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Early Music Day at King's Lynn Festival

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In what now seems to be a King’s Lynn Festival tradition, another enjoyable and successful Early Music Day at the St Nicholas Chapel took place yesterday.

It consisted of three events, an organ recital given by Rachel Mahon, (which I did not attend), the Baroque Ensemble Spiritato with Ciara Hendrick, (singing beautifully in cantatas by Pepusch), and Music for a Musical Coalman, given by Ensemble Hesperi.

The coalman was one Thomas Britton, a small-time coal merchant who ran musical evenings in his coal loft in Clerkenwell, attracting the elite's great and good, as well as the best performers of the day in early 18th-century London.

Rachel Mahon (58184887)
Rachel Mahon (58184887)

The music performed during Early Music Day was composed by such great musicians as Handel, Purcell and Corelli, but others, not so well known, were also included such as W Corbett, O Shuttleworth, Finger, Playford, Banister and Whichello!

The idea being to give the audiences a flavour of the composers and their music which were composed and performed in eighteenth century Britain and the various styles and influences that became popular at the time, such as ones from Italy, France and Germany.

Rachel Mahon’s organ recital included music by Bach, Widor, Bales, Parry, Mendelssohn and Laurin and took place in St Nicholas’ chapel as did the other performers.

I won’t single out individual soloists but all string and wind players performed superbly, as did the harpsichord and trumpet players. A great day, thanks to all who contributed to it.

The organ recital was sponsored by Soroptimists International of King’s Lynn and the other two evening concerts sponsored by Kate and Adrian Parker, with John Mallen also sponsoring The Taste of The Nation concert (Spiriato), together with Kate and Adrian.

Andy Tyler

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