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LSO Discovery Lunchtime Concert
Friday 10 September 2021, 12.30 to 1.15pm
Ethel Smyth First movement from 'String Quartet in E minor'
Gioachino Rossini First movement from 'Duetto in D for cello and double bass'
Alexander Borodin First movement from 'String Sextet in D minor'
Leroy Anderson Plink, Plank, Plunk
Sarah Quinn violin & concert curator
Haim Choi violin
Bridget O'Donnell violin
Preston Yeo violin
Gillianne Haddow viola
Mabon Rhyd viola
Theodore Chung viola
Henry Hargreaves cello
Nina Kiva cello
Yong Jun Lee cello
Evangeline Tang double bass
Rachel Leach presenter
The LSO String Experience Scheme is generously supported by the Thriplow Charitable Trust, Fidelio Charitable Trust and Lord and Lady Lurgan Trust.
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Ethel Smyth (1858 to 1944)
String Quartet in E minor
✒️ 1912 | ⏰9 minutes
Dame Ethel Smyth was born in Sidcup. Her father was a major general in the Royal Artillery and was against her taking up a position at the Leipzig Conservatoire. So, the teenage Ethel shut herself in her bedroom and refused meals until he agreed – little did she know that she was to encourage others to employ similar tactics years later in the fight for women’s votes! After study in Germany, Smyth forged a career as a composer, but her output often fell between two opposing criticims – it was either ‘too masculine’ to have been written by a woman or ‘too gentle’ to be taken seriously alongside the men! This quartet was begun in 1902 and finished ten years later. During that time, Ethel Smyth became politically engaged. She joined the suffragette movement in 1910, gave up composing briefly in 1912 and even served a prison sentence for the cause!
Note by Rachel Leach
Gioachino Rossini (1792 to 1868)
Duetto in D for cello and double bass
✒️ 1824 | ⏰8 minutes
Giachino Rossini was born in Pesaro, Italy to a family of musicians. His dad was a horn-playing slaughterhouse inspector and his mum a singer. Rossini completed 40 operas, mostly in his distinctive bubbly, energetic style. At the peak of his fame and aged just 37, Rossini retired from music and only returned to composing very briefly in old age. He then led a lavish and notorious life full of parties and food and even became as known for his cooking as for his music – several famous Italian dishes are named after him! This very unusual but wonderful duet was commissioned by an amateur English cellist called Sir David Salomens and was written with the help of bass ‘superstar’ Domenico Dragonetti. It is the most famous cello/ bass duet by far and it requires skilled performers to pull of its deceptively flippant style.
Note by Rachel Leach
Alexander Borodin (1833 to 1887)
String Sextet in D minor (first movement)
✒️ 1860 | ⏰5 minutes
Nowadays Alexander Borodin’s name is firstly associated with music but in his lifetime he was far better known as an organic chemist – there is a scientific principle named after him and he was very active in promoting science as a career for women. Because of this busy scientific life Borodin described himself as a ‘Sunday composer’ and he therefore didn’t have the time to complete many pieces. This charming sextet was written in 1860 while Borodin was studying chemistry in Germany. It was probably performed at one of the musical soirees the composer regularly attended. Borodin said it was influenced by Mendelssohn and it goes a long way to dispute Tchaikovsky’s theory that Borodin had little skill – it is brilliant.
Note by Rachel Leach
concert curator, LSO Sub-Principal Second Violin
Born in Dublin, Sarah Quinn began playing the violin at the age of eight. Keen to pursue a career in music, she moved to London to study at the Royal College of Music, where she was the recipient of many awards and prizes. Whilst a student at the RCM, Sarah was awarded a place on the LSO String Experience scheme. Sarah joined the LSO in 1998 having graduated from the RCM with distinction. In addition to her busy schedule at the LSO, Sarah is in demand as a teacher and regularly tutors at the RCM, Royal Academy of Music and Guildhall School. She has also worked extensively with youth orchestras and is passionate about working with young musicians. Sarah is regularly involved with all aspects of LSO Discovery, working in schools and in the community. Sarah has also served as a Director on the Board of the LSO.
About the LSO String Experience Scheme
Established in 1992, the LSO String Experience scheme enables young string players at the start of their professional careers to gain work experience by playing in rehearsals and concerts with the LSO. Currently, more than 15 members of the LSO came to the Orchestra via the scheme.
The scheme auditions students from the London music conservatoires – Royal Academy of Music, Royal College of Music, Guildhall School of Music & Drama, and Trinity Laban College of Music and Dance – and up to 15 students per year are selected to participate in the scheme. Participants are treated as professional 'extra' players (additional to LSO members) and receive fees for their work in line with LSO section players. They are given other opportunities during their year on the scheme, including tickets to LSO concerts, exploring string orchestra repertoire side-by-side with LSO players, and chamber music coaching. The participants are guided throughout the year by the five LSO mentors – Maxine Kwok and Sarah Quinn (violins), Robert Turner (viola), Eve-Marie Caravassilis (cello) and Tom Goodman (double bass).
Auditions for the 2021/22 scheme will take place in October and November. For further details visit the LSO website or contact Rebecca Ranson email@example.com.
Performing in today's concert are:
Haim Choi (Royal College of Music)
Bridget O’Donnell (Royal Academy of Music)
Preston Yeo (Royal Academy of Music)
Theodore Chung (Guildhall School)
Mabon Rhyd (Guildhall School)
Henry Hargreaves (Royal Academy of Music)
Nina Kiva (Royal College of Music)
Yong Jun Lee (Royal Academy of Music)
Evangeline Tang (Royal College of Music)
Save the Date:
Forthcoming Lunchtime Concerts
Friday 22 October 12.30pm
Friday 19 November 12.30pm
Friday 26 November 12.30pm
Rachel Leach presenter