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Appreciating Music

Sessions to explore and deepen our connection with music. No previous experience or musical knowledge needed – all are welcome. To include listening, cultural and historical background, discussion and sharing time.

Exploring Bach and the world of the Baroque

“We yearn to know what kind of a person was capable of composing music so complex that it leaves us completely mystified, then … so irresistibly rhythmic that we want to get up and dance to it, and then … so full of poignant emotion that we are moved to the very core of our being.”

John Eliot Gardiner

Sessions on Tuesday mornings to explore the world of the German composer J.S. Bach, his contemporaries, his world and his influence

The German composer Bach is the subject of our exploration in the spring term 2023.

We will explore a varied selection of music by J.S. Bach both sacred and secular including extracts from the Brandenburg concertos, the violin and keyboard concertos, the music for solo violin and solo cello, the Well Tempered Klavier, his suites and sonatas, the Passions, the Mass in B minor and the Magnificat.

Some scholars have described Bach as a saintly person who dedicated his whole life and music to the glory of God. Some have described Bach as growing up in a violent, thuggish world. What does the music tell us about this as we listen, and does it matter whether he was a saint or a thug? Above all, how does the music touch or move us today?

Tuesday morning sessions from 10th January until 28th March 2023, 10am until 12 noon online using Zoom (half term break – no session on 14th February ) (short comfort break in the middle). Option to arrive early or stay later to interact with other participants 

Online sessions using Zoom (hi-fi sound at my end to maximise sound quality). Audio recordings will be shared after each session so that you can catch up if you miss one – or listen again. You will also receive Youtube playlist suggestions for further listening and to explore more deeply what we hear in the sessions

Cost £280 for the whole course OR early bird £255 if booked and paid by 24th December 2022. A limited number of concessionary places are available on request. Please get in touch if cost would be an obstacle to attending – I would like this to be accessible to those who would benefit from this

Termly sessions have been running continuously since 2009. You can read what previous participants have said about the sessions here or read about me here and elsewhere on this website. Previous themes have included: Exploring Harmony, Chopin, Beethoven, Brahms, Exploring music from Eastern Europe and many more…

Bookings are now open. If you’re drawn to join, you can book here, or feel free to get in touch if you have any questions

Suggested reading (optional)

https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/17883941-bach
https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/3867797-bach

In person sessions at Stoke Lodge, Bristol

Bookings are open via the Stoke Lodge office or online here

27th January 2023 10am – 3pm Exploring Elgar’s Cello Concerto

Come and spend a day listening to and exploring Elgar’s Cello Concerto and how we respond to it including background and discussion. No previous knowledge needed – all are welcome. This workshop will be delivered at Stoke Lodge but will move online if necessary using ZOOM.

25th March 2023 10am – 4pm Exploring Bach’s Goldberg Variations

Come and spend a day listening to and exploring Bach’s Goldberg Variations and how we respond to it including background and discussion. No previous knowledge needed – all are welcome. This workshop will be delivered at Stoke Lodge but will move online if necessary using ZOOM.