REVIEW – Devizes Arts Festival – Leonore Piano Trio @ Town Hall 13th June 2022

A Real Classic

Andy Fawthrop


It’s taken a lot of resolve and a lot of hard work and planning to get Devizes Arts Festival back on the road after two enforced years away due to that C-thing, so it was great to get back to business as usual. And the good folks of D-Town have responded well by turning out for the first few events.….

Lesley Garrett at the Corn Exchange (“A Diva and a Piano”) was a cracking start with the hall full and Lesley herself on sparkling and witty form. I’m not a personal fan of her singing style, but it was well worth the time just listening to her down-to-earth humour, and her genuinely funny stories. Superb entertainment.

Since then we’ve had Baila La Cumba, South American music (reviewed earlier here on Devizine by Darren) and the first free Fringe event with Rockin’ Billy at The British Lion on Sunday

Which brings us to Monday and our first piece of classical music programming. The Leonore Piano Trio, first formed in 2012, consists of Benjamin Nabarro (violin), Tim Horton (piano), and Gemma Rosefield (cello). Each of them is an acclaimed soloist, having played with many famous orchestras and musical projects around the world. And last night it was a pleasure to welcome them to the beautiful setting of the Town Hall.

An almost-full room were treated to three pieces. The first, and perhaps most familiar was Haydn’s XV:25 in G major (Gypsy Rondo) – a lively and upbeat three-movement work. Second up was the far less familiar four-movement work by Bargiel – Trio in F, a work which the group have been recently recording. And, following the interval, Mendelssohn’s Trio in D minor. For me it was this last piece which struck the deepest chord, with a passionate and romantic first movement, and a wonderful short, sparkling scherzo as its third movement.

To my untrained ear, it was all pitch-perfect. The trio played with spark and intelligence, bringing real feeling to the pieces and, to quote a somewhat unreliable source, played all the right notes in the right order. It was a wonderful, uplifting and entertaining evening. And, as we are fairly starved of classical music in Devizes, a very welcome opportunity to hear three world-class musicians perform in our little town. A thoroughly enjoyable night out.

And there’s plenty more yet to come with the best part of two weeks’ worth of events still to happen, yet again nailing the increasingly redundant myth that “nothing ever happens in Devizes”. It’s good to see this major cultural Arts Festival firmly back in the calendar.

And this is just the Devizes Arts Festival! – don’t forget that there’s plenty of other stuff happening during that same two weeks – Wadworth’s Music (Wadfest), Saddleback Music Festival and Jim Blair solo at The Southgate – and that’s just on Saturday. See elsewhere on Devizine for a complete guide as to what’s on where and when. Get yourselves out there and see some live music!!


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