsal. Nicoline, Ian and I arrived at Langley Park School for Boys on Monday in time to spend a long morning working with eight young musicians in preparation for concerts that same afternoon and on the following day for older people in local care settings. Head of Music David Bullen not only conducted, but also played the piano, played the clarinet and drove the bus, and staff violin specialist Lisa Fry coached and played to complete the ensemble. Some of the boys had only been in the school a couple of weeks as brand new Year 7s, holding their own in a mixed group of violins, cello, flute, bassoon and horn, with Nicoline Kraamwinkel playing the violin and coaching the strings, Ian Fasham playing the bass trombone and coaching the wind alongside me, Margaret Archibald, on clarinet.

Concert 1: at St Barnabas Beckenham, hosted by Father Tim Hide, with a magnificent array of home-made cakes served by a team of volunteers and enjoyed by local people including  a large contingent from the Abbeyfield flats across the road and a group of guests from Bertha James Day Centre on Bromley Common.

Concert 2: a cocktail showcase concert at Langley Park Boys’ School in the magnificent concert hall, the music enjoyed by parents and friends in a “happy hour” with Gin Giardino, Tempo and Fruit Sparkler.

Concert 3: after another early rehearsal to add a couple of extra pieces to our programme, a performance for residents at St Cecilia’s Leonard Cheshire Home in Sundridge Avenue.

Concert 4: afternoon tea at Prince George (Masonic) Duke of Kent Home in Chislehurst, where many of the residents still remembered the previous visit of Langley Boys in a noisier ensemble of woodwind, brass and percussion.

Nicoline and Lisa lead the young strings at Prince George (Masonic) Duke of Kent Home
Nicoline and Lisa lead the young strings at Prince George (Masonic) Duke of Kent Home
Jun 172015
 

Rosanna Rolton visited Raleigh House on Saturday to give a post-luncheon harp recital to the Dementia Club. “What a wonderful recital Rosanna treated us to on Saturday!” wrote Assistant Day Centre Manager Marion Caldwell. “Everyone was spellbound and thoroughly enjoyed themselves. Even members who can be prone to restlessness were taken with the performance “.

 

 

Intimacy and informality charm Rosanna's audience at Raleigh House
Intimacy and informality charm Rosanna’s audience at Raleigh House.
Rosanna demonstrates the harp pedals to a captivated audience.
Rosanna demonstrates the harp pedals to a captivated audience.

Later that same afternoon Rosanna drove her harp round the corner to The White House where once again she offered items from her musical menu  and happily answered questions from those inquisitive about her beautiful instrument. As Rosanna herself explained, “there was much excitement about the harp, many people had never seen a harp close by, which resulted in many questions and stories being shared”.

This day offered the Maldens & Coombe Neighbourhood two extra concerts, thanks largely to donations from the Friends of Everyone Matters. in addition to the six concerts organised during the ’14-’15 season under the local neighbourhood grant scheme.

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