LIVE REVIEW: Antony and Friends, Todmorden Methodist Church 16th June 2018


This series of informal, friendly concerts continued with featured musicians Lynda Robertson (flute) and Tim Wilkes (piano). It opened with Debussy’s haunting flute solo “Syrinx”. Lynda Robertson and Tim Wilkes then played Bach’s flute sonata in E minor (BWV 1034) which opened with a stately adagio and ended with a sparky allegro, and featured an electric harpsichord. This was followed by Antony Brannick with Mozart’s piano sonata in C minor, with a solemn adagio sandwiched between two allegri, the first at times stormy, and the second mostly lively.

Having both Bach and Mozart, well performed, in the first half of a concert, can create a “follow that” feel. Good as the first half was, the second half still had a lot to offer.

It opened with flute music, a lovely Chinese melody, followed by Lynda Robertson’s own composition, the atmospheric “Arietta”. Then Tim Wilkes gave a sensitive performance of “Magnetic Rag” by Scott Joplin. This composer was a jazz pioneer. “Ragtime” featured a new kind of rhythm, but this rag was also melodic and laid back.

At one point, after a thoughtful Grieg nocturne, your reviewer suspected one of the audience of leaving their mobile phone on, but instead it was “Wake up” by Dehnhard, a duet for alarm clock and flute.

The concert finished with “Spiral Lament” by Ian Clarke, inspired by giant African snails, with a slow graceful flute tune from Lynda Robertson and sparkling piano backing from Tim Wilkes.

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I came to Todmorden in 1979 with my record collection but have gradually become converted to live music