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2018 Festival Programme

marking one hundred years since the end of WWI
Storm and Refuge

Thursday 21 June, 7.30pm

St Giles-without-Cripplegate

Tickets £20 (includes interval glass of wine)

Elgar Great is the Lord
Elgar Give unto the Lord
Holst Nunc dimittis
Duruflé Requiem

City of London Choir
Marta Fontanals-Simmons, mezzo soprano
Mark Williams, organ
Bozidar Vukotic, cello
Hilary Davan Wetton, conductor

The festival opens with Elgar’s defiant pre-WWI psalm settings, giving way to the consoling and ethereal Requiem by Duruflé. Holst’s exquisite Nunc dimittis of 1915 completes the programme. 

How are the mighty fall’n

Friday 22 June, 7.00pm

St Mary-le-Bow

Tickets £20 (includes interval glass of wine)

Brahms Geistliches Lied
Handel Suite from Rinaldo
Parry Songs of farewell (selection)
Shostakovich Quartet No.8

Septura Brass Septet


A secular Remembrance programme presented by the acclaimed and innovative brass ensemble Septura.

Septura brings together London’s leading players to redefine brass chamber music through the uniquely expressive sound of the brass septet by creating a canon of transcriptions, arrangements and new commissions for this brand new classical configuration (‘brilliantly done’ The Observer).


Inspired by the strong battlefield associations of brass instruments, Septura’s focus is the mortal aspect of armed conflict, reflecting themes of heroism, sacrifice and grief.

After you've gone: Weimar Cabaret and Prohibition songs

Saturday 23 June, 7.30pm

St Bartholomew the Great

Tickets £20 (includes interval glass of wine)

A rousing programme of fabulous cabaret songs celebrating the post-WWI era. With music by Kurt Weill, Friedrich Hollaender, Irving Berlin, Cole Porter, George Gershwin and many more.

​Mary Carewe, soprano accompanied by Harry the Piano

​The Steinway Model D Piano is used by kind permission of City Music Society.

Choral Evensong at St Bride's

Sunday 24th June, 5.30pm

St Bride's, Fleet Street

No admission charge

Dyson Evening Service in D
Rose Responses
Walford Davies chant
Parry Never weather beaten sail
Mendelssohn Verleih’ uns Frieden
Ireland Greater love hath no man 

The Choir of St Bride’s, Fleet Street
Robert Jones, Director of Music
Matthew Morley, organ

Choral Evensong at St Bartholomew the Great

​Sunday 24th June, 6.30pm

St Bartholomew the Great


No admission charge

Howells Evening Service in G
Rose Responses
Parry My soul, there is a country 

The Choir of St Bartholomew the Great
Rupert Gough, Director of Music
Jonathan Eyre, organ


Breath of Hope


Monday 25 June, 7.30pm

St Stephen Walbrook

Tickets £20 (includes interval glass of wine)

Holst Wind quintet in A flat, op. 14
Finzi Five bagatelles op. 23
Ravel (arr. Mason) Le tombeau de Couperin
Vaughan Williams Six English folksongs
Lili Boulanger D'un matin de printemps
Erwin Schulhoff Divertissement
Poulenc Sextet

New London Chamber Ensemble

Robert Manasse, flute
Melanie Ragge, oboe
Neyire Ashworth, clarinet
Fraser Gordon, bassoon
Alexia Cammish, horn
Michael Dussek, piano

An enchanting programme for woodwind and piano, embracing music from home – Vaughan Williams’ Six English folksongs and Finzi’s Five bagatelles – and abroad. Ravel’s Le tombeau de Couperin (1914-17) is a series of memorials to the composer’s friends who had died fighting. A spirit of hope and vitality is captured in Lili Boulanger’s D’un matin de printemps, despite being written shortly before Boulanger’s untimely death in 1918, and continued in Poulenc’s Sextet. 

All Earthly Things Above: Holst’s Planets

Tuesday 26 June, 7.00pm

St Bartholomew the Great

Tickets £15

Gustav Holst’s monumental Planets, premiered in 1918, as rarely heard – in the composer’s own transcription for piano (four hands), with a new dimension of evocative poetry-reading.

York2: John York and Fiona York, piano duet

Nickolas Grace, reciter

Rohan McCullough, reciter

​​The Steinway Model D Piano is used by kind permission of City Music Society.

'National Gallery' lunchtime piano recital

Wednesday 27 June, 1.00pm

St Giles-without-Cripplegate

Tickets £15


J. S. Bach Prelude and fugue in C# minor, BWV 849 
Beethoven Piano sonata ‘Appassionata’ in F minor, Op. 57
Brahms Three intermezzi from Op. 119
Chopin Nocturne in F# major, Op. 15 No. 2
Chopin Waltz No. 1 in Eb major, Op. 18
J. S. Bach Jesu, joy of man's desiring

Adrian Brendle, piano

During the Second World War, pianist Myra Hess had the idea of morale-boosting lunchtime concerts in the National Gallery. Taking place every weekday for six years, throughout even the Blitz, they were an enormous success, attracting and inspiriting many thousands of Londoners. This concert is inspired by the opening performance given by Dame Myra (as she was to become) herself, and features her celebrated arrangement of JS Bach’s Jesu, joy of man’s desiring and Beethoven’s Appassionata sonata – her great stalwart in times of particular trouble.

Presented in association with the Keyboard Charitable Trust
With thanks to Jaques Samuel Pianos Ltd

Gathering Storm Clouds

Wednesday 27 June, 7.30pm

St Giles-without-Cripplegate

Tickets £20 (includes interval glass of wine)

Gurney Sehnsucht; The sea; Prelude in D flat major

Ireland London pieces 

Vaughan Williams The lake in the mountains

Vaughan Williams Fantasia on Greensleeves (piano duet)

Vaughan Williams Fantasia on a theme by Thomas Tallis (arr. Maurice Jacobson and Vaughan Williams for two pianos -

first public performance in modern times)

Delius On hearing the first cuckoo in spring (transcribed for piano duet by Peter Warlock)

Frank Bridge Sonata for piano

Mark Bebbington, piano

with Rebeca Omordia, piano

and Irene Loh, piano 

Ravishing British music of the early 20th century for piano, drawing on the love of composers for town (Ireland’s London pieces) and country (Vaughan Williams’ rarely heard The lake in the mountains), nature (Delius’s On hearing the first cuckoo in spring and rare works by Ivor Gurney) and history (Vaughan Williams’ Fantasia on a theme by Thomas Tallis, transcribed for two pianos). The pastoral idyll is shattered by Bridge’s Sonata for piano, expressing the composer’s reaction to accounts of First World War atrocities. 

Generously supported by the John Ireland Trust and the Vaughan Williams Charitable Trust.

With thanks to Jaques Samuel Pianos.

Farewell to Arms


Thursday 28 June, 6.00pm

St Stephen Walbrook

Tickets £15

Howells King David

Gurney Extracts from five songs of Rupert Brooke  

Ireland The land of lost content

Browne Arabia; To Gratiana Dancing and Singing 

Finzi Farewell to Arms

James MacMillan The children

Richard Robbins, tenor 

Guy Murgatroyd, piano

Jo Blake Cave, story-teller

Music and words vividly recalling First World War experiences.  Songs by Ivor Gurney (the poet and composer whose life was blighted by his suffering in the trenches), William Denis Browne (died in a Turkish trench in the Dardanelles in June 1915), Gerald Finzi and John Ireland (both deeply affected by the loss of friends and contemporaries), woven together with letters written home from the Front. James MacMillan’s contemporary response to the anguish of war completes the programme.


Flowers of the Field


Friday 29 June, 7.30pm

St Giles-without-Cripplegate

Tickets £20 (includes interval glass of wine)

Warlock Capriol Suite

Butterworth Songs from A Shropshire lad

Patrick Hawes I know the music  

Butterworth The banks of green willow 

Elgar Chanson de matin

Vaughan Williams The lark ascending  

Finzi Requiem da camera   


Roderick Williams, baritone

City of London Choir

London Mozart Players

Hilary Davan Wetton, conductor

A programme of music poignantly harking back to a pastoral age devastated by the outbreak of the First World War, combined with settings of haunting war poetry. Includes the Shropshire lad song cycle and The banks of green willow by George Butterworth (killed at the Somme, 1916), Patrick Hawes’ moving setting of Wilfred Owen’s poem I know the music, and Vaughan Williams’ evergreen Lark ascending of 1914. The festival closes with Gerald Finzi’s affecting Requiem da camera, written in memory of friends and colleagues lost in the trenches, and expressing the grief of a nation.  


We are deeply grateful to CMS Cameron McKenna Nabarro Olswang LLP, M&G Investments, the John Ireland Trust, the Vaughan Williams Charitable Trust, the Keyboard Charitable Trust, Jaques Samuels Pianos and all our supporters for making this first year of Summer Music in City Festivals possible. We are grateful to the clergy, churchwardens and administrators of St Giles Cripplegate, St Bartholomew the Great, St Stephen Walbrook, St Mary-le-Bow and St Bride's for all their help and support.

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