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NADSA NEWS - September 2018

Welcome to the new Concert Season! We begin on Friday September 21st in the Courtenay Centre, Newton Abbot at 7.30pm with a Clarinet & Piano recital by our friends Elaine Cocks (home-grown in Ashburton) and Viv McLean (returning after two years), looking at some of the lesser-known repertoire. The programme will include works by Poulenc, Devienne, Mayer, Bowen and Francaix; details at Elaine Cocks with Viv McLean Piano where you can also book tickets for collection at the door.

Elaine is a visiting lecturer and teacher at the Guildhall School of Music and an Associate of the Royal Academy of music; she has played with the London Sinfonietta, BBC Symphony Orchestra, English Chamber Orchestra and London Mozart Players among others, and has premiered several works written for her. Viv too has worked with the major British orchestras, playing at the Barbican and the Royal Festival Hall as well as touring the USA with the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra. Both have appeared on Radio 3 as part of their Young Artists Forum and we're delighted to welcome them both back to Newton Abbot where their concert will be sponsored by Rathbones Investment Management

NADSA's programme for the rest of the season is: Note that unless otherwise indicated, all concerts are on a Friday evening, and each may be booked online at the discounted rate of £13; otherwise £15 on the door.

Save even more by becoming a member: individual tickets for only £10, or the whole season of seven concerts for only £56. Individual membership for the year costs £20, or £30 for a couple, so by joining you could save a massive £29 as a single or £68 as a couple! Students save even more: the whole season of seven concerts for only £30. Amazing value! Members also have the opportunity to attend the Annual General Meeting in June where you will enjoy a complimentary cream tea, a short complimentary recital and have the forum to share your ideas for the future of the Society with fellow members and the committee. What are you waiting for - get on the NADSA website and sign up now to maximise your savings! You may have realised that even if you miss a concert, you're still saving money - and you can pass your ticket on to a friend to enjoy the evening's entertainment.

Elsewhere in the area, the Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra are at the Great Hall, Exeter on 11th October with their 'Divine Sublime' concert; Mozart's 'Gran Partita' serenade no.10 and Beethoven's 7th symphony - for more information.

Exeter Cathedral has three events in the coming weeks: first an Organ Recital by David Flood on 13th September, and a week later on 20th the choral group Tenebrae present their programme of commemoration, in poetry and music, 'We will remember them'. On Sunday 7th October the Cathedral Choir, University of Exeter Chapel Choir and Exeter Symphony Orchestra lead an orchestral service of Choral Evensong. More information and tickets from

Finally, keen string players may be interested in a workshop in Baroque style playing to be held on Sunday October 7th at Aller park, Dartington. Organised by Devon Baroque, has more information.

That's it for now; happy listening,
John Rockey
nadsa concerts April 2018

April sees the seventh and final concert in this our 72nd season and we are grateful to Austins Department Store for their support throughout the season. Without our sponsors, both corporate and individual, it would not be possible to present such a varied programme of artists, each of whom is at the top of their field, here in Newton Abbot. The season will be drawn to a close with a slightly Welsh flavour on Friday 20th April by Lesley Hatfield (Violin) and Huw Watkins (Piano) at 7.30pm in the Courtenay Centre, and our thanks go to one of our members, Colin Power, for his sponsorship of the evening.

Lesley Hatfield is Leader of the BBC National Orchestra of Wales and also enjoys a distinguished career as a soloist and chamber musician as well as teaching. After gaining her Recital Diploma at the Royal College of Music she has played with the Chamber Orchestra of Europe, going on to leadership of the Northern Sinfonia and the Ulster Orchestra. Described as "One of the most rounded composer-musicians in the UK", Huw Watkins teaches composition at the Royal Academy of Music and has many works to his credit; orchestral, chamber and song. He is also in great demand from orchestras and festivals as a pianist and has performed throughout the UK and in North America.

Their programme for us will include works by Prokofiev, Beethoven, Schumann and Ravel as well as one of Huw's, written two years ago as a companion piece to partner the Beethoven. Look at Lesley Hatfield Huw Watkins for the full programme details, then follow the on-page link to book your ticket for collection at the door.

While you have your diary out, make a note of NADSA's concert dates for next season. They are - 21st September, 19th October, 16th November, 20th January 2019, 17th February, 15th March and 13th April. All are in the Courtenay Centre except April's, which will be at Teignmouth School. Members will also want to make a note of the Annual General Meeting on Sunday 10th June at 2.30pm - but secretary Gill will write to you about that nearer the time. Suffice it to say for now that the business will be followed by a cream tea, and then a short recital of handmade traditional flutes by a local artist: this will be somewhat different to our usual run of performers but he comes highly recommended! Enough, before I disclose too much...

What else is going on?

Starting at 2.30 on Sunday 15th April The English Concert make their first visit to Exeter's Northcott Theatre with a Baroque programme of Handel, Purcell, Rameau, Vivaldi, Tartini and Bach. See for more about this exciting programme from one of the leading orchestras specialising in music of the baroque and early classical periods.

The Divertimento String Quartet are playing at Lustleigh Village Hall on Saturday 21st April at 3pm; their concert will include works by Haydn and Brahms. See for further details and to book tickets. If that's too much string for one weekend you can hear them again at Totnes on Sunday 29th. (

Again in Exeter, Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra are at the Cathedral on Thursday 26th, 7.30pm with their 'Notes of Nostalgia' concert. gives details of their programme which includes Britten's Four Sea Interludes, Dvorak Cello Concerto and Richard Strauss's Death and Transfiguration.

This April it all happens in Exeter! At the Cathedral, this time on Saturday 28th, there is a concert at 7.30 by Exeter Music Group called 'Night at the Museum', in support of the 150th anniversary of the city's Royal Albert Memorial Museum. The programme includes excerpts from Saint-Saens' Carnival of the Animals and Mussorgsky's Pictures at an exhibition, plus works by Weber, Silvestri and Vaughan Williams. Details and bookings at

A little early to book perhaps, but in May the Exeter Philharmonic Choir present an evening of French and English music in Buckfast Abbey on Saturday 19th - take a look at if you're interested.

There we have it for April: share this with your friends, and happy listening,
John R

nadsa concerts March 2018

Our March concert on the 16th returns us to the usual Friday evening time of 7.30 at the Courtenay Centre, and features pianist Clare Hammond, . An active chamber musician, Clare has worked with the Brodsky, Endellion, Badke, Dante and Piatti Quartets and with Henning Kraggerud, Andrew Kennedy, Jennifer Pike, Philippe Graffin and Lawrence Power so it is a privilege to welcome her to Newton Abbot as a solo performer. In 2016, she won the Royal Philharmonic Society's 'Young Artist Award' in recognition of outstanding achievements. Highlights that year included a performance at the Royal Festival Hall with the Philharmonia and a series of three concerts at the Belfast International Arts Festival, broadcast as part of the BBC Radio 3 Lunchtime Concerts series. Her concerts have earned critical acclaim, as have her several world premier performances. Clare will play for us just one modern piece, Edmund Finnis's 'Youth' from 2017, and the varied programme will also include a Haydn Fantasia in C, Four Schubert Impromptus, Beethoven's Sonata no.30 in E, Scriabin's op.19 sonata and three movements from Stravinsky's Petrushka. More programme detail can be found at , where you may also buy tickets for this exciting evening at the advance price of £13. If you wait until the night it'll cost you £2 more at the door, but as a member you would enjoy a further reduction to only £10 - a bargain price! We are grateful to Estelle McCormick for generously sponsoring this concert, and to our Season's Sponsor, Austins Department Store.

This weekend on Saturday 10thTorbay Symphony Orchestra are at Teignmouth Pavilions as part of the Teignmouth Classical Music Festival, where they will be performing Stephen Montague's Dark Sun' alongside the Tchaikovsky violin concerto (with soloist Elena Abad) and Mahler's 1st Symphony. If you miss this, the concert is repeated in Totnes the next day and tickets for either concert can be bought from their website above.

The Teignmouth Classical Music Festival is on right now; it includes poetry by Keats featuring South Devon Singers Choir and supported by The Gallery Singers and Flute Cake; free Mini-Recitals; Lunchtime and Afternoon Concerts, and Teign Piano Trio playing Palm-Court style at the Oystercatchers Cafe. Then in Chudleigh on 18th is A Night at the Opera, with Red Earth Opera Chorus & Orchestra. Full details of the festival can be found at Teignmouth Classical Music Festival on Facebook

The Torbay Singers are singing the Monteverdi Vespers of 1610 on Saturday 24th March in Babbacombe, with soloists and accompanied with sackbuts, cornetts and baroque strings conducted by Tina Guthrie evoking the majesty of St. Mark's, Venice. Information and tickets from

Another event this weekend is the Lord Mayor's Concert on Saturday in Exeter Cathedral, where the Exeter Philharmonic Choir will perform the Mozart Requiem; in the same programme, Jordan Black will be the soloist in Mozart's Clarinet Concerto. for more information.

The Cathedral always has a pretty full programme of music; will give you details, but March will include a Requiem by Howard Goodall and movements from Mozart's 'Great' C-minor Mass; Rachmaninov's Liturgy of St. John Chrysostom; Villages in Harmony, and Handel's Messiah.

In all, a fairly busy month for music lovers in South Devon: make the most of it!
Happy listening,
John R

nadsa concerts February 2018

This month's concert is the second of our afternoon presentations, so you don't need to come out on a dark winter's evening: make a note now of Sunday 18th February at 3pm in the Courtenay centre. This concert features the Arcadia String Quartet, a Romanian ensemble who have won a number of international competitions in their field. Now in their twelfth year they have performed throughout Europe, playing also in China as well as touring in Japan. Their debut disc of works by Mendelssohn and Brahms won critical acclaim, as did their later Janacek disc, extracts from which can be heard here: Their Programme for us will include the Haydn 'Joke' quartet, Shostakovich's 8th ('Dresden') and Borodin's 2nd quartets - think 'Kismet' - a well-varied programme and you can probably be home before dark!

The concert is sponsored by solicitors Wollen Michelmore, and our sponsor over the whole season is Austins Department Store. Read the review: Arcadia String Quartet Review

On Tuesday 6th March after an interval of two years live jazz comes to Abbotskerswell again when the Jack Honeyborne Trio will be in St Mary's Church. In his 90th year pianist Jack brings two of London's finest up and coming rhythm section players, Mark Rose on double bass and Jason Reeve on drums, back to the village for an evening of jazz classics. More information at

In the same week, Moriarty Winds, all post-graduate students of the Royal Academy of Music will appear at Powderham on Friday 9th March; has a little more about this.

Not too far away, Torbay Symphony Orchestra are performing at Teignmouth and Totnes over the weekend 10-11 March when they will perform Stephen Montague's 'Dark Sun' alongside the Tchaikovsky violin concerto when Elena Abad is the soloist, and Mahler's 1st Symphony. For more information see

Exeter Philharmonic Choir are running a workshop on Saturday 17th February at Mint Methodist Church in preparation for singing Mozart's Requiem at the Lord Mayor's Concert in the Cathedral on 10th March; look at if you're interested. The concert will also include Mozart's Clarinet Concerto with Jordan Black.

At All Saints, Babbacombe on 24th March The Torbay Singers are performing Monteverdi's Vespers of 1610 with baroque strings and historic instruments; tickets can be reserves online via

Plymouth Guildhall is the venue for the Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra's next concert in Devon on Friday 23rd February when Leonard Elschenbroich is the soloist in Elgar's Cello Concerto. has more detail of the programme which also includes Wagner's Siegfried Idyll and Dvorak's New World symphony.

Exeter Cathedral plays host to the Exeter Recorder Orchestra on Saturday 17th February for a free concert (although admission charges to the building still apply) at 1.15pm. A welcome break from shopping? Certainly a step up from your average school recorder group!

That's all for this month; please share this with any friends who may be interested; it isn't just for nadsa members. If you are such a friend and would like to receive the newsletter regularly, just let me know and you'll be added to the list.

Happy listening,
John R

A happy new year to you all

We start 2018 with one of our occasional departures from the usual timetable, with the next concert on Sunday 21st January at 3pm in the Courtenay Centre. This will feature the Pomegranate Piano Trio - three outstanding musicians each with their own careers as soloists, accompanist and ensemble players who came together to form Pomegranate four years ago. Individually and together they have preformed at the Wigmore and Queen Elizabeth Halls in London; the Musikverein in Vienna; La Salle Cortot, Paris ; New York's prestigious Lincoln Center; and Hong Kong's Cultural Centre. Their concert at Newton Abbot will include the Haydn Keyboard Trio No. 29, Beethoven's 'Archduke' Trio and the lesser-known Opus 15 Trio by Smetana.

If you don't already have tickets they may be purchased from Pomegranate Piano Trio, or on the door: a snip - where else would you get an afternoon's entertainment by top musicians for only £13? This is only possible with the help of our sponsors, The C&M Pike Trust, and of course Austins Department Store, who are supporting NADSA for the whole season: we are grateful for their generous help.

January seems otherwise to be a quiet month for local live music. Any singers among us may be interested in a choral workshop to sing the Monteverdi Vespers (1610), organised by Torbay Singers and directed by Tina Guthrie at Exeter School on Saturday 27th January: go to for more information but be quick - bookings close on Friday 12th!

On Thursday 1st February there is an evening of words and music reflecting the events of the Holocaust, with Raphael Wallfisch and Anita Lasker-Wallfisch. Anita is one of the few surviving members of the Women’s Orchestra in Auschwitz and will speak about how art can survive the worst of human atrocities. Raphael is her son and a world-renowned musician. He will play a recital of evocative and sublime cello music, inspired by his Jewish heritage and accompanied by John York at the piano. John has an international reputation as a pianist, composer and writer and for over 30 years has been professor at the Guildford School of Music and Drama. to find out more and to book.

That's it for now; look out for another newsletter in a month's time with information about music in February and early March. Please forward this to any of your friends who may be interested. It is sent to around 120 NADSA members and friends and more can easily be added to the lists!

Keep listening,
John R

Hello fellow concert goers -

For our next NADSA concert we're back in the Courtenay Centre again, next Friday 17th November at 7.30 to hear Joglaresa: early music with a difference! None of their programme is of a western European background, so no Gregorian Chant or Plainsong; expect instead to hear songs originating from Morocco, Turkey, the Balkans and 13-14th century Spain (so a strong Moorish influence here too). In fact this programme is called 'The Enchantress of Seville'. The five members play a variety of medieval folk instruments to bring to life ancient and traditional musics, researched through years spent in the Middle East and North Africa. Joglaresa have been described as "Early Music's 'bit of rough'" with their bold and rebellious style, reaching straight to the heart of medieval music by blurring the lines between composer, arranger, improviser and performer. Now in their 25th year, they have toured extensively and performed in London, Cardiff, Slovenia, Istanbul, Amsterdam and several Early Music Festivals. Book your tickets at and collect them at the door - don't delay, this promises to be an exciting evening; I can't wait to hear their 'Killer Rabbit' instrumental! Our thanks go to Buyrite Tyres for their kind sponsorship of this event.

That same weekend at the Duke of Cornwall Hotel, Plymouth, Peter Fisher and the Chamber Ensemble of London present a World War I concert, We Will Remember, on Sunday 19th at 2.30pm. The full programme can be seen at and will include works by Elgar, Vaughan Williams and Clive Jenkins. Some NADSA members saw this concert last year in Dartington and it was a very moving experience. Tickets may be booked at

The following weekend, 25th & 26th, Torbay Symphony Orchestra are hosting a String Concerto weekend with master-classes, open rehearsals and pre-concert talks. These all take place at the Ariel Centre, Totnes, and there's more information here: where you can also buy tickets. The Saturday concert includes works by Vaughan Williams, Bartok, Gordon Jacobs and Brahms, followed on Sunday by Mozart, Dvorak and Beethoven. Quite a feast for string players and aficionados!

Torbay Singers and Chamber Orchestra present a seasonal celebration, Joy to the World, on Saturday 2nd December in St. Matthias Church, Torquay, with music by Handel, Bach and Vaughan Williams as well as carols; for more details see

If you're Christmas shopping in Exeter on Saturday 9th December, the Exeter Music Group are holding a free 'drop-in' at St Stephen's Church in the High Street, ideally placed to give you a break, complete with coffee & cake! Small ensembles will perform solos & duets from 10am to noon - a very tempting offer...

Also in Exeter in the coming weeks the Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra will appear twice at the Great Hall: 'Smooth Classics' on 23rd November and 'An Artist's Reply' on 7th December. Details of these two concerts are at,10077&t=Exeter . For this latter concert Don Frampton has arranged a bus from Torquay & Newton Abbot: there may yet be room for you - email him NOW if you're interested at or ring him on 01626 354580.

Exeter Cathedral has, as always, several concerts of interest in the next month: on 18th November the Exeter Festival Chorus with the Erlöserkirche Chor (from Exeter’s twin German city, Bad Homburg) present a double bill of organ and choral music, Duruflé’s Requiem and Dvořák’s Mass in D. In December there are no less than eight Christmas concerts, as well as Handel's Messiah by the Cathedral Choir and Devon Baroque in the afternoon on Sunday 10th. The full list may be seen at where you may also buy tickets.

This all demonstrates that South Devon isn't a musical wasteland; there's plenty more going on here that isn't listed such as the many Christmas concerts in churches and villages where amateur singers and musicians celebrate the season. Look out for their posters and get out there and support them!

Happy listening,
John R

Hello fellow concert goers -

Always a busy time for musicians, there's quite a lot to look forward to this month. Much seems to be happening in Exeter, but don't worry, there's plenty nearer to home!

Our next NADSA concert is in Teignmouth, at the Performing Arts Centre, Teignmouth Community School, Exeter Road on Saturday 21st October, 7.30pm when the Chroma Chamber ensemble will be playing late 19th - 20th century French pieces. This will include works by both Jacques Ibert and Henriette Renie - who was instrumental in the development of the harp - for violin, cello and harp; a Saint-Saens Fantasy for violin and harp, and adaptations of piano pieces by Saint-Saens and by Debussy.

CHROMA is a collective of musicians, and we will be hearing three of their number. Harpist Eleanor Turner brings more than 18 years professional experience; performing with the Academy of St Martin in the Fields aged only fifteen, she has also appeared as soloist at the Berlin Philharmonie, in Amsterdam, London, New Orleans and Sydney. With several awards as a player she also enjoys success as a composer in a wide range of styles. David Le Page is our violinist for this concert and has been a prize winner at the BBC Young Musician series and at the Yehudi Menuhin competition; having worked with the Kreutzer quartet, Opera North, Thomas Ades, Nicholas Daniel, John Tavener and Michael Tippett, he has released three albums of his own material and is currently exploring ideas of transformation in music. Cellist Clare O'Connell is a founder member of CHROMA who also works with The Storytellers Ensemble, The Harborough Collective, Lontano, Aurora, Marais Ensemble and Propellor Ensemble, but is most devoted to CHROMA, for whom she also curates their series of Berkhamstead concerts, interweaving poetry and storytelling with music - maybe an idea for another time?

There is more information here , where you can also book tickets to collect at the door, price £13. This promises to be an entertaining and unusual evening so be sure not to miss it! The concert is sponsored by Rathbones Investment Management.

The Two Moors Festival starts shortly and unfortunately, at the time of compiling this newsletter a part of their website was down. Some of their venues are local to us: Exeter Cathedral, St Andrew's church and St Lawrence Chapel, Ashburton; St Andrew's, Moretonhampstead; St Pancras, Widecombe and St Michael, Chagford. If you're interested in finding out what's on, look at the EVENTS tab at for more information about these small-venue concerts with big-name musicians - many are during the daytime, so no difficult trips in the dark! The festival runs until 21st October.

Exeter Music Group celebrate their 50th anniversary with a concert in Exeter Cathedral on Friday 3rd November under conductors Leo Geyer and Tony Hindley. Their programme of English music features Elgar's Enigma Variations, Parry's coronation anthem 'I was glad', Bax's Tintagel overture and a Symphonic Suite 'Exeter Cityscapes' by local rising composer Alfie Pugh. There is also the opportunity to join the EMG Singers in the Parry - go to for more information where again, tickets may be booked. Another good 20th-century (just) programme, this time from our own side of the channel!

At Powderham Castle next month - Friday 10th - the Alke Quartet play string quartets by Haydn, Beethoven and Schubert; details at .

Devon Opera are promoting Mozart's comedy Cosi fan tutte in the Great Hall, Dartington on Saturday 14th October and again on 17th at the Barnfield Theatre, Exeter. Sung in Italian by a cast of young professionals with piano accompaniment, there are surtitles to help you follow the plot; for more details.

Exeter Philharmonic Choir present 'The Glorious Baroque' on Saturday November 11th at the Mint Methodist Church, with Exeter Chamber Orchestra; has all the information.

Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra are once again at the Great Hall of Exeter University with a programme of Elgar, Ravel and Vaughan Williams ( on Thursday 9th November, and again on 23rd with 'Smooth Classics', a format that ClassicFM listeners will recognise (,10077&t=Exeter ) but there's an added attraction to their 7th December concert 'An Artisi's Reply', also at the Great Hall: you don't have to drive! Featuring Prokofiev's Romeo and Julie suite, Rachmaninov's Rhapsody on a theme of Paganini and Shostakovich's magnificent 5th Symphony, there are tickets available at £22.00 and at £26 and this includes the cost of a coach from Newton Abbot, with a Torquay pick up too. So far 24 seats are reserved so email Don Frampton quickly if you're interested at or ring him on 01626 354580 before the end of this month. Priority will probably be given to NADSA members, but others please make contact all the same. Thanks Don for organising this.

Finally, I know that many NADSA members and friends are keen to support local charities so I commend to you two more musical events.

The first is on this coming Sunday, 15th October in a venue we all know well, The Courtenay Centre at Newton Abbot when you are invited to a 'Palm Court' Afternoon Tea beginning at 3pm in the Pollard Room. The Orchard String Quartet will entertain us in an appropriate manner and all-inclusive tickets are £8.50 in advance from or The Avenue Methodist Church. On the door, the cost will be £10 so book your afternoon tea now - you can always chip the £1.50 you save into the pot at the end! The afternoon is in aid of Newton Crisis Aid, a local registered charity raising funds to help refugees caught up in the current crisis. Remember how much you've enjoyed NADSA AGMs with music and cream teas? This is going to be another such great afternoon!

The second isn't until 25th November, so write it on the calendar now! The concert is at Dartington, 7.30 and is aid of The Towersey Foundation which is a charity for the promotion of music in palliative care. Nicholas Mc Carthy, who many will know and have heard, is one of it's Patrons and is giving this recital free of charge. Nicholas is an inspirational pianist who was born without his right hand, started playing at the age of 14 and has studied at the Guildhall School of Music and the Royal College of Music. Recently returned from a tour of China he is fast becoming, if not already, an international star. His programme includes works by Puccini, Liszt, Chopin, Gershwin and Strauss. Tickets cost £15 and can be obtained from 01803 847070 and also from's-on

That's all for now; happy listening,
John R

Hello fellow concert-goers -

A warm welcome to NADSA's 72nd season of live music in South Devon. We open on Friday 15th September at the Courtenay Centre, Newton Abbot at 7.30pm with a recital by Norweigian pianist Kristian Lindberg. Some of us will remember hearing him play at last year's AGM and it will be a delight to welcome him back. A past winner at the Norweigian Young Pianists competition and the International Grieg competition, his programme will naturally include five of Grieg's many Lyric Pieces. Mozart's Nine Variations on a Minuet by Duport also feature, as well as five of Rachmaninov's Preludes and Chopin's complete Opus 28 set. Full programme details can be seen at where tickets may also be booked, and you can read more about Kristian at . We are grateful to one of our committee, Albert Blackwell for sponsoring this concert.

Tickets for all our NADSA concerts cost £15 on the door or £13 in advance, but do you know that full members can take advantage of a reduced price of £10, or season tickets at £56 for all seven concerts? Annual Membership costs £20 for a single person, £30 per couple or the corporate rate of £50. Do the sums and see how much you'll save, besides not having to worry about missing a concert! To find out more, email Gillian Taylor via the web page .

The season continues with some variations to our usual days, times and venues as follows:
Saturday 12st October, 7.30pm at the Arts Centre, Teignmouth Community Centre: Chroma Chamber Ensemble
Friday 17th November, 7.30pm at the Courtenay Centre: Joglaresa
Sunday 21st January, 3pm at the Courtenay Centre: Pomegranate Piano Trio
Sunday 18th February, 3pm at the Courtenay Centre: Arcadia String Quartet
Friday 16th March, 7.30pm at the Courtenay Centre: Clare Hammond, piano
Friday 20th April, 7.30pm at the Courtenay Centre: Lesley Hatfield & Huw Watkins, violin & piano
A Newsletter like this will precede each concert to remind you, but put the dates in your diaries now just to be sure!

Before looking at music-making wider afield, there's one aspect of our own concerts which you may not be aware of: when artists visit, where do they stay? After the excitement of a performance it's something of a let-down to be alone in a hotel room so we try to accommodate our guests at the home of a member or friend. To this end we are most appreciative of our small band of volunteers who are sometimes called upon to host our guest artists overnight, feeding and ferrying them between the station and venue too when necessary. If you think that this is an area where you may be able to help out, contact Sue Collman on 01626 368313 - she'd be so pleased to hear from you!

Its certainly too late to remind you that Stephen Isserlis is playing - among other things - three of Bach's Cello Suites in Bovey Tracey on Friday 1st September because that concert is sold out, but you may be in time to catch Superlocrian brass ensemble on Saturday 2nd at lunch-time, or even Norika Ogawa playing NADSA's own piano in the evening ( ) so I won't say any more...

On Sunday 3rd September at 3 pm local organist Wyn Turner is giving a recital at St.Mary's, Abbotsbury. Despite its splendid Hele organ, the church has been abandoned as a place of worship by the recently reorganised Newton Abbot parish, so the future of Wyn's world class recitals there is in jeopardy. Hear him while you still can!

At Exeter Cathedral the choral group Tenebrae are performing a very varied selection of works on Friday 15th September; then on Monday 16th October the City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra as part of the Two Moors Festival play Mozart's 'Figaro' overture, Beethoven's 4th Piano Concerto and Brahms 1st Symphony: for more information.

At Powderham Anna Lapwood and Fatima Lahham present music for organ and recorder on Friday 29th September; see .

If you like your music on a larger scale, also on 29th September the Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra are at the Great Hall in Exeter with a programme of Mendelssohn (Hebrides Overture), Mozart (violin Concerto No.5) and Beethoven (Eroica Symphony).,10077&t=Exeter

The Two Moors Festival is now well established and this year runs from 13th to 21st October. At venues which near to us include Exeter Cathedral, Widecombe, Chagford and Ashburton, there are some stunning concerts featuring Barry Douglas, Dame Felicity Lott, the CBSO, the Endellion and Heath quartets, Tasmin Little... look and see what's on offer at .

Devon Opera presents a cast of young professional singers in Mozart's comedy opera Cosi fan tutti at Dartington on 14th October and at Exeter on 17th; details at .

That's it for now; there's so much music out there to be enjoyed, now spread the word among your friends and make the most of it!

Happy listening,
John R

NADSA Newsletter
Number 26 April 2017

Hello fellow concert-goers

Next Friday (21st) is the final concert of the season when we have an opportunity to hear what is probably the country's leading Piano Trio play for us in Newton Abbot. The London Bridge Trio have played regularly in the capital since forming in 2002, concentrating on early 20th century English music - hence their name. Read more about them at London Bridge Trio Biography , but in brief, their earlier recordings of Frank Bridge's work were critically acclaimed; now in their current concerts they explore the influences, connections and history of works by Mozart, Schumann, Mendelssohn and Brahms. We are to hear Robert Schumann's op.73 Fantasiestücke, which you may be more familiar with as a Clarinet piece, Clara Schumann's rarely heard op.17 trio, and Mendelssohn's 2nd Piano Trio, op.66 - all written in the 1840s. Tickets for this performance may be booked at Tickets for London Bridge Trio , and we at NADSA are very grateful to Ray at Buyrite Tyres ( - which is not just tyres!) for sponsoring this event. Be at the Courtenay Centre by 7.30 as usual for an evening of first-class music making.

Across the estuary in Lympstone the Dante Quartet (who entertained us at NADSA in March) will begin Beethoven's Quartet Journey on the first weekend of May (Friday 5th to Sunday 7th) looking at the first of the early quartets, the Razumovskis and some of the late quartets. Then on the first weekend of June (2nd to 4th) they complete the journey with the remaining quartets plus transformations and the Grosse Fugue. Full details of each performance are at, with links to buy tickets. These performances will combine the exquisite playing of The Dante Quartet with a dramatised personal testimony from Beethoven himself, featuring new writing by playwright Clare Norburn alongside original sources and letters, including the famous Heiligenstadt Testament in which Beethoven expresses his despair at his growing deafness. The concert series can be dipped into or enjoyed complete, giving the listener new insights and a deeper understanding of Beethoven’s music and his extraordinary personal journey. A rare opportunity for beginners to de-mystify Beethoven and for experts to immerse themselves completely - take advantage now!

On May 5th the Virtuosi Octet from Wells Cathedral School preform works by Bach, Brahms, Glazunov and Mendelssohn at Powderham Castle. Tickets may be booked at, where you can read more about these up-and-coming young artists.

Shaldon Festival runs from 22-25 June: too much to detail here, but look at for more information. Performers include the Julian Bliss Septet (wind), Amatis Piano Trio, and Innovation Chamber Ensemble, as well as the Festival Choir and a choral workshop.

Exeter Music Group are now in their 50th season, under a new conductor Leo Geyer; those who heard their recent concert in the Cathedral will remember a fizzing 'West Side Story' and it's being followed on 20th May by live music in Princesshay Shopping Centre ( 10am 'til 1pm, free) in support of Children's Hospice South West. You'll realise this isn't part of any regular concert series but a fun pop-up bringing classical and modern music to a wider audience. If the grandchildren like that, they'll be delighted with the afternoon matinee 'Fantasy, Fun and Fairy Tales' in St Peter's School on Saturday 24th June. More about these performances at .

The Cathedral has as always a full musical programme in the coming months which will include the Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra (Debussy, Lalo and Rimsky-Korsakov), Exeter Philharmonic Choir (Gerontius), and The Sixteen - all these in May. The full list of events for the summer is at

A final date for you: Sun 14th May at 3pm,Peter Fisher & Peter Adams, violin & piano at The Duke of Cornwall Hotel, Plymouth 01752 275850,

That's all for now: there'll be another newsletter next month to remind NADSA members of the Annual General Meeting on 11th June - make a note now!

Meanwhile, enjoy Easter,
John R

NADSA Newsletter
Number 25 March 2017

Hello fellow concert-goers

Since 1995 The Dante String Quartet have been delighting audiences all over Europe - and more recently Japan - with their blend of imaginative programming and impassioned performances and so it will be a privilege for NADSA to welcome them to Teignmouth on Saturday 18th March. Radio 3 listeners will already be familiar with their recordings of established quartet repertoire and of newly commissioned works. Their programme for us (seen in full at Dante String Quartet , where you can also buy tickets) will be of more 'traditional' fare, with works by Mendelssohn, Dvorak, Janacek and Beethoven. You might like to look up to read more about the quartet and learn of their other work in the field of musical education. So: if you haven't already done so, make a note in your diary and remember that this concert is at the Performing Arts Centre, Teignmouth Community School, Exeter Road, Teignmouth TQ14 9HZ and not at our usual venue! As is often the case we are grateful to Austins Department Store here in Newton Abbot for their generous sponsorship, helping to bring the best musicians to South Devon.

Before that though, we have a slightly less prestigious event at the Courtenay Centre, Newton Abbot where we're pleased to be able to offer another 'Piano Sunday'. These have become rather erratic of late through no one particular reason, but if you haven't been before I can recommend this as a thoroughly pleasant way to pass an afternoon. These are not formal concerts but rather a chance for amateur players to experience a first-rate instrument and for listeners to relax and take in whatever range of styles our friends bring along. If you are a lapsed or retired player, this is an opportunity to re-kindle some of that passion: if you still enjoy playing, come along and share some of that joy. There's always a pile of music to leaf though if you haven't brought any; tea and biccys are available, and although the afternoon is free of charge we do ask a donation please to cover hire of the premises. Make a note now: Sunday 12th March, 3pm at the Courtenay Centre for a hour or so.

Some of our Piano Sunday regulars will remember Ben Gardner's playing: you'll be pleased to know that he continues to recover after last year's hand injury and I'm sure you'll wish to join me in congratulating him on his acceptance of a place at Trinity Laban Conservatoire, Greenwich on a four year course of piano study. Well done Ben. For the rest though, be reassured - we don't normally expect our Sunday players to reach this peak of ability!

Looking further afield now: also next weekend, on Saturday 11th Torbay Symphony Orchestra are at Teignmouth Festival with Debussy's Apres-midi d'un Faune and Bartok's Concerto for Orchestra. Benjamin Tarlton will be the soloist in Schumann's Cello Concerto. Tickets and more information here:

At our NADSA Annual General Meeting we always have something other than business to attract members, and one our artists this year will be Stephen Beville: Stephen is giving an evening piano recital on Friday March 17th at South Street Baptist Church, Exeter, 7.00pm. No details of his concert programme, but it includes Beethoven, Chopin and Lizst as well as his own work; find out more about Stephen here:

On April 1st Exeter Music Group Symphony Orchestra have an exciting programme of late 20th-century music by Gershwin, Bernstein, Marquez and a Première by Leo Geyer. This is at Exeter Cathedral, and tickets may be booked at

Also at Exeter Cathedral in March and early April are concerts by Exeter School Choral Society with Haydn's 'Nelson' Mass and Rutter's Magnificat; Exeter Philharmonic Choir with Verdi's Requiem; Exeter Chamber Choir with a programme that includes Allegri's 'Miserere' as well as works by Bach and Rheinberger. Full details of these and others at

A reminder if you haven't tickets already: Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra's 'Russian Fire' concert,10077,10121&t=Exeter is at Exeter University Great Hall on Thursday March 16th.

In Torquay, at St Mary the Virgin Church, St Marychurch, Torbay singers are augmented with soloists from the Royal Academy of Music to perform Bach's B minor Mass. on Saturday 25th March.

A fairly eventful month then; happy listening, and don't be shy - forward this to any of your friends who might be interested. Show them that live music really is alive in this corner of Devon!

More news next month,
John Rockey

NADSA Newsletter
Number 24 February 2017

Hello fellow concert-goers

Gerard McChrystal's sopranino saxophone surely warmed up a chilly January for us - now we know what an oboe sounds like on steroids! Will Marco Fatichenti's piano recital next Sunday enliven February? He's certainly assembled an intriguing programme, with Debussy's Masques and Schumann's Carnaval in the first half, followed by Debussy, Granados and Chopin in the second. Described variously as 'Chopin incarnate' (The Times) and 'Marrying Romantic turbulence with Classical order' (International Piano) this young Spanish virtuoso has attracted sparkling reviews for his interpretations of Brahms and Debussy and NADSA are grateful to Wollen Michelmore, Solicitors, for sponsoring his appearance here in Newton Abbot. Look at for more information about Marco and to hear extracts from some of his recordings, then make sure you have your tickets for the Courtenay Centre on Sunday afternoon (19th February) at 3pm - order then from Marco Fatichenti Tickets if you haven't already done so.

Not too far away at Powderham Castle on Friday 24th February students from the Welsh College of Music and Drama will present an evening of Opera highlights and a selection of Gilbert & Sullivan arias. More information at where you can also book tickets.

Exeter Cathedral are holding a Candlelit Concert on Saturday March 4th; beautiful music for Lent and Passiontide (including Allegri Miserere mei) performed in the candlelit nave of Exeter Cathedral by the Cathedral Choir (conductor: Timothy Noon) - see to book tickets, then on 16th Exeter School Choral Society present an evening of Haydn and Rutter. On 18th Verdi's Requiem will be performed by Exeter Philharmonic Choir; details of these last two from

A reminder that BSO are at the Great Hall, Exeter on Thursday 16th March; too late to take advantage of Don Frampton's bus service, but concert details of their 'Russian Fire' programme are at .

On Saturday 25th March The Torbay Singers are performing Bach's B-minor Mass at St Marychurch, and several of our NADSA members will be taking part. Booking details are at .

Finally, if you'd like to hear all sixteen of Beethoven's string quartets played by the Dante Quartet, they will be at Lympstone Parish Church during the first weekend of both May and June to present 'Beethoven’s Quartet Journey' in six concerts. Further details will follow, but make a note in your diary now if you're interested...

That's all for February; feel free to forward this email to any of your friends who may be interested.

John R

NADSA Newsletter
Number 23 January 2017

Hello fellow concert-goers

We start 2017 in fine style with a slightly unusual pairing who certainly differ from the rest of our season. Irish saxophonist Gerard McChrystal teams up with British pianist Simon Mulligan for an afternoon of classical and jazz music. Each is equally at home playing with a symphony orchestra or as soloist in a club, and individually they bring a wealth of experience and talent to Newton Abbot. Gerard is a leading light in saxophone circles as an adjudicator in international competitions and as an Artistic Director as well as in developing the repertoire for his instrument. Simon has collaborated with many notable artists including Yehudi Menuhin who described him as "one of the finest pianists I have ever had the pleasure of performing with" and Herbie Hancock ("Phenomenal"). Both have worked with major international orchestras and soloists, so be prepared to be dazzled in a programme ranging from Johann Bach to Jerry Mulligan. To read more about Gerard and hear some of his music go to ; Simon's pages are here: .

Note that this concert is on Sunday afternoon, 22nd January at 3pm: if you arrive at the Courtenay Centre as usual on Friday evening you could have a long, cold wait! To avoid disappointment you can always book tickets online here - Gerard McChrystal Simon Mulligan Tickets ; just print out and bring with you. We are grateful to Estelle McCormick for sponsoring this concert.

You may remember that NADSA member Don Frampton sometimes organises transport to BSO concerts in Exeter, and he's done it again! In anticipation he has reserved 30 seats for the Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra concert at The Great Hall, Exeter on Thursday 16th March at 7.30 pm, and has booked a 38 seat coach to take us. The coach will leave Newton Abbot bus stop on the road outside McDonalds at 6.15 p.m. Concert ticket and coach combined cost is £29.00.

The programme "Russian Fire" comprises Beethoven's Overture Leonora No 1 and his 2nd Piano Concerto, followed by Rachmaninov's 2nd Symphony. Details are here: . This is a super programme for many reasons; a chance for the orchestra to show off and for us to enjoy its great string section in the Rachmaninov, and a chance to enjoy perhaps the very best composer for the piano - Ludwig Van Beethoven and his 2nd Concerto.

Don writes: This concert is the last of the BSO’s January sale concerts with the tickets discounted from the normal £25.50 to a mere £15.50. I’ve had to estimate the coach cost as I am waiting for their price... Any excess charge will be refunded to you. The sooner you book your ticket the sooner all the reserved concert seats are taken up and I can try and reserve more tickets up to the 38 seats on the coach. I MUST PAY FOR THE TICKETS BY THE 23RD JANUARY 2017; Cheque for £29.00 payable to me M D Frampton, 3 KEYBERRY PARK, NEWTON ABBOT, TQ12 1BZ by 20th January please. THANKS... DON F Contact details:

At Exeter Cathedral on Saturday 21st January is a concert postponed from October in memorial of Two Moors Festival co-founder John Adie, featuring the Orchestra of the Swan. Jordan Black will play the Mozart Clarinet Concerto, Alina Ibragimova will play his 3rd Violin Concerto; there's also one of his Divertimenti, plus Sibelius (Karelia & Finlandia) on the programme. More information

Also in the locality during the next few weeks: there's a treat for G&S fans on 24th February at Powderham Castle when students from the Royal Welsh College of Music and Drama will present an evening of Opera highlights and a selection of Gilbert & Sullivan arias. Most of these young singers are currently studying for their Masters degrees and have won major prizes and scholarship awards; find out more here:

On Saturday 11th March Torbay Symphony Orchestra are at Teignmouth Festival with Debussy (L'apres-midi d'un Faune), a Schumann Cello Concerto and Bartok's Concerto for Orchestra. The programme is repeated the next day at Totnes; details at

That's it for now; happy listening...
John R

NADSA Newsletter
Number 22 November 2016

Hello fellow concert-goers

there are two items on the NADSA calendar this month, both over the coming weekend. The first is on Friday 18th and features Alessandro Ruisi (violin) and Dina Duisen (piano). Their programme includes Schumann's arrangement of the Bach Chaconne - always a favourite whenever performed in whatever instrumental combination - plus sonatas by Schumann and Beethoven and Four Romantic Pieces by Dvorak. Details can be found at Alessandro Ruisi Tickets where you can also book tickets. These two young musicians have studied and played internationally: Alessandro plays with the Ruisi Quartet and is co-leader of the European Union Chamber Orchestra as well as appearing with the Endymion ensemble at the 2014 BBC Proms and performing regularly with the Philharmonia Orchestra. Dina studied at the Kazakh National Academy before graduating with distinction from the Royal Academy of Music's Master's degree in performance. A prizewinner at many international piano competitions, her recitals continue to receive glowing reviews. This promises to be a delightful evening for us all at the Courtenay Centre, starting at 7.30. The concert is sponsored by the Countess of Munster Trust who do so much to help young musicians to establish careers.

On the following Sunday (20th) at 3pm there will be another of our Piano Afternoons when local music student Ben Gardner will polishing his audition pieces. Public performances like this are important to aspiring musicians for so many reasons, and it will be great if everyone can give their support and encouragement on Sunday. Because Ben's keyboard time is still being limited, there will of course be the opportunity for others among us to play, so let's try and make this a real sharing of skill and talent. As usual, admission is free and there is no charge for refreshment during the afternoon, but contributions towards venue hire and to the Piano Fund will be appreciated please. Players: don't be put off by the fear of an impossibly high standard - none of us are professionals here. We've seen a wide range of styles and grades in the past which have all been warmly received by an envious audience, so come and make this a pleasurable afternoon for all. And let's enjoy ourselves!

Surprisingly, in the Newton Abbot area the rest of November is musically fairly quiet; December too. There is no other NADSA concert in the run up to Christmas, but at Powderham Castle the a capella group Amamus Cantare present 'Sounds of the Season', a programme of old and new songs interspersed with audience carols and light readings. This is on Friday 16th December and tickets may be booked at

Moving to Exeter, the Cathedral has a full programme of music which includes Bach's St John Passion on 25th November, with English Touring Opera, Military Wives Choirs singing 'Home for Christmas' on 28th, Bach's Christmas Oratorio on 3rd December and several other Christmas Carol concerts. Details at

At the University Great Hall, Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra have three concerts before Christmas: the first on 25 November celebrates the end of the University's Diamond Jubilee year with works by Johann Strauss, Rachmaninov, Elgar, Tchaikovsky and Walton. Then on 1st December the theme is 'Roman Holiday' with Elgar, Richard Strauss and Mendelssohn, and finally on December 21st they present the Last Night of the Christmas Proms when various composers set out their festive favourites together with songs from West End and Broadway musicals. Look at for more information and to book tickets. One of our NADSA members, Don Frampton, sometimes organises a coach from Newton Abbot for BSO concerts, so you might like to email him at if transport is a problem on these dark wintry evenings.

At a less exalted level there will naturally be the usual variety of carol services in local halls and churches, so keep an eye open for posters. Many of you will be taking part in your own choir concerts, so have fun with these - whatever we can do to encourage live music-making, it all helps.

Finally, this newsletter is mailed to NADSA members and friends and the lists have recently been updated. If you know of anyone else who would like to receive their own copy feel free to pass this one on. Email me a reply and you can have your own regular monthly copy, the next being in late December or early January.

Happy Listening,
John Rockey

NADSA Newsletter
Number 21 October 2016

Hello fellow concert-goers

First, an apology: in the last Newsletter the sponsorship of our September concert featuring the Chamber Ensemble of London was a little more complicated than you were led to believe. The main sponsors were Major George W. Braden; BS, N.B.A., O.St.J. and Trina R. Braden, Lord and Lady of the Manorial Borough of Newton Bushel and the Manor of North Bovey, in Memoriam for Hugh Rupert Courtenay, 18th Earl of Devon, 1942-2015, of Powderham Castle. The Estate of the late Albert Nutty sponsored the work by Jenkins. I apologise for any confusion which might have been caused. Here at NADSA we value our sponsors greatly because without them we would not be able to promote the quality of concerts featuring musicians of international repute, which we have all come to look forward to so much.

Our next concert is next Friday evening October 21st, at the Courtenay Centre in Newton Abbot and starts as usual at 7.30. This is a welcome return of pianist Margaret Fingerhut, regarded as one of the most poetic piano recitalists of her generation. She has captivated audiences throughout the world with her imaginatively designed programmes in which she explores the highways and byways of the piano repertoire, and her programme for us will include a Haydn Fantasia (in C, Hob.XVII/4), Schubert's Sonata in B-flat, D960 and a selection of works by 'the Mighty Five' school of Russian composers. As a concerto soloist, Margaret has appeared with all the major London orchestras and her extensive and eclectic discography has received worldwide critical acclaim. We are privileged to have her here next week and the concert is sponsored by Rathbones Investment Management ( This promises to be another piano feast, so if you haven't done so already book now at Margaret Fingerhut Tickets

Some of you have noted with disappointment the fact that our regular monthly 'Piano Sundays' have been suspended for a while: well, there's some good news. Our friend Ben Gardner is hoping to give a recital on Sunday 20th November at 3pm in the Courtenay Centre, so look out for more news next month. It is still hoped that the opportunity for everyone to play will return to the calendar next year.

Looking wider afield, next Thursday 20th October there is a Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra concert ( ) at the University Great Hall opening with a Schumann Overture, Daniel Müller-Schott will play the Elgar Cello Concerto, and closing with Dvořák's 8th Symphony. One of our NADSA members, Don Frampton, has been known to organise a coach from Newton Abbot, so you might like to email him at if transport is a problem on these dark wintry evenings.

Exeter Music Group will present a concert with a Scandinavian flavour in Exeter Cathedral on Saturday 12th November under their new conductor, Tony Hindley. the programme opens with Nielson's Helios Overture and continues with Sibelius's Karelia Suite and First Symphony. For tickets and more information go to .

Next Saturday 22nd October the Two Moors Festival, begins, taking place at various venues in Devon through the coming week. Most events are North of Tiverton, but nearer to home, Tuesday 25th is Ashburton's day in the limelight, with four separate concerts through the day. Then on Saturday 29th there is a concert in Exeter Cathedral: Michael Barenboim and Jordan Black, along with the Orchestra of the Swan and young musicians from the South West, perform Sibelius, Mozart and Brahms in memory of Two Moors Festival founder, John Adie.

On Friday 11th November the talented young flute and harp duo Zephyr (Ruth Molins and Sally Jenkins) perform works by Alwyn, Britten, Nielson and Ravi Shankar at Powderham Castle. Some of you may have heard them play the Mozart concerto last year with Exeter Symphony Orchestra; to find out more, go to

Finally, at the Great Hall Dartington on Sunday 13th November there's a chance to hear the principal orchestra in the South West to specialise in baroque and early classical music played on period instruments and in appropriate style. Devon Baroque ( present their concert 'Wild Women', a programme of intensely dramatic songs by Purcell and arias by Handel from his operas and oratorios. Women in distress - including Bess of Bedlam, Dejanira and Cleopatra - are brought to vivid life by the outstanding soprano Elin Manahan Thomas. The orchestra complements the singing with instrumental music by the two composers. A great and rare opportunity for South Devon's lovers of early music to hear an orchestra of top-class enthusiasts.

That's it for now; see you next week,
John Rockey

NADSA Newsletter
Number 20 September 2016

Hello music lovers

After a summer of festivals NADSA's new concert season is launched later this month by the strings of the Chamber Ensemble of London on Friday 16th September at the Courtenay Centre, Newton Abbot at 7.30 pm. With eight string players (sometimes more), handpicked from London’s best and directed by the violinist Peter Fisher, the CEOL has given many concerts at St Martin-in-the-Fields, St James’s Piccadilly and the Purcell Room. Its versatile programming often uses special arrangements and New Music as well as standard Baroque and Classical repertoire. Their programme for us will include works by Jenkins, Elgar, Wilson and Britten. This concert is kindly sponsored by the estate of the late Albert Nutty and we are grateful for their support.

To whet your appetite further, the rest of the season is as follows:

  • Margaret Fingerhut, piano - Friday 21st October
  • Alessandro Ruissi (violin) and Dina Duisen (piano) - Friday 18th November
  • Gerard McChristal (Saxophone) and Simon Mulligan (piano) - Sunday 22nd January, 3pm
  • Marco Fatichenti, piano - Sunday 19th February, 3pm
  • Dante String Quartet - Saturday 18th March at Teignmouth Community School
  • London Bridge Trio (piano, violin, cello) - 21st April.

All concerts start at 7.30 and are at the Courtenay Centre, Newton Abbot unless otherwise indicated. More information about each programme can be found on the Concert Tickets page where you can buy advance tickets for only £13. Otherwise, tickets cost £15 on the door, but if you are a NADSA full-member this reduces to £10, so why not become a member and save? Or book the whole season and save even more... contact our treasurer at to find out more about this great offer.

Our regular Sunday Piano afternoons have been suspended through the summer, and unfortunately won't resume until the new year. Due to various people being either away or unavailable, or the piano being out on hire it was starting to look patchy up to Christmas, so rather than have the confusion of "Is it on or off this month?" it was decided to resume in 2017, so watch this space for more details later. Sorry to disappoint - I know some of you were preparing pieces for us!

Those of you who have been regulars at these Sunday afternoons will be pleased to know that our regular young contributor Ben Gardner is now recovering slowly after his setback earlier in the year, and we wish him well and look forward to hearing him again when he is fully fit.

Further afield, some advance notices for October: on Friday 7th October the Divertimento Piano Trio will be performing at Powderham Castle - see for more about their programme.

The next day Piano fans will be excited to hear that the Torbay Symphony Orchestra are performing all five Beethoven concerti in a single weekend with members of the McLachlan family as soloists. On Saturday 8th they perform nos 1, 2 and 3, with 4 and 5 on Sunday 9th. In addition to the two concerts (on Saturday and Sunday evening), there will be master-classes, pre-concert talks, open rehearsals and other events, all focusing on the piano, the concerto and specifically on Beethoven's 5 Piano concerti. This promises to be a great weekend!

Later in October the Two Moors Festival brings a whole week of music-making to Devon with concerts in Ashburton, Moretonhampstead and Exeter as well as North Devon; their website has all the details for each day's events.

Also in October Devon Opera is delighted to be offering Verdi's Rigoletto; gives the dates for performances at Chudleigh, Dartington and Dartmouth. The company's first full-length production is in an abridged version, fully staged in the original Italian, and with piano accompaniment.

Feel free to share this newsletter by forwarding it to any of your friends,

Happy listening
John Rockey

NADSA Newsletter
Number 19 June 2016

Hello all

This newsletter contains some late news for members regarding the NADSA AGM, plus some summer reminders.

First then, a message from our secretary Gillian.

Dear Members

Nadsa is pleased to announce that we have engaged an international pianist, Kristian Lindberg, for the recital at our AGM on Sunday 12th June. His programme will include works by Grieg, Chopin and Liszt.

Born in 1980, Kristian began making waves in his native Norway at a young age. In 1997 he won the Norwegian Young Pianists Competition and the following year represented Norway in the Eurovision Young Musicians competition in Vienna. In 2006 he completed a soloist’s diploma (the highest level of postgraduate performance study) at the Norwegian Academy of Music in Oslo, where he studied with Einar Steen-Nøkleberg.

Since his orchestra debut with Drammen Concert Orchestra in 1996 he has appeared as a soloist with most of Norway's professional orchestras, as well as with many leading Norwegian and international conductors. In 2008 he went on tour with the National Opera Symphony Orchestra playing Rachmaninov's 3rd Piano concerto; in 2011 he performed the same concerto with Orkester Norden on tour to the Konzerthaus in Berlin. He has given recitals all over the world including in Weill Recital Hall in New York, Wigmore Hall in London, and the Concertgebouw in Amsterdam. He has been on tour in Russia, Asia, and North and South America. He has also appeared at numerous festivals, including the Bergen Festival and Oslo Chamber music festival, playing with leading singers and instrumentalists.

We do hope you can join us and please do not forget to let Gillian know by 5th June. The meeting starts at 2.30pm at the Courtenay Centre.

We have a rare opportunity indeed to hear a pianist of such international renown, and at no charge to members. Gillian can be contacted at so if you haven't already done so, please get in touch now!

Now an appeal: you may have some music stands which you no longer use, and these could be given a new lease of life by NADSA. Kept in our cupboard at the Courtenay Centre, they could then be used by visiting musicians, which would be a huge help. In September we have an ensemble of about 8 players and your old stand could be given a star part in their recital! If you can help, would you contact Sue Collman, please.

Events through the summer include the Summer Moon Festival of beer & live music at Kingskerswell where on Thursday 16th June Torbay Symphony Orchestra are giving a 'Night at the Proms' concert. As well as the traditional Elgar/Wood/Jerusalem items there's also a Verdi overture, a Strauss horn concerto and a Dvorak violin concerto; see the whole programme at . Sounds like a great evening!

That same weekend is also Shaldon Festival, . This year's programme includes London Winds, Chetham's School of Music Chamber Ensemble (the children - or grandchildren - will love 'Peter and the Wolf!) and the Busch Trio, as well as a Choral Workshop and Shaldon Festival Choir.

On Sunday 26th June at St. Peter's School, Exeter, the Exeter Music Group present an afternoon of film music. This will include works by Massanet, Grieg, John Williams, Hans Zimmer and Shostakovich. Programme details and tickets from ; this sounds like another exciting afternoon concert for the younger audiences (as well as we older film buffs!)

In the last newsletter I briefly mentioned Devon Opera's concert in the chapel at Ugbrooke Park: it now has a title, 'The Follies of Love' and is on 23rd July. This will be an evening of opera excerpts entwined in a love story performed by three hugely talented professional young opera singers with piano accompaniment. Staged in the beautiful Robert Adam chapel of Ugbrooke Park this opera concert evening for Sense Devon Group offers the opportunity to picnic in the beautiful park designed by Capability Brown. has all the information you need.

Advance warning for September (because tickets will probably sell like the proverbials): Nourish Festival in Bovey Tracey will feature the Brodskys, Kagemusha Taiko, Calefax Reed Quintet and on Saturday 3rd, live music in the High Street. Full details at .

Who says that there's no live music in the South-West? It could be a busy summer... enjoy it, and look out for another newsletter in August.

Happy listening,

John Rockey
NADSA Newsletter
Number 18 May 2016

Hello NADSA members and friends

having reached the end of our concert season with such a tour de force as the Diabelli variations, not much remains to be said, apart from some gentle summer reminders.

Once again there will be no Sunday piano matinee this month as neither of our two mainstay players are available, and no-one else has expressed an interest. It's always a pity when something has to be cancelled, but we don't want our regular small audience to turn out for nothing, so after the summer break it might be useful if aspiring players could let me know beforehand that they'd like to play on a particular Sunday.

If you like Piano Duos (and yes, we've had some afternoon duets!) then Volt & Potenza are playing at Powderham Castle on 10th June - see .

Sunday June 12 is the Annual General Meeting in the afternoon, and our secretary Gill will be writing to you with more information in a few weeks time, but make sure you have the date in your diary now.

Just a couple of days later on Thursday 16th Torbay Symphony Orchestra are at Kingskerswell for a 'Night at the Proms' concert, part of the Summer Moon Festival of beer & live music. As well as the traditional Elgar/Wood/Jerusalem items there's also a Verdi overture, a Strauss horn concerto and a Dvorak violin concerto; see the whole programme at . Sounds like a great evening!

That same weekend is also Shaldon Festival, . This year's programme includes London Winds, Chetham's School of Music Chamber Ensemble (the children - or grandchildren - will love 'Peter and the Wolf!) and the Busch Trio, as well as a Choral Workshop and Shaldon Festival Choir.

You then have five weeks to recover before Devon Opera's concert in the chapel at Ugbrooke Park, 'A Night at the Opera'. No details yet, but this is a professional production of their usual high standard; will have all the information nearer the date.

For those who missed it earlier, here's another opportunity to put next season's NADSA Concerts in your diaries. Apart from March 2017, all are at the Courtenay Centre, Newton Abbot, and the Friday and Saturday concerts all start at 7.30pm.
  • Friday 16th September
  • Friday 21st Oct
  • Friday 18th Nov
  • Sunday 22nd Jan 3pm
  • Sunday 19th Feb 3pm
  • Saturday 18th March at the Performing Arts Centre, Teignmouth School
  • Friday 21st April Programme details will be announced later in the year.
And finally - an appeal: Abbotskerswell Singers are looking for a new Music Director for their friendly village choir in Abbotskerswell. For further information please contact our present Music Director Michael Roberts 01626 335091

Feel free to forward this to any of your friends who may share your interest in live music, and if you'd like to be added to the mailing list just let me know your email address.

Happy listening,
John Rockey
NADSA Newsletter
Number 17 April 2016

Hello follow concert-goers

After last month's delightful concert by the Sacconi quartet in Teignmouth, we're back at the Courtenay Centre on Friday 15th April where Viv McLean will give a piano recital. A past winner of the prestigious Maria Canals International Music Competition in Barcelona he has performed throughout Europe, Japan, Australia and the USA. In this country he has appeared with groups as diverse as the Sacconis (again) and Galliard Wind ensemble as well as the major orchestras. UK venues have included the Barbican and Royal Festival Halls, Cheltenham and Harrogate festivals; now we are privileged to hear him in Newton Abbot by the kind sponsorship of the C & M Pike Trust.

Viv has been praised for his technical mastery of the piano and for his musical maturity, so our last concert of the season promises to be a real treat. The programme will include Nocturnes and Ballades by Chopin, and in a change to the published programme, Debussy's 'Estampes' replaces his 'Suite Bergamasque'. The highlight for many though will be the Beethoven 'Diabelli Variations', generally reckoned to be one of the greatest sets of piano variations ever written: 33 transformations of a merry little German waltz theme by the Austrian Diabelli. What a great way to end the season! Go now to to book your ticket - they're bound to be popular and you won't want to miss this one. If you're in any doubt, look at Viv McLean's biography on, then listen to Andras Schiff's poor-quality recording at and you will say "Yes, I want to be there"!

At a more domestic level, our own NADSA piano Sundays will become a little erratic through the coming months. If you were at the last one you'll recall that one of our mainstays, Ben Gardner, has a hand injury which will severely curtail his practice time for a while, so I'm sure you'll want to join with me to wish Ben a speedy but more importantly, complete recovery and we look forward to hearing him play again when he feels able. As our other stalwart Richard Chambers is also unable to be with us it has been decided that there will be no piano matinee this month. Richard will also be missing on May 8th, so this is a golden opportunity for those of you who prefer to hide your lights under bushels to come forth and shine - come on, don't be shy! This is no more serious than playing for friends in your front-room: relax, make a few mistakes, enjoy... no one expects perfection here.

June 12th is our NADSA Annual General Meeting. Watch this space for more information in the coming weeks, but pencil the date in now: you may also like to think about how you might be able to help the committee in organising and managing our concerts - they don't happen by magic!

In the wider community, there are a few tickets left for the Exeter Music Group's performance of the Britten 'War Requiem' in Exeter Cathedral on Saturday 23rd April. Scored for two choirs, two orchestras plus organ and soloists this is a big piece which juxtaposes the traditional Latin text with poems by Wilfred Owen. A very moving work, the composer said of it after its first performance at the dedication of Coventry Cathedral, "I hope it'll make people think a bit." Tickets may be booked from here:

Summer is the season of Music Festivals, so look at to see what's happening at Shaldon in June. London Winds, Chetham's Chamber Ensemble and the Busch trio all feature, as well as the Festival Choir with their tribute to Sir David Willcocks, and there are still places on Stephen Threlfall's Choral Workshop.

That's all for now; please pass this on to any of your friends who may be interested - they can easily be added to the mailing list if necessary, this news isn't just for members only. And finally, if you've been to a concert at the Courtenay Centre you'll know that it's comfortable and has good parking and other facilities. Ever though of using it for your next family party or get-together? Look at to see what's on offer.

Enjoy the springtime,
John R
NADSA Newsletter
Number 16 March 2016

Hello fellow concert-goers -
Two NADSA news items again this month, the main one being that the Sacconi String Quartet are playing for us at the Performing Arts Centre, Teignmouth Community School on Saturday 19th March: so if you're a season ticket holder, don't go to the Courtenay Centre! This well-established ensemble has won a number of awards and is known for its creativity and integrity of interpretation, having performed throughout Europe and toured the middle-East since its inception in 2001. With works by Mozart and Schubert, the programme will also include a 20th-century work by Cornish composer Graham Fitkin in what promises to be an exciting evening. Read about the quartet here or book your tickets online here. We are grateful to solicitors Wollen Michelmore for their generous sponsorship which allows us to bring the Sacconi Quartet to Teignmouth.

Secondly, don't forget our regular monthly Sunday afternoon Piano Matinée on March 13th (yes, this weekend!): come along at 3pm and enjoy playing our Yamaha concert grand. Even if you don't play this makes a relaxing way to pass an hour or so listening to those who do. Don't be put off by the words 'concert' or 'grand': this a purely informal way for friends to experience the joy of making live music together, and there's no grade or standard to attain - this is just playing for the sheer fun of it.

A last-minute reminder that Torbay Symphony Orchestra have a concert on Saturday 12th March at St Marychurch, and the next day at St John's Bridgetown, where they will play second symphonies by Beethoven and Schumann, and Richard Strauss's first Horn Concerto; see for more information.

In case you missed these dates last month, here's an opportunity to put next season's NADSA Concerts in your diaries. Apart from March 2017, all are at the Courtenay Centre, Newton Abbot, and the Friday concerts all start at 7.30pm (and not 7pm as stated last month!) Dates are
  • Friday 16th September
  • Friday 21st Oct
  • Friday 18th Nov
  • Sunday 22nd Jan 3pm
  • Sunday 19th Feb 3pm
  • Saturday 18th March at the Performing Arts Centre, Teignmouth School
  • Friday 21st April Programme details will be announced later in the year.
Feel free to forward this to any of your friends who may share your interest in live music, and if you'd like to be added to the mailing list just let me know your email address.

Happy listening,
John Rockey
NADSA Newsletter
Number 15 February 2016

Hello fellow concert-goers;

two main items for you this month, the first being on this coming Sunday afternoon, 14th. Bring your valentine along to the Courtenay Centre in Newton Abbot at 3pm and impress her (or I suppose this year it might be him!) with your virtuosity at the piano. Yes, it's our monthly matinee. If in the past you've felt eclipsed by our regular player Ben Gardner, this will be your chance to shine forth, as he is unable to be with us this time. We're looking for solo players, or duettists (there's always a partner available if your heart's delight is shy) and of course an audience. If you've been before you'll know how informal these sessions are; plenty of opportunity to chat between items, make a cup of tea and fetch a biscuit, catch up with friends, all to the accompaniment of of a first-class concert instrument which, I'm told, is a delight to play. No matter what your style you'll be warmly welcomed.

What better way to spend a Sunday afternoon?

Well , if you prefer wind to keyboard, maybe to come the following Sunday to hear the Northern Brass Quintet! These five talented players are all alumni of the Royal Northern College of Music and have performed across the country to wide acclaim, as well as on radio and television. Members individually play regularly with the Halle, Royal Liverpool and the BBC Philharmonic Orchestras in addition to their work with English National Ballet and Opera North. Their programme includes Bizet's ever-popular Carmen suite and music by Gershwin, Sondheim and Bernstein. If your perception of brass music is that of grim-faced miners playing heavyweight marches then prepare to be pleasantly surprised: the expression 'chamber music' generally conjures a picture of a string ensemble with maybe a flute or harp, but just a couple of years ago, Northern Brass Quintet won the Philip Jones prize for chamber music, so expect to hear light and agile playing of the highest standard. We are very grateful to Buyrite Tyres for their generous sponsorship which allows us to bring such players to Newton Abbot. Book now: 21st February at 3pm. You may book online here , or read more about them and sample their work at .

Casting the net wider, at Powderham Castle the Éolienne woodwind quintet perform on 26th February, including works be Nielsen, Arnold and Barber; more details here .

Torbay Symphony Orchestra have a concert on 12th March at St Marychurch , and the next day at St John's Bridgetown, where they will play second symphonies by Beethoven and Schumann, and Richard Strauss's first Horn Concerto; see for more information.

Finally, many of you will want to put next season's NADSA Concerts in your diaries. Apart from March 2017, all are at the Courtenay Centre, Newton Abbot, and the Friday concerts all start at 7pm.
Dates are
  • Friday 16th September
  • Friday 21st Oct
  • Friday 18th Nov
  • Sunday 22nd Jan 3pm
  • 19th Feb 3pm
  • Saturday 18th March at the Performing Arts Centre, Teignmouth School
  • Friday 21st April Programme details will be announced later in the year, meanwhile just book the dates!
Feel free to forward this to any of your friends who may share your interest in live music, and if you'd like to be added to the mailing list just let me know your email address.
See you on Sunday; happy listening,
John Rockey
NADSA Newsletter
Number 14 January 2016

Hello fellow concert-goers -

is it too late to wish a happy new year to everyone? OK, I will anyway!

A couple of reminders to make sure you don't forget what's on this month: most importantly, moving away from our usual day and time, on Sunday 24th at 3pm in the Courtenay Centre Raphael Wallfisch will perform Cello works by Schumann, Brahms, Beethoven and Clarke, accompanied by John Yorke on piano. Raphael is a player of international stature and reputation with a wide repertoire of recorded work, so we are privileged to be able to welcome him to Newton Abbot.

Coming from a musical family he has played all the major venues and with the world's principal orchestras. will tell you more, and having whetted your appetite you will surely want to book tickets. This can be done through the NADSA website at .

This concert is generously sponsored by Austins Department Store, to whom we are very grateful.
Finally, next Sunday sees the resumption of our regular Sunday afternoon piano matinees when anyone who can play is invited to bring some music along to the Courtenay Centre at 3pm and try out our own concert grand.
This is a chance to play on a top-notch instrument in an informal atmosphere of supportive enjoyment - no critics , just a small but appreciative audience of fellow music-lovers. If you can't make this one, note in your diary that there will be other opportunities in February and March on the second Sunday of the month in each case.

That's all for now; happy listening,
John Rockey
NADSA Newsletter
Number 13 December 2015
Hello everyone -
just a brief note to remind you that there will be no concert in December, but that Raphael Wallfisch & John York will be at the Courtenay Centre on Sunday 24th January at 3pm; there'll be more news about this in the new year.

Also not taking place this month: our regular Piano Matinee. With so much else going on as we approach Christmas this will allow you to concentrate on your favourite local carol concerts! Otherwise, Powderham Castle hosts a performance of Handel's Messiah on 11th ( ).

Enjoy all the opportunities to hear live music that this busy season affords, have a good Christmas, and we look forward to seeing you at NADSA Concerts next year; see the full programme at .

John Rockey
NADSA Newsletter
Number 12 November 2015

Hello fellow concert-goers -

November sees the local concert programme start to fill out, and here at NADSA we're delighted to welcome the Tim Kliphuis trio back to Newton Abbot. Their last visit was a couple of years ago and was very popular, so book early if you haven't already done so. Well-known pieces that this violin, guitar & bass trio are bringing will include movements from the Vivaldi Four Seasons (yes, that's the "Please hold, your call is important to us" music!) and Copeland's Hoedown, as well as some favourites made popular by Stephan Grappelli and Django Reinhardt.
Expect to be surprised by African grooves and gypsy jazz elements.
That's at the Courtenay Centre, 7.30 on Friday 20th. will take you to the on-line booking page where you can also see some video clips of the trio in action.

This Sunday, 8th, we'll be holding another piano afternoon when anyone who can do so is invited to come along to the Courtenay Centre at 3pm and experience the joy of playing a first-class instrument, our own Yamaha C6X Concert Grand. Bring along a favourite piece or three and enjoy an afternoon of music-making in a small informal group setting.
Can't play? Then come along and listen to those who can...

Out and about, in date order, David Davies (Exeter Cathedral) is giving an organ recital at Powderham on 13th for more information.

Then on 14th Torbay Symphony Orchestra are at St Peter's Church, Shaldon with the Elgar Cello Concerto, Shostakovich 10 and the world premier of a commissioned work by John Goldie-Scott; the programme is repeated the next evening at St John's Church, Bridgetown, Totnes. will tell you more about TSO and their concerts.

Exeter Music Group present a Russian evening at the Cathedral on 21st November with Kabalevsky's Colas Breugnan Overture, Shostakovich's 2nd Piano Concerto and Rachmaninov's 2nd Symphony. for tickets and details.

Finally on 1st December at 3pm, as part of their South West Tour, IMS Prussia Cove are at St Mary's Church, Totnes with a chamber string ensemble. Their programme will include works by Mozart, Dvorak, Kodaly and Rossini - see for further information about the ensemble. Tickets from Totnes information centre or £12 at the door.

That's it for now; see you at the Courtenay Centre soon, Happy listening John Rockey
NADSA Newsletter
Number 11 October 2015
Hello fellow concert-goers -

didn't Ron Abramski get the new season off to a fizzing start!
Contrasting Brahms with Hindemith we were spellbound by his skill and obvious rapport with the music.

October sees a change to the published programme: sadly, Chroma Chamber Ensemble will not be able to join us due to an injured player. However Sally Pryce, who we last saw seven years ago, has kindly stepped in to give a harp recital. A BBC Young Musician finalist, she has studied with such masters as Osian Ellis and Maria Robles, and her programme will include works by Parry, Britten, Glinka and Mathias, showing the wide range of styles that the instrument is capable of in the hands of such an accomplished musician. This will be at The Courtenay Centre, Newton Abbot, on Friday October 16th at 7.30 pm and promises to be an entertaining and informative evening.

Our Sunday piano matinees resume on 11th October at 3pm, so if you're a player seeking an audience, or a listener seeking live music, why not think about coming along to one of these informal sessions. There's no charge - but a donation would be thoughtful - and tea & biccys are available to round off the experience. Last year a number of local folk took the opportunity to play our excellent instrument in a variety of styles. Bring along some music, or take a 'lucky dip' into whatever has been brought by others and have a go; treat it as an extra practice!

On the wider scene during October:

Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra are at the Great Hall, Exeter on 9th & 22nd

At Exeter Cathedral Simon Callow will narrate 'Peter and the Wolf' on 23rd, part of the Two Moors Festival and there are also local concerts and recitals at Holne, Widecombe-in-the-moor, Chagford, Moretonhampstead, and Ashburton during the month, most of which are daytime events.

Happy listening,
John Rockey
NADSA Newsletter
Number 10 September 2015
Hello fellow concert-goers -

now that the festival season is over we look forward to an autumn and winter of more regular music-making, and in the coming months NADSA Concerts has lined up quite an array of artists.

We begin on Friday 18th September (yes, only two weeks if you don't already have tickets) with a piano recital by Ron Abramsky with a programme by Brahms, Hindemith, Chopin, and a Liszt transcription. A former BBC young-musician finalist, he is an accomplished, award-winning pianist who has performed across Europe as well as in North America in concerts and festivals; we are fortunate to welcome him to Newton Abbot. Tickets may be booked on-line at for this performance at the Courtenay Centre, 7.30pm.

The season continues on Friday 16th October with the Chroma Chamber Orchestra, about whom there'll be a reminder nearer the date. Then after four years the Tim Kliphuis Jazz Trio makes a welcome return on 20th November to coincide with Teignmouth Jazz Festival, so you'll need to book early for this one. January 24th sees Raphael Wallfisch and John York bring their Cello and Piano programme, followed by Northern Brass on 21st February: these are both Sunday afternoon concerts to spare you the possibility of a cold journey in the winter's darkness. On Saturday 19th March we move to the Performing Arts Centre at Teignmouth to hear the Sacconi String Quartet. The season closes at Newton Abbot again on Friday 15th April with Viv Maclean, piano, who returns to us after many years. Tickets for all of these concerts may be booked individually via , or why not join NADSA as a member and take advantage of reduced prices? Contact for more information.

After a summer break our Sunday afternoon piano matinées resume next month on October 11th, but you'll be reminded in the next newsletter.

At the AGM we were reminded how important our sponsors are, and we are indeed grateful to them for helping the society to continue - one of the few remaining such groups in the south-west. If you know of anyone who might be willing to sponsor - or part-sponsor - a concert, we'd love to hear from you!

Thanks to sterling work by one of our members, Julian Fuller, we can now be followed on Facebook and on Twitter, hence the new logo; links can be found on the website . If anyone else has a specific skill to offer, again, we'd love to hear from you.

And finally: many of you are known personally to me, and I'd like to commend to you the Devon Open Studios event currently taking place across the county until 20th September. As a craft woodworker I'm one of the 220 artists taking part at some 140 venues. The full brochure can be found at . With the other seven artists and craftswomen I'm at Venue 76, Manaton Parish Hall; do come and say hello.

Happy listening,
John Rockey
NADSA Newsletter
Number 10 May 2015

NADSA's season of formal concerts has now ended, and wasn't Samantha Ward a brilliant choice with which to bring it to a close. So thoughtful to include birthday greetings to our sponsor, too, although the audience could have been in better voice!

So why another newsletter? To remind you of what's happening through the coming months so that you can put them in your diary, and to remind you of next season's dates.

First event is on Sunday when our informal piano matinées will resume at the Courtenay Centre at 3pm. This is an opportunity for anyone who enjoys the piano to play whatever they'd like on our own Yamaha grand. Bring along some sheet music, or pick something from the library provided (actually, a collection of boxes and music-cases!) and entertain yourself and the small audience for as long as you wish. Over the last year we've had a wide range of styles including singers and accompanists as well as soloists, all of whom have been very much appreciated. Don't be shy, step up now: and that includes you, audience... Tea & biccys provided, but you'll have to make it yourself - yes, it's that informal!

On June 14th there won't be a matinée afternoon as such: instead it will be the Annual General Meeting of NADSA, and members will shortly be receiving a letter or an e-mail from Secretary Gill formally giving notice of AGM. However, it can be disclosed that entertainment will be provided by Ben Gardner, one of our regular Sunday afternoon players, and if that isn't enough to tempt you there will be a cream tea served afterwards. Don't look on this as 'just another meeting': look on it as both a social occasion and an opportunity to see how NADSA works - and might you even be temped to volunteer to help in some way?

Sunday piano matinées resume on July 12th, but the crystal ball goes a little cloudy after that...

Next year's concert dates for your diary, and venues are:
Friday, 18th September Courtenay Centre
Friday, 16th October Courtenay Centre
Friday, 20th November Courtenay Centre
Sunday, 24th January 2016 Courtenay Centre
Sunday 21st February Courtenay Centre
Saturday, 19th March Teignmouth Community School
Friday, 15th April Courtenay Centre

Artists will be announced at the AGM.

On the wider arts scene, on June 20th Torbay Symphony Orchestra are at St Mary's, St Marychurch, with symphonies by Beethoven and Bruckner, and the Dvorak cello concerto. More information at

If you're in Exeter on 21st May, Exeter Music Group are holding an open rehearsal at St Peter's School: if you haven't played since school orchestra, this is your chance to sit with a full-blown (and bowed and struck) symphony orchestra. If nothing else, you'll learn to count! Their concert is at the same place on 27th June and has a theme of 'Trains' and includes music from Brief Encounter, Schindler's List, and Murder on the Orient Express as well as works by Adams and Honegger (yes, you know the ones).

Just before our own season starts, at Bovey Tracey the Nourish Festival will run from 4-5th September; further details at Last year's event was very well received with international artists of the highest standard and although the 2015 programme hasn't been published yet, it's bound to be worth investigating.

That's all for now; more news in August. Meanwhile, enjoy the summer.

Happy listening,
John Rockey  
NADSA Newsletter
Number 9 April 2015

Weren't the Wihan Quartet splendid last month in Teignmouth? A pity they'd already sold out of their most popular CDs, but certainly an indicator of the enthusiasm that they bring to their playing.

This month we're back at the Courtenay Centre on Friday 17th April when Samantha Ward will present a programme of piano music (hey - we no longer have to hire one!) to include Beethoven & Brahms, Schubert & Schumann. Samantha has appeared widely in UK and Europe, as well as winning several prestigious competitions and awards. More about Samantha at where you can also hear her playing a number of excerpts from her extensive and varied repertoire.

Less formally, our own regular Sunday afternoon piano matineés will be somewhat irregular through the summer when various people take holidays, so there will be no session this month: back again in May. April 12th is now a free afternoon, so go and have a cream tea or something!

Thinking of which, our NADSA AGM will be held on 14th June, so put it in your diary now. Last year's cream tea afterwards was so well received we're going to repeat the menu this year, and as a bonus Ben Gardner - a familiar face at the piano matineés - will also entertain us during the afternoon. More details to follow nearer the day...

On the wider scene, Exeter Music Group have a programme of French music at the Cathedral on 11th April to include Saint-Saens 3rd Symphony - the stirring 'Organ' symphony. See for details and on-line booking.

Then on 18th April at the Great Hall, Dartington, Robin Blaze and Elizabeth Kenny present "T'is Nature's Voice"; countertenor accompanied by lute & theorbo singing 17th century (i.e. to include Dowland & Purcell if you're not too hot on dates) works. More at

That's all for now; happy listening,
NADSA Newsletter
Number 8 March 2015

It's time to remind you again about NADSA concerts coming up in the near future. Those who were at the recital by Craig Ogden and Judith Hall will need no convincing of the sheer musicality of the artists who come to Newton Abbot to entertain and stimulate us.

Next Sunday sees another of our regular piano matinées when members and friends are invited to play or listen to our Yamaha grand piano in the Courtenay Centre at 3pm. Last month's contributions included works by Haydn, Rachmaninov and Beethoven as well as more up-to-date ballads with smoky, dreamy vocals! A regular visitor is Ben Gardner, and we are very lucky to have such a talented player living so close at hand. Yes, we all nod when a proud parent tells of their offspring's musical prowess, but young Ben is a cut or three above the rest: if you need persuading, listen to him play Chopin's no.2 opus 38 Ballade here...

Our Sunday matinées are informal affairs - pull up a chair, gather round, have a cup of tea when you fancy one (we even provide biccys) and enjoy the company of friends who also like to listen to, and chat about the same things. Or bring along some music - this week there won't be the usual 'library' to rifle through and choose from - then try out the piano for yourself. Either way you'll be pleasantly surprised.

On Saturday March 21st we move to the Performing Arts Centre at Teignmouth Community School when at 7.30 the Wihan Quartet will play for us. Described as "One of the best quartets in the world today" (International Record Review), over their 30 years together they have developed an outstanding reputation in performance and in recording, with glowing reviews and recommendations. Read more about them at

As one might expect from Czech players the programme includes work by Smetana (quartet no.1 'From my Life') as well as Mozart (no.15) and Beethoven (op.59 no.7 'Razumovsky'). This promises to be an evening of quartets equally pleasing to the listener as to the players and NADSA are proud to be able to present musicians of this calibre playing such music here in Teignbridge. Book now!

If you like choral and wind music, Exeter Music Group have just such a concert at Southernhay URC on Saturday; will tell you more. Then on Saturday April 11th they have a programme of French music at the Cathedral to include the Saint-Saëns organ symphony. Stirring stuff!

Finally, some of you will be thinking about your next Autumn break, or maybe even next year's Spring break. To help with your planning, here are the dates for next season's concerts. Of course, there'll be more detailed information as these events draw nearer.
Friday, 18th September Courtenay Centre
Friday, 16th October Courtenay Centre
Friday, 20th November Courtenay Centre
Sunday, 24th January 2016 Courtenay Centre
Sunday 21st February Courtenay Centre
Saturday, 19th March Teignmouth Community School
Friday, 15th April Courtenay Centre

That's all for now; hope to see you all over the coming weeks at one of these events.
NADSA Newsletter
Number 7 February 2015

This month as usual there are two events to bring to your attention; the first will be good, the second outstanding!
The first is our regular Sunday afternoon piano matinee on 8th, when amateur pianists (or even those modest souls who might describe themselves as not even that!) can play NADSA's beautiful Yamaha grand piano. This is an opportunity to play on an instrument whose tone and touch has impressed all who have tried it; if you're a player, why not come along to the Courtenay Centre at 3pm and sample it for yourself? Bring some favourite pieces and enjoy the experience. We already have a couple of regular players and are starting to build a small audience: yes, non-players are equally welcomed. What we now need is a few more players and some more NADSA members in the audience! This is a very informal matinée, not a recital; there's no 'standard' to be attained, no 'preferred style', no ceremony or protocol. People drift out and make a cup of tea when the need arises, listen, chat, make comment on the many and varied styles of music being offered, and generally enjoy a pleasant afternoon in sociable company. If you haven't done so yet - try it. NADSA Yamaha C6X Classical Concert Piano
The second event this month is on Friday 20th when we welcome again Judith Hall and Craig Ogden. When Craig last played for us here in Newton Abbot he gave what amounted to a master-class for non-players: guitar aficionados came from as far afield as Tavistock (there's enthusiasm!) and extra seating had to be brought in, so book now or you may be disappointed. Both are international stars of their instruments, having played separately and together in festivals and concerts all over the world. Their websites and will tell you more about their backgrounds as individuals and as an ensemble.

As you'd expect from a flute and guitar duo there's a wide range of music in the programme, from Beethoven to Milhaud via several typically Spanish composers, and even Django Reinhardt! Expect to hear some familiar pieces in unfamiliar settings... Judith Hall and Craig Ogden will give you a flavour of their exciting programme.

This concert promises to be one of those 'Agincourt' moments: And gentlemen in England now-a-bed... or to paraphrase Henry V, if you weren't there, you'll kick yourself afterwards!

Finally, the Exeter Music Group has two concerts during the spring which you may find of interest: a programme of choral and symphonic wind music on March 7th at Southernhay URC, followed on April 11th by Andrew Millington playing the newly renovated organ in a programme of French music at the Cathedral, to include the Saint Saens Organ Symphony. See for more information about both of these concerts.

NADSA Newsletter
Number 6 January 2015

On this coming Sunday, 11th, you'll have another opportunity to play our Yamaha grand piano at the Courtenay Centre from 3pm.  There will be a selection of music available, or you might prefer to bring your own; otherwise, just come and listen.  It's all very informal, sitting around the piano with tea and biccys.  Taken as a whole its a very pleasant way of passing an hour or so in good company - both as performer or listener.

Then the following Sunday (note: it isn't a Friday!) there's an afternoon concert with ZUM3 at 3pm.  Who?  As you might guess, ZUM3 are a trio: accordion, cello and violin,and they play gypsy tango.  They have taken their brand of virtuosity to such varied venues as the South-Bank Centre, Ronnie Scott's, Radio 3 and now Newton Abbot's Courtenay Centre.  Sometimes light-hearted, sometimes seductive, always energetic, this promises to be one of those performances that you'd kick yourself afterwards for missing!  So don't: book online now at ZUM3

During the concert interval be sure to pick up a poster or small flyer from the table at the back of the hall.  The more of these little items of publicity that are seen in windows at home or the back of the car, the wider our concerts become known and this can make quite a difference to our attendances:  it's surprising how many musically-astute people in our area don't know of NADSA Concerts. Similarly, feel free to pass this e-mail on to any of your friends who you think might be interested - you can always print it if you don't know their address!

NADSA Newsletter
Number 5 December 2014

Wasn't last weekend a treat?  BSO at the great Hall on Thursday, Ensemble Marquise at the Courtenay Centre on Friday, and back to the Great Hall on Saturday with Exeter Music Group for an excellent version of the 'Young Person's Guide', extended to include bass woodwind variations, and narrated!

The main purpose of this note though is to give you another afternoon in which to write your Christmas cards...

December 14th being the second Sunday in the month, there's usually a piano matinee to enjoy.  However, our two most active players aren't able to come on either of those days, so rather than have an audience turn up without anyone to listen to, it's been decided to cancel the event.  So you can write cards instead...

Our next concert isn't until January 18th when ZUM3 will entertain us, and you'll be reminded again nearer the date.  Meanwhile, have a good Christmas with plenty of carols & festive music.

NADSA Newsletter
Number 4 November 2014

Have you booked your tickets for Friday's concert yet?  Don't leave it too late: the Varenne Ensemble played to a packed house last month, and this next concert promises to be just as exciting.

Ensemble Marquise are a 'mini-opera' group who perform baroque chamber opera and instrumental works in period dress, and in a setting which evokes the spirit of the 17-18th centuries, when much of such work was performed in private houses for the entertainment of the gentry.  Their programme for us will include arias and duets from several of Handel's works as well as solos and duets for harpsichord, cello and baroque recorder.  A treat for the eyes as well as the ears then...  More information at Ensemble Marquis

Our Sunday piano matinees continue to be well supported, but NADSA members were a small minority earlier in the month when young Ben Gardner gave a masterly recital which included a couple of 'works-in-progress', and bringing his own following of parents and friends from Bishopsteignton.  Other players contributed lighter works to give a distinct 'piano bar' feeling to the afternoon!  If you haven't yet had the opportunity to take part, either as listener (the majority) or player, then come along to the Courtenay Centre at 3pm on Sunday 14th December when the NADSA piano will once again be put through its paces - maybe by you?

This newsletter is only sent to NADSA members and a small handful of friends who have specifically asked for it.  Please feel free to forward it to any of your friends who may be interested - it never hurts to keep people informed!
NADSA Newsletter
Number 3 October 2014

Before we go away (again!) there's just time for a quick reminder that our next concert is at the end of the month.  Those of you who enjoyed hearing Daniel Tong and Sarah Trickey play to a packed Courtenay Centre a couple of weeks ago will be pleased to learn that there's another opportunity to hear Daniel on 31st of this month when he plays as part of the Varenne Ensemble.

The Varenne ensemble comprises, with Daniel, our local friend Elaine Cocks on clarinet and Robin Michael playing cello.  Their programme is drawn from the romantic period as well as 20th century music for clarinet, piano & cello trio, and promises to be another exciting evening, so note the date now and make sure you have your ticket in time. 

On 12th October - that's this coming Sunday - at 3pm there will be another of our regular gatherings, when you get the chance to hear and play our new Yamaha piano at an informal matinée.  There are three ways to take part:  bring along some of your own music to play; rifle through the sheet-music that someone else will bring, or as many of us do, just sit back and listen to the home-grown talent within the Society.  What better way to pass an autumn afternoon...?

You'll have probably noticed that at the back of the hall at each performance there are some little A5 flyers advertising the next concert.  These are just the right size for a car window, to pass on to friends or to leave with your local shop, church, health centre/dentist, holiday park or hotel (but please ask first!)  The more widely we can spread the news of NADSA concerts, the more likely we are to be able to fill the hall again with those music-lovers we haven't yet been able to reach, and it's in little things like this that everyone can help and make a difference.  So don't forget to pick some up please.

That's it for now; we'll be back again in time to see you on 31st, meanwhile, happy listening

NADSA Newsletter
Number 2 September 2014

This second Newsletter reminds you that the new season opens in just a couple of weeks - where did summer go?

Our first concert is at the Courtenay Centre on Friday 19th September at 7.30, when Sara Trickey and Daniel Tong will perform a programme of Classical, Romantic and 20th-century work for violin and piano: read more detail at Sarah Trickey and Daniel Tong Commend it to your musical friends, and be sure to have your season ticket ready!

Hands up all who already know about the 'Nourish' festival of Food, Craft and Music in Bovey Tracey?  Tomorrow (Friday 5th) night Devon Baroque are playing Bach (father & 9th son), Vivaldi and Handel at the Parish Church of Ss. Peter, Paul & Thomas.  On Saturday 6th the percussion duo Malleticious are at the Baptist Church, Hind Street at 3pm, followed at 7.30 in the Parish Church by the Brodsky Quartet playing Borodin, Barber, Beethoven & Tchaikovsky.  Its good to find so much quality music packed into a single weekend, as close as this to Newton Abbot; definitely worthy of our support!

Their full programme is at

That's it for now; we look forward to seeing you on 19th.
NADSA Newsletter
Number 1 June 2014

This is the first of what will become regular updates about the NADSA concert season.

On Sunday 15th June there was a very encouraging turn-out of more than fifty for the Annual General Meeting.  Was it the prospect of a cream tea (excellently and so ably organised by Anita Clay with the help of Isobel) or the promise of a  wonderful recital by Simon Passmore afterwards that tempted so many to what is usually regarded as a 'duty'?  Whichever, the committee were delighted at the level of support shown:  thank you for coming.

The concert season starts again at the Courtenay Centre on September 19th, but don't forget that on the second Sunday in July - that's the 13th - at 2.30 there will be another of our monthly gatherings, when the new Yamaha piano is wheeled out for an informal matinée.  There are three ways to take part:  bring along some music to play; browse the sheet-music that someone else will bring and then play, or, as most do, just listen to the home-grown talent within the Society.  This is an excellent opportunity for amateur players to glide their fingers over a first-class instrument, and to hear the music that our own members (maybe you?) can make.  Oh yes - there's tea 'n biccys too!

Enjoy the rest of the summer, and we look forward to seeing you again in September.