Musicians

Interview With Jeremy Summerly, Conductor

by Karine Hetherington

Karine interviewed conductor Jeremy Summerly in preparation for KOFMA’s ‘Come and Sing’ event on Saturday 10th November. We will be singing Haydn’s ‘Mass in the Time of War’ to commemorate the armistice. 

What does the Armistice mean to you?

I have a picture of my grandfather in my study. I look at it every day. He is going off to war with a pair of shoes he had made for himself. He was from Northamptonshire.  The story goes that he was a commander in France and that knowing his younger brother to be there too, asked him to join his battalion. My great uncle was only sixteen and like so many others, he had lied about his age so that he could enlist. He was killed on the train he took to meet up with my grandfather. My grandfather never got over his younger brother’s death. Continue reading “Interview With Jeremy Summerly, Conductor”

Concerts, Musicians

Grand Day Out For Four In Chelsea: An Interview With Four Lallemants

by Karine Hetherington

On Saturday October 6th 2018, The Lallemant Quartet will perform a piano extravaganza at St Luke’s Church, Chelsea.

Karine Hetherington caught up with three of the sibling pianists: Miles, Oliver and Lydia Lallemant.

You’re going to be performing on four grand pianos. That’s quite a feat!

Oliver: We’ve done this before. The first time was in 2011, seven years ago. But then it was out of necessity! I had to hire two extra pianos for a concert I was directing and I needed to recoup the cost of piano hire. I therefore organised an ad hoc event the night before the main concert and got my three siblings to play with me. We got our money back but I have to admit that our first foray wasn’t much good. However it was a start and we got a taste for it. Since then we have had much more concert practice! Continue reading “Grand Day Out For Four In Chelsea: An Interview With Four Lallemants”

Concerts, Musicians

Music For Five Winds: An Interview With The Atéa Quintet

by Karine Hetherington

Karine went down to the South Bank to meet the internationally acclaimed Atéa Quintet. Three of the members were able to make it: horn player Chris Beagles; clarinettist Anna Hashimoto; and oboe player Phillip Haworth.

Three out of five of you are here. Who’s missing?

Chris: Alena, our flute player, is unfortunately sick, and our bassoonist Ashley is working in New York.

Which begs the question: How easy is it to play as a quintet? How do you fit it into all your other musical commitments?

Anna: It is a challenge but we have played together for nearly nine years now. That means every time we come together, we blend instantly. We know how each one of us plays. Everything is really natural. Continue reading “Music For Five Winds: An Interview With The Atéa Quintet”

Singers

Interview With Edward Kay, Baritone

by Karine Hetherington

Who or what inspired you to take up singing and pursue a career in music?

I started singing as a boy at the age of seven at Clifton Lodge School in Ealing which had a very impressive choir setup at the time. I remember one day coming back home from school and announcing to my parents that I wanted to audition – nothing much more to it than that!

Who or what has been the most important influence on your musical life and career? 

Tenor Ben Johnson with whom I recently started studying. Continue reading “Interview With Edward Kay, Baritone”

Singers

Interview With Dominic Bevan, Tenor

by Karine Hetherington

Meet Dominic Bevan, a tenor who has sung with us at KOFMA.

Tell us a bit about your childhood.

We were a big, musical family. There was no television. We were only allowed to watch opera videos. I can still picture Don Giovanni, scene by scene.

Did you always want to become an opera singer?

I definitely chose not to be an opera singer. Continue reading “Interview With Dominic Bevan, Tenor”

Concerts

Drugs and Drama: The Staging of ‘Dido and Aeneas’

Karine Hetherington recaps 2017’s performance of Dido & Aeneas by the KOFMA choir. 

We are on the eve of our performance of Purcell’s baroque opera ‘Dido and Aeneas’. We’ve been in a dress rehearsal for hours and during a short break I close my eyes, wrap a thick woollen scarf about my neck, and play dead while other members of the choir stare at their mobile phones. Am I nervous? Yes! We all are. Up until now the chorus has had the benefit of numbers. On the night however, there will be no hiding – each and every one of us has been working on this challenging opera for months!

This project is the brainchild of Laura Lamph, our mezzo-soprano, who sang the title role of Dido touring with Sestina, the early music ensemble, in Ireland last year. She, together with our exacting Music Meister, Miles Lallemant, head up our three-year-old choir, Aves Cantantes. Songbirds! We are a mish-mash of twenty individuals of different ages and levels of singing experience. But no matter how different we may appear to the outside world, inside the church we sing as one. Continue reading “Drugs and Drama: The Staging of ‘Dido and Aeneas’”