Sunday 29th May threatened to be a cold and wet day, but this didn’t deter the dedicated fans of baroque music from attending the inaugural performance of new ensemble Musique Vivante at All Souls’ Church.
The dexterity of the musicians and iconic harmonies of the baroque period were rewarded with enthusiastic applause from the appreciative audience.
Ensemble members Agnes Weinstein (baroque violin), Andrew Gardiner (baroque flute), Graham Strahle (viola da gamba) and Anne Whelan (harpsicord) tuned up around the elaborately painted harpsicord prior to the opening of the concert.
The theme of the concert was William Morris’s love of art and crafts from the middle ages.
A feast for the eyes as well as for the ears was provided by the beautifully created Morris-inspired quilts by Michele Hill that were on display around the church.
Front-of-house welcomers Fiona, Mary and Owen sold the winning raffle ticket to quilter Michele Hill. Michele won a bottle of Clare Valley wine and a set of William Morris drink coasters.
The audience was surrounded by the spectacular Morris stained-glass windows, and received a brief talk about their history in All Souls’ Church.
Viola da gamba specialist, Graham Strahle, spoke about the period instruments and books on display that were an additional link with William Morris’ Arts and Crafts movement of the 19th century.
Afternoon tea in Coles Hall followed the concert and provided an opportunity for audience members to speak with the performers and relax after a most enjoyable performance.