Gateway Arts Concerts


Chester Street, Shrewsbury

Thursday 23rd February at 1.00 p.m.

VIOLINS: Anne Tupling, Richard Lane, Julia Johnson, Megan Webb VIOLAS: Helen Schilsky, Sarah Fairbank 'CELLI: John Fairbank, Lilian Kelly, Hilary Summers BASS: John Hyslop

Mendelssohn’s String Octet op. 20
Bach’s Brandenburg Concerto no. 3

Concerts sponsored by Shropshire Council

Counterpoint Strings

Admission £4.00 on the door (£7.00 for evening concerts)
Friends of Gateway Arts £3.00
Carers with disabled and children free

To reserve tickets phone Muriel Williamson on 01743 850267

About Counterpoint

Counterpoint is a Shropshire based ensemble of chamber musicians formed in 2001 and directed by Anne Tupling.

Counterpoint has played for us at the Gateway Arts Centre in Shrewsbury on many occasions, with a range of music as varied as our audience, and always to the highest professional standard. They have helped us maintain an exciting concert programme over many years, and always attract good audiences. Their concerts at other local venues as well as the Gateway are well known, and include those at Shrewsbury Abbey, St. Alkmund's Church, St.Chad's Church and Y Tabernacle in Machynlleth.

On the 23rd February 2012 Counterpoint Ensemble will perform two of the most popular string pieces ever written; Bach’s Brandenburg Concerto no 3 and Felix Mendelssohn’s Octet in E flat. Mendelssohn composed his Octet op 20 in the autumn of 1825 when the composer was aged just sixteen. He wrote is as a birthday gift for his friend and violin teacher Eduard Rietz. The original score is for double string quartet with four violins and pairs of violas and ‘cellos. It is bursting with youthful verve and brilliance and is surely one of the miracles of nineteenth-century music; a perfect antidote to brighten dark days and cold weather in February!

Bach’s Brandenburg Concerto No. 3 in G major is scored for three violins, three violas, and three ‘cellos/bass. It forms three movements: the opening Allegro is followed by an Adagio consists of a single bar with two chords before bursting into the exuberant final Allegro.

We would be grateful for all publicity for this concert as it is indeed a rare event.

THE LINE UP – alphabetical!

All the players are from he county and include some who are very well known indeed. We are fortunate to have such a line up.

John Fairbank studied at Bretton Hall and at the Royal College of Music, with Helen Just. He moved to Shropshire in 1975 to work for Shropshire Music Service as a specialist lower strings teacher. Latterly, before retiring from full time teaching in August 2011, he was Head of Strings for the Music Service, launching many new exciting teaching initiatives. He started the annual chamber music residential course, the Wider Opportunities Whole Class String teaching programme, ran numerous workshops and string concerts. He also conducted both the Shropshire Youth Orchestra and the Shropshire Youth Cello Ensemble. He continues to work part time now both as a teacher and free lance cellist and has been able to devote himself more to his lifelong passion, chamber music.

Sarah Fairbank studied at the Royal College of Music under Bernard Shore and Maria Donska. She then went on to teach at Stevenage before moving to Shropshire. She worked part time for Shropshire Music Service and also taught privately while her family were growing up. In 1991she became a full time teacher upper strings teacher with the Music Service and also retired in august 2011. She sang with the CBSO chorus for several years and like John plays as a free lance musician supporting a variety local groups

Julia Johnson moved to Shrewsbury with her family in 1986, and has since then worked as a teacher of Modern Languages. She has been Leader of the Telford Orchestra for the past ten years and leads the Shropshire Chamber Orchestra, a relatively new venture, which gives two or three concerts a year in the county. Three times a year, in Snowdonia, she runs chamber music courses for string players.

Lilian Kelly studied for her BMus at London University and studied cello with Rhuna Martin and Moray Welsh, going on to gain a Performance Diploma from the National Centre of Orchestral studies. She has freelanced as a player in London, Spain and the midlands and has worked for West Sussex and Staffordshire Music services teaching cello, Viol and Double Bass and conducting and arranging for string ensembles.

Richard Lane was educated at King Charles 1st Grammar School, and took a degree in Modern Languages at Trinity Hall, Cambridge. Whilst still at school, where he studied the violin with Paul Bridger and Harry Nankervis, he became an Associate Member of Birmingham School of Music.
Outside his career as Local Government Officer, he has for many years played in chamber music ensembles in all parts of the country: his present commitments are to Chandos Symphony Orchestra, which performs regularly in Malvern and of which he is co-leader, and to Wyre Forest Symphony Orchestra, which he led for its earliest days.

Hilary Summers is passionate about chamber music and often plays with Counterpoint. She also works as a freelance player across Wales and the West Midlands. Hilary lives in Ludlow and teaches piano and 'cello at schools and privately.

Anne Tupling combines a career as freelance violinist, orchestra leader and violin & piano teacher. She directs her own music agency SOUNDS INTERESTING providing string quartets for corporate events and weddings. Anne plays an Italian violin made by Pietro Messori.

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Megan Webb learnt to play the violin at school in South Wales, becoming a member of the Welsh National Youth Orchestra and then went on to study music at Exeter University. Three exciting years in Ghana studying African music followed, along with a family. When not teaching she now enjoys playing chamber music with Worcestershire's Volante Strings and various string quartets.

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