Second Music at Millfield showcases diverse performances

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The second ‘Music at Millfield’ evening of the academic year brought yet another host of inspiring and varying performances to the Johnson Hall, including music from Beethoven to the Beatles, and from symphony orchestra to a four-piece percussion ensemble.

The ever popular Jazz Band began proceedings with two classic choices, including ‘Feeling Good’ with soloist, Susanna Khalkacheva. The Brass Ensemble followed, opting for a classical programme, with works by Humperdinck and Praetorius.

The Augmented 6ths continued the first half in style with a beautiful rendition of Christina Perri’s ‘A Thousand Years’. Following on, as a complete contrast, String Orchestra gave a moving performance of Elgar’s ‘Sospiri’ (Sighs), a piece full of extreme emotion and tension.  

Either side of the interval was the turn of Percussion Ensemble, who performed two very different pieces, the first a crowd-pleasing Latino-influenced marimba work, and the second showing off the various performance techniques that can be used with un-tuned, graduated drums.

The remainder of the second act was devoted to Millfield’s two most prestigious ensembles: Camerata and the Millfield Orchestra. Camerata began with the joyful ‘Magnificat in B-flat’ by Stanford, which was followed by an arrangement of ‘Blackbird’ by Paul McCartney and John Lennon that shone the spotlight on the sopranos. Eric Whitacre’s ‘Lux Aurumque’ was next in Camerata’s programme, a work full of contrasting colours and shimmering chord clusters. To complete Camerata’s pieces, they upped the tempo with ‘I’m a Train’, as a fun end to their slot.

Finally, the Millfield Orchestra finished the concert with a bang by performing the finale of Beethoven’s Fifth Symphony, a highly challenging piece that provided a suitably spectacular ending to the concert.

Please see a selection of images from the night here.

Watch highlights from the concert here.