Our next concert:

Saturday 4th December 2021 7.30pm

St. Peter's Church
90 Kensington Park Road
London W11 2PN

£8 in advance online. No booking fee.

£10 on the door on the day. Children (16 and under) free

A concert of English music
Butterworth The Banks of Green Willow
Two English Idylls
Vaughan Williams
(Orch. Jacob)
English Folksong Suite
Elgar Chanson de Nuit
Chanson de Matin
Enigma Variations (selection)

The concert explores music written over a short period between 1898 and 1923. The main work is Elgar's Enigma variations, in which he writes musical caricatures of his friends as variations on an original theme. The name "Enigma" arose through a statement that Elgar made in an interview shortly after the first performance. He said that it is possible to add another phrase, which is quite familiar, above the original theme had that written. However, he never revealed what that phrase was, and no plausible solution has yet been found. The set of variations remains one of his most successful works and is a masterpiece of musical invention and orchestration. In this performance we are playing ten of the fourteen variations. This is to limit the size of the orchestra to allow effective social distancing. We are also playing three shorter orchestral works by Elgar, each of which is a masterpiece in its own right.

In the years before the first world war many English composers began to explore and write down folk music from all over the British Isles. We are playing pieces by two of these: George Butterworth and Ralph Vaughan Williams. The pieces by Butterworth all weave the folk melodies into a lyrical evocation of the English countryside, even though some of the sources were rather macabre ballads. In contrast the Vaughan Williams English folk song suite was originally written for a military band, and presents some of the same folk melodies in lively marches. The latter work became so successful that Vaughan Williams got one of his music students, Gordon Jacob, to arrange a version for symphony orchestra, and has remained a favourite concert piece to this day.

Online ticket sales

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Your ticket(s) will be sent by email. There is a limit of 6 tickets per booking - if you need more, please just make a further booking.

Please either print out your e-ticket and bring it on the night, or be ready to show it at the door on your smartphone, so that we can scan the barcode.

All tickets are unreserved. Arrive early for the best seats!

We regret that we cannot refund any advance ticket purchases, unless we have to cancel the concert.

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The Portobello Orchestra is a registered charity no 1081212
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