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A Week at the Royal Academy of Music

The Royal Academy of Music (near Baker Street Station, easily accessible for most Londoners) is notably welcoming to the public.

Their events are mostly open entry-free (or inexpensive). Refreshments can be taken in the students' restaurant, and the packed progamme is listed on an excellent website.

During last week (June 22-26 2009) we enjoyed amazingly varied fare:

Monday: a lecture/concert about 19th C violin music - Revolutionary Violin

Tuesday: in the same Duke's Hall Mainly New, a Tansy Davies showcase of contemporary chamber ensemble music, including her

Inside Out II/Greenhouses (World Premiere - Jessica Cottis conductor)
Dark Ground· (Manny Arciniega drums)
Women in Love (Vanessa Bowers soprano· Mandy Lo percussion)

- most of it fastidious and austere, despite varied instrumentation. It was all well prepared but oddly presented in dark concert attire, with great solemnity; no applause between items...

Afterwards, in the Sir Jack Lyons Theatre, an enlivening presentation of the Broadway musical Sweet Charity by the Academy Musical Theatre Company and Orchestra, given with complete professionalism and imaginative staging by a company headed by a future star Jennifer Kristian (reviews of that Department are discouraged).

Friday: a ground-breaking clavichord recital and master class.

Explore the RAM programme - and those of the other Music Colleges - and enjoy.

Peter Grahame Woolf