Magical music at second festival

Lewes Chamber Music Festival returns for a second year promising enchanting music and magical performances from leading young artists.

Running from Friday, June 7-Sunday, June 9, it comprises a sparkling programme put together by festival artistic director Beatrice Philips.

Cellist Guy Johnston, pianist Tom Poster, singer Jonathan McGovern and actor Samuel West will be among the performers taking to the stage during the weekend. Composer Kate Whitley will also give the world premiere of her new work, Three Pieces for Violin and Piano, alongside violinist Beatrice.

The programme combines chamber music classics such as Mozart’s Clarinet Quintet and Mendelssohn’s D minor Piano Trio with more contemporary modern works by composers including Janacek, Berg and Catoire.

As last year, the main venue will be St John Sub Castro Church, with one concert at the Westgate Chapel and one at St Peter’s Church in nearby Firle.

The Lewes Chamber Music Festival will also be enhanced by an educational series, Chamber Music at School, which aims to engage budding musicians at primary schools in the local area.

The 2013 Festival opening concert will be on Friday, June 7 at St John Sub Castro Church,

7pm with two great masters of chamber music writing: Beethoven and his teacher, Haydn. Violinist Beatrice Philips, cellist Hannah Sloane and pianist Alasdair Beatson will perform Haydn’s Piano Trio in A flat Major, followed by Beethoven’s Clarinet Trio in B flat with pianist Tom Poster, violist James Boyd and clarinettist Matt Hunt.

Poster will remain at the piano to perform Dohnanyi’s Piano Quintet op. 1, with cellist Amy Norrington, viola player Oliver Wilson and violinists Katharine Gowers and Michael Gurevich.

The festival continues with

l Late Night Romance, Friday, June 7 - Westgate Chapel, 9.45pm, performance of the romantic String Quintet op.16 written by turn-of-the-century composer Gyorgy Catoire. The performance will feature cellists Guy Johnston and Hannah Sloane, alongside Beatrice Philips and James Boyd.

l Coffee Concert, Saturday, June 8 - St John Sub Castro Church, 11am. Composer and pianist Kate Whitley will unveil her Three Pieces for Violin and Piano in a world premiere at the Lewes Chamber Music Festival. She will perform the work with Beatrice Philips after a performance of Janacek’s cello sonata Pohadka (Fairytale) from Guy Johnston and Alasdair Beatson.

l Mozart and Strawberries Saturday, June 8 – St Peter’s Church, Firle, 3.30 for 4pm.

Tasty treats are in store at the Mozart and Strawberries concert in Firle. Audience members will also be able to sip a glass of Pimm’s before listening to a selection of duos and trios by Haydn, Mozart and Bartok, plus Mozart’s Clarinet Quintet in A major, performed by Matt Hunt, Michael Gurevich, Katharine Gowers, Oliver Wilson and Amy Norrington.

l On an Ovegrown Path Saturday, June 8 - St John Sub Castro Church, 8pm.

Actor Samuel West (recently seen in ITV’s Mr Selfridge and the film Hyde Park on Hudson)

will take to the stage to perform selected poems and reading as part of the concert, On an

Overgrown Path, which features Janacek’s work of the same name.

l Coffee in Vienna, Sunday, June 9 - St John Sub Castro Church, 11am.

l Lunch in Vienna, Sunday, June 9 - St John Sub Castro Church, 2.30pm

l Festival Finale, Sunday, June 9 - St John Sub Castro Church, 7.30pm;; 01273 479865.