Façade: Music For A Summer’s Night

Cornish Sinfonia 8th Jul 2022 7:30pm

Conductor: Michael Reed
Reciters: Rebecca-Louise Dale & Richard Jackson
Solo Horn: Dave Lee
Solo Clarinet: Jacob Perry

Seaford Snapshots by Paul Lewis
Soloist Dave Lee             

Carricknath (world premiere) by Ian Stephens
Soloist Jacob Perry          

Tintagel by Arnold Bax arr. Michael Reed         


Façade by William Walton
Soloists-Rebecca Louise Dale & Richard Jackson 

Seaford Snapshots – Paul Lewis
These pieces were commissioned to celebrate the Edwardian town of Seaford on the Sussex Coast. The three movements in this concert celebrate different aspects of the town, from the seven hills to the esplanade and the new beach huts.

Carricknath for clarinet and orchestra – Ian Stephens world premiere. A rough, rocky, grass-capped headland – Carricknath Point – juts into the entrance of Falmouth harbour, pine trees crowning its tip. This place, loved by the composer since earliest childhood, is the inspiration for this piece, which features the excellent Cornish clarinettist Jacob Perry as soloist. Carricknath was commissioned in memory of Thea King, Jane Fletcher and Jennet Campbell, three inspirational woodwind players in the musical life of Cornwall.

Tintagel – Arnold Bax
During the late summer of 1917 Bax, together with the pianist Harriet Cohen, with whom he was having a passionate love affair, spent six weeks in Cornwall. They visited Tintagel Castle which inspired the composer to write his famous symphonic poem. He aimed, he said, to offer an impression of the cliffs and castle of Tintagel and the sea "on a sunny but not windless summer day", and to reflect some of the literary and traditional associations of the scene. The orchestration you hear this evening was made especially for this performance by Michael Reed 

Façade: An Entertainment – William Walton
Façade is the delightful setting of poems by Edith Sitwell to music by William Walton performed by the Cornish Sinfonia and our two reciters, Rebecca Louise Dale & Richard Jackson. Many of these are well known, not least, Popular Song, which was used as the signature tune to the television programme, Face The Music.   

About the Cornish Sinfonia

During its formation in 1999, the Sinfonia was asked to perform the winning entries of the Cornwall Young Composers’ Competition at the Hall For Cornwall, accompany the premiere of a new opera by local composer Russell Pascoe, called Charlotte Dymond, under the baton of David Frost. The orchestra was asked to step in at short notice to take over a concert from the Bournemouth Sinfonietta as a result of its regrettable demise. This concert was widely hailed as a huge success.

In the summer of 2000, The Cornish Sinfonia forged collaboration with Macmillan Cancer Relief, performing with the Duchy Opera Chorus, a scintillating programme of orchestral and choral classics in the imposing grounds of Pendennis Castle. This was followed in the summer of 2002 with a concert at the Eden Project to a capacity audience.

The following year the orchestra played live to the animated films of Mousehole Cat & The Story of Arion & The Dolphin with music by the late Ian Hughes. The orchestra also received Arts Council support for a commission of Grasshopper Rhymes, which was performed with William Walton’s Façade and featured Jenny Agutter and Peter Skellern as the soloists.

The orchestra has also played in a performance of the award winning The Armed Man conducted by the composer Karl Jenkins and accompanied the soprano Katherine Jenkins in concerts at the Plymouth Pavillions.

In 2005 we began a collaboration with the Duchy Opera in their production of The Masked Ball, followed by The Wreckers and Tosca.

In 2003 the orchestra began an association with the Duchy Ballet and performed the premiere of an adaptation of The Mousehole Cat by Ian Hughes, together with Giselle.  The resulting artistic success was also matched by record audiences at the Hall For Cornwall and the composition was one of three finalists for stage productions at the British Composers Awards.  The Sinfonia was used for the premiere of the highly successful ballet by David Frost of The Mermaid of Zennor.

2008 saw a highly praised concert at the Hall For Cornwall featuring Suzanne Manuell, which included a performance of the chamber version of Mahler’s 4th Symphony and in November of 2010 the orchestra performed as part of the Hall’s International Season. Members of the Cornish Sinfonia also performed at the Hall For Cornwall in View From The Shore with the Jacky Lansley Dance Theatre and took part in a tour of British Cathedrals, in a production of Standing Stones for Ascendance.

2014 saw the premiere of the acclaimed community production, Giant Bolster by David Frost at the Hall For Cornwall. Since then the orchestra has appeared again at the Hall with a Valentine’s Day concert and a series of open air concerts at Lusty Glaze.

In March our principal conductor David Frost, passed away and a wonderful celebration concert of his life and music was held at Truro Cathedral, to a packed congregation and with nearly two hundred performers. David was a great support and inspiration to the orchestra and will be greatly missed.

We are delighted that Michael Reed has agreed to take over the role of principal conductor and last year has seen the orchestra perform for the G7 summit in a performance of Beethoven’s Eroica.

Further details of the Cornish Sinfonia can be found on www.cornishsinfonia.co.uk