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London String Quartet Foundation’s Symposia for Young String Quartets announced

2 December 2009

Applications are open for the London String Quartet Foundation’s Symposia for Young String Quartets in February (Manchester) and April (London).

The Manchester Symposium will take place from Friday 12 to Sunday 14 February at Chetham’s School of Music. Faculty will include Pavel Fischer (founding 1st violin of the Skampa Quartet), Mark Messenger (violin, Bochmann Quartet, Head of Strings, Royal College of Music), Christoph Richter (cellist of the Heine Quartet, professor of cello at Essen Hochschule and European Chamber Music Academy faculty member), Raphael Todes (2nd violin of the Allegri Quartet), Graham Oppenheimer (founder and former violist of the Schidlof Quartet, senior chamber music tutor and viola teacher Chetham's School of Music), Nicholas Jones (former cellist of the Bochmann Quartet, Head of Strings at Chetham's School of Music and RNCM cello faculty member) and the Carducci String Quartet. Places are available for up to 16 school-age quartets and three advanced-level quartets. Applications close on Friday 1 January.

The London Symposium will take place from Friday 9 to Sunday 11 April at the Royal Academy of Music. 12 quartets will work with up to six tutors over three days, culminating in a performance on Sunday evening. The tutors are drawn from the highest level of international chamber music performance, including Marc Johnson (cellist, Vermeer Quartet), András Keller (violin, Keller Quartet), Johannes Meissl (violin, Artis Quartet), Christoph Richter (cellist, Heine Quartet), Hariolf Schlichtig (viola, ex-Cherubini Quartet) and Roger Tapping (viola, ex-Allegri and Takács Quartets). Both the masterclasses and the final performance are open to the public; admission is free. 12 quartet places are available for undergraduate and postgraduate quartets who have not yet started a professional career. Applications close on 15 January. For further information, email LSQF on info@playquartet.com. www.playquartet.com

Sir Peter Mawell Davies becomes patron of University of Manchester Music Society

2 December 2009

Manchester music students have appointed composer Sir Peter Maxwell Davies as patron of their society. Professor Phillip Grange, Head of Music at The University of Manchester said, 'This is a major coup for our students and we heartily congratulate them. Max studied at the University of Manchester between 1952 and 1957 and is undoubtedly the most famous alumnus of the Music Department.' David Tagg-Oram, president of The University of Manchester Music Society, added, 'We are extremely honoured to have Max as our patron, and to benefit from his insight and experience - especially as he was originally a performer, musicologist and composer in Manchester.'

Keyboardtech opens new building including state-of-the-art Hammond Lab

30 November 2009

Keyboardtech, part of Tech Music Schools, has officially opened its new building, including a state-of-the-art Hammond Keyboard Lab. The west London based schools have added a fourth building to their premises after extensive on-site alterations over the summer. The new building will primarily serve Keyboardtech and houses various teaching rooms including the Hammond Lab, which boasts six XK1 drawbar keyboards, one XK3c drawbar keyboard, one XK pro system two-manual organ and a Leslie 2101 speaker system. The Lab is part of Tech Music Schools’ commitment to fully integrating the keyboard into the band line up; all full time students are required to take keyboard as a second study whatever their first instrument. Renowned Hammond player James Taylor officially cut the ribbon as part of a day that included live performances of rock, jazz and funk by Taylor and several tutors. There were also talks and question/answer sessions covering the history and development of the Hammond organ and life at Tech Music schools.

Pioneer of British Kodaly training Cecilia Vajda dies aged 87

30 November 2009

Cecilia Vajda has died at the age of 87. A pupil of Kodaly's, Vajda came to the UK from Hungary in 1967. She went on to found the British Kodaly Society (later Academy), running over 20 summer schools and publising two books on the method. She was also the Academy's first president. This year, Vajda was honoured with the prestigious Bartok-Pasztory Award in recognition of a lifetime's work in Kodaly training.

In Harmony Lambeth opens music portacabin

30 November 2009

In Harmony Lambeth, a community music project based on Venezuela's El Sistema, has acquired a portacabin that has been kitted out for use as a teaching, practice and rehearsal room. The project is based at the community hall of the Lansdowne Green Estate where facilities up to now have been limited; the portacabin will provide valuable extra space. In harmony Lambeth is implemented by Lambeth Music Service with partners the Southbank Centre and Amicus Horizon, based on best known practice in music teaching and social intervention.

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