The Ancient Town of Winchelsea, part of the Cinque Port Confederation, is an historical, architectural and environmental gem; set on a hill overlooking Romney Marsh and the English Channel, protected by its status as a conservation area, yet easily accessible by the motor car and public transport. For some two centuries, the town has been a magnet for writers, artists and musicians, drawn by its charm, peace and inspiration. Central to these qualities and geographically central to the Town itself is the Church of St Thomas the Martyr.
This Church, of which only the choir nave remains of a much more extensive early 14th century structure, contains magnificent monuments, a unique collection of stained glass windows by Douglas Strachan and features excellent acoustics. These attributes make the Church a perfect venue for concerts.
- Details of all concerts are listed here:
Saturday 14th May at 7.30pm
The Tara Minton Quintet present their new album "Please Do Not Ignore The Mermaid" - an impressionist dive into mermaid myth and legend with a strong environmental undercurrent. Drawing inspiration from jazz legends John Taylor and Kenny Wheeler alongside French composers Debussy and Ravel, this is a unique jazz suite with harp at it's centre. The ensemble is lead by harpist, vocalist and composer Tara Minton and features Phil Merriman on piano, Tommaso Starace on soprano saxophone, Ed Babar on double bass and David Ingamells on drums.
Sunday 19th September at 5pm
Since making their international debut at the Culture and Convention Centre Lucerne, Switzerland in January 2017, the Ensemble has appeared at venues such as Wigmore Hall, Bridgewater Hall and St Martin-in-the-Fields as well as festivals and concert societies nationwide, including a residency at the Britten-Pears Foundation, Aldeburgh. The concert will focus on music based around the themes of harvest and autumn. The church will be decorated for harvest festival which takes place on the same day.
Sunday 3rd October at 4pm
Niel du Preez has inspired live and radio and television audiences in the UK, continental Europe, the Far East, North America and his native South Africa with his expressive and poetic solo playing, performances with leading orchestras and collaborations with chamber musicians from all around the world. His most recent collaboration comes in the form of a duo with Paris-based clarinettist Myriam Carrier. He is also the Artistic Director and Founder of the newly established ArtePiano Masterclass Series and the International ArtePiano E-competition. Niel returns to Winchelsea to perform pieces by Busoni, Beethoven, Chopin, Scriabin and Liszt.
Saturday 13th November at 7.30pm
The Hastings Philharmonic Orchestra is the first fully professional orchestra in Hastings since the 1930s when the Hastings Municipal Orchestra was based at the White Rock Theatre. In founding a new professional orchestra in Hastings, the artistic director and principal conductor of Hastings Philharmonic Orchestra, Marcio da Silva, set himself the challenge of putting Hastings back on the map as a centre of excellence for classical music - one that will be recognised both nationally and internationally. The concert will feature music for strings by Nielsen, Mozart and Dvořák, in addition to the D minor keyboard concerto by J S Bach.
Saturday 18th December at 4pm
Wassail - A Festive Concert by Candlelight
Pegasus Chamber Choir
Matthew Altham - conductor
Ann Rachlin - commère
Ann Rachlin, commère, and the Pegasus Chamber Choir conducted by Matthew Altham, present a range of seasonal music focusing on the secular traditions of these islands, not least that of wassailing, as well as from further afield. Ann Rachlin will explore some of these which, until recently, were a feature of Kent and Sussex, The Garden of England, where apple trees, used for cider making, were wassailed at the end of the year to promote a good harvest for the forthcoming season. Repertoire will include, Vaughan Williams’ Wassail and Jesus Christ the Apple Tree by Elizabeth Poston.
Pegasus will return to Winchelsea to perform a range of seasonal music focusing on the secular traditions of these islands, not least that of wassailing, as well as from further afield. Ann Rachlin, will explore some of these which, until recently, were a feature of Kent and Sussex, The Garden of England, where apple trees, used for cider making, were wassailed at the end of the year to promote a good harvest for the forthcoming season.
Repertoire will include, Vaughan Williams’ Wassail and Jesus Christ the Apple Tree by Elizabeth Poston. Since its founding in 2001, Pegasus has built up a reputation as one of London’s most versatile and exciting chamber choirs. The ensemble has developed an extensive repertoire embracing sacred and secular music from the Renaissance to the present day. Pegasus’s members are experienced singers who pursue their passion for choral music alongside careers in other fields.
Sunday 20th March at 4pm
Music has always been of prime importance at this south west London school, and this afternoon concert will feature over fifty young musicians performing a wide range of music for choirs, solo instrumental music and small vocal ensemble. Many of the performers are music scholars for whom music is their passion.