Live music events returns to Wensleydale church

Philip Sharp.

Live music returns to Aysgarth church next month thanks to the Wensleydale Concert Series.

The concerts are at Aysgarth church because the organisers, Carol Haynes and Liz Sowter, believe it is well suited for Covid-safe audiences.

All the concerts will be full length with only a brief interval but, due to the pandemic, there will be no refreshments.

There will be two concerts a month in July, August and September, beginning with Thomas Guthrie (baritone) and Daniel Grimwood (piano) presenting Schubert’s The Wanderer Fantasy, Op.15 and Die Schöne Müllerin.

Daniel returns a week later on Saturday, July 24 for a Trio Chamber concert with Peter Cigleris (clarinet) and Gemma Rosefield (cello). The programme will be Weber’s Grand Duo Concertant, Op.48 for clarinet and piano; Mendelssohn’s Sonata for Cello and Piano No.2 in D major, Op.58; and the Clarinet Trio Op.114  by Brahms.

On Wednesday, August 11 guitarist Scott Bradley will present a concert which will include J.S.Bach’s Lute Suite BWV 997; John W Duarte’s English Suite Op.31; Johann Kaspar Mertz’s Hungarian Fantasy;  and the world premiere of Simon Runcorn’s Pretchistenka.

The piano recital by Philip Sharp on Wednesday, August 25 includes music by Handel, Beethoven, Mahler, Debussy, Messiaen and Stravinsky.

Dvořák’s Slavonic Dances and arrangements of Brahms’ Hungarian Dances are included in the programme on Monday September 6 played by Robin Michael (cello) and Daniel Tong (piano).

And finally, on Wednesday, September 22 pianist Alicja Fiderkiewicz returns to Aysgarth church for a concert which will encompass compositions by Schumann, Chopin (including Barcarolle), Bacewicz and John McLeod’s Hebridean Dances.

The concert organisers said: “After an awful year we hope you are well and looking forward to an exciting programme of music this summer.

“It was a terrible year for musicians too and we have invited as many musicians as possible who had concerts cancelled last year.”

Last year, with funding from the Coop Community Fund they had planned to provide transport from different parts of Wensleydale using minibuses.

They can’t do that this year due to the pandemic but are willing to help those who might need to be accompanied by a friend or a carer by providing one free ticket. It might also be possible to pay for a taxi but for this they need to be contacted well in advance.

They don’t intend to sell tickets at the door as they have done previously.

Instead tickets need to be booked in advance. For details see the website  or phone 01969 663026.

Covid guidance will be posted on the website before each concert.

“We want people to feel and be safe,” the organisers said.