Previous Events

Saturday 3rd December 2016 - 7:00pm, St Edmund's Church, Southwold, IP18 6JA:

The Winter Star - a fully staged opera for children

Southwold Concert Series teamed up with Aldeburgh’s Jubilee Opera to present a concert involving more than 50 local children, including members of Southwold Primary School. 

The concert featured a fully staged performance of 'The Winter Star', a short opera based on the Christmas story by Malcolm Williamson. This was preceded by a selection of songs and carols for Advent to celebrate the joy of singing and the coming of Christmas. 

The concert was led by the inspirational conductor Dominic Peckham, who regularly conducts the National Youth Choir of Great Britain and London Mozart Players, and accompanied by professional musicians making up the Jubilee Opera Ensemble.

Southend Boys and Girls Choirs, Saturday 30th April 2016, 3pm, St Edmund's Church, Southwold.

Southwold Concert Series hosted a free concert by the hugely popular Southend Boys and Girls Choirs. The choirs returned to give their 6th concert in Southwold since 2009.

The concert was hosted by Town Mayor Councillor Melanie Tucker, with a retiring collection taken to support the Town Mayor's two nominated charities, St Barnabas Care Home and the Southwold Music Trust. This raised over £500 for the two charities.

London Haydn Quartet on Thursday 23rd October, 2014, in St Edmund's Church, Southwold.

One of the world's leading period instrument quartets, the London Haydn Quartet was born out of a passion for Haydn, and for many years they dedicated themselves exclusively to his works. They perform with gut strings, classical bows and from contemporary sources. The Quartet performed three works which they are then recording at Potton Hall later in the week as part of their recording cycle of Haydn's complete quartets for the Hyperion label.

A review of the first concert in our 2014/15 season - Fenella Humphreys, violin, Bach to the Future - by David Vass, held on Sunday September 14th, 2014:

In the beautiful setting of St Edmund’s church in Southwold, the wooden angels imperiously looking down from their precipitous height, violinist Fenella Humphreys treated a rapt audience to a mixed programme of solo violin pieces - all of them spinning off the central spoke of Bach’s music. She opened, and therefore underpinned, the concert with an emphatic and unfussy performance of Bach’s Partita in E Major, and then cleverly shifted back and forth in time, illustrating how Bach would have been influenced and how he has been influential.

Biber’s Passacaglia, astonishing in its modernity and hauntingly beautiful in its simplicity, allowed Humphreys to show her interpretive skills, while Ysaye’s Sonata no.2 – at times a battle between its conflicting sources – was a startling showcase for her extraordinary virtuosity. Both pieces are part of a continuum that Humphreys has extended by commissioning work that shows how freely a composer can riff off their progenitor. Cheryl Frances-Hoad’s Suite No.1 is a frenetic refraction of Bach’s intent more than his music, and while Gordon Crosse’s ‘Orkney Dreaming’ quoted directly from Bach, his illustration of the power of nature is manifest and his own.

Quite apart from being brilliantly performed, Humphreys’s programme was genuinely thought provoking. Her insightful commentary had me wondering if I heard Britten in Crosse’s work, or what sort of debt Philip Glass owes Biber. It’s a rare accomplishment to wow an audience with technical prowess, seduce them with emotionally rich music, and yet also engage them intellectually. The personable Fenella Humphreys managed all three.

Other events from previous seasons are listed below:

Saturday May 10th, 7:30pm - Messiaen's Quartet for the End of Time - Ben Hancox, Cara Berridge, Sarah Beaty and Alastair Beatson

Saturday 7th December 2014 - The Christmas Extravaganza Elinor Jane Moran, Philip Lee and the Saint Felix Choral Society in the now annual festive musical event as part of the Southwold Christmas Lights Switch-on celebrations. 

Saturday 28th September 2013 - James Gilchrist, Alison Nicholls, Nathan Williamson - 'Britten and Ireland' - a programme of British song, including Britten's Michelangelo Sonnets and Canticles I and V, Ireland's Land of Lost Content, songs by Gurney and new work by Nathan Williamson.

Saturday 29th June 2013 - St Edmund's Church, Southwold; Sunday 30th June, Aldeburgh Jubilee Hall - William Walton's Facade and Constant Lambert's Concerto for Piano and Nine Players - Claire Bloom and Humphrey Burton - reciters, David Owen Norris - piano, The Spring Ensemble, Nathan Williamson - conductor

Saturday May 25th, 2013 - The Society of Strange and Ancient Instruments - a concert entitled 'The Ministry of Angels'

Saturday March 16th, 2013 - 'Bach, Britten, and Brahms': Alexander Somov, cello; Nathan Williamson, piano - Bach - French Suite (for keyboard) in G major BWV 816    Britten - Third Suite for Solo Cello, op.87    Brahms - Sonata in F major for piano and cello, op.99

Saturday 9th February, 2013 The Lawson Trio - Mozart - Trio in C Major; K.548   Anthony Powers - Piano Trio  Shostakovitch - Trio no.1 in C minor; op.8  Brahms - Trio no.2 in C major; op.87

Saturday 8th December, 2012, Christmas Cabaret Extravaganza - Festive music from Richard Knight, Elinor Jane Moran, Olivia Castle, and Marc Callahan, with the Saint Felix Choral Society 

Saturday 1st December, 2012, Christmas Choral Extravaganza - featuring the Saint Felix Choral Soceity in a performance of excerpts from Handel's Messiah

Saturday 3rd November, 2012, Anna Cashell, violin and Simon Watterton, piano - Handel - Sonata in D major, op1 no.13, Malcolm Arnold - Five pieces, op.84, Elgar - Salut d'amour; La Capricieuse, Chanson du Matin, Mozart - Sonata in E Minor; K304, Schumann - Sonata in D minor, op.121

Saturday 22nd September, 2012, The Park Quartet - Haydn - String Quartet in G major, op.33 no.5, Elizabeth Maconchy - String Quartet no.5 (1948), Dvorák - String Quartet in F major, op.96, 'American'

Saturday 12th May 2012, Michael Petrov, cello and Rosie Richardson, piano - Debussy - Cello Sonata (1915), Beethoven - Sonata for piano and cello in C major, op.102, Chopin - Introduction and Polonaise Brilliante, op.3, Bartok - First Rhapsody (1929), Brahms - Sonata for piano and cello in E minor, op.38

Saturday 7th April 2012, Nathan Williamson, piano - Liszt – Variations on a theme of Bach (Weinen, klagen, sorgen, zagen), JS Bach - Fantasia and Fugue in A minor, BWV 904, Mozart – Fantasy and Fugue in C major, K.394, Liszt – From the 'Transcendental Etudes': Eroica, Harmonies du Soir, Chasse-Neige, Beethoven – Sonata in A flat, op.110

Saturday 18th February 2012, The Sacconi Quartet and Nathan Williamson, piano - Franz Joseph Haydn – Quartet in G major, op.77 no.1, Béla Bartók – String Quartet no.3 (1927), Edward Elgar – Piano Quintet in A minor, op.84

Saturday 3rd December 2011, Christmas Extravaganza - Elinor Jane Moran, soprano, Richard Knight, tenor, and Olivia Castle, soprano, accompanied by Nathan Williamson, piano

Thursday October 20th 2011, The Rhodes Piano Trio - Franz Joseph Haydn – Trio in E minor, Hob.XV:15, Robert Schumann – Trio in F major, op.80, Antonin Dvorák – Trio in F minor, op.65 (1883)

Saturday September 24th 2011 - Classical guitars - Tom Ellis and Laura Snowden - Wolff Jakob Lauffensteiner (1676-1754) – Sonata in A major, Ferdinando Carulli (1770-1841) – Nocturne, op. 143 no.2, Heitor Villa-Lobos (1887-1959) – Five Etudes, Benjamin Britten (1913-1976) – Nocturna, Colin Downs (b.1949) – Letras de Humo, Béla Bartók (1881-1945) – Five pieces from Mikrokosmos

8th July 2011 – James Gilchrist, tenor, Alison Nicholls, harp - Britten A Birthday Hansel, Alec Roth Romantic Residues, Lennox Berkeley Five Herrick Poems, Nicola LeFanu Alkman the Choirmaster, Howard Skempton Three songs for Jennie, Ravel Cinq mélodies populaires grecques 

28th May 2011 – Njabulo Madlala, baritone, Nathan Williamson, piano - Songs by Duparc, Mahler, Vaughan Williams, Howells, Schumann, and arrangements of South African Folksong

9th April 2011 – Nathan Williamson, piano Mozart Sonata in F major K.332, Brahms Pieces op.118, Schubert Sonata in A major D.959

12th February 2011 – Alexander Somov, cello, Nathan Williamson, piano - Stravinsky Suite Italienne, Britten Sonata, Williamson Things Needed for a Great Celebration, Shostakovitch Sonata 
4th December 2010 – Christmas Lights Switch-on weekend - Elinor Jane Moran, soprano, Richard Knight, tenor, Daniel Roddick, baritone, with Nathan Williamson, piano. A medley of Christmas music as part of the Christmas Lights Switch-on weekene celebrations.

23rd October 2010 – Barbirolli String Quartet - Haydn Quartet in E major, op.54 no.3, Szymanowski Quartet no.2 op.56, Nathan Williamson String Quartet 2010 (world premiere), Felix Mendelssohn Quartet in F minor, op.80

11th September 2010 – Amsterdam Chamber Soloists - Mozart Piano Quartet in E flat K.493, Turina Piano Quartet in A minor, op.67, Richard Strauss Piano Quartet in C minor, op.13.

26th June 2010 – Scenes from ‘A Fountain Sealed’ - a new opera Libretto by Thomas Walton - Music by Nathan Williamson; Anna (soprano) – Emilie Bregeon Daniel (tenor) – David Knight Giles (baritone) – Lukas Kargl Ruth (soprano) – Hannah Sawle Young Giles (counter-tenor) – Magid El-Bushra Alison Luz and John-Paul Gandy, pianos, conducted by the composer

 22nd May 2010 – Sacconi Quartet, Nathan Williamson, piano - Borodin Quartet no.2, Janacek Quartet no.2, Dvorak, Piano Quintet op.81

13th February 2010 – Mark Simpson, clarinet, Ian Buckle, piano - Debussy Premiere Rhapsodie, Schumann Phantasiestücke, Kenneth Hesketh Point Forms, Patrick Nunn Prism, Brahms Sonata in E flat, op.120 no.2

5th December 2009 – Festive Musical Fayre! - Elinor Jane Moran - soprano, Richard Knight - tenor, Daniel Roddick - baritone, Nathan Williamson - piano. Christmas songs, Victoriana, Flanders and Swann, Gilbert and Sullivan, all designed to get you in the festive mood!

31st October 2009 – Nathan Williamson, piano - Bach Excerpts from Anna Magdalena’s Notebook, Fantasia and Fugue in A minor, Mozart Variations Ah je vous dirai, maman, Beethoven ‘Moonlight’ Sonata, Schubert Impromptus D.899, Maxwell Davies Farewell to Stromness, Brahms Two Rhapsodies op.79

26th September 2009 – Martucci Ensemble, Laurence Ungless, double bass, Nathan Williamson, piano - Handel/Halvorsen Passacaglia, Janacek Pohadka, Mozart Piano Quintet in G minor, Schubert ‘Trout’ Quintet

4th April 2009 – David Chivers, violin, Nathan Williamson, piano - Mozart Sonata in G major K.301, Sonata in G major K.379, Webern 4 pieces, op.7, Brahms Sonatensatz, Sonata in A Major op.100, Sonata in D minor, op.108

25th October 2008 – Elinor Jane Moran, soprano, John Savournin, baritone, Arisa Fujita, violin, Max Baillie, viola, Matthijs Broersma, cello, Nathan Williamson, piano - Britten ‘On this Island’, Ireland, Vaughan Williams, Stanford - Songs, Nathan Williamson ‘Crystal’ (world premiere), Schumann Piano Quintet in E flat op.47, Mozart opera arias and duets

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Piano Circus


Sunday 24th June, 7:30pm, 2018, Southwold Arts Centre


Staged as part of the Southwold Arts Festival 2018


The Southwold Concert Series is staging its next event in collaboration with Southwold Arts Festival: a concert by the renowned new music ensemble Piano Circus on Sunday June 24th at 7:30pm.


Piano Circus is one of thw world's leading new music ensembles, compris six pianists performing specially commissioned work by a variety of contemporary composers.


Click here for more information.

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