Free Lunchtime Clarinet Recital – Mark Simpson
Gavin Higgins – Four Broken Love songs
Kate Whitley – Orare
William Marsey – New Work
Mark Simpson – Echoes and Embers
Herbert Howells – Clarinet Sonata
Mark Simpson Clarinet
Kate Whitley Piano
Born in 1988 in Liverpool, in 2006 at the age of 17 Mark Simpson became the first ever winner of both the BBC Young Musician of the Year and BBC Proms/Guardian Young composer of the Year Competitions.
The BBC commissioned him to write the opening work for the 2012 Last Night of the Proms and the BBC Symphony Orchestra perform his composition ‘A mirror-fragment…’ at the Barbican in 2013. This season he joins BBC Radio 3’s New Generation Artists scheme as a clarinettist and gives recitals at Wigmore Hall, Royal Festival Hall and the Purcell Room with premieres of works by Simon Holt and Jonathan Harvey. He is currently a fellow on the Jerwood Opera Writing scheme and part of the Tillett Trust’s Young Artist Platform series.
As a clarinettist Mark has appeared as soloist with the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic (Vassily Petrenko), Northern Sinfonia (Yan Pascal Tortelier), BBC Philharmonic (Gianandrea Noseda), City of London Sinfonia, Manning Camerata, BBC Concert Orchestra, Oxford Philomusica and the Cambridge Philharmonic Orchestra. In 2008 he was a soloist in the BBC Last Night of the Proms in Hyde Park. Further afield he has given recitals at the Festspiele Mecklenburg-Vorpommern, BeethovenFest in Bonn, Denver Colorado as a Lakewood Music Scholar, and toured the Middle East. During 2009/10 he was artist in residence with the Northern Chamber Orchestra.
Mark has had his compositions performed by some of the country’s leading orchestras and ensembles. In 2008 he wrote ‘Threads’ for the National Youth Orchestra, Nur Musik for oboe and ensemble commissioned by Ensemble 10/10, and ‘A mirror-fragment…’ for orchestra commissioned by the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra. In 2011 the Aronowitz Ensemble performed his Los Proverbios at the Royal Concergebouw and in 2012 the Meiningen Symphony Orchestra performed ‘A mirror-fragment…’ in Germany. He has also written for the pianist Richard Uttley and the Mercury Quartet and in 2010 won the Royal Philharmonic Society’s Composition Award for which he wrote Lethe for trombone and ensemble performed at the Royal Festival Hall.
Mark is deeply committed to the performance of new music. His debut CD was released on the NMC label and saw the culmination of five years of working with composers Mark-Anthony Turnage, Gary Carpenter, David Horne, Kenneth Hesketh, Gavin Higgins, Emily Howard and Stephen Pratt, developing new works for the clarinet and basset clarinet.
Mark read Music at St. Catherine’s College Oxford graduating with first class honours. In 2012 he completed an MMus in composition with Julian Anderson at the Guildhall School of Music & Drama supported by the Ralph Vaughan Williams Trust. He studied clarinet with Nicholas Cox at the Junior School of the Royal Northern College of Music and now studies privately with Mark van der Wiel.
Kate Whitley is a 24 year old composer and pianist who has written 3 operas to date: Bonesong was premiered in a Zoology Museum, Unknown Position is about a woman in love with a chair bar, and Terrible Lips is a science-fiction dance-opera premiered in a disused warehouse. Her music has been performed across the UK and Europe and broadcast on BBC Radio 3. She graduated from Cambridge University in 2011 with a Double First in Music and MPhil in Composition. She is the recipient of the BBC Young Composer Prize, Arthur Bliss Prize for Composition, and the SkyArts/IdeasTap Futures Fund Bursary, and her work has been supported by GFTA Arts Council England, PRS For Music Foundation, British Council Composers’ Travel Bursaries, The Holst Foundation, The Golsoncott Foundation, The RVW Trust, The Newton Trust, The Nicholas Boas Charitable Trust, The Ernest Cooke Trust, The Co-op Community Fund, The Leche Trust, and more. She runs a project with conductor Christopher Stark that brings an orchestra to a Multi-Storey Car Park in Peckham. This summer her new piece Wishes Lies and Dreams was performed there by 100 people from local schools and community choirs.
FREE Lunchtime Concerts are FREE, suggested donation £3.50 which goes towards the work of St Martin’s
Sometimes it is necessary to alter programmes and substitute artists at short notice. If you are intending to hear a particular piece or performer, we recommend that you telephone the Box Office (020 7766 1100) on the day of the concert in order to confirm performance details.