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Ambache logo WORDS and MUSIC
The reader can be a star, such as Jenny Agutter, or an excellent, though less famous professional.
These programmes can be evening or lunchtime;
enquiries to Diana Ambache at

Click on the title to see the details:
  • Mozart - child prodigy to adult genius
    (two players, one reader )
  • Jane Austen's World - a celebration of English life by it's women authors and composers
    (two players, one reader )
  • The Schumanns - music by Clara & Robert with readings from their marriage diaries
    (two players, two readers )
  • Mendelssohn to Mendelssohn - music and letters by Fanny & Felix Mendelssohn
    (three players, two readers )
  • Mozart - chamber music masterpieces
    (five players, one reader)

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MOZART - child prodigy to adult genius
for piano, oboe and reader
Mozart as a child (idealised version!);
detail from painting by Joseph Duplessis
Music from Mozart's early and middle life, incorporating two letters by Leopold Mozart and six by Wolfgang

MOZART Sonata in A, K12 (Mozart the prodigy)
MOZART Sonata in A minor, K310 (Mozart the bereaved)
J C BACH Sonata in D (Mozart's love of the 'English' Bach)
J S BACH Allegro from Sonata in G minor (Mozart & fugues)
MOZART Allegro in A minor, K402
MOZART Sonata in F, K376 (Mozart the independent adult)

Mozart's standing as the most loved composer in western music needs no justifying. However many people feel they don't know the man behind the music, except through Peter Schaffer's Amadeus.

This programme brings Mozart the person to life by combining his own words with his music. In a series of vignettes interwoven with music of the same date, Mozart - the creator of such miraculous music - becomes all too human, with hopes and fears like all of us.

Starting with some astonishing music written when he was only eight years old, the programme tells of his brilliant success as a child prodigy, his feelings on his mother's death, his affection for two of the famous Bach family, and concludes with his famous battle with the Archbishop of Salzburg.

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a celebration of English life by its women authors and composers
for piano, oboe and reader
Jane Austen
Jane GUEST Sonata in D major, Op 1, c1783
Maria Hester PARK Sonata in D, Op 13, No 1, 1801
Henry PURCELL Hornpipe
George Frederick HANDEL Sonata in c minor
Antony Le FLEMING Imprompto
Madeleine DRING Danza gaya

The authors of this programme - Fanny Burney, Jane Austen, Maria Edgeworth, Mary Wollstonecraft - are highly valued for their descriptions of English life and acute observations about people. Sections illustrate gender attitudes, class, diversions and pleasures, and aspects of loving.

The composers are equally expressive, providing a wide range of musical idea and form to complement the words. The programme brings to light some hidden treasure from our cultural heritage.

Together they show that women have long played an important part in voicing our traditions and ideas and vividly express a rich creative vein in English life.

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music by Clara & Robert with readings from their marriage diaries
for piano, oboe/cor anglais and reader
Clara Schumann
Clara SCHUMANN Romanze in A minor, 1853
Robert SCHUMANN No3, Drei Romanzen, Op 94
Robert SCHUMANN No 2, Drei Romanzen, Op 94
Robert SCHUMANN No 4, Funf Stucke im Volkston, Op 102
Clara SCHUMANN No 2, Drei Romanzen, Op 22
Robert SCHUMANN No 5, Funf Stucke im Volkston, Op 102
Clara SCHUMANN No 3, Drei Romanzen, Op 22
Robert SCHUMANN No 1, Drei Romanzen, Op 94
Robert SCHUMANN Allegro from Adagio & Allegro, Op 70
Robert SCHUMANN No 2, Funf Stucke im Volston, Op 102

The most famous musical marriage, between one of Germany's greatest Romantic composers and one of the 19th century's greatest pianists, is brought to life with extracts from the diaries they wrote together between 1840-44.

The pleasures and constraints of two highly active and imaginative people living and working under one roof were many. They range from their mutual love to the question of how to accommodate their different needs, such as his work composing and her piano practice.

Romantic miniatures were one of Robert's greatest achievements. Here are several gems, alongside equally expressive pieces by Clara. The individuality and overlap of their music makes a fascinating comparison.

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letters and music by Fanny & Felix Mendelssohn

for piano, violin, cello and two readers
Fanny Mendelssohn
Felix MENDELSSOHN Lied Ohne Worte, Op 109, 1845 (vc & pn) Fanny MENDELSSOHN Piano Trio in D minor, Op 11, 1847
Fanny MENDELSSOHN Adagio in E, 1823 (vn & pn
Felix MENDELSSOHN Piano Trio in D minor, Op 49, 1838

This wide-ranging and enjoyable programme brings together words and music by Felix Mendelssohn - the acclaimed composer of elegant romantic music and Fanny Mendelssohn - a little recognised but powerful and passionate musician in her own right.

Brother and sister were very close, both personally and musically, exchanging ideas on their experiences and their compositions throughout their lives. There are descriptions of their European travels and meetings with important artistic and royal people.

The letters reveal Fanny as a witty, perceptive and intelligent woman, inhibited by self-doubt, and Felix as worldly and a little controlled. The music shows a similarity of language between them, while each also expresses individuality.

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for piano, oboe/cor, violin, viola, cello (5 players) and reader
Mozart by Johann Nepomuk della Croce (detail)
MOZART Piano Trio in B flat, K502
MOZART Oboe Quartet in F, K370
MOZART Adagio for cor anglais and string trio, K580a
MOZART Piano Quartet in G minor, K487

This fine programme of chamber works encompasses music of brilliance, playfulness, intimacy and drama. It opens with one of Mozart's most splendid Piano Trios - K502 - a work of inspired mastery and nobility of invention.

Friend and colleague Friedrich Ramm inspired the Oboe Quartet, which is full of delightful capers and frolics. The hallowed atmosphere of the cor anglais Adagio makes a beautiful contrast both to that and the ensuing Piano Quartet, which has an intensely passionate first movement, a lyrical Andante and a showy Finale.

The programme can also be done with readings from Mozart's letters of the period, illustrating his thoughts on life and his musical preoccupations.

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