Thursday, 12 July 2018


Opera House


Ondes Martenot

Valentin Bender's clarinet

Park near the Music Conseratory


Grand Place

Grand Place

Stairway to Toone

Waiting for Faust to begin

Wednesday, 11 July 2018

Ostend: last day

The best event at the whole conference: Les Bon Becs!!
Twinned with Godmanchester Grand Piano Cafe?

Bridge opening... that the yatch could get through.

Black headed gull

Spot the Arctic tern

Yatchs coming through the lock
Ostend station in miniature

Full size Ostend station

Ostend day 3 of ClarinetFest

Sculpture on the sea front

Long walk to the Thermae Palace where some of the events took place
A tram

One of the parks

View from my hotel
One of the highlights: Anthony McGill playing Copland

Monday, 9 July 2018


Quick photo diary from ClarinetFest in Ostend.
Spotted on the sea front



St Peter and St Paul

Inside the Kursaal




Music Conservatory

On the Shuttle Bus

Israel Clarinet Choir

Saturday, 23 June 2018

Caldecote Open Gardens 2018

It's been over a year since I last played the harp in public but as things go I have two events to play for this June weekend. I've known about Saffron Walden's Fete de la Musique for a while but last week I had an email asking if I might be able to play my clarinet, or recommend some students to give a mini-recital at Caldecote Church as part of the Caldecote Open Gardens weekend. I didn't have anything ready on the clarinet and it was too short notice for most students so I offered them a mini harp recital!
Caldecote Church
Mini-recitals were 15 minute slots on the hour between 2 and 5 on the Saturday and Sunday. I was allocated the 3pm slot but arrived just after 2pm to hear some beautiful unaccompanied Bach drfting down the church path. The cellist turned out to be Kizzi, a (very) young but extremely musical cellist whose mum I know fairly well. As well as the sound there was an overwhelming scent of fresh icing as the cake stall of Biscotti di Debora was set up right by the entrance.
Biscotti di Debora
I got set up and played at 3pm. I started with my two easy Grandjany tunes and did a tiny bit of speaking between each piece, mentioning the dramatic climate in Eriskay Love Lilt. O'Carolan Concerto went better than it did in practise this morning while Andres' Gavotte has an unusual error that I had to skirt round but otherwise all went well and my small but appreciative audience chatted to me afterwards. One chap said he'd been on a cruise where a flute and harp duo had performed. Hearing them while sailing very close to Fingals cave was a highlight for him. I stayed until 4pm to hear the next recital which was on the chamber organ. A lovely sound and a mixture of Pachelbel, Handel and some mroe modern tunes were played.
I bought a couple of cakes to bring home then had a wander up to see another of the gardens.

Caldecote is a long village on a narrow country lane so I hitched a lift with Sue, a local resident and village historian. The tea gaden I went to was lovely with a display of how the house and garden had developed over the last 20 or so years. I had a cup of tea and a look around the garden then with no obvious lift available walked the mile back down the hill to my car.
Tea 'n' cake selfie
Local resident
There was more to see, and more gardens are open tomorrow. This was the first year of holding mini-recitals so hopefully Dona, the overall organsier of the event will be able to continue the format for next year.

Friday, 7 October 2016

Benslow Woodwind Band 2016

Tutoring at Benslow again so just enough time to do a photo diary...

Luxury accommodation!

View from the bathroom window
The picture hanging outside my room has some harps on it.
Maybe this was an early Benslow course.
George tries out the contra