Run by students; performed by students; for everyone. The Music Durham Lunchtime Concert Series proudly showcases the plethora of musical talent within the university. This term, the series covers an exciting array of ensembles and repertoire. From musical theatre to classical soloists, the Lunchtime Concert Series has it all.

This year, the series kicked off with a stunning Freshers’ Concert, featuring a host of diverse talent. Beginning with Richard Waters’ brilliant rendition of Grieg’s Piano Sonata, the concert covered the musical gamut, with highlights including the first movement of Saint-Saens Cello Concerto no.1 by Emma Farmer, Chloe Emmerson’s fabulous performance of Bon Jovi’s ‘You Give Love a Bad Name’ and the superb vocals of Joy Sutcliffe, singing Marcello and Fauré. Indeed, the Freshers’ Concert of 2017 truly set the bar for this year.

For performers, the concert series provides a unique opportunity for performers to hone their skills and try out new repertoire in a relaxed performance environment. Most recently, vocalist Hannah Cox and flautist Ellie Knott utilised the concert series, not only for the joy of performance, but as a trial run for their final recitals. Hannah commented:

“Lunchtime concerts are the perfect opportunity to practise public performance, preparing be it for a concert or an exam. The informality keeps it relaxed and a wonderful chance to get support from friends!”

Whilst Ellie added,

“It’s a really relaxed and supportive environment whilst you’re on stage, and a great way to put into practice all you’ve been working on individually as an instrumentalist or singer. I found it particularly useful as it simulates the format of my final year public recital.”

The Lunchtime Concert Series aims not only to exhibit of a high standard of musical talent, but provide the opportunity to open your ears to new repertoire. Following Ellie and Hannah’s collaboration, Abi Groocock said:

“Ellie introduced us to a whole host of repertoire, from a more traditional sonata to jazz styles that you don’t usually hear on flute! It was also really helpful to have an introduction to each piece to learn a little about the contest too. Hannah’s singing was sensational; full of drama that really captivated the audience. The concert was an excellent way to spend a lunch hour”.

Earlier in the term, Harry Lampert performed a recorder concerto, accompanied by Helen Butcher on continuo, bringing an often-overlooked instrument into the limelight:

“I feel like recorder is an underrated instrument because everyone had to learn it at school. I had never been able to perform the whole concerto with a proper continuo and this gave me the opportunity to both perform it and show people that recorder can be played properly at the same time!”

So why not come and enjoy the music, support your fellow performers, open your ears to new music, or perhaps even perform yourself… all for free. Then again, it’s also a great place just to eat your lunch. Same time, same place, every week. Wednesdays at 1:15pm to 2pm in the Music Department concert room.

Upcoming concerts:

8th November – National Saxophone Day
A concert to celebrate National Saxophone Day which takes place on the 6th November. Laura Buckingham (president of Durham University Big Band) will be performing alongside a Saxophone Quartet.

15th November – DULOG Showcase
The lunchtime concert this week will feature members of Durham University Light Opera Group performing songs from their recent shows and other musical theatre hits!

6th December – Barbershop Harmony
The lunchtime concert this week will feature Full Score, the brand new barbershop harmony society. Come along to enjoy close harmonies and barbershop classics!

 Want to perform at a lunchtime concert? Contact Concert Manager Nellie Chadwick-Smith at  [email protected]