YORK Late Music’s 2022/2023 season opens on Friday with the Delta Saxophone Quartet’s evening concert, The Steve Martland Story, at St Saviourgate Unitarian Chapel, York.
The 7.30pm programme takes in Purcell/Martland’s Fantasia 6; Martland’s Remix and Principia; Joe Duddell’s Compacted Grounds and world premieres of Damon Rees’s A Hocket A Day and Stine Solbakken’s Karl Johan’s Gate.
Further works will be Louis Andriessen’s Slow Birthday; Tom Armstrong’s Damascene Redux; Michael Nyman’s 24 Hours; Mark Anthony-Turnage’s Run Riot (1st Movement) and Paul McCartney’s Golden Slumbers/Carry The Weight, from The Beatles’ album Abbey Road.
The finale comprises David Lancaster’s arrangement of Joy Division’s Love Will Tear Us Apart, followed by Joe Duddell & Nick Williams’s Joy Division/Factory Records-inspired arrangements.
Looking ahead to the season as a whole, administrator Steve Crowther says: “Whether you are a devotee of new music or simply a lover of music itself, our 2022-2023 season promises to be a truly rewarding experience. We have more than 40 world premières, expressing freshness and innovation.
“The season embraces a full range of musical styles and genres. The stark immediacy of Xenakis. The hypnotic minimalism of John Adams. Authentic musical arrangements of Joy Division and David Bowie. We also include pieces by composers who deserve to be better known, for example Reginald Smith Brindle.”
This season also marks the 75th birthday of York Late Music patron and composer Nicola LeFanu, the 150th birthday of Ralph Vaughan Williams and the death in April this year of contemporary classical music and opera composer Sir Harrison Birtwistle.
Concerts largely take place at St Saviourgate Unitarian Chapel on the first Saturday of each month from September to December 2022, then February to June 2023. The season’s opening concert, however, falls this Friday, to be followed by lunchtime and evening concerts the next day.
Each evening concert has an informal pre-concert talk at 6.45pm, accompanied by a free glass of wine or juice, usually featuring an interview with one of the evening’s composers and an open discussion. First up, on Friday, will be saxophonist Chris Caldwell: Remembering Steve Martland.
“All of our concerts are informal and family-friendly, offering a chance to talk to composers and performers, which we strongly encourage. They don’t bite!” says Steve. “Students and young musicians are especially welcome.”
In Saturday’s lunchtime recital at 1pm, pianist Jakob Fichert focuses on the music of Massachusetts composer John Adams, who turned 75 on February 14 this year. His works China Gates and American Berserk will be complemented by Adolf Busch’s Variations On An Original Theme; Schönberg’s 6 Little Pieces Op. 19; Deborah Pritchard’s The Sun
and the world premiere of Steve Crowther’s Piano Sonata No.4.
Saturday evening’s 7.30pm programme by the Bingham String Quartet comprises Beethoven’s String Quartet No. 6 in Bb Major (Op.18); Schnittke’s String Quartet No.3
LeFanu’s String Quartet No.2 and Tippett’s String Quartet No.2.
Further concerts will be given this year by pianist Duncan Honeybourne, November 5, 1pm; James Turnbull, oboe, and Libby Burgess, piano, November 5, 7.30pm; Micklegate Singers, And There Were Shepherds, December 3, 1pm, and Gemini, Nicola LeFanu At 75, A Portrait and Celebration, December 3, 7.30pm.
Next year’s programme opens with Music On The Edge: The Lapins, featuring Susie Holder-Williams, flute, Chris Caldwell, saxophone, and James Boyd, guitar, on February 4 at 1pm, followed by the Fitzwilliam String Quartet at 7.30pm.
Ruth Lee presents a harp recital on March 4 at 1pm; the Elysian Singers perform at 7.30pm that night.
On April 1, cellist Ivana Peranic and pianist Rachel Fryer unite for the lunchtime recital; York Late Music regular Ian Pace returns to the piano for the Xenakis Centenary Concert: Composers With A Side Hustle at 7.30pm.
On April 29, Tim Brooks and the York Hub steer the children and young students’ recital in a day-long project from 8am to 5pm.
Guitarist Federico Pendenza presents Reginald Smith Brindle: A Tribute on May 6 at 1pm. The tributes continue that evening when The New Matrix focus on the music of Sir Harrison Birtwistle at 7.30pm.
The Composers Competition Workshop takes place at the Unitarian Chapel from 8am to 5pm on June 2.
Baritone Stuart O’Hara sings to piano accompaniment on June 3; Nick Williams conducts the Late Music Ensemble at 7.30pm.
“We hope this whets your appetite and we look forward to seeing you soon,” says Steve. Full programme and ticket details can be found at latemusic.org. Tickets are available on the door too.