Diversity and new experiences is key to success of Lake District’s world class music festival

Lake District Summer Music 2018 opens on Saturday, July 28 (7.30pm) with the pomp and pageantry of Handel’s Water Music Suite.

Performed by the highly thought of Northern Chamber Orchestra at Ulverston’s Coronation Hall, the concert also includes Elegy for Strings, originally written by the late great Sir John Manduell as a tribute to inspirational violinist, Christopher Rowland, who died in 2007.

Leading Irish soprano Ailish Tynan also features in the programme – which is under the acclaimed direction of Nicholas Ward – performing Mozart’s Plasmator Deus and Exsultate, Jubilate, still remembered by many as part of the 1986 Royal Wedding of Prince Andrew.

Ailish will also be in fine voice for a recital with pianist Simon Lepper on Tuesday, July 31 (7.30pm) at St Thomas’s Church, Kendal, augmented by the horn and clarinet players from the Magnard Wind Ensemble – which also gives a recital the following morning at Carver Church, Windermere – in order to perform two of Schubert’s most glorious lieder, both with pastoral settings highly suited to the Lakes.

Among the highly anticipated 44 LDSM events playing across 11 South Lakeland venues will be pianist Cristian Sandrin’s festival debut at Ambleside Parish Church on Monday, August 6 (11am).

The young Romanian has just won the top prize at the Windsor Piano Competition and will perform works by Haydn, Beethoven, Enescu, Chopin and Ravel’s impressionist masterpiece Miroirs.

Celebrating its 34th year, the prestigious musical gathering also includes Burying the Dead, about the life of composer Henry Purcell performed on Friday, August 3 (7.30pm). Written by Clare Norburn, the piece is a marvellous marriage of music, drama, sound and light, featuring more than 20 of Purcell’s works performed at Kendal’s St George’s Church by early music group Ceruleo and actor Simon Cole.

St George’s is also the venue for the rare screening of the film that made Rudolph Valentino into a superstar and the first movie to feature the tango, The Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse, with live improvised accompaniment on the church’s famous organ courtesy of Darius Battiwalla. That’s staged on Sunday, July 29 (7.30pm).

Clive Walkley’s popular Pro Nobis Singers also grace the festival with a fabulous wide-ranging programme from Renaissance to modern pieces at Ambleside Parish Church on Sunday, August 5 (7.30pm).

Another festival highlight promises to be the long-awaited return to LDSM by the star Navarra Quartet performing at Kendal’s St Thomas’s Church on Monday, August 6 (8pm) and on Wednesday, August 8 (7.30pm) at Ambleside Parish Church with bassoon player, Catriona McDermid and cellist Guy Johnston.

The festival is one of UK’s biggest and most diverse and concludes in thrilling style on Friday, August 10, with percussionist Simone Rebello performing at Ambleside Parish Church (11am) followed at the same venue (7.30pm) by the National Youth String Orchestra’s first appearance at LDSM conducted by Damian Iorio with violinist Mathilde Milwidsky as soloist.

For copies of the Lake District Summer Music festival diary telephone 01539-742620, go online at www.ldsm.org.uk or call into the festival office at Stricklandgate House, 92 Stricklandgate, Kendal.


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