The second concert in our spring season featured two very talented “local” young musicians.
Fiona Haynes attended both Wycombe High School and Sir William Borlase Grammar before moving on to the B.Mus programme at the Royal College of Music under teacher Amanda Roocroft. She says that it was the fantastic music teaching in our schools, as well as her supportive family, that have encouraged her to aspire to a career in opera. She performed two very varied sets of songs, ranging from Purcell through Fauré and Wolf to Britten and Hageman. Fiona has a wonderfully sweet voice that seems to soar effortlessly to the top notes. I feel she's still working on developing the full operatic richness of tone, but her performances of Mozart's "In uomini in soldati" and of Micaela's aria from Carmen showed off her vocal flexibility and I loved her beautiful performance of Quilter's "Weep you no more, sad fountains".
Robert Cheung is being schooled at home and studies piano with Dr Nigel Wilkinson. He recently won a soloist competition which will lead to him making his concerto debut in 2015 with the Reading Symphony Orchestra, playing Rachmaninov’s second piano concerto. Meanwhile he gave us a quite outstanding performance of both great precision and musicality, played entirely from memory. Beethoven's sonata No 27 was played with wonderful evenness as well as feeling, and the concert ended with a bravura interpretation of Chopin's Scherzo Op 20 No 1 that brought proceedings to a triumphal close.
Both performers received great praise and applause from a very appreciative audience and we can only wish them every success in their continuing careers.
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