On Memory: Recital and Conversation

Professor of Composition, Michael Zev Gordon, explores the festival theme with award winning pianist Joseph Houston.

The evening includes a discussion between the composer and pianist exploring the relationship between memory and music, followed by a performance of On Memory, a 40-minute work for piano.

Birmingham University Singers

Talented student conductors direct these university choirs for their spring term concert.

Whitacre: Three Flower Songs
Monteverdi: La giovinetta pianta
Tavener: Eonia
Spiritual arr. Whalum: The Lily of the Valley
Britten: Five Flower Songs


Jazz Orchestra Ft. Juice Aleem

University Music Society/CrossCurrents+
JUICE ALEEM – Rap/spoken word

The University’s Jazz Orchestra collaborates with one of the UK’s finest MCs as part of
an exciting and unique project culminating in brand new arrangements of Juice’s critically acclaimed music. Come and hear this large ensemble explore a dynamic and creative set of music featuring rap, spoken word, improvisation and groove.

Presented by University Music Society and CrossCurrents+ in partnership with
Juice Aleem

Barber Evening Concert

Callum Smart attracted public attention at the age of thirteen after winning the strings category final of BBC Young Musician 2010 and in the same year, the top European prize in the Menuhin Competition in Oslo. He has since appeared at festivals, in concert and with major orchestras across Europe, and released his first recording in 2014. He is joined by acclaimed pianist, Richard Uttley. Richard has given concerts in the Barber Lunchtime Series and makes his debut in the evening series with this concert.

Chamber Choirs and University Camerata

Four talented student conductors and their choirs take to the stage to present an afternoon of sublime choral music. 

Alexander Creamer and Matthew Brady – Camerata conductors
Bradley Gill and Sidney Brass – Chamber Choir conductors

Programme includes:

MendelssohnVerleih uns Frieden gnädiglich
Bruckner: Ave Maria
Ešenvalds: Only in Sleep
DurufléNotre Père
MonteverdiCantate Domino
Ola Gjeilo: Ubi caritas
Whitacre: Five Hebrew Love Songs
ParryI was glad
Tippett: ‘Steal Away’ from Five Negro Spirituals

BEER: Dark Matters

In collaboration with the Art@CMS project at CERN in Switzerland, the Birmingham Ensemble for Electroacoustic Research (BEER) presents this performance involving the sonification of data streams from the Large Hadron Collider, the world’s largest and most complex particle accelerator. Experimental data containing clues towards possible ‘new physics’ becomes the raw material for improvised music and visualisations programmed in real time by the ensemble with the aim of creating a result that is beautiful, and both musically and scientifically meaningful.

As part of this event Nomad, BOM’s cutting edge restaurant partner, will offer an innovative physics-inspired menu. (Further details will be made available at foodbynomad.com)

Barber Lunchtime Concert

Students from Chetham’s School of Music give their annual concert in the Barber Institute. One of the UKs most respected music school, Chetham’s support future generations of musicians and composers. Come along to spot a star of the future!

University Big Band

Jonathan Silk and the University Music Society Big Band welcome internationally renowned American trumpet and flugel horn player, Bobby Shew, as the featured artist in their Spring concert. Bobby joins the Big Band as part of a UK tour.

*Join us from 6.30pm for the pre-gig warm up session from a selection of Jazz Collective small bands in the Bramall foyer.


Chamber Choirs & Brass Band

The Music Society’s two chamber choirs and brass band present an evening of popular compositions and arrangements, with feature soloists.

Final Year Recitalists

Tristan O’Leary – Clarinet
Man Him Chan – Piano
Christina Perrin – Trumpet
Heather Rose – Clarinet

Final year recitalists perform a selection of music in preparation for their end-of-year performance assessments in the Summer Term.

Presented by the Department of Music.

Orchestral Weekender

The Music Society orchestras and their conductor Daniele Rosina present a weekend of concerts in the Bramall Music Building. The concerts feature popular orchestral works alongside soloists and the world premiere performance of postgraduate composer Oliver Frost’s
new orchestral work, drawn onward.

Garnier Organ Recital: Nathan Laube

A recital from one of the world’s most respected concert organists, Nathan Laube. Nathan’s international performances include Vienna Konzerthaus, the Berlin Philharmonie and the Sejong Center. In addition to his busy performing schedule, Nathan is Assistant Professor of Organ at The Eastman School of Music in Rochester, New York, and gives this recital following a masterclass  with organ students at the Royal Birmingham Conservatoire.

Muffat: Toccata Septima from Apparatus Musico-Organisticus
Storace: Ciaconna from Selva di varie compositioni
J S Bach: Passacaglia, BWV 582
Haydn: Sonata VII from The Seven Last Words of Christ on the Cross
Mendelssohn: Sonata in F minor, Op. 65, No. 1

Final Year Recitals

Final year recitalists perform a selection of music in preparation for their end of year performance assessments.

Jefferson Goh – cello

Stephanie Nixon – flute

Madeleine Roy – soprano

Eugenie Pui – cello

Fretwork: For Four

Asako Morikawa, Emily Ashton, Sam Stadlen and Richard Boothby – Viols

Winner of the 2017 Royal Philharmonic Society ‘Chamber Music and Song’ prize, Fretwork return to the Barber Institute with their programme, For Four, presenting renaissance and baroque quartets from England, France, Germany and Italy. In the 25 years since their formation, they have performed all over the world and their recordings of the classic English viol repertory have become the benchmark by which all others are judged.

Matthew Locke: Consort of Fower parts No. 2 in D
Henry Purcell: Two Fantasia in 4 parts
Etiénne Moulinié: Fantasie pour les violes
John Jenkins: 2 Fantazies in 4 parts
Robert Parsons: Ut re mi
Alfonso Ferrabosco: Pasacalio
John Bull: Ut re mi
Giovanna Legrenzi: Sonata sesta
Alfonso Ferrabosco: Hexachord Fantasy
J S Bach: Passacaglia BWV582

Presented by University Music and Concerts as part of the Barber Evening Concert series. 

BEAST: Evensong

Tune into your surroundings and join BEAST for a deep listening session drawing together sounds collected from locations across campus and beyond.

Prince Regent’s Band

Fraser Tannock – cornet/trumpet
Richard Thomas – cornet/trumpet
Anneke Scott – althorn/horn
Phil Dale – tenor horn/baritone/trombone
Jeff Miller – bass tuba/trombone

The Prince Regent’s Band join us following the launch of their new disc ‘Russian Revolutionaries’ with a performance of repertoire from composers associated with Tsar Alexander III, himself an amateur brass player. The Band perform on a collection of early 20th century instruments including French cornets and Russian/German-style alto and tenor horns, creating a vastly different sound world to that of a modern brass quintet.

Böhme: Prelude and Fugues No. 1, Op. 28
Glazunov: Brass Quintet, Op. 38, ‘In Modo Religioso’
Ewald: Brass Quintet No. 2, Op. 6

Presented by University Music and Concerts as part of the Barber Lunchtime Concert series.

Tesla Quartet

Winner of the Gold Medal at the 2012 Fischoff National Chamber Music Competition and prize winner in the 2012 London International String Quartet Competition and 2013 Bordeaux International String Quartet Competition, the Tesla Quartet was formed at The Juilliard School in 2008 and quickly established itself as one of the most promising young ensembles in New York, winning Second Prize at the J.C. Arriaga Chamber Music Competition only a few months after its inception.

Schubert: String Quartet in C minor, D. 703, ‘Quartettsatz’

Linus Köhring:  7 Aphorismen

Mendelssohn: String Quartet in E minor, Op. 44, No. 2

Ross Snyder – violin

Michelle Lie – violin

Edwin Kaplan – viola

Serafim Smigelskiy – cello

Chamber Choirs & Brass Band

Stuart Birnie – Brass Band conductor
Elliot Mercer, Emma Warren – Chamber Choir conductors

The Music Society’s Chamber Choirs and Brass Band give their spring term concert, including music from the Brass Band’s entry to the 2018 UniBrass competition in February. The brass band and the two chamber choirs, female and mixed voices, draw singers and musicians from across the University, studying all subjects, from first years to PhD students.

Programme includes:
T J Powell: March, Castell Coch
Paul Lovatt Cooper: Wall of Sound
Rameau: La Nuit
Sullivan: The Long Day Closes
Saint Saens, arr. Philip Wilby: Finale from Organ Symphony

Presented by the University Music Society.