Endymion commemorates WW1

robertgraves-7782Endymion will be travelling to Bath at the end of October to première a new oratorio based on the life and works of “war poet” Robert Graves, best known for his poems detailing his experiences from school to the trenches of Europe.

We’ll be joined by the Philharmonia Voices, the Bath Children’s Choir, and baritone soloist Edward Grint, and conducted by regular Endymion player Robin O’Neill. The performance is part of the Bath Festival and will be one of many events throughout the UK marking the 100th anniversary of the beginning of the First World War.

Composer Jools Scott has written the new oratorio on texts by Robert Graves compiled by librettist and writer Sue Curtis.

Tickets are available from the Bath Festival website.

Endymion returns to the Proms!

Now making our 10th appearance at the Proms, Endymion will be performing with the BBC Singers for the 10:15 pm concert of Steve Reich‘s “The Desert Music” on August 13th.

We’ll once again be joined on stage by the BBC Singers’ Chief Conductor David Hill, who also conducted when we played the same piece last October in the new hall at the Barbican, Milton Court. As David Nice wrote of that performance, “this is vibrant, thrilling music for everyone, one of the few towering works of the 1980s, and it’s destined to last.”

As with all Proms concerts, you can tune in live on BBC Radio 3 and also stream the concert online.

For more information about “The Desert Music,” which draws on the poetry of William Carlos Williams, you can check out the BBC Discovering Music documentary on the piece. Come join us! Buy tickets at the BBC Proms website.

Below is a recording of the full orchestral version of the first movement with the BBC Symphony Orchestra and the BBC Singers.

CPG success for Endymion

Making Music CPG logo

Endymion are delighted to announce that they have been chosen as 2015-2016 Selected Artists for the Concert Promoters Group.

The Selected Artists brochure, containing information on soloists and groups specially chosen by the Group, will be sent out in May across the country to promoters and music clubs who are members of Making Music.

Endymion are looking forward to playing for the many Making Music members up and down the country in the 2015-2016 season.

Endymion at the Proms!

Endymion will be performing at the BBC Proms once again in 2014: we’ll be joining the BBC Singers for a late night Prom performance of Steve Reich’s “Desert Music” on August 13th.

The 10pm concert follows our very well-received performance last year at Milton Court, London’s newest concert hall. The BBC Singers’ Chief Conductor, David Hill, will conduct.

Like all Proms performances, this concert will be broadcast live on BBC Radio 3, giving all our fans, near and far, a chance to hear.

For more information about our Proms visit and how to buy tickets, visit the Proms website.

Endymion on disc

Signum

Endymion spent a few days in mid-March making a new recording of choral music by renowned British composer Judith Weir for independent label, Signum Records.

The beautiful Temple Church, in central London, became a studio for Endymion, the choristers of the Temple Church Choir, the BBC Singers and their conductor, David Hill, as they recorded Judith’s “Storm” and “All the Ends of the Earth”.

We haven’t got a release date yet, but we’ll be sure to let you know!

Horn Trio on tour

(photo: Malcolm Crowthers)

Stephen Stirling (above), Krysia Osostowicz and Michael Dussek visited York, Richmondshire, Teesside and Sheffield with a very successful tour of Endymion’s popular Horn Trio programme. At the end of February and beginning of March, the group performed the pairing of Brahms’ Horn Trio (op. 40) and Ligeti’s trio, subtitled “Hommage à Brahms” to four very appreciative audiences.

The audience in Sheffield were encouraged to give their feedback during the interval (so we didn’t get to hear what they thought of the Brahms): here are some of the highlights:

  • “Brilliant, artists play in absolute harmony and make you feel every melody”
  • “Fantastic opportunity to hear and see the Ligeti performed – and so well.”
  • “Beautifully played, a real treat.”

We also had some lovely feedback from the other promoters: all-in-all, a very successful tour!

Song Stories comes to a rousing conclusion

Endymion Song Stories

We recently completed a four-week long devising and performance project with Primary schools in Westminster as part of its Song Stories outreach strand.  Around 120 children in Year 4 and Year 5 from St Barnabas’ Church of England Primary School and St Clement Danes Church of England Primary School  in Westminster, London took part in a series of workshops based upon the myth of Orpheus and Eurydice and the opera Orfeo by Monteverdi.  The workshops were led by the spirited Animateur John Barber, and supported by Endymion musicians Adrian Bradbury, Jenna Sherry, Massimo Di Trolio and Rebecca McChrystal  and students from the Royal Academy of Music.   Students from the Academy were involved to participate in the project to gain work experience and to absorb and refine their outreach and education skills.

The project, called I am Orfeo, enabled the children at both schools to devise and compose their own songs around the story of Orpheus, and rehearse them to perform at a gala concert.  They also had a chance to learn about the instruments from our quartet (percussion, clarinet, cello and violin) and watch mini-performances by these solo instruments and in duos.

Both schools came together on Thursday 13th March at St Clement Danes Church in Aldwych, central London, to perform the complete story of Orfeo, with arrangements of Monteverdi by John Barber and interspersed with performances from us.  The two schools sang one massed song all together, and their own original songs based on the story.  The event was a huge success, with parents and public attending, and a wonderful sharing experience between the two schools and the musicians from Endymion and the Royal Academy.

We are incredibly grateful to the many trusts who supported this work, in particular the Ernest Cook Trust and the Esmee Fairbairn Foundation, without which it would not have been possible.

Endymion’s Birthday Party

Endymion celebrated our 35th birthday in February this year, performing a weekend of concerts at Kings Place. Endymion gave the inaugural concerts at Kings Place in October 2008, so it was the perfect venue for our party.

Two of the concerts were also part of the Kings Place Top 50 Chamber Classics Unwrapped series: featuring favourite works voted for by readers of BBC Music Magazine. Thursday’s concert included the Brahms Horn Trio (voted no. 43), while Friday’s concert of music for harp, flute and viola featured Debussy’s Trio Sonata (no. 44).

Saturday’s third and final concert was particularly special: three founder members of Endymion gave London a Brahms-fest. Mark van de Wiel (also principal in the Philharmonia) played both of Brahms’ Clarinet Sonatas with Michael Dussek on the piano, as well as the Clarinet Trio (op. 114) joined by cellist Jane Salmon.

Our audiences were appreciative, and it was a pleasure to share our anniversary celebrations with them.

Endymion at 35!

Endymion group by Eamonn McCabeIn 2014, Enydmion celebrates its 35th birthday with a weekend of concerts at Kings Place. Since it’s our birthday we’re calling the shots, and we’ve programmed three evenings of our (and our audiences’) favourite pieces.

On Thursday 6th February, our fabulous horn player Stephen Stirling joins the equally fabulous Krysia Osostowicz and Michael Dussek for our perennially popular horn trio programme, pairing works by Brahms and Ligeti. The Brahms horn trio was voted into the Top 50 Chamber Classics by BBC Music Magazine readers, and we’re delighted to have been invited to play it as part of Kings Place’s “Chamber Classics Unwrapped” series.

http://www.kingsplace.co.uk/whats-on-book-tickets/music/brahms-horn-trio-endymion

Also part of the Top 50 series is Debussy’s Sonata for flute, viola and harp, which we’re playing on Friday 7th February. It’s a difficult piece to programme around, but we’re not afraid of a challenge and Hugh Webb, Helen Keen, Krysia Osostowicz and Asdis Valdimarsdottir come together for a concert featuring solos, duos and trios by Beethoven, Saint-Saëns, Martinů and Debussy’s eternal counterpart, Ravel: the renowned harpist Skaila Kanga made her own arrangement of Ravel’s piano “Sonatine” for the same forces as the Debussy sonata, and we perform them side-by side.

http://www.kingsplace.co.uk/whats-on-book-tickets/music/debussy-sonata-for-flute-viola-harp-endymion

On Saturday 8th February, in an all-Brahms concert, our clarinettist Mark van de Wiel takes centre stage with Michael Dussek, performing both clarinet sonatas – the last chamber works he wrote. Our wonderful cellist Jane Salmon joins the pair for the Clarinet Trio to round off our birthday weekend.

http://www.kingsplace.co.uk/whats-on-book-tickets/music/endymion-plays-brahms

All the concerts are on sale now, and there are still some Online Saver tickets available for only £9.50, and as a special birthday gift to you, there’s a 20% discount when booking two or more concerts!

Endymion at the Ashbourne Festival

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Endymion will be appearing on 29th June at the Ashbourne Festival, performing one of our most popular programmes, the Mozart and Brahms Clarinet Quintets. It’s our first appearance at Ashbourne so we’re delighted to continue to meet new audiences, even after 34 years of performing!  You can get tickets for the concert here.