I am very fortunate to have been a steward for three events at Spitalfields Music’s Summer Festival this year – In the House and a couple of concerts with Harry Christophers & The Sixteen – and have enjoyed every minute of it!
In the House was a tour of five houses located in Spitalfields, each having a musician perform a solo piece for the group. It was my first time as a tour guide. We not only found out about the history of these houses, we also enjoyed the music played by wonderful musicians from the Royal Academy of Music. The owners of each house were really friendly and we were all given short tours around their homes.
During The Sixteen: Allegri & MacMillan I got to meet the conductor himself, Harry Christophers and had a photograph taken with him. He is such a lovely man and very welcoming. The concert itself was magical, flawless and I felt transported to another time. James MacMillan’s new composition Miserere was a treat to listen to and I do hope to hear it again in the future.
The second time I was stewarding, The Sixteen did a Monteverdi set split into two concerts. It was also an education on the style of music which I didn’t have much affinity for until now. The best bit was in the second concert that evening when they paired up with virtuoso jazz pianist Julian Joseph and double bassist, Mark Hodgson. It was a Monteverdi / jazz collaboration. I have never experienced anything like it – the music was organic and really suited improvisation. Who would have thought that Monteverdi and jazz could work so well side by side?
The Festival was great fun and I can’t wait until the Winter Festival comes around, what will be in store I wonder?