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22. Six Songs of Melmoth: Carolyn Sampson & Joseph Middleton

13 October 2020, 7:30pm - 9:30pm

Carolyn Sampson is undoubtedly one of today’s leading sopranos and has been described as singing with ‘luminous perfection and beautiful diction’ (Herald Scotland). After a stunning debut appearance at the Festival last year, we are delighted to welcome her back, with regular duo partner and lauded pianist Joseph Middleton.

We are equally delighted that they will premiere Cheryl Frances-Hoad’s new work, Six Songs of Melmoth, the second of today’s world premieres. Cheryl began a three-year position as our Associate Composer last year. For this new work, she has collaborated with the writer and librettist Sophie Rashbrook to create 'A musical matryoshka' inspired by Charles Maturin's gothic novel, Melmoth the Wanderer from 1820and Sarah Perry's 2018 novel-response, Melmoth, whose eponymous central character is a mysterious figure condemned to wander the earth across all time.

Carolyn and Joseph begin their programme with a selection of Schubert songs, including ‘Litanei’ and ‘Elysium’ (almost as a prelude to tomorrow’s ‘sacred and secular’ theme). In the second half of this recital they perform songs by Eric Satie, Poldowski – the pseudonym of Régine Wieniawski – and Joseph Canteloube, before concluding with William Walton’s inspired songs from Edith Sitwell’s Façade.


This event will be presented by Gavin Plumley.



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Please note that Samuel Hasselhorn, who was due to be this evening's 'Emerging Artist' has regretfully had to withdraw from this concert due to travel complications arising from current restrictions.

This concert will be streamed completely live from the Holywell Music Room. Shortly afterwards, it will also be available to watch again (using the same ticket and link) until 1 November 2020. Click here for further information on how tickets will work this year.

After a short break at the end of the concert, there will be a Q&A with the artists. Please email any questions you have during the interval or at the end of the concert ( or post them on social media (#OLF2020), and the artists will answer as many as time allows.

Oxford Lieder gratefully acknowledges support from the PRS Foundation, the Leche Trust the Nicholas John Trust and the RVW Trust for Cheryl Frances-Hoad's commission. 


10 October 2020 | 10:00am

Connections Across Time - A Brief History of Song

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21. Imogen Cooper plays Schubert: Imogen Cooper & Harriet Burns
13 October 2020, 5:30pm - 6:30pm
Next Event
23. The Hermes Experiment
13 October 2020, 10:00pm - 11:00pm

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