Lunchtime Recitals

Lunchtime Recitals

Lunchtime Recitals

We are thrilled to invite two award-winning, renowned professional pianists to offer midday recitals to celebrate the gift of our new Yamaha C7X grand piano at St Barnabas Dulwich. Recitals start at midday and last no more than 40 minutes.

Sunday 12 May - Víctor Braojos

Sonata in B-flat Major D960        Franz Schubert (1797–1828)

  1. Molto moderato
  2. Andante sostenuto
  3. Scherzo: Allegro vivace con delicatezza
  4. Allegro ma non troppo

Sunday 26 May - Maria Canyigueral

Prelude and fugue I in C Major, BWV 846                    J.S. Bach (1685–1750)

Prelude and fugue VI in D minor, BWV 851                 J.S. Bach

Prelude and fugue in D Major, Op.87, No.5                 Dmitri Shostakovich (1906–75)

Prelude and fugue IX in E Major, BWV 854                 J.S. Bach

Prelude and fugue in A Major, Op.87, No.7                Dmitri Shostakovich

Prelude and fugue XXII in B flat minor, BWV 867     J.S. Bach

Ballade No.4, Op.52                                                       Frédéric Chopin (1810–49)

Víctor Braojos

Usually praised for his poetical, intense and original performances, Víctor Braojos obtained his BMus (Hons) at Escola Superior de Música de Catalunya (Barcelona), working with Jordi Masó and Pierre Reach and supported by a scholarship by the Anna Riera Foundation. He later moved to London, where he pursued his Master in Piano Performance and Artist Diploma (Distinction and Concert Recital Diploma) at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama, working with Martin Roscoe and thanks to an Excellence Scholarship Award given by this institution.

Over these years, he has completed his musical formation working regularly with world-acclaimed performers such as Dame Imogen Cooper, Sir Stephen Hough, Paul Lewis CBE, Robert Levin or Stephen Kovacevich, being chosen at the same time to join the roster of artists supported by renowned institutions, such as the Imogen Cooper Music Trust,Talent Unlimited and the Keyboard Charitable Trust. He has won several prizes and awardsin national and international piano competitions, among which we could highlight, the Best Spanish Pianist Award at the 68th Maria Canals International Piano Competition 2023, the 1st Prize in the Catalunya Piano Competition (youngest winner ever in the 50 years of history of this competition), the 1st Prize in the Barcelona Piano Competition, the 1st Prize in the Girona Musical Competition or the 2nd Prize at the prestigious “El Primer Palau Music Competition”.

His commitment to combine classical repertoire with contemporary music has led him to world-premiere works by some of the most renowned Spanish composers such as Benet Casablancas, Joan Magrané, Marc Migó or Josep Maria Guix and, concurrently to his soloist activity, he usually collaborates with several chamber music ensembles and orchestras, among which we could highlight his multiple collaborations with the Barcelona Medical College Orchestra, conducted by Alfons Reverté.

Along his career he has performed in several venues across Spain, France, Italy, Germany, Poland, Russia or the UK, among which we could remark concerts at emblematic venues such as the Palau de la Música Catalana, the National Auditorium of Barcelona, London Steinway Hall, Instituto Cervantes de Palermo or the Frédéric Chopin Museum in Warsaw. His most recent and future engagements include internationally acclaimed concert halls and festivals, such as the Münchener Künstlerhaus, the London National Liberal Club, the “International Masters Concert Series” at the Auditorio Ciudad de León (Spain), the North Fylde Music Circle or the Imperial College of London.

In September 2022, Víctor was appointed Junior Fellow at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama. Since January 2023, he also holds the position of Visiting Piano Teacher at Newton Prep School.

Maria Canyigueral

Maria Canyigueral has been described by La Vanguardia as “a pianist of great personality”.

One of the leading lights among the new generation of Spanish pianists, Maria Canyigueral has inspired collaborations with outstanding contemporary composers such as Antón García Abril, Benet Casablancas, Nicolas Bacri, Konstantia Gourzi and Moritz Eggert.

Recent highlights include recitals at Palau de la Música Catalana and Auditori in Barcelona, at Fundación Juan March in Madrid, at the Wigmore Hall in London and at Ljubljana Festival. She recently made her debut at Gran Teatre del Liceu performing Beethoven Choral Fantasy Op.80 with Fundació Liceu orquestra and Manel Valdivieso.

Maria Canyigueral has performed in Spain, the UK, Japan, Belgium, Slovenia and France.

In addition to her live performances, Maria has made an impact with her recordings. Her solo album Avantguarding Mompou for Audite (2020) has been critically acclaimed from magazines such as International Piano, Pizzicato, Revista Musical Catalana and Melómano. It features the complete Cançons i danses by Frederic Mompou and commissions from Nicolas Bacri, Antón García Abril, Joseph Phibbs, Konstantia Gourzi, Moritz Eggert, Jiri Gemrot, Josep Maria Guix, Joan Magrané and Victor Estapé. The project was world premiered at the Conway Hall in 2018, receiving an award from Arts Council in England and the support of Instituto Cervantes, Fundació Mompou and Institut Ramon Llull. 

She won the Gold Medal at the Global Music Awards in California for her album of works by C. Franck, Granados, Skerjanc and Finzi, recorded with violinist Lana Trotovsek (Hedone Records, 2016).Two more albums for Hedone Records (2017, 2021), one featuring works for flute and piano by Martinu, Böhm, Fauré and Poulenc alongsite flutist Boris Bizjak and a recent live recording from a solo recital at Palau de la Música Catalana performing Bach, Beethoven, Haydn and Montsalvatge. 

Her live performances with Lana Trotovsek at Festival Ljubljana 2020 of the complete set of Sonatas for violin and piano by Beethoven have been recently published on four CDs, thanks to ZKP RTV Slovenia and Festival Ljubljana. It has been ‘Melómano de Oro’ in Melómano Magazine.

Canyigueral has recently released with cellist Ramon Bassal the Beethoven complete works for cello and piano with Da Vinci Classics (2023), recorded and produced at Teldex Berlin Studio.

Having spent her formative years between Spain and the UK, Maria completed her undergraduate studies at the Conservatori del Liceu in Barcelona with Michel Wagemans, she later attained a Master of Arts in Performance from the Royal Academy of Music in London, studying with Sulamita Aronovsky. She has also received musical advice from Nino Kereselidze and André de Groote.

An avid chamber musician, Maria has been appointed artistic director at a new chamber music series in Barcelona, in Sarrià theatre. First edition took place from March to November 2021.

The Gift of Music: A New Piano for Our Church

This month we have taken delivery of a new Yamaha C7X grand piano. This beautiful instrument will serve our church for decades to come and enable a greater flexibility of music making, both in worship and services, but also through recitals and lunchtime concerts. 

Week by week, we are aware that our fine 3-manual Tickell organ is a superb and versatile instrument: it is as brilliant in leading large congregations and handling French organ symphonies as it is when accompanying 16th century verse anthems (Orlando Gibbons’s, This is the record of John, for example). This should be no surprise: it was designed by Kenneth Tickell and Dr William McVicker (Director of Music here between 1988-2019). Their work so evidently seized the opportunity to create something positive from the devastation of the fire in 1992. They were both acutely aware of the legacy that remains in installing a new instrument. Almost thirty years on we still benefit, week by week, from the vision and determination of McVicker and Tickell in designing and building our organ. 

William’s 31 years’ service is inspiring and testament to his commitment. He told me how he was inspired by his predecessor, Raymond Gray, who was Organist and Director of Music between 1951-1988 and continued to deputise for William in to the early ‘90s. You may have noticed the bench dedicated to Raymond that sits outside St Barnabas underneath the welcome area’s canopy. Raymond sadly never heard the new organ because he died in 1995. There is no doubt he would have been enthused by the improvement on the Speechly instrument in the Victorian church that had (by all accounts) seen better days. 

Three decades on, our new piano is a significant moment for us, not only because it gives us a first-class instrument that now matches our pipe organ, but more so because it is given in memory of both Raymond Gray and Audrey Skillman. 

Audrey was a stalwart of St Barnabas and a committed member of our congregation for over five decades. Members of the choir recall how Audrey would stand in the welcome area to greet the choir as they began their procession into church, such was her love of the choir and choral music. Audrey died in May 2023 and her gift has enabled us to invest in music and purchase a much needed new piano.  

Audrey lived with her sister, Lynn Gray (1932-2016), who was married to Raymond. They all lived in Woodwarde Road until moving to flats in Dulwich Mead in the early 2000s. 

There is something hugely humbling about this generous gift. Both Raymond and Lynn’s, and Audrey’s, service, commitment and faithfulness to St Barnabas continues to this day through their gift to us. 

There will be opportunity over the coming months to give thanks for the legacy of Audrey and the Grays through music and the playing of the piano. This instrument gives us new possibilities that were not feasible with our current instruments that are heavily worn and in desperate need of replacement.  We begin with  these two lunchtime concerts ; we will host music examinations; we will enable community music groups to offer concerts that previously needed to be held elsewhere.  

Above all, however, this instrument will be used to lead and inspire worship with our choirs. Given that the combined service of Audrey, Lynn and Raymond tops a century, enabling music in worship is an entirely fitting tribute to them. 

Christopher Woodward 
Director of Music