‘For music alone can abolish differences of language or culture between two people and invoke something indestructible within them.’  Irene Nemirovsky (Suite Française – Ukrainian born novelist)

Music is a social event, and the friends that we make when playing with others, the ability to turn down our own ego and do something for the betterment of others is one of the great draws of chamber music making.

Building on the successes of our work in 2022, we are delighted to announce that our Young Musicians’ Platform will return this year in collaboration with Hertfordshire County Music Service.

This year our theme is ‘A Family Affair’, and the great tradition of bringing people together through music is still alive and thriving at all levels of music education. Hatfield House Music Festival provides young ensembles with the opportunity to showcase their talents in our ‘Young Musicians’ Platform’ Concerts.

If you have a string quartet that you belong to, a recorder ensemble that you and your siblings love going to, or if you’ve been looking for excuse to turn jamming with your friends in to something more serious, then apply to be part of the 2023 Young Musicians’ Platform HERE

Have a look below at how much our performers appreciated the opportunity in our 2022 season.

In 2022, as part of our education and outreach work we invited Hertfordshire’s talented young chamber musicians, through their schools and/or Hertfordshire Music Service, to film and submit their own performance of a piece of chamber music for our Young Musicians’ Platform. From those video performances we selected 3 ensembles to perform as ‘curtain-raisers’ during the pre-concert talks in the stunning Long Gallery of Hatfield House and to attend the Festival concert which followed in the Marble Hall.

We started with a Clarinet Quartet from Richard Hale School, Hertford who gave us a lively performance of Mambo Jambo by Perez Prado, arranged by Thomas Martyn Stephens (pupil) and Fantasie for Clarinet Ensemble by Thomas McDonnell (pupil).

On Friday evening, a String Quartet (Year 9) from Dame Alice Owen’s School gave us a stunning performance of Mendelssohn’s string quartet in D Op. 44 3rd mvt.

On Saturday, the Senior Guitar Ensemble from Dame Alice Owen’s School who had been coached by Morgan Szymanski in a masterclass during the week delighted the audience and Morgan with 3 Czech folk songs.

The ensemble performed in the stunning, historic surroundings of the Long Gallery at Hatfield House. In addition they were treated to a pre-concert talk from broadcaster and musicologist, Stephen Johnson. We were excited that Morgan Szymanski came to wish the Guitar Ensemble luck and to hear their final rehearsal, before himself performing in the Marble Hall with the renowned tenor, Mark Padmore and we got free tickets to this concert in the very Hall where the famous 16th century lutenist and composer, John Dowland, played for Queen Elizabeth I.

On the Friday evening, the Y10 String Quartet gave a highly praised performance of a Mendelssohn quartet movement in the same stunning surroundings of the Long  Gallery before the Marble Hall concert given by the United Strings of Europe.

Our thanks to the Hatfield House Chamber Music festival for these wonderful opportunities.
Katherine Bamber, Director of Music, Dame Alice Owen’s School

As part of our ‘World of Music’ theme, we also invited the Steel Pan Ensemble from Richard Hale School to perform during the concert interval on Saturday evening in the Armoury and they entertained us with some colourful performances of a range of Calypso and Caribbean melodies.

Our students had a fantastic time performing as part of the Music Festival at Hatfield House. They relished the whole experience, not only performing to an audience, but also listening to wonderful music in the concert and being in an impressive setting! A very inspirational and memorable event and the students are delighted to have been part of it! Thank you very much for all your help and support in the lead up to the concert.
Leena Rana, Music Teacher, Richard Hale School

We were also delighted to welcome the young wind quintet, Ensemble Renard, holders of a Chamber Music Fellowship for 2021-22 at the Royal Academy of Music and Britten Pears Young Artists 2022-23 to the Festival this year. They gave us a stunning performance of Knussen’s Alleluya Nativitas as a ‘curtain-raiser’ in our Saturday evening concert in the Marble Hall.

Thank you so much for having Ensemble Renard at Hatfield House Chamber Music Festival this year. It was an immense privilege for us as an ensemble and we felt so welcomed into the festival community.
Patrick Bolton

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