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The professional orchestra of 
West Sussex



Sunday 14th November 2021 at 2.45pm

Beethoven               Overture: The  Creatures of Prometheus

Butterworth            The Banks of Green Willow
Elgar                       Sospiri
Ravel                      *Le Tombeau de Couperin– Prélude, Forlane, Menuet, Rigaudon

Puccini                    Crisantemi
Beethoven               Piano Concerto No. 5 ‘Emperor’

Soloist: MARIA MARCHANT (piano)

Beethoven’s Piano Concerto No. 5 ‘Emperor’ has been described as the embodiment of Romantic conflict. The title may well have been first used in Vienna at an 1812 concert ordered by the city’s French conquerors. It is one of the most accomplished of all piano concertos, with a striking opening movement and a glorious rondo finale, but it is the beauty and serenity of the hymn-like adagio which makes this one of Beethoven’s greatest creations.


Maria Marchant, a native of Sussex, dazzled us with her sparkling performance of Shostakovich’s Second Piano Concerto two years ago.

The concert opens with Beethoven's Overture: The Creatures of Promethius. This brilliant overture to the ballet of the same name bristles with energy and is often said to represent Proetheus fleeing from heaven after stealing fire from the Gods. 

Ravel wrote his Le Tombeau de Couperinin 1917 in tribute to his friends killed in the war and as a homage to the great eighteenth century French composer Louis Couperin. In reality the work is not sombre in mood but rather a light-hearted, and sometimes reflective work. As Ravel said himself: The dead are sad enough, in their eternal silence. 


The very talented George Butterworth, who was awarded the MC, was killed by a sniper’s bullet at the Battle of the Somme. His idyll The Banks of Green Willow is based upon two folksongs – ‘The Banks of Green Willow’ and ‘Green Bushes’. It is one his best works and perfectly captures the nature of the English countryside. It is almost as if the music occurred naturally and Butterworth just discovered it!  


Elgar’s Sospiri was composed in the months leading up to the outbreak of the First World War and perhaps the gathering storm clouds moved him to write this beautiful, heartfelt adagio.

Puccini’s Crisantemi (The Chrysanthemums) was composed in one night on hearing the news of the death of his friend, Amadeo di Savoia, the second son of Vittorio Emanuele II . This short elegy for strings is named after the flower of mourning and lament and ideas from it were later used in his opera Manon Lescaut.


The back half of the stalls, in the new seating plan, allows some spacing with only alternate rows available for sale. The Balcony and the front stalls are fully available.

Photo of Maria: Steven Peskett Photography



IMulti award-winning London-based Christian pianist & conductor Maria Marchant performs frequently for numerous festivals, music societies, recordings, projects and concerts at leading venues in the UK and abroad. Her performances have been featured on radio stations internationally including BBC Radio 3 ‘Breakfast’, ‘In Tune’ and ‘Record Review’, WMNR Radio in the USA and Premier Christian Radio in addition to TV shows such as the BBC Great British Menu and the BBC One Show. Maria has been awarded a ‘Digital Classical Music Award’ for the Best Digital Project by a Musician following the success of her 60 week global online composition project #7Notesin7Daysat7pm as featured on Classic FM, Gramophone Blog and International Piano.

Maria is pianist-in-residence in the Shipley Arts Festival and a founding member of the Stradivarius Piano Trio who have a busy concert schedule and have featured on BBC Great British Menu; she frequently collaborates with composers, including Roderick Williams OBE and has had numerous works written for her to premiere.  Maria’s debut SOMM Recordings CD, Echoes of Land & Sea, was released to critical acclaim and her second SOMM album, Bantock Rediscovered, reached No. 15 in the Official Classical Chart, featuring works never before recorded on disc.   She has extensive experience as a concerto soloist and has performed with Worthing Symphony Orchestra conducted by John Gibbons and the English Chamber Orchestra conducted by Brian Kay in addition to working with leading international orchestral players and singers.

Tickets here:

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