New Paths 2017

The second New Paths festival – in Beverley, Yorkshire – has been every bit as successful as the first, with forty musicians performing in thirty events in five days, all of it spearheaded (and much of it performed) by Artistic Director Libby Burgess. From family events to late-night Bach, from chamber music and song to organ recitals, from to the world premiere of The Ebb Variations by Alasdair Nicolson to festival jazz drinks, it was an action-packed long weekend, and the audience of Beverley rose to the occasion with its characteristic warm welcome. The dates for 2018 have been announced as 5th – 8th April: put the dates in your diary! More information on www.newpathsmusic.com.

New Paths 2017 programme announced

Absolutely delighted that the 2017 New Paths programme has been announced.

Under Libby’s Artistic Directorship, New Paths has quickly established itself as one of the most important and exciting new festivals in the land. 2017 sees our trademark combination of world-class concerts and feet-on-the-ground community involvement, reaching out to children, to old people, and to all corners of the town in a series of pop-up performances.

Our bold programming, wonderful venues, and the beautiful town of Beverley, combine to make this an unmissable festival. Take a look at www.newpathsmusic.com for further details.

New disc: ‘Airs, Blues & Dances’

Libby’s latest disc with oboist James Turnbull has been released and is available for purchase here. ‘Airs, Blues & Dances’ includes works by Michael Tippett, Judith Weir, John Tavener and Richard Rodney Bennett.

James and Libby’s previous disc, ‘The English Oboe: Rediscovered’ was extremely well reviewed:

‘There is no disputing the technical facility of James Turnbull or the warm, sensitive pianism of Libby Burgess’ (Stephen Pritchard, Observer)

‘This CD is framed by arguably the finest ever recorded versions of Rubbra’s magnificent Sonata and Vaughan Williams’ Six Studies in English Folksong… I have little doubt that this new performance will become the benchmark recording…’ (David Jennings, Music Web International)

Both discs are released on Champs Hill Records.

New disc ‘Notes from the Asylum’ released

‘Notes from the Asylum’, with mezzo-soprano Clare McCaldin, is released on Champs Hill Records today. It features songs by Purcell, Abrams, Brahms, Wolf and Rorem, chosen to complement the central themes in Stephen McNeff’s Vivienne, premiered by Clare and Libby in 2013 and recorded here for the first time.

The disc is available on Amazon and the Champs Hill Records website.

Read more about ‘Notes from the Asylum’ here.

First New Paths festival a roaring success!

April 2016 saw the first New Paths festival taking place – a feast of performances by some of the country’s finest young musicians at venues across Beverley. The festival, of which Libby is Artistic Director, immediately established itself as a major new event in the region.

There were 22 events during the four days of the festival, ranging from song and chamber music at St Mary’s, to organ recitals at the Minster, a Shakespeare celebration at the East Riding Theatre, and children’s events at Toll Gavel United Church. The town quickly took the performers to its heart, welcoming them in pubs and coffee shops throughout the town, and the new Premier Inn at Flemingate, as well as in the concert venues. Audiences blossomed, with over 1700 tickets taken and many people returning for event after event, as locals and visitors flocked to hear the vast array of outstanding music-making.

See here for further information.

Radio 3 broadcast

Libby will appear on today’s BBC Radio 3 ‘In Tune’ programme, in songs with baritone Mark Stone. Tune in!

New Paths Music

Extremely excited to announce the launch of New Paths Music, a new festival of song and chamber music taking place in Beverley, Yorkshire, in April 2016. Have a look at our website, follow us on Twitter, like us on Facebook, put our dates in your diaries, and get ready to buy your tickets when they go on sale in January!

Workshop opera

Thrilled to announce two brand new one-day courses, in November and January, for professional and training singers. Led alongside director Joe Austin, the workshops will focus on the development of character in arias, and how this plays out in musical and dramatic terms. Joe and Libby have worked together as Director and Musical Director for five years, on productions ranging from Britten’s The Prodigal Son and Mendelssohn’s The Homecoming for Ryedale Festival Opera to new work by Stephen McNeff at Tête à Tête Festival and the Linbury Studio. They regularly coach together and have run a residential course focussing on similar work. Details are available at Workshop Opera; do spread the word, and apply!

Summer festivals

Back from an inspiring summer playing for various summer festivals – such a rich and important part of the British musical calendar. From the rural and picturesque Etchingham Festival – playing Brahms, Bridge and Schumann piano quartets with the Wieck Ensemble – to the heart of the City of London with St Lawrence Jewry Summer Music Festival – piano duets of Mozart, Schubert and Beethoven with Sholto Kynoch; from the long-established Dartington – Mozart, Berkeley and Poulenc music for winds and piano with the Berkeley Ensemble – to the new kid on the block, Southwell Music Festival, featuring a Schubertiade with Alison Rose, Nick Pritchard, and festival director Marcus Farnsworth, and then, perhaps the summer’s highlight, the Rite of Spring in its duet form with James Baillieu (lots of feedback, live commenting and photos available on their Twitter page, @Southwell_Music). Festivals are such a key chance for musicians to gather in different places, be inspired by their surroundings, their colleagues, and above all, the music. Thank you to those who make them happen!

Petros Singers

Happy to be guest conducting the Petros Singers next term for their autumn rehearsal season and their Christmas Concert. Having previously undertaken similar projects with the Renaissance Singers and the Nonsuch Singers, it proves to be a rewarding way of working with new choirs! Full programme details to be announced in due course.

CantiaQuorum concerts

Excited to be taking part in a series of concerts in Canterbury in the autumn and winter, under the umbrella of CantiaQuorum. CantiaQuorum was recently set up by trumpeter Alex Caldon, and prides itself on electrifying interpretations, audacious programming and world-class performers. It is the resident ensemble at the University of Kent, where the concerts take place in the Colyer-Fergusson Hall. Particularly looking forward to playing Shostakovich’s first piano concerto (for piano, trumpet and strings) in November!

Website redesign

Delighted with the www.libbyburgess.com redesign, by the ever-brilliant Tom King. Have a look at the various new pages, the additional pictures and clips, the more detailed events listings, and enjoy the more up-to-date look.

Bach to Baby

What fun to be part of the new Thames Valley branch of the well-established Bach to Baby concert series. These concerts present high-quality music to pre-school children and their parents, in a relaxed atmosphere – dancing, exploring and crying are definitely part of the package!

Have a look at the photo albums of the Windsor and Henley concerts event here and here.

Four stars in the Telegraph

Complimentary 4* review from the Daily Telegraph for the Lennox Berkeley disc recorded with the Berkeley Ensemble in the autumn. The repertoire includes the atmospheric Sonatine for clarinet and piano, not previously performed since the 1930s!

Geoffrey Norris writes of ‘the high quality of the performances by the Berkeley Ensemble, a malleable group which, like the Nash Ensemble, can adapt itself to different formats and plays as if it were truly inside the music.’ See the full review here.

Sunday Times review of Berkeley Ensemble disc

Paul Driver in The Sunday Times writes, ‘outstanding in the exuberantly performed sequence are the expressive central adagio of the Op 19 String Trio and the 1971 Introduction and Allegro for double bass (Lachlan Radford) and piano (Libby Burgess)’. Here is the full review:

Berkeley Ensemble Sunday Times review

Berkeley Ensemble Sunday Times review