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Chiltern Sinfonietta - a Local Gem that Deserves Better Support

January 26, 2016 4:31 PM

symphonieta blog2We are most fortunate that our local area supports several fine choirs and orchestras and amongst its residents are a number of musicians and singers of international stature.

I have been aware of the Chiltern Sinfonietta for some time, but each time I planned to go to one of their concerts, some other engagement clashed in my diary. Well last Saturday I decided, diary clash or no - and there was one - I would go to their concert in Kings Langley.

Definitely the right choice!

The concert was held in the theatre at the Rudolph Steiner School on Langley Hill with a three-part programme, the Overture to Mozart's Marriage of Figaro, Vaughan Williams Songs of Travel with Soloist Richard Moore and Brahms Serenade No1 in D Major.

Their first item was of course an old favourite and really familiar to orchestra and audience alike - but I was immediately bowled over by the pace, precision, clarity and spot-on timing of their playing. And the high standard carried on throughout - a tribute not only to the evident competence and enthusiasm of the players but also to their Conductor David Moore, himself an accomplished violinist.

Described as Vaughan Williams "first major foray" into songwriting, their second piece Songs of Travel was a work I had not heard before - although familiar with some of the poems of Robert Louis Stevenson which served as the lyrics.

The soloist was bass-baritone Richard Moore - the son of the Conductor - who studied at the Royal Northern College of Music. He has won many prizes and has returned to the Northern College to continue his post-grad studies.

His fine, well trained voice was a delight to hear, his poise and confidence adding to the ambivalent sentiments of the composition.

The powerful combination of Stevenson's words, Vaughan Williams music and Richard's restrained singing produced a bitter-sweet emotional effect.

Richard was warmly and affectionately applauded for his masterly performance. I think everyone there realised they were witnessing a talented young man poised on the threshold of a notable career.

After an interval which allowed for a mental change of gear, the audience returned to enjoy the Brahms Serenade. A substantial and varied piece which gave full opportunity to the orchestra to demonstrate its versatility.

I left the hall buoyed up by the evening's performance and with the strong feeling that the Chiltern Sinfonietta is a local gem that deserves a great deal more support. I for one intend to do my best to become a regular attendee at their future concerts.

The Chiltern Sinfonietta was established in 2012 with the objective of performing music from the small orchestral repertoire written by composers from the Baroque to the 20th Century.

The aim is to play three concerts each year in the Chilterns area and to make the music as accessible as possible to as wide an audience as possible.

Following the January concert the next concert will be on Saturday May 14th 2016. The programme and venue will be published shortly on http://www.chilternsinfonietta.com/