Multi Talented Principal Conductor Takes Centre Stage with Sinfonia Viva

Multi Talented Principal Conductor Takes Centre Stage with Sinfonia Viva

The audience at Sinfonia Viva’s latest concert in the Twilights series at Derby Cathedral on Friday April 7 will be treated to two distinctly different sides of the Orchestra’s multi-talented Principal Conductor Duncan Ward.

Ward will return to the Cathedral for the fourth in the Twilights series of drive time and early evening concerts after initially launching the programme last November.

The April 7 concert, starting at 6pm, is entitled ‘A Spring Quintet’.  The highlight will be a new composition by Ward entitled ‘Hopscotch for Wind Quintet’ which he will conduct.

Then for the opening and closing pieces – Poulenc’s ‘Sextet for Wind Quintet & Piano’ and Mozart’s ‘Quintet in Eb for Piano, oboe, clarinet, horn and bassoon’ – Ward will transfer to the piano to play alongside the Sinfonia Viva wind players.

Ward said: “I am thrilled to be back at the piano and joining Viva's wind soloists in performing some of the most exquisite chamber music in the repertoire.

“Mozart himself declared that he considered the Piano quintet with winds to be the best thing he had written in his life.

“The Poulenc Sextet is a fun-filled romp of jazz-tinged clowning satire and near-teary songfulness.

“I composed 'Hopscotch' aged 14. It was the piece that subsequently earned me the 2005 BBC Young Composer of the Year award and that led to an exciting stream of early commissions.

“As the title suggests it reflects a childhood game with each instrumentalist representing a different character, and covers a range of emotions as these distinct characters compete for attention, tease, play, clash and reconcile.”

The Twilights series has been presented with Derby Cathedral in association with Orchestras Live and supported by Arts Council England and Derby City Council.  It is a key element in the Cathedral’s two-year cultural audience development programme which has been supported with a £80,000 Arts Council England grant.

Ward continued: “The Twilights series has been a key element of our partnership working with Derby Cathedral – one of Derby’s most historically significant and powerful spaces.

“Our aim has been to keep high quality and professional classical music alive in the city and fill the gap left by the closure of the Assembly Rooms.

“Twilights concerts have ranged from a full Chamber Orchestra to presenting the fantastic ODuo percussion performance.

“This diversity of music and the different timings of the concerts has succeeded in appealing to a wider range of audiences and cement Derby Cathedral as the home of classical music in the city.”

Derby Cathedral Chapter Steward Rachel Morris continued: “The Classical Music Development Programme is a key component in developing our wider arts and cultural offer.

“Our links with Viva have brought several concerts and have been instrumental in developing our wider offer to support the Cathedral’s own vision in being one of Derby’s developing cultural venues.

“The continued closure of the Assembly Rooms and uncertainty of any future for a concert venue, has resulted in the Cathedral being the only viable classical venue alternative – ensuring that audiences do not have to travel further afield to access professional work of this high quality.”

Tickets for ‘A Spring Quintet’ on April 7 are available from Sinfonia Viva’s website; by telephone 0333 666 3366 or in person from the Derby LIVE box office in the Market Place. Tickets cost £10 with £8 concessions and £6 for anyone under 26. Booking fees may apply.

Twilights will return to Derby Cathedral in October 2017.

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