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Ludham festival proves big success

PUBLISHED: 10:58 20 August 2010 | UPDATED: 11:57 16 September 2010

THE first season of the St Catherine's Church, Ludham Season of Music and the Arts is drawing to its close.

It was officially opened at the fifth annual arts and crafts event at the beginning of May and will finish tomorrow, Saturday, with a classical concert to be given by a talented young duo with local connections who are at the start of their careers.

THE first season of the St Catherine's Church, Ludham Season of Music and the Arts is drawing to its close.

It was officially opened at the fifth annual arts and crafts event at the beginning of May and will finish tomorrow, Saturday, with a classical concert to be given by a talented young duo with local connections who are at the start of their careers.

Along the way there has been a mixture of music of all sorts as well as exhibitions and art events.

Following the arts and crafts event, this season continued on May 14 with an evening of traditional jazz performed by the Peter Franks All Star Dixieland Jazz Band, making their fourth visit to Ludham.

Their performance, together with that of vocalist Loretta Scott, was considered by the assembled audience to be the best so far.

This was followed on June 19, by something totally different, when young classical guitarist Georgina Whitehead, who grew up in Hickling, gave a performance in St Catherine's of works by a wide variety of composers from Scarlatti to Albeniz and Richard Rodney Bennett, showing the versatility of the instrument.

The centrepiece of the first season of music and the arts, and for many the highlight, was a visit to St Catherine's by the Academy of St Martin in the Fields Chamber Ensemble, led by Kenneth Sillitoe, which played to a packed church.

As part of Open Churches Week, August 1-8, an exhibition in the church entitled Ludham at War, illustrating the part the village played during both world wars drew over 600 visitors during the week.

The week ended with a concert, Songs which won the War, performed by St Catherine's singers.

Then finally, this weekend, the last event of this first season will be a piano and violin recital by two young musicians, Esther Hopkinson (violin) and Phillipa Harrison (piano).

These two young graduate musicians, with local connections, are at the start of their careers, but are already winning awards in international competitions.

The duo will be playing a varied programme of works by Beethoven (Spring Sonata), Debussy, Bartok, Gershwin and Sarasate. Tickets, £6, can be bought from Ludham Butchers, or by calling 01692 678437, or 678654, or on the door on the night.

The concert starts at 7.30pm.

The season, which is the first attempt by St Catherine's church to put on anything of this kind, has been a great success, drawing in different audiences, from locally and further afield, for each of the events.

Members of the fund-raising committee of the Parochial Church Council, who arranged this year's event, will soon be starting to arrange next year's programme.

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