REVIEW: The Funtington Music Group

Lynden Cranham
Lynden Cranham

The Funtington Music Group was in for an unexpected treat when Lynden Cranham presented her Exploration of the Life and Times of Nineteenth Century Cellist, Robert Lindley, at the University of Chichester

Lindley, a remarkable musician, described even as a teenager as a “musical wonder”, played with all the famous composers of his age, such as Mendelssohn at George IV’s coronation and even Paganini in his later years. His extemporisations were the making of legends.

Lynden Cranham explained how influential he was in the world of music, being first mentioned in the press when he was only 12, and then going on to found the Philharmonia Society, only retiring aged 75 in 1851, the year of the Great Exhibition.

Robert Lindley was also a composer and the Quartet, comprising family members, Emma Parker [violin], Thomas Parker [cello], and Simon Lane [piano], with Lynden Cranham [cello], played two contrasting pieces from his repertoire, showing his transition from a composer so clearly influenced by Mozart, to the second piece, which was much more 19th Century.

The first half concluded with a tranquil and melodic performance of the Adagio Cantabile from Paganini’s Terzetto Concertante for violin, cello and piano.

After the interval the concert continued with a Chamber Trio by William Sterndale Bennett, who was a contemporary of Lindley. Here the accompaniment of the piano was sensitive with at times intricate, accurate dexterity. The Finale was played by all the musicians with consummate, effortless poise.

The final piece was Mozart’s Piano Quartet in E Flat Major KV 478. In fact the first movement had been played at the beginning of the concert, following, as Lynden Cranham, mentioned the 18th Century tradition of so doing, but also as it made such an appropriate and joyful introduction to the evening. The final two movements were equally well-received by the audience, as the music of the second movement, shaded in delicacy, emerged into the expressive warm colours of the finale.

David Tinsley, Chairman of the Funtington Music Group, said, “What a delightful evening, with such exquisite playing. Such an interesting story, with some marvellous anecdotes and a fascinating musical programme. We had a really enjoyable musical experience.”

Further details of the Funtington Music Group can be obtained from the Membership Secretary, Mrs Elizabeth Brooks, on 01 243 378900.

Please visit our website at www.funtingtonmusicgroup.org.uk

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