Events 2013 Archive

Winter Prom 2013

Winter Prom Tait Winter Prom 26 November 2013

Our major event for 2013 will be our annual Winter Prom at Holy Trinity, Sloane Square, Chelsea. Please save the date of the 26th November. This year’s Winter Prom promises to be a veritable musical feast of the first order. Classics, yes, old and newer: Bach, Handel and Stravinsky as main courses; side-orders of Gounod, Schubert, Verdi and Schumann. The climax of the evening will be Bach’s D minor concerto played by the great, Dame Gillian Weir. She has given her last organ recital and returned to her former love, the harpsichord, on which she has often recorded – it is no departure for her to eschew pedals.

But we shall not be without the sound of the organ because Dame Gillian’s protégé, Australian Travis Baker, will open the programme playing Handel’s personal favourite organ concerto, the one in D minor, opus 7/4; an audience favourite too, because of its noble lyricism and its many catchy tunes. Another keyboard instrument will be heard: the Australian/Philippine virtuoso pianist, Primavera Shima, opens the second half of the concert with a Schumann Romance, and Guido Agosti’s thrilling transcription of a suite from Stravinsky’s ever-popular ballet The Firebird.

Valda Wilson (soloist in Westminster Abbey’s Dame Joan Sutherland memorial) sings no fewer than three Ave Marias: the Bach-Gounod, Schubert’s popular song and the prayerful A.M. from the last act of Verdi’s Otello.

The evening begins with a reception at 6.30pm with drinks and canapés then the concert at 7.30pm. All in all this November concert will be a don’t-miss, satisfying, musical feast. Give it a go.

We look forward to seeing you there.

Programme arranged by John Amis

Handel (1685-1759)
Concerto in D minor, Op 7, No 4 for organ and strings
Organ: Travis Baker
Musique Cordiale
Handel (1685-1759)
Messiah HWV 56
I know that my Redeemer liveth
Soprano: Rosemary Forbes-Butler
Musique Cordiale
A Prelude and three Ave Marias:
JS Bach (1685-1750)
First Prelude from the Forty-Eight
Piano: Primavera Shima
Bach – Gounod (1818-1893)
Ave Maria
Soprano: Valda Wilson
Piano: Primavera Shima
Schubert (1779-1828)
Ave Maria
Soprano: Rosemary Forbes-Butler
Piano: Primavera Shima
Verdi (1813-1901)
Ave Maria (from Act 4 of Otello)
Soprano: Valda Wilson
Musique Cordiale
Schumann (1810-1856)
Romance in F sharp, Op 28, No 2
Stravinsky (1882 – 1971) arr. Agosti
Suite, The Firebird:
Danse infernale – Berceuse – Finale
Piano: Primavera Shima


John Amis Portrait by June Mendoza AO OBE

John Amis
A Concert in Celebration
Tuesday October 8th 2013 at 12 noon
St. Paul’s Church, Knightsbridge
32a Wilton Place
London, SW1X 8SH


A musical celebration of the remarkable life of John Amis.
John Amis worked with the London Philharmonic, Symphony and Royal Philharmonic, organising concerts for Myra Hess at the National Gallery and for Michael Tippett whose secretary-dogsbody and friend he was, concert manager for Beecham, music critic for The Scotsman, organiser of the Summer School of Music with William Glock at Bryanston and Dartington for 34 years, broadcaster on BBC radio and TV for 40, during which time he interviewed some 500 of the most famous and interesting musicians, Hindemith to Bernstein, Cage to Swann, Stravinsky to Stockhausen.

For the last six years of his life John Amis was a Patron of the Tait Memorial Trust. Proceeds from this concert will go into the fund for the ‘John Amis Award’

Please come….and in the spirit of John, colourful clothing and flamboyant dress will be the order of the day. We are delighted to announce that the Faust Ensemble, an exciting new chamber orchestra in London, founded by conductor Mark Austin, will be playing. Steuart Bedford, who recently conducted Grimes on the Beach as part of the Aldeburgh Festival, will conduct the Britten Tippett and Walton, Aldeburgh Variations and the Grainger, Handel in the Strand with Jayson Gillham playing the universally recognised fiendishly difficult piano part. Mark Austin, will conduct the Britten, Now Sleeps the Crimson Petal with the young Australian tenor, Christopher Diffey This song was removed from the famous, Serenade for Tenor, Horn and Strings for no other reason than the composer wished to have one poem from each poet in his cycle. A condition for public performance is that it may only be done on its own. The song was first recorded by Steuart Bedford in 1987. Mark will also conduct the trio from Cosi fan tutte, Soave sia il vento with Elena Xanthoudakis, Lauren Fagan and Morgan Pearse and will conduct Lauren Fagan in Handel’s Largo, Ombra mai fu.

Elena will also sing one of John’s favourite songs, L’invitation au voyage by Duparc accompanied by Mark Austin on the piano. A treat will be to hear celebrated flautist, Phillippa Davies playing a flute sonata by Poulenc accompanied by Jan Willem Neileke, piano

The concert will include memories of John by old friends and colleagues, David Cairns CBE and former head of Dartington, Gavin Henderson CBE. The Trogs, the administrative staff at Dartington, will be represented by Jeremy Barker,. Recordings of John singing with Donald Swann will delight and show the lighter side to one of the great men of modern British music.

Salut d’amour (Elgar): whistled by John Amis Amiscellany CD
Sonata for flute and piano (Poulenc): Philippa Davies, flute & Jan Willem Neileke, piano
David Cairns CBE a rememberance
L’invitation au voyage (Duparc): Elena Xanthoudakis, soprano & Mark Austin, piano
Ombra mai fù (Handel): Lauren Fagan, soprano & Faust Ensemble cond. by Mark Austin
Variations on an Elizabethan Theme (Sellenger’s Round) -Variations 2,4 & 6 (Tippett, Britten & Walton): Faust Ensemble cond. Steuart Bedford
Handel in the Strand (Grainger): Jayson Gillham, piano & Faust Ensemble cond. Steuart Bedford
Now sleeps the crimson petal (Britten): Christopher Diffey & Faust Ensemble cond. Mark Austin
Soave sia il vento from Così fan tutte (Mozart): Elena Xanthoudakis, Lauren Fagan & Morgan Pearse, with Faust Ensemble cond. Mark Austin
Gavin Henderson CBE
Bilbo’s last song (Swann): John Amis & Donald Swann Amiscellany CD
Trogs of Dartington
Yes we have no bananas: John Amis My Music tape, CD
Tutto nel mondo è burla from Falstaff (Verdi): London Symphony Orchestra & cast cond. Sir Colin Davis CD
RSVP to or 020 7351 0561
Please donate to the John Amis Award here


John Amis (1922-2013)

London, Friday August 2nd

Dear Friends.

Darling John died peacefully last night at the Chelsea and Westminster – I was with him at the time.

His last two months have been a struggle – Scotland for a month, then in London for 5 weeks. The doctors and nurses gave him wonderful care and support.

I will miss him enormously, but shall remember all the wonderful times we shared together with so many of our dear friends, and so grateful for the music which brought us together. As Humphrey Burton says, “the very spirit of music…unforgettable and irreplaceable”.


Love, Isla

Isla Baring OAM
Tait Memorial Trust

An obituary published in the Daily Telegraph