Dartington Music Summer School & Festival presents a new series of Listening Clubs: intimate evenings exploring the art of listening through conversation and live music. Aimed at demystifying classical music and the concert experience, each event will introduce a musician appearing at our 2020 Festival. Join Artistic Director Sara Mohr-Pietsch as she launches the series with Liam Byrne, who will perform old and new work on the Renaissance viola da gamba, and discuss his practice of listening deeply to the music and secrets of the past.
Liam Byrne spends most of his time playing either very old or very new music on the viola da gamba. An obsession with the instrument’s most obscure 16th and 17th century repertoire is a recurring theme in his work, whether in devising baroque performance installations for the Victoria & Albert museum, or in collaboration with the Appalachian fiddler Cleek Schrey, or creating new electronic works with Icelandic composer Valgeir Sigurðsson.
Over the years, Liam has worked closely with a wide variety of musicians, from Damon Albarn to Emma Kirkby, and is a frequent guest of new music ensembles Stargaze, the London Contemporary Orchestra, and Crash Ensemble. With a background in Historical Performance and degrees from Indiana and Oxford Universities, Liam has played and recorded with many of Europe’s leading Early Music ensembles, including the Huelgas Ensemble, Dunedin Consort, The Sixteen, i Fagiolini, and the viol consorts Phantasm, Concordia, and most notably Fretwork, with whom he toured and recorded extensively for several years.
“Liam Byrne gave a glittering performance to match what he was wearing, and proved able to be skittish, throw a tantrum, and come to a sweet resolution, all in a brief sequence of notes” The Guardian
Sara Mohr-Pietsch is a music broadcaster, writer, presenter and curator. She curates and presents Night Tracks on BBC Radio 3, and her voice can be heard on countless others, including BBC Proms on Radio 3, BBCFOUR and BBC World Service. She has hosted pre-concert events for a variety of festivals and venues including the Royal Opera House, Barbican and Southbank Centre. She is the new Artistic Director of Dartington Music’s Summer School.
You are invited to join us for a drinks reception before the concert to find out about Sara’s plans for the Summer School and Festival 2020 and the artists who will be joining us at Dartington next summer. Your ticket includes a glass of wine and entry into the concert.
(Further Listening Clubs will take place in the new year – more details available soon.)