It was great to take part in the British Double Reed Society’s Festival at Royal Birmingham Conservatoire on 17 May. There was an excellent attendance and I enjoyed looking in on the workshops by Melinda Maxwell, Emmet Byrne, Nikolaj Henriques and Margaret Cookhorn. The RBC concert featuring Emmet Byrne’s and Nikolaj Hendriques’ brilliant rendition of the Jolivet Sonatine for oboe and bassoon was a real highlight. Also Melinda Maxwell’s fascinating lecture and demonstration of the aulos….taking oboe playing back several thousand years. I also enjoyed interviewing Melinda and Nikolaj in one session and conducting the final playthrough with over sixty double reed players playing Donal Flynn’s arrangement of Holst’s Song of the Blacksmith from his Second Suite in F, featuring oboist Tommy Hill on anvil!
Thanks to BDRS and James Turnbull and to RBC and Jenni Phillips for leading this incentive. There were many happy participants by the end of the day!
Margaret Cookhorn, contrabassoon