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Holywell Music Room

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Holywell Street
Oxford, OX1 3BN United Kingdom

In the summer of 1998, the Holywell Music Room celebrated its 250th anniversary. The oldest custom-built concert hall in Europe, it opened its doors to the public for the first time in 1748. Designed by Thomas Camplin, Vice-Principal of St. Edmund Hall, the building was probably the brainchild of William Hayes, then Professor of Music at the University. The project was funded by public subscription (established in 1742). The room continued as a concert venue throughout the eighteenth century and until 1836, from which time it was used for a number of other events, including auctions and exhibitions. By the 1870s, it was being used for weekly rehearsals by the Oxford Philharmonic Society and its future as a musical venue was further secured after 1910 when the Oxford University Musical Union obtained a lease on the building. The Holywell was restored and refitted in 1959-60 and since that time has been the location for many hundreds of recitals and concert series featuring prestigious visiting musicians as well as many local groups and student performers.

While Wadham College owns the Holywell Music Room, the use of this room is divided between the Faculty of Music and the College. The Faculty makes use of the room during University Term Time and Wadham during vacations, with each using its own discretion regarding policy and charges.

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December 2017
17 Dec

Coffee Concert

This week's Coffee Concert features Daniel Lebhardt performing Beethoven's Sonata in D minor, Op. 32, No. 2 'Tempest Sonata', and Ravel's Gaspard de la nuit (complete).

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January 2018
21 Jan

Oxford Chamber Music Society – Schubert & Different Trains

The Bingham is one of the most innovative of UK string quartets, venturing where not all ensembles choose or dare to go so we are particularly excited to have in the Reich and Crumb two ‘Bingham classics’. Their performance of the first of Schubert’s three late, great quartets will be…

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27 Jan

Bach and the concerto

Bach Project: Bach and the concerto Pre-concert discussion at 6:30pm with John Butt, Alexander Janiczek, James Boyd and members of Instruments of Time and Truth. Concert at 8:15pm, Curated by the Faculty's Director of Performance, Natalie Clein Alexander Janiczek, violin Dan Edgar, violin James Boyd, viola Instruments of Time and Truth…

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27 Jan

Bach Project: Bach and the Concerto

Director of Performance Natalie Clein leads the Bach project, exploring the music of JS Bach. Natalie Clein, Cello Alexander Janiczek, violin Dan Edgar, violin James Boyd, viola Instruments of Time and Truth Programme to include: Bach Violin concerto in A major with Alexander Janiczek Bach Concerto for Viola, Strings and…

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February 2018
9 Feb

Contrapunctus Workshop

A workshop on vocal consort singing techniques, led by Owen Rees and members of Contrapunctus.

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9 Feb

Contrapunctus Workshop

A workshop on vocal consort singing techniques, led by Owen Rees and members of Contrapunctus.

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14 Feb

Ibrahim Aziz

Ibrahim Aziz - viola da gamba Dan Tidhar - harpsichord Viola da gamba and harpsichord recital with works by Marin Marais, François Couperin and Georg Philipp Telemann.

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14 Feb

Ibrahim Aziz

Ibrahim Aziz - viola da gamba Dan Tidhar - harpsichord Viola da gamba and harpsichord recital with works by Marin Marais, François Couperin and Georg Philipp Telemann.

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18 Feb

North Sea Radio Orchestra Matinee Show at Holywell Music Room

Tigmus is proud to present North Sea Radio Orchestra Matinee Show at Holywell Music Rooms in Oxford on Sunday 18th February. Back in 2002 North Sea Radio Orchestra were born in the lanes and alleys of the City of London, playing, in dusty old churches, a kind of chamber/alternative classical/folk high-Victorian hybrid…

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23 Feb

The Villiers Quartet

The Villiers Quartet are in their last year of the Radcliffe chamber music residency at the Faculty of Music presented in association with Music at Oxford. Following a brilliant couple of years with concerts in the fabulous Holywell Music Room, they offer an engaging variety of music in their final…

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23 Feb

The Villiers Quartet

The Villiers Quartet are in their last year of the Radcliffe chamber music residency at the Faculty of Music presented in association with Music at Oxford. Following a brilliant couple of years of workshops, lecture-recitals and concerts in the fabulous Holywell Music Room, they offer an engaging programme in their…

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27 Feb

Workshop: Voice Culture

Shruti Samvaad ~ A Conversation with Music A discussion on the basics of Hindustani Classical Music. Part of the Sounds of South Asia series.

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28 Feb

Ensemble Isis Concert with Shruti Jauhari

Appropriation, cross-pollination and cultural transmission The Faculty’s New Music ensemble, Ensemble Isis with Music Director John Traill, performs Maurice Delage's Quatre poèmes hindous (chamber version), traditional Hindustani works performed by vocalist Dr Shruti Jauhari and a new work by Des Oliver in a programme that explores issues of appropriation, cross-pollination…

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28 Feb

Ensemble Isis Concert with Shruti Jauhari

Appropriation, cross-pollination and cultural transmission The Faculty’s New Music ensemble, Ensemble Isis with Music Director John Traill, performs Maurice Delage's Quatre poèmes hindous (chamber version), traditional Hindustani works performed by vocalist Dr Shruti Jauhari and a new work by Des Oliver in a programme that explores issues of appropriation, cross-pollination…

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March 2018
4 Mar

Oxford Chamber Music Society – Beethoven, Brahms & Rachmaninov

Rachmaninov Cello Sonata in G minor op 19 Beethoven Clarinet Trio in B flat Gassenhauer op 11 Brahms Clarinet Trio in A minor op 114 A new ensemble, but with experienced musicians, including the brilliant clarinettist Anna Hashimoto, who has earned worldwide praise   Elena Kiseleva and Tatiana Chernyshova, who both began their training in Moscow,…

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9 Mar

International Women’s Day Concert

The Holywell Music Room plays host to a celebration of female musicians featuring the Faculty of Music's Director of Performance, Natalie Clein. Natalie Clein, Cello Chi-chi Nwanoku, Double Bass Katya Apekisheva, Piano Hannah Roberts, Cello Boris Brontsyn, Violin Phil Dukes, Viola Programme to include: Louise Farenc - Piano Quintet Joel…

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9 Mar

International Women’s Day Concert

International Women's Day Celebration Following last year's concert celebrating International Women’s Day, the Music Faculty is proud to present this year’s celebration curated by the Director of Performance and Artist in Residence, cellist Natalie Clein. Natalie Clein, cello with Chi-chi Nwanoku, double bass Katya Apekisheva, piano Hannah Roberts, cello Boris…

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April 2018
15 Apr

Oxford Chamber Music Society – Dr K. Sextet

The Dr K. Sextet explores and tells stories, drawing on an eclectic mix of composers from around the world who have used folk tales to create fascinating musical stories. Programme to include: Sir Peter Maxwell Davies Dances from the Two Fiddlers (sextet), Sadie Harrison Bell Music for St Casimir (clarinet and piano), Thomas Simaku My Beautiful…

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22 Apr

Oxford Chamber Music Society – Mozart Quintet; Mendelssohn Octet

Mozart String Quintet in G minor K516 Dobrinka Tabakova Insight Mendelssohn Octet in E flat op 20 Founded in 2012 by violinist Eloisa-Fleur Thom and cellist Max Ruisi, London-based 12 ensemble has now acquired an international reputation. We are delighted to welcome three quarters of them (including Eloisa-Fleur and Max) in what will…

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27 Apr

Bach and the voice

Instruments of Time and Truth Ian Bostridge, tenor Giles Underwood, baritone Claire Booth, soprano Discussion with Claire Booth, Ian Bostridge, Giles Underwood Programme of Cantatas Cantatas to include: Cantata 199 Mein Herze schwimmt in Blut Cantata Ich Habe Genug BWV 82

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May 2018
5 May

Oxford Philharmonic: Mozart, Barber and Nielsen

MOZART Quintet for Piano and Winds in E flat major, K. 452 BARBER Summer Music, Op. 31 NIELSEN Wind Quintet, Op. 43 The Soloists of the Oxford Philharmonic; Marios Papadopoulos piano Marios Papadopoulos is joined by The Soloists of the Oxford Philharmonic for an evening of summer music. Shortly after…

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9 May

Two Chairs Writing Competition

The 'Two Chairs Creative Writing Competition' runs across the UK from September 2017 to March 2018. It invites school pupils, university students and the creatively minded public to write short poems or prose pieces reflecting their ideas and experiences of cultural differences, of communication and crossing between cultures, and of…

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19 May

Cello Masterclass with Steven Isserlis

Saturday 19 May (4th week) 11.30am-1.30pm Holywell Music Room Free admission – email beau@oxfordphil.com to reserve or to apply

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June 2018
9 Jun

Oxford Philharmonic Chamber Concert – ‘Seeker of Truth’

PIET SWERTS Prelude. Le jardin à Giverny Seeker of Truth -A piano fantasy Cinq Préludes à la mémoire de Frédéric Chopin Dix Valses Enigmatiques FAURÉ Piano Quartet No. 1 in C minor, Op. 15 The Soloists of the Oxford Philharmonic Russell Hirshfield (piano) Internationally acclaimed American pianist Russell Hirshfield is…

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10 Jun

Bate Collection Family Gamelan Concert

3-4pm Holywell Music Room Holywell Street OX1 3SD Discover the bronze gongs and metallophones of the Javanese Gamelan, with Oxford Youth Gamelan & added saxophones! There will be a chance to try the instruments after the concert. Tickets Adults £5, children FREE, available on the door.

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August 2018
2 Aug

Oxford Piano Festival Recital – Menahem Pressler

HANDEL Chaconne in G major, HWV 435 (8’) MOZART Fantasy in C minor, K. 475 (13’) MOZART Piano Sonata No. 14 in C minor, K. 457 (20’) -INTERVAL- DEBUSSY Five Preludes Book I: I. Danseuses de Delphes, II. Voiles, VIII. La Fille aux Cheveux de Lin, X. La Cathédrale Engloutie, XII. Minstrels (23’)…

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