southwell music festival

The most memorable event of the 2015 Festival?

Haydn’s Seven Last Words of Our Saviour on the Cross for string quartet was performed in Southwell Minster in a late night concert on Friday 28th August: the performance was given in the round and in almost total darkness beneath the central tower.


Sunday Times critic Hugh Canning reserved particular praise for this concert:

“Perhaps the most memorable event I attended was a late-night performance of Haydn’s The Seven Last Words of Our Saviour on the Cross, given by [Jamie] Campbell and Maria Wloszczowska (violins), Simon Tandree (viola) and Nathaniel Boyd (cello) in the crossing of the dimly lit minster. Haydn’s seven slow movements (and final earthquake) were interspersed with brief readings from the relevant scripture. The quartet captured the anguish of Christ’s suffering with an intensity to match the violent harmonic shifts of Haydn’s music — surely the most avant-garde quartet-writing of the 18th century and still modern-sounding today. The audience, ranged in cruciform seating around the players, responded with a contemplative concentration that was as stirring as the performance itself.  A long silence, before prolonged applause.”

The impact of the music is complemented by wonderful exterior views of the Minster and sight of a very special moon behind scurrying clouds.

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The 2016 Festival takes place from 25-29 August.  The programme will be launched at a special concert on Friday 18th March at 7.30pm in Southwell Minster.

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