Ludlow English Song Weekend

Ludlow English Song Weekend

 

Ludlow English Song Weekend

On Saturday 30th October 2021 it was an honour to perform a recital with Artistic Director Iain Burnside in memory of Christopher ‘Kiffer’ Finzi at St Laurence’s Church in the final recital of the Ludlow English Song Weekend.  

We gave the premiere performance of Rhian Samuel’s song cycle “The Moon and I” and I was delighted to sing with Natalya Romaniw Lee Hoiby’s ‘The Bermudas’  as the final piece of the concert. 

http://ludlowenglishsongweekend.com

“Finally, the closing recital in memorial to Christopher ‘Kiffer’ Finzi was a standout moment. When Kathryn Rudge took to the stage, the audience knew they were in for a rare treat and her stamina and sheer, obvious joy handling Finzi and Elgar and Rhian Samuel’s ‘The Moon And I’ was just delightful. And then, Natalya joined her on stage for the finale ‘Bermudas’ and again, tears…. Katie and Natalya’s voices are a beyond perfect combination and we were left wanting so much more.” The Ludlow Guide

Mozart Requiem – Alexandra Palace

Mozart Requiem – Alexandra Palace

Sundav 24 October 2021 –
• 3pm
Alexandra Palace Theatre, London N22 TAY

Mozart Requiem
Jessica Curry Echo (World Premiere)
Brahms Schicksalslied

London Mozart Players
Crouch End Festival Chorus
David Temple conductor
Francesca Chiejina soprano
Kathryn Rudge mezzo-soprano
Ronald Samm tenor
Benjamin Bevan baritone

Crouch End Festival Chorus, under its conductor David Temple, joins with the London Mozart Players to perform Mozart’s Requiem, one of the greatest works in the choral repertoire. Commissioned in 1791 when the composer’s health was failing, Mozart created a work which was completed after his death by Süssmayr and contains some of his most sublime and evocative music.

 CEFC also presents the World Premiere of a work by Jessica Curry, renowned for her award-winning scores for video games. Echo is based on an evocative Christina Rossetti poem combining passion and mystery.

NI Opera Festival of Voice

NI Opera Festival of Voice

The Northern Ireland Opera Festival of Voice is an annual celebration of singing in the historic coastal village of Glenarm, Co. Antrim. This year marks the eleventh festival, and it took place in sunny Belfast across bank holiday weekend 27-29th August 2021.

I loved returning to Belfast to record a recital of songs by Britten, Mahler, Delius and Harty with Simon Lepper for a broadcast later in the year for BBC Radio 3. 

Mendelssohn’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream – RSNO Edinburgh International Festival

Mendelssohn’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream – RSNO Edinburgh International Festival

Mendelssohn’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream - Edinburgh International Festival

Wed 11 Aug 2021, Edinburgh Academy Junior School

Thomas Søndergård Conductor

Members of the Edinburgh Festival Chorus
Aidan Oliver Chorus Director

Rowan Pierce First Fairy
Kathryn Rudge Second Fairy
Dame Harriet Walter Narrator

I really enjoyed singing Second Fairy in Mendelssohn’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream Overture with Royal Scottish National Orchestra conducted by music director Thomas Søndergård,  with members of the Edinburgh Festival Chorus and Dame Harriet Walters narrating.  

We initially all rehearsed together in Glasgow Royal Concert Hall.  There were two performances on Wednesday 11th August at an impressive outdoor venue at Edinburgh Academy Junior School.  

Mendelssohn’s magical A Midsummer Night’s Dream Overture was composed when he was just 17 and is one of classical music’s most-loved pieces. Decades later, the composer returned to Shakespeare’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream to compose incidental music for the entire play – it became one of his greatest successes. It is not often performed in its entirety and it was rare opportunity to discover Mendelssohn’s evocations of Shakespeare’s most magical play.   The first performance took place during a rainstorm which sounded brilliantly dramatic on the canvas and we had a crisp clear night for the final performance in the evening –  and seeing the outdoor lights twinkling around us as the Sun went down and the music soared added to the magic!  

The Edinburgh International Festival was the inspired idea of Rudolf Bing, then the General Manager of Glyndebourne Opera, Henry Harvey Wood, the Head of the British Council in Scotland, and leaders from the City of Edinburgh. It was established in 1947 as a world class cultural event to bring together audiences and artists from around the world, and over 70 years has gone from strength to strength. 

Brian Elias Focus Day – Wigmore Hall

Brian Elias Focus Day – Wigmore Hall

Kathryn Rudge Wigmore Hall

Brian Elias Focus Day Concerts at Wigmore Hall

Concerts at Wigmore Hall on Saturday 24th April 2021 were dedicated to composer Brian Elias. I sang his unaccompanied ‘Green Glen Songs’ and ‘Three Songs (Christina Rossetti)’ for alto and harp with wonderful Olivia Jageurs in Part 2 of the Focus Day. It was great to work with Brian, he gave us generous support and insight into his work.

Meet Me in the Green Glen (2009) for solo voice

Meet Me In The Green Glen
Song
Now Is Past
Love’s Pain
Hesperus 

“The first of these songs for solo voice to poems by John Clare was written for the NMC Songbook, a CD collection of songs by a variety of British composers, which was released in April 2009. I wrote the remaining songs in March and April 2009, as I had always intended to make a group of songs to these poems.

The songs may be performed individually or as a set and by any voice. They may also be transposed as desired by the singer. When more than one song is performed the transposition should be by the same degree throughout. ”  Brian Elias

 

Three Songs (Christina Rossetti) (2003) for alto and harp.

?”These three poems were written by Christina Rossetti (1830-1894) several years apart, yet seem to express similar emotions and concerns. The first was written in 1853 when she was twenty-three, the second when she was in her late thirties and the third, written towards the end of her life, may be the last poem she ever wrote. 

I have wanted to write a work for voice and harp for some time and found the dark and secret world of these poems ideally suited to this sonority.” Brian Elias

Both concerts are available to watch online for 30 days. https://youtu.be/7pMrQkTIkp8

“The programmes were curated by Elias himself and represented a retrospective of his smaller chamber oeuvre from early works written in the 70s’ and 80s’ to those written in the last two decades. Paired with Elias’ music were works by the three composers who have been a significant influence: his teacher and mentor Elisabeth Lutyens; Maurice Ravel, who Elias credits with teaching him ‘everything he knows’ about instrumentation; and Claude Debussy, a constant beacon of inspiration.”

Lots of incredible artists involved..
Olivia Jageurs harp
Rob Burton alto saxophone
Daniel Lebhardt piano
Gabriele Strata piano
Thomas Hancox flute
Jon Carnac clarinet
Adrian Spillett percussion
Castalian String Quartet
Sini Simonen violin
Daniel Roberts violin
Charlotte Bonneton viola
Christopher Graves cello
Thomas Kemp conductor

If you watch the concert, please consider donating to Wigmore Hall so that they can continue to support musicians and bring you music live from the Hall.

Spotlight Chamber Concert: Momentum Artists

Spotlight Chamber Concert: Momentum Artists

Spotlight Chamber Concert

Spotlight Chamber Concerts on 7th December 2020 – Schubert song recital with baritone Roderick Williams, pianist Susie Allen and bass Edward Hawkins. Presented by Bandstand Chamber Festival and St John’s Waterloo.

Venue: St John’s Waterloo, Waterloo Road, London, SE1 8TY

  1. Schwanengesang, ‘Swan Song’ D 957Franz Schubert

It was a wonderful feeling to meet an audience again after many months of postponed and cancelled events due to Covid-19. With huge thanks to Roderick Williams, Susie Allan for the opportunity to perform with them in their Schubert concert.  Thanks also to Momentum; our future, now  who are supporting artists particularly during this difficult time – and to Spotlight Chamber Concerts who looked after us all so well with various safety measures to keep us all safe.

It was the first time I have stepped onto a stage wearing a protective face mask,  and looked out into the audience to see everyone wearing their masks too – it was a very surreal – but also invigorating to know that so many people had been able to return to a concert venue to enjoy live music again.

Bandstand Chamber Festival brings some of the world’s finest classical musicians to the safely socially-distanced interior of one of London’s landmark churches, St John’s Waterloo. With dramatic lighting centred only on the performers, the audience is invited to focus solely on the immersive experience of live music in this series of concerts and recitals set to lighten up the winter months ahead. Tickets are strictly limited, and available from Spotlight Chamber Concerts website

 

MOMENTUM: Our Future, Now is an initiative driven by leading international artists supporting younger professional colleagues in the first substantial phase of their career. Created by Barbara Hannigan, the Momentum model is an urgent artistic and human response to the situation caused by the 2020 pandemic, yet devised with long-term staying power.

Momentum: Our Future Now, sees leading soloists and conductors supporting younger colleagues by bringing them onto main stage professional engagements, with immediate effect. 

Kathryn Rudge Spotlight Chamber concerts Roderick Williams

Photographs by Matthew Johnson