Maxwell Quartet

Newsletter 2019

Welcome to all our many supporters from Newton Stewart and District Music Club.

We operate under the auspices of Enterprise Music Scotland with the remit of providing a platform for small groups of professional musicians to perform in this area.

Although there is a block grant, we still need to raise funds locally in addition to ticket income, and therefore there is always a degree of uncertainty as to the outcome.

I am glad to report that we have had a most successful season due to the support and encouragement we have received from you all and many thanks for that.

We have enjoyed some stunning concerts this last season.

SUMMER SOIREE 2018.  In early June we were able invite those who had supported us through the previous season to a summer evening concert at Creetown when ALEKSEI KISELIOV and ALASDAIR BEATSON (cello and piano) give us a moving virtuoso recital.

Swing 2018 - John Russell

Our 2018-19 season began with SWING 2018 in the Cinema. This Edinburgh group had visited us several times in the past and this time brought the celebrated pianist BRIAN KELLOCK to play with them and dazzle us with his ingenious improvisations.

NOVEMBER.  Again in the Cinema, on a Sunday afternoon, PHIL GAULT and CLAIRE HASLIN (baritone and piano) gave us a gripping performance of Schubert Lieder and a selection of other works. This was a stunning performance where there was no opportunity for the attention to wander. Phil’s outstandingly powerful voice and his passion kept the audience engaged and we were sorry when it was time to leave. This was one of our club’s most memorable performances.

Murray McLachlan & FamilyJANUARY.  Another afternoon performance in the Cinema when MURRAY McLACHLAN and FAMILY (Murray plus his wife Kathryn Page and their son Matthew and daughter Rose McLachlan) gave us a varied selection of major classical piano works which was well received by the sizeable audience. This was an excellent way to spend a dull January afternoon.

FEBRUARY brought a Valentine’s Day performance in the County Buildings, Wigtown, by the MAGNARD ENSEMBLE. This wind quintet was touring under the auspices of the Tunnell Trust and a place on their tour was somewhat competitive. Your committee worked hard for it and although we had to move to a Thursday to fit in with the tour we were thrilled to achieve a visit from the internationally renowned group. We selected the Wigtown venue for its particularly suitable acoustic for a wind group and we were not disappointed with the stunning sound.

Maxwell QuartetMARCH.  Again in the County Buildings, Wigtown, we were able to have the last of our season’s events with the MAXWELL QUARTET.

We had some difficulties in booking the group, having failed the previous year, but the result was that the booking was fortunately well in advance. The quartet have become international stars and are now well out of our usual price range.

Having been made aware of the increase in costs to us, the group stuck to their original pricing structure and the concert went ahead.

In this writer’s view, this was one of our all time most outstanding concerts.  The security and firmness of intonation and passionate musicality of these young men was striking in the first few seconds and captivated us all evening. The audience was at capacity and we required to bring in extra seating.

Our season certainly ended on a high.  We rely heavily on your support as audience attendance figures assist us greatly in our grant applications and we thank you for helping us to continue to provide high quality music to this beautiful part of Scotland.

The Music Club committee thank you for your support and help in keeping classical music alive and well in this beautiful part of Scotland.

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