Welcome to Hartlepool Music Society's 2010/11 season, which again features distinguished artists from Europe and Great Britain.
We have been particularly fortunate in recent years to attract some of the finest string quartets, and this season is no exception, as we are presenting three outstanding quartets.
We begin Wednesday 6th October with the young British group, the Badke Quartet, who have gone from strength to strength since winning the top prize at the 2007 Melbourne competition. They will play a programme of Haydn, Janacek and Ravel for us.
For our second concert, Monday 8th November, we welcome back the pianist Mark Bebbington, who has been rediscovering and recording fine English piano music by composers such as John Ireland, and it is fitting that his programme includes the Three London pieces by Ireland. We are particularly grateful to the John Ireland Trust, who have kindly agreed to make a financial contribution toward the cost of this concert.
For our Christmas concert on Friday 3rd December we once again leave our regular Town Hall home, and move to St. George's UR Church for A Yuletide Tale, which is an evening of music by Scarlatti, Monteverdi, Mozart and Purcell interspersed with readings recounting the Christmas story. The Musicke Companye are our guests, and it promises to be as enjoyable an evening as our recent Christmas concerts at St. George's have been.
After our Christmas break, we welcome 16th February the lovely mezzo-soprano, Victoria Simmonds, who will sing a programme of Mahler, John Ireland (once again) and Schubert's Schwanengesang. Many of you will have heard Victoria sing for Opera North, where she has recently created the title role of Pinocchio in Jonathan Dove's opera and also sung Dorabella in Cosi fan tutte.
We finish the season with two outstanding string quartets. On Tuesday 22nd March, we will entertain the St. Petersburg Quartet, who are particularly famous for their recordings of all the Shostakovich quartets. They are playing a programme of Beethoven, Brahms and Dvorak for us, and are really not to be missed.
And the same applies to the Cremona Quartet, who, I think, are our first artists from Italy. They have established themselves in the 10 years since they were founded as one of the leading quartets in Europe, and will play Bartok, Schumann and Grieg for our final concert on Wednesday 13th April.
We look forward to welcoming you to all of these concerts, and hope you enjoy our season.
Hon. Concert Promoter.