Classical Mixtape Live 2 – St George’s, Bristol

Friday 28th June, 2019

I had missed the first classical mixtape earlier in the year which was a shame as I really like the idea. Short classical pieces played by excellent young soloists as a taster, an introduction, a way in to classical music. If, like me, you aren’t from a culture with a background of classical music it can feel like a slightly scary world (it isn’t!) and worrying about when to clap, or making noise at the wrong point, does put people off going. Which is a real shame as there is such a magical world of music to be discovered. Hence me loving the idea of the mixtape and going along to support St George’s this evening.

The soloists were Jess Gillam on saxophone, Martin James Bartlett on piano, Chloe Hanslip on violin, Bartosz Glowacki on accordion and Andrey Lebedev on guitar. They were all superb and to single anyone out would be wrong. I had a couple of favourites, of course, but all five of them are very talented young musicians and the future of classical playing is in very safe hands.

Hearing pieces adapted for accordion and sax was ace, it bought pieces to life for me and I had no idea either instrument could be so versatile in this genre.

Each took their moment to shine as a soloist before coming together to play in a variety of combinations and then as a quintet for the final piece. They had only played together a few hours earlier, at sound check, so to have pulled off such a wonderful final piece was a real accomplishment.

If you get the chance to hear a classical mixtape take it, it was a really accessible way into the classical world.

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