20 years since Aldeburgh

I was looking at my part to Hindemith’s Der Schwanendreher (a concerto for viola and orchestra) when I noticed the inscription I’d written at the top of the viola part (I have this habit of writing dates/places of performances of pieces at the top of the part). It was nearly 20 years ago to the day that I was a participant in a master course with Kim Kashkashian at the Britten-Pears School for Advanced Musical Studies (as it was then called). I’d played the first movement of the Hindemith as one of my selections (the others were Bach’s D minor Suite, the Concertpiece by Enescu, and Shostakovich’s Viola Sonata), and the part is peppered with things that Kashkashian had said to me during those incredibly demanding public class sessions. It’s just strange to think that I was in East Anglia, twenty yearsa go, just about now, right along Britten’s own River Alde, having an amazing musical experience with five other wonderful violists.

By Charles Noble

I'm the Assistant principal violist of the Oregon Symphony.

3 replies on “20 years since Aldeburgh”

OMG, Charles. I used to work there, for John Owen from 1984-1987. Such fond memories of that beach, where I lived in a small, unheated cottage, and the room at the Maltings. You heard that Hugh Maguire had recently passed away? Bruno Giuranna was the master class giver of choice for violas when I was there – a beautiful tone I remember to this day.

I wish that I’d had a camera phone and all the tech stuff I have now – I’m sadly low on photos from that trip. I’ve been pining to get back to the UK ever since. My dream would be to have the Arnica Quartet do a residency there at some point…

hi! fun to see Mark’s comments here…it looks like a good beach to walk on, but not to return to an unheated cottage! surely three quarters of the year you would want a hot cuppa and a fire when you finished walking and mulling, with music running around and around in your head.

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