Wednesday 28 September 2016

Locklair, Bednall & Hewitt Jones: Showcase concert for the Otakar Kraus Music Trust

I recently reviewed Convivium Records new disc of music by the American composer Dan Locklair performed by Sospiri, conducted by Christopher Watson and there is now a chance to hear the performers in Locklair's music as part of a concert at Merton College Chapel, Oxford on Saturday 1 October 2016. The concert is being given in aid of the 25th Anniversary Appeal of the Otakar Kraus Music Trust. Sospiri will be joined by Sansara and the Cathedral Singers for a performance of Thomas Tallis's Spem in Alium.

The concert will also form a showcase for a number of other recent Convivium discs, with performances of new music by David Bednall (whose Stabat Mater I reviewed recently) and Thomas Hewitt Jones. Performers also include the Illumina Duo (Ellie Lovegrove trumpet and Richard Moore organ), Sebastian Thomson (organ) and the treble Angus Benton (BBC Young Chorister of the Year 2015) accompanied by Malcolm Archer (organ).

The Otakar Kraus Music Trust provides music therapy and music projects for children, young people and adults with physical, learning, neurological or psychological difficulties. The Trust was founded by Dr Margaret Lobo in memory of Otakar Kraus OBE, the Czech born English baritone who created the role of Tarquinius in Benjamin Britten’s The Rape of Lucretia and King Fisher in Tippett’s The Midsummer Marriage in 1955. Otakar Kraus helped Margaret Lobo, also an opera singer, to recover her voice after it was damaged. Margaret thereafter trained as a Music Therapist and inspired by her own experience, founded the Otakar Kraus Music Trust in 1991 in order to help those with communication or other difficulties.

The concert also represents an opportunity to say goodbye to Christopher Watson (co-founder of Sospiri, director of music at St Edmund Hall, and member of the Tallis Scholars) as in January 2017 he takes up the post of director of music at Trinity College, Melbourne in Australia.

Further information from the Otakar Kraus Music Trust website. You can donate to the Otakar Kraus Music Trust's 25th anniversary appeal through the JustGiving website.

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