Highlight No 10: Mendelssohn’s Octet

Welcome to Day Ten of our 12 Days of Christmas series in which we are presenting twelve short highlights from the inaugural 2014 Southwell Music Festival.

We wanted a big musical gesture to open our first Festival and in chamber music terms there are few bigger than Mendelssohn’s Octet – indeed the 16 year old composer directs that the players should perform in an orchestral manner.  So here are the opening moments of that performance – the first of two by these players on the evening of Friday 22 August as they went on to repeat it in the Old Theatre Deli an hour or so later: a landmark in the performing history of this great piece.

The performers are Jamie Campbell, Hannah Dawson, Natalie Klouda and Maria Włoszczowska (violins), Ruth Gibson and Simon Tandree (violas), and Karel Bredenhorst and Nathaniel Boyd (cellos).  The recording is by Alex Barnes .

One audience member commented: “The sheer enjoyment of music making [was] particularly evident in the Octet…”

If you would like to comment on our 12 Days of Christmas celebration or on the Southwell Music Festival in general please email or join the conversation on Twitter.

Please join us for the Festival’s London concert on Tuesday 3rd February and find out about the 2015 Festival programme when it is launched at Southwell Minster on Friday 13th March.  Details are in the Christmas newsletter (pdf download). The dates for the 2015 Southwell Music Festival are 27-31 August.

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