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barbican string quartet

barbican string quartet

World class string quartet fundraises for anti-Link Road campaigners

The Barbican string quartet played to a packed Village Hall in Crowhurst last Sunday evening. Billed as ‘The Road to Nowhere Fundraising Concert’, the show was a sell-out and raised funds for the villagers’ campaign against the Bexhill Hastings Link Road.

It was a cabaret style concert: the quartet played under spotlights in the auditorium, whilst the audience listened enthralled at candlelit tables around the musicians in an atmosphere which was both intimate and inspiring.

The Barbican string quartet was formed by four members of one of London’s premier symphony orchestras. Having performed regularly at music festivals in France and Denmark, it has now made its UK debut here in Crowhurst.

Its members have impressive CVs: Richard Holttum (viola), lives in Crowhurst and has been a member of the London Symphony Orchestra for over 30 years; Gina Beukes (violin) and Philip Nolte (violin) have led symphony orchestras in Cape Town and Portugal, respectively. Moray Welsh (cello), having studied with no less than Mstislav Rostropovich at the Moscow Conservatoire, has had a most distinguished career, including performances of chamber music with James Galway!

The programme started with Mozart’s graceful and lively ‘Quartet in G Major’, followed by contrasts of pathos and humour in Haydn’s ‘Quartet in D major’. After the interval, the quartet gave the audience a fantastic experience of Shostakovich’s ‘Eighth Quartet’. Written in 1960 and dedicated to ‘the victims of Fascism’, this protest piece of music reflected, sometimes with uncanny accuracy, the individual and collective voices that the protest against the road has produced. Discordant, aggressive sawing noises could be heard in the second movement, with angry, passionate and sometimes gently lyrical lone voices calling out across the piece.

This was an outstanding, world-class performance; a real treat for Crowhurst villagers and one which raised over £700. ‘This level of support shows that many remain opposed to the Bexhill Hastings Link Road and feel outraged at what many see to be both cultural and environmental vandalism’, said one of the Concert organisers. A series of further events and meetings are planned in support of the Crowhurst Campaign.

For more stories about the Anti-Link Road campaign, see here, or visit the Combe Haven Defenders site here and the Hastings Alliance site here.

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Posted 20:03 Tuesday, Apr 9, 2013 In: Campaigns

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