Lively start to a summer of music in Warwickshire

Copenhagen Chamber Ensemble, Church of St James the Great, Snitterfield, May 7.

THERE’s no stopping the Leamington Music machine! With the hugely successful bank holiday festival weekend still a vivid memory, the summer concerts schedule kicked into operation with a return visit to Snitterfield’s parish church in the company of the five-piece Copenhagen Chamber Ensemble.

Having brought together professionals from the worlds of medicine, law and music, plus a Polish refugee violinist, Steen Lindholm leads from the harpsichord, acts as spokesperson and arranger of pieces originally designed for larger ensembles.

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Two examples of Steen arrangements - from Handel’s Oratorio, Solomon, the famous Sinfonia Arrival of the Queen of Sheba and the Suite in D provided a lively start to the programme.

Steen insists Telemann’s work deserves greater recognition, as it is ‘quality music’, with Tafelmusik from 1733 frequently compared as a collection to the renowned Brandenburg Concertos by Bach.

Father and son, Johann Sebastian and Johann Christian – a striking pairing, remind us how many later composers adapted and reworked the Bach family successes. The Quintet in D by son JC uses the harpsichord as a solo instrument and the Sinfonia in F by father JS is his Brandenburg Concerto No 1, less one movement and minus the two horns. On the evidence of Tuesday’s Radio 3 live performance of this concerto from Chipping Camden, we were fortunate to hear the Sinfonia.

Clive Peacock

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