2018 / 2019 Season

Programme dates and topics are subject to change. Always check this site for updates before travelling.

14 Sep, 2018 Rachmaninov - reviled and revered

Rachmaninov suffered some critical disdain during his lifetime, as he was deemed to be out of touch with modern trends in composition. However, modernism has since mellowed and the public never lost its enthusiasm for his unashamedly romantic style of music. JOHN COTTRELL is a devotee who plans to present some of Rachmaninov’s less well-known works, as well as revisiting some acclaimed pieces.

28 Sep, 2018 High definition

In addition to SACD audio recordings, SRMS Chairman DAVID ANDERSON is always on the lookout for the best quality high definition Blu-ray video recordings he can find for playing to the society. This is normally the only regular programme in our season that features the use of a digital projector to present Blu-ray extracts on a large screen. Last year, David devoted the second half of his talk to a single opera, but his aim tonight is to feature a broader variety of musical genres (past talks have featured videos of opera, ballet, choral, orchestral and chamber music performances).

This talk was originally scheduled for April 2018, but had to be cancelled due to a clash with another event

12 Oct, 2018 All in 24 hours

Tonight, DIANA TIZZARD investigates how the works of various composers have been associated with the changing atmosphere and light in the passing hours of the day. Various instruments, including human voices, will be highlighted in both solo and ensemble performances.

26 Oct, 2018 Maths and music at Bletchley Park

Many people suspect that there may be a link between musical and mathematical ability, a topic that JIRINA (Georgette) MILLER plans to explore this evening, with examples drawn from the lives of men and women who worked at Bletchley Park on the decoding of enemy signals during the Second World War.

 9 Nov, 2018 1918

One hundred years ago this month, the Great War (“The war to end all wars”) came to an end. Amid the upheaval of this terrible conflict, life still went on in other ways. NORMAN AMEY has has therefore had no problem in unearthing a variety of musical connections to the year of 1918. As is usual with Norman, his programme will include some early jazz recordings.

Note that the next meeting is on the following Friday

16 Nov, 2018 Sergiu Celibidache - magician or madman?

In this programme, SRMS President MICHAEL JAMESON considers the career of the celebrated Romanian conductor, Sergiu Celibidache, certainly one of the most prodigiously gifted yet controversial musical personalities of the 20th Century. Celibidache’s authoritative but unfailingly idiosyncratic performances have divided critical opinion and challenged the stamina (and sometimes the patience!) of orchestral musicians in more or less equal measure ever since the conductor shot to international fame in 1945. Meticulous and demanding in rehearsals, he once remarked that “there is no miracle in music…only hard work!” This presentation will chart Celibidache’s recorded legacy with a selection of some of his finest recordings. An extra charge of £1 is payable for this meeting.

30 Nov, 2018 Ballet music

For his presentation this year, CHRIS COAKES aims to focus our attention on the world of ballet. In addition to Stravinsky’s Firebird, he plans to include a selection of ballet music from famous operas, and from a long-forgotten opera that was a total flop.

14 Dec, 2018 Christmas social evening

As usual, this social event follows the pattern of an ‘American Supper’ (i.e. everyone brings a contribution to the food and drink). The first half of the evening will be devoted to an entertaining Musical Quiz compiled by our previous Chairman, Roy Gage (now Chairman Emeritus). It always brings the year to a very enjoyable conclusion.

Note that there is a 4 week gap before the next meeting

11 Jan, 2019 The sea and the storm

Tonight, SRMS Treasurer DAVID PEARCE will consider a subject that has been a musical inspiration for composers throughout the ages. David hails from Suffolk, so Benjamin Britten is certain to be included, but the focus will move beyond the subject of the sea surrounding our own island to places further afield. An eclectic mix of music is promised.

25 Jan, 2019 The Versatile Pianist

In a replacement for the published programme, DIANA TIZZARD will explore the repertoire of piano music, both familiar and less familiar. Some pianists choose to pursue a solo career and the chance of becoming a star performer, despite a lifestyle involving solitary travel and rehearsal time, often in unfamiliar surroundings. Others prefer to embark upon a career of involvement with other musicians, which has the benefit of not only a more social working environment and the general esprit de corps of rehearsals, but also a wider variety of music. Diana's choices tonight will reflect these variations.

 8 Feb, 2019 Potpourri

Just like Ann Matthews, SRMS Vice-Chairman CHRIS TOPLEY is being deliberately vague about the content of his programme, but as a man who owns nearly 40 different recordings of the Eroica Symphony, it’s probably safe to say that he will play some of Beethoven’s music.

22 Feb, 2019 The English symphony

SRMS Vice-President TERRY BARFOOT is a well-known music writer and lecturer in the south of England. He is also Publications Consultant to the Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra. Last year, Terry gave us a talk about symphonies with links to America. Tonight, he is moving closer to home with his chosen subject being the English symphony. An extra charge of £1 is payable for this meeting.

 8 Mar, 2019 A musical tour of the British Isles

It is probably fair to say that JOHN FAWCETT’s special subject is British music. His tour of these sceptred isles will include a variety of British composers, but John has hinted that Haydn, Wagner and other foreign composers may also be issued with British visas for this evening.

22 Mar, 2019 Haydn in London

Joseph Haydn was 58 years old and already a famous composer when he made his first visit to England in January 1791. He stayed until June the next year, and was received with much acclaim. Once again, we welcome guest speaker PETER AVIS, whose talk tonight will address the subject of why Haydn came to be in London and what he did when he got there.

 5 Apr, 2019 Serenades

A serenade was originally a piece of music sung or played in the open air, typically by a man at night under the window of his beloved, but its meaning has gradually developed to cover instrumental compositions in several movements, written for a small ensemble. From among a wealth of such music, JILL MEAGER has chosen a varied programme with which to serenade us this evening.

Note that there is a 3 week gap before the next meeting

26 Apr, 2019 Musical memories of past holidays

Looking back on a lifetime of holidays, Chairman Emeritus ROY GAGE has realised that many of them prompted memories of a musical nature, which he plans to share with us tonight.

Note that there is a 3 week gap before the next meeting

17 May, 2019 Beethoven’s 7th and 8th Symphonies

The American musicologist Dr NORS JOSEPHSON has visited us on several previous occasions. This year, his subject is Beethoven. Dr Josephson, who lives in Germany, has recently carried out some research in Bonn on the 7th and 8th symphonies and will talk to us tonight on the conception of these late great works and their relationship to each other.

31 May, 2019 Havergal Brian (Note change of date!)

For his first presentation to the society, Dr MARTIN GROSSEL has chosen to feature the prolific but little-known English composer Havergal Brian. As one of the founders of the Havergal Brian Society, Martin is something of an expert on this topic. Sadly, Brian died without having heard many of his finest works, as none were commercially recorded during his lifetime. That situation has now changed significantly. Recordings have been made of almost all of his 32 symphonies and much else besides.

Note that the next meeting is on the following Friday

 7 Jun, 2019 Sir Arthur Bliss

In the past, guest speaker Dr DAVID DUNSTAN has given us a couple of talks on Sir Malcolm Arnold. This year, his subject is another English musical knight, Sir Arthur Bliss.

21 Jun, 2019 The music of Latin America

Previous talks given by JOHN WARREN have had a Spanish theme, and that trend is set to continue with tonight’s move to Latin America. John plans to discuss some of the factors that shaped this music and which influenced its major composers. Bring your own maracas!

 5 Jul, 2019 Annual General Meeting

All members are asked to make their best efforts to attend the Annual General Meeting. Important decisions are made and votes taken which can fundamentally affect the future operation of the Society.

With the exception of Peter Avis, Terry Barfoot, Dr David Dunstan, Michael Jameson and Dr Nors Josephson, all presenters are current members of Southampton Recorded Music Society