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Singing the praises of Bach – one of the classical greats

By Western Morning News  |  Posted: February 16, 2013

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Johann Sebastian Bach appears to be the man of the moment this spring, with events associated with the German composer taking place in Cornwall and Devon.

This Wednesday, Exeter Bach Society hosts an illustrated talk by Margaret Steinitz, artistic director of London Bach Society. Looking at whether the composer was "an obedient servant or an enlightened master", it takes place at 7pm in St Stephen's Church.

Mrs Steinitz will examine Bach's working environment and contrast it with the challenges that face music societies today.

"The more knowledge we have of his life and music, the more we can influence his continued popularity in the future," she said.

The widow of London Bach Society founder-conductor Dr Paul Steinitz, she founded the annual Bachfest in 1990. In 2001 she was made an honorary associate of the Royal Academy of Music and in 2006 she received the Officer's Cross of the German Order of Merit for her contribution to the promotion of German culture.

Tickets for the talk are priced £10 (half-price for full-time students) and are available from Exeter Phoenix box office on 01392-667080.

On Saturday March 2, Bach fans in East Cornwall are holding a singing day at Liskeard Methodist Church in preparation for a performance of Requiem by Maurice Durufle the same evening. The aim of the event, which will be led by East Cornwall Bach Choir conductor Paul Ellis and organist Luke Bond, is to give singers the experience of working in a large choir.

ECBC member Nigel Cooper explained that Requiem is a lyrical and atmospheric piece composed in 1947.

"Singers unfamiliar with the music are most welcome to come and give it a try," he said. "It is not unduly difficult and can be a deeply moving experience to sing. Anyone familiar with the Requiem by Faure will certainly find much here to enjoy. And anyone who feels unsure about following the music is welcome to ask for help from an experienced member of the choir who can give support where needed throughout the day.

"Lasting not much over 40 minutes, this lovely work is a realistic peak for us to attempt in one day of concentrated study – and we hope that plenty of friends and supporters will come along in the evening to enjoy the results of our efforts."

The singing workshop runs from 11am to 5.30pm and costs £12 (students £8). It is followed by a public performance at 7pm. Admission £5.


ALDERMAN'S BARROW: North Devon Ramblers walk Lucott Farm, Nutscale Reservoir, about eight miles. 835423Meet Sunday 10.30am.


Queens Theatre: North Devon Gang Show. Thurs, Fri,Sat 7.15pm, matinee Sat 21.5pm;

Castle Centre, Castle Street: North Devon Archaeological Society talk by Tom Cadbury on 'Ice Age Devon and Early Humans; Members no charge, visitors £2.50. Tuesday 7.30pm.


Village Hall: Craft and Table top Sale Saturday 10am-noon.


Phoenix Hall: North Devon Ramblers walk followed by 2013 Area AGM Saturday 2pm.


Baptist Church Hall: Guest speaker at the next meeting of Bridgwater Senior Citizens' Forum, is horticulturist Roy Cheek (RHS). Thursday 10.30am.

Railway Club, Wellington Road: Friends of Bridgwater Station meet. All welcome. Thursday 7.30pm.


The Crackington Institute: King Arthur the Panto by Angela Cook. Tickets from Crackington Village Stores. Thurs, Fri, Sat 7.30pm, Saturday also matinee 2.30pm.

Parkhouse Centre: Bude Flower Club, demonstration by Barbara Clatworthy entitled Celebrations Tuesday 2.30pm. All welcome.


Village Hall: Bingo. Eyes down Monday 7.30pm.


Methodist Church: A Cornucopia of Musical Talent. £5. Proceeds to Erin's Fund for Life and Church Funds. Saturday 7.30pm.


Cawsand Bay Congregational Church: Rame Peninsula Male Choir first concert of the year in the church on the Rame Peninsula. Admission by donation to choir funds. Music director Jonathan Delbridge, Saturday 7.30pm.


Town Hall: Coffee morning in aid of the Royal national Institute for the Blind at Chulmleigh Town Hall. Saturday 9am-11am.


31 High Street: Newton St Cyres Art Group Exhibition weekdays 9.30-5pm.Until March 29.


Village hall: Playford Style Country Dancing. Friday 7.30pm.


The Flavel: Frankenstein! by the Miracle Theatre Company. Tuesday.


Shuttleworth hall: Beetle Drive. Entry £3.50 per person incl sausage and mash supper, soft drink, tea and coffee. Bring your own wine and glasses. Book seat. 01208 81361. Proceeds to the Parish of Wadebridge funds.


Cathedral: Exeter Symphony Orchestra and Exeter Philharmonic Choir. Saturday 7.15pm.

Cathedral: June Tabor and the Oyster Band. Thursday 7.30pm.

Westpoint Arena: Dreamworks presents Madagascar live! Thurs, Fri (3pm 6.30pm), Sat 11am 3pm 6.30pm, Sun 12pm 4pm.

St Stephen's Church: Background to Bach, musically illustrated talk given by Margaret Steinitz, artistic director of the London Bach Society. Wednesday 7pm. Tickets £10.

Phoenix Theatre: Frankenstein! by the Miracle Theatre Company. Wednesday.

The Form, University of Exeter: Hansel and Gretel by Le Navet Bete. Saturday 10.45am-11.15am and 12-12.30pm.


Pavilion Theatre: The Dolly Parton Story, Saturday 7.30pm.

Withycombe Methodist church Hall: Exmouth Folk Dance Club with caller Rosie Shaw and Souwesters Band. Thursday 8pm-10pm.


Princess pavilion: Carnon Downs Drama Group presents Cinderella. Thurs 7.30pm , Friday and Saturday 2pm 7.30pm.


Merlin Theatre: Hull Truck presents Jane Eyre. Saturday.


The Royal Standard: Euchre Drive. Monday 8pm.


Village Hall: Goonhavern & District Old Cornwall Society meeting Friday 7.30pm.


Landmark theatre: The Lock In! Saturday 8pm.


Eagle House Hotel: Central Methodist Church Annual Barn Dance. Music by Home Brew. Tickets incl supper £10 from 01566 772821.Friday 7.30pm.


Sterts Arts Theatre: Bob Hall. The musical story of black vaudeville theatre. Saturday 7.30pm.

Public Hall: Plymouth Area Police Choir and Canoryon Lowen Choir St Neot. £5. Organised by The Lions Club of Liskeard. Friday 7.30pm.Details 01579 321681.

Long Room: Country Market. Friday 8.30am-noon.


Village hall: Dave Doyle will be taking to the Old Cornwall Society on "A Clay Village Empire". Thursday 7.30pm.


Nicholls Hall: Domesday Book of Devon and Cornwall an illustrated talk by Terry Faull. £6 on the door in aid of church funds. Friday 7.30pm.


W I Hall, Crantock Street: Scottish Country Dancing. Friday 7.30-9.30pm. £3. All welcome. Details 01208 77598.


Courtenay Centre: Rebel Country presents McKenzie on Friday.


Okement Centre: Devonshire Association talk 'George Jago, headmaster of Plymouth Public School 1843-1886 by Charles Westlake, his great great grandson Thursday 3.30pm.

Meldon Village Hall: Okehampton Sequence Dance Club. £1.50 per person. Beginners welcome. Wednesday 8pm-10.30pm.


Village Hall: Otterton Garden Club talk by Mr Chris Britton on 'Some Unusual Plants'. Some plants will be on sale. Tuesday 7.30pm.


Penlee House: Lecture for the Penlee photographic collection with John Wallis/Jeremy Rice. Monday 7.30pm. Booking essential 01736 363625.


The Gott Hall, Par Green: Par Old Cornwall society, refreshments and a chance to view a selection of our library books. Speaker Mr Mike Balek on 'Withiel'. Facilities for those in wheelchairs. New members welcome. 01726 814286.


The Royal Plymouth Corinthian Yacht Club, The Hoe: Carlton Big Band. Tickets £8 on the door. Sunday 12.30pm.

Pavilions: The Australian Pink Floyd, Thursday; Plymouth Raiders vs DurhamWildcats, Friday; The Westcountry Wedding Show 2013. Sunday.

Theatre Royal: High Society. Until Tuesday until Feb 23.

St Edward's Church Hall, Home Park Avenue: Plymouth Railway Circle 'At Liberty in Luxembourg', slideshow and talk by Richard Green. £1 members, £2 visitors. Monday 7.30pm.

Drum Theatre: My Perfect Mind. Until March 2.

Stoke Library, Devonport: Jane Austen, Pride & Prejudice 20th Anniversary display. Library opening times.

City Museum and Art Gallery: Ida Kar: Bohemian Photographer until April 13.


Treffry Tavern: Newquay Pentire Probus Club Third Wednesday Lunch Group. New members always welcome. Details 01637 878990 for more information. Wednesday 12.30pm.


Wesley Buildings: Methodist Church Craft Fair Saturday 10am-3pm.


Village Hall: Whist Drive, Tuesday 7.30pm.


Methodist Church: Christian Aid Lent Lunch, Soup & Sweet. All welcome. Booking essential 01579 383534.


Mount Charles social Club: Royal Air Forces Association branch monthly lunch meeting for members and supporters at Thursday noon for 12.30pm.


Church Hall: Whist Drive, Tuesday 7.30pm.


St Ives Theatre: The Big Nights In, Thursday 7.30pm.


Richard Huish College: Exmoor Toy and Train Fair. Admission £2. Saturday 10am-3pm. Anticipated around 100 tables.


The Wharf: The Cuckoo Collective, Friday 8pm; The UK Pink Floyd Tribute Show, Sat 8pm and Uriah Heep, Sun 8pm.


Carlton Theatre: Teignmouth Players present Mrs Warrens's Profession by George Bernard Shaw. Wed-Sat 7.30pm.


The Babbacombe Theatre: Spellbound. Tues & Wed 8.15pm.

Princess Theatre: Dolly Parton, 9-5 The Musical.Mon-Sat 7.30pm, Wed & Sat 2.30pm matinee.


Methodist Church Hall: Totnes Folk Club night. AGM followed by dancing. Thursday.

St Mary's Church: Chant for All Season, a practical workshop on Plainsong repertoire ending with the Office of Compline. Saturday 11am-5pm.


Village Hall: Ian Griffin from Swansea will be a playing a concert of all types of electronic organ music for St Austell Organ & Keyboard Club. Non members £6.50, all welcome. Wednesday 7.30pm. Details 01726 61167.


Hall for Cornwall: Truro Country market. Tuesday 9.15-3pm.


Crown Inn: North Devon Ramblers walk 3.5 miles. Meet 10.30am. Nice and easy. Local paths. Optional pub lunch.

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