Tuesday, 30 April 2013

Wymondham Music Festival, Norfolk - Launch Saturday 11 May

The 18th annual Wymondham Music Festival, centred on Festival Fortnight, June 22 to July 7, but with events from May to October, will be launched in Wymondham Market Place on Saturday, May 11 at 10am, with an open-air performance from Wymondham Area Schools’ Brass Band.

The Festival brochure, available from May 11, features more than 80 events, with 40 during Festival Fortnight. Events are organised by both the Festival committee and other groups. Many of the events during Festival Fortnight are free in venues across the historic South Norfolk market town.

Tickets for Festival Fortnight concerts go on sale on May 11 at the Book Fountain, Wharton’s Court, Wymondham, and for the first time can be bought online at www.wymfestival.org.uk. For Festival event enquiries, contact the Festival office, t. 01953 601939, e. office@wymfestival.org.uk. Save £1 on Festival Fortnight tickets booked by June 15, either online, or by using the discount voucher in the Festival brochure.

Enjoy performances by national, regional and local musicians with everything from Rachmaninov, Bach and Britten to folk, Americana, swing, jazz, flamenco, blues, bluegrass and contemporary rock.

Festival Chairman John Wood said: "Soon we shall be converting months of planning into music - it's a really exciting time for everyone. The Wymondham area will be buzzing from May to October. Festival Fortnight is going to be a real treat for music fans, with its superb mix of classical, folk, jazz and contemporary music."

Early Events in May and June
 May 11, 10am to 12noon, Wymondham Area Schools’ Brass Band, Market Place.
 May 25, 10am to 12noon Town Busking Day.
 June 1, 10am to 12noon, Matt Watson Band (former lead singer with Huck), Market Place.
 June 8, 10am to 12noon, Ragamuffin (folk), Market Place.

Festival Fortnight highlights 

Wymondham Abbey
 The Lightning Thieves, June 22 at 7.30pm, Adam Summerhayes, concerto violinist turned ultra-modern electric fiddler, with David Gordon, the ‘Hendrix’ of the harpsichord. Ticket £12, under-18 £3.
 Jazz in The Abbey June 27 at 7.30pm, presents Peter King, rated by Dave Gelly in 'The Giants Of Jazz' as…‘the finest alto saxophonist that Britain has ever produced, and one of the finest in the world today’ with Steve Melling (piano), Owen Morgan (bass) and Roger Odell (drums). Ticket £12, under-18 £3
 Lunchtime recital, June 28 at 1.10pm with Finn McEwen, saxophone, winner of Norfolk Young Musician 2013. Retiring collection.
 Voigt Piano Trio, June 30, 8pm. Rachmaninov Trio Élégiaque No 1 in G minor and Schumann, Piano Trio No 1 in D minor. Retiring collection.
 Lunchtime organ recital July 1 at 1.10pm, with Ashley Grote, Master of Music at Norwich Cathedral. Retiring collection.
 Wymondham Young Musicians’ Concert, July 1 at 7pm. Admission on the door £4 (children and performers free).
 Lunchtime recitals all at 1.10pm, Norfolk Winds Quintet, July 2, The charm of Ivor Novello in words and song, July 3 and Britten Song Recital with Nicholas Allen (tenor) and Soojeong Joo (piano), July 4, Retiring collection.
 Rupert Egerton-Smith – piano, July 3 at 7.30pm. Rupert, originally from Norwich is an international concert pianist. Music from Scarlatti, Beethoven, Scriabin and Rachmaninov. Ticket £10, under-18 £3.

Ex-Servicemen’s Club 
 Megson – Folk at The Regal, June 29 at 8pm, Stu and Debbie Hanna are Megson. They draw heavily on their Teeside heritage to create an infectious mix of heavenly vocals, lush harmonies and driving rhythmic guitars and mandolas. Ticket £10, under-18 £3.
 Flamenco at the Regal, July 6 at 8pm with Zimali Flamenco from Norwich. Ticket £10, under-18 £3.

Wymondham Central Hall
 The Vagaband July 4 at 8pm – Norfolk eight-piece band performing Americana, blues, jazz, country, celtic and rock. Ticket £10, under-18 £3.
 Wymondham Roots, The Acoustic Sessions, July 5 at 8pm. Johnny Steinberg presents Whirligig, The Jake Morrell Band and Andy Kirkham (guitar) with Henry Walker (drums). Ticket £10, under-18 £3.

Open-air Events 
 Wymondham High Jazz Bands, June 22, 10am to 12noon, Market Place
 Midsummer Jazz Picnic at Becketswell, June 24, 6pm to 9pm, featuring Dixie Mix Jazz Band
 1940s evening, June 28, 7pm-9pm, Skyliner plays nostalgic family favourites Glenn Miller-style in the Market Place, 7pm to 9pm; also Norfolk Military Vehicle Group display.
 The Proposition, acoustic American music, June 29, 10am to 12noon, Market Place
 Teddy Bears’ Picnic, June 30, 11am to 1pm, at King’s Head Meadow with live music and storytelling.
 The A13 All Stars, blues, country and Americana, July 6, 10am to 12noon, Market Place.

Wymondham Baptist Church
 Wymondham Songfest 2013, June 22, 9am to 5pm – songwriting workshop with Johnny Steinberg. Workshop fee £5, advance booking essential t. 01953 604816, e. abbeyrecords@googlemail.com.

Ketts Park Centre
 The Kickstart Sessions June 29, 11am to 6pm, showcasing young local bands; organised in partnership with SNYA Radio and Woodshack Rehearsal Studios. Tickets £3, t. 07515 146337.

Festival Fortnight Finale Wymondham Baptist Church
 The Drones present The Toy Symphony, July 7 at 3pm, this fun family concert features music performed on the cello, harmonium, bouzouki, mandolin, clarinet, percussion, car parts, toys, birdcalls, musical saw and items from the garden shed (3pm). Ticket £10, under-18 £3.

Wymondham Music Festival is supported by Wymondham Town Council, South Norfolk Council and Norfolk County Council.

Raveningham Gardens Norfolk UK – May Day Bank Holiday Openings

Raveningham Gardens, near Hales in South Norfolk, are opening on Bank Holiday Sunday, May 5 and Monday, May 6, 2pm to 5pm. There is a good display of tulips, osmanthus and early scented spring shrubs, along with scented roses in the conservatory. The wild flower meadows are also starting to come into life with cowslips and fritillaries

Explore the 18th century walled kitchen garden, Victorian glasshouses, arboretum and herb garden, enjoy the contemporary sculpture throughout the gardens, and visit Raveningham’s 14th century church; tea and cakes on sale on May 5 and 6.

Raveningham Gardens are also open for spring flowers week, Monday, May 13 to Friday, May 17, daily 11am to 4pm, during the Broads Outdoors Festival.

Raveningham Gardens, Raveningham, NR14 6NS is open all Thursdays, 11am to 4pm, to the end of August. Entry is adult £4, concessions £3.50 and children under 16 free. Tel. 01508 548152, e. office@raveningham.com, www.raveningham.com.

Tuesday, 23 April 2013

Norfolk Deaf Association Hearing Support Service Celebrates Twentieth Anniversary

Norfolk Deaf Association's (NDA) Hearing Support Service (HSS), established in 1993, celebrated its 20th anniversary on Monday 22 April with a tea party for the service’s volunteers.

Tony Innes, Chairman NDA and Gill Girling NDA trustee and first HSS volunteer cut the birthday cake

Over the last year 6296 people, comprising 7649 appointments, including 580 new referrals, benefited from the service, which is delivered by trained volunteers.

Volunteers help people affected by hearing loss, advising them on the use, cleaning and maintenance of hearing aids. Home visits are offered for those with limited mobility, and there are 50 static clinics and 28 mobile clinics, provided by the Listen Here! Bus, in towns and villages in Norfolk. The mobile clinic also visits 25 sheltered housing complexes. The timetables for both the static and mobile clinics can be downloaded from the website at www.norfolkdeaf.org.uk, or tel. 01603 404440 (voice/minicom).

The HSS is NDA’s largest service and is supported by the Norfolk & Norwich NHS University Hospital, which provides supplies and training. The service also receives some funding from North Norfolk and Central and South Norfolk Clinical Commissioning Groups.

In addition NDA runs an Assistive Listening Devices advice and support clinic on Thursday mornings between 10am and 1pm at the NDA headquarters, 217 Silver Road, Norwich NR3 4TL.  This is ideal for anyone thinking of buying equipment to enhance hearing. A wide variety of equipment is on display including induction loops, wireless listeners, flashing and vibrating doorbells, vibrating alarm clocks, smoke alarms, telephone amplifiers and mobile phones.

Aliona Laker, NDA Manager said: “Our Hearing Support Service is delivered by 36 very hard working volunteers, co-ordinated by Pam Spicer.  Four new volunteers have been trained during the last year and welcomed to the team, but we always need more volunteers to help us with this vital activity.”

Diana Gee, HSS volunteer said: “I went deaf in my twenties and am now in my seventies. I moved to Norfolk 20 years ago and the help I received from the HSS made a big difference. I have been a volunteer for 16 years now. The support from NDA means a great deal to people and gives them confidence. Volunteers normally operate generally within a five-mile radius from home. I enjoy meeting clients and have between two and four appointments a week.”

Dr John FitzGerald, Head of Audiology, Norfolk & Norwich NHS University Hospital said:
“The hearing support service provides a crucial part of the whole package of care for people with hearing aids in Norfolk. The mobile Listen Here! Bus provides a lifeline to communication for those who find it difficult to travel to the hospital for ongoing care.”

                                    Hearing Support Service Volunteers at the celebration

Gill Girling, NDA Trustee and the HSS’s first volunteer explains her hearing ‘journey’ and the value of the service: “Having turned down the offer of a hearing aid at age of 14, I was 28 before I eventually acquired one. After a brief attempt to use it I put it in a drawer and it remained there for the next seven years.”

“In 1983, now aged 35, I joined a lipreading class where the teacher, a hearing therapist, noticed that I put my hearing aid in my ear when I arrived and removed it at the end of the lesson. She offered me an appointment at her NHS clinic and after two sessions I began wearing my hearing aid every day and have never looked back.”

“In 1991 I trained as a volunteer to help people with hearing aids. The British Association for the Hard of Hearing (now Hearing Concern/Link) ran the course. The idea was that, once trained, volunteers would approach their local audiology department and offer their services.”

“I was well received at the Norfolk & Norwich Hospital who, in March 1993, along with Social Services and NDA set up the HSS around me as the first volunteer. Other volunteers quickly followed. Soon NDA began providing its own volunteer training courses and the HSS became the respected, essential service it is today.”

“HSS volunteers provide information, offer support and education to family members and clean and maintain hearing aids and ear moulds. With ongoing encouragement and support I believe there is much less likelihood of hearing aids ending up in a drawer!”

Static Clinics include Blakeney, Coltishall, Fakenham, Gorleston, Holt, Ludham, Sheringham and Wells-next-the-Sea.

Mobile Clinics include Acle, Aylsham, Bunwell, Dereham, Diss, Harleston, Hingham, Hoveton, North Walsham, Reepham, Stalham, Swaffham, Taverham, Thetford, Watton and Wymondham.

For more information about HSS clinics or home visits contact Pam Spicer on 01603 404440, email nhss@norfolkdeaf.org.uk or visit the website at www.norfolkdeaf.org.uk

Norfolk Deaf Association was founded in 1898, originally as a benevolent society. The charity aims to improve the lives of young people and adults with all degrees of hearing loss through information, support, awareness and communication. The key services are Hearing Support Service, Befriending Service, Tinnitus Support Group, Deaf Awareness Training and Hard of Hearing Club.

We cannot run our services without the excellent help we get from our volunteers and the NDA owes an enormous debt of gratitude to all Volunteers past and present.

If you think you would be interested in becoming a volunteer please contact us at the NDA office. We will offer you training, a supervised introduction to the work we do and then regular training updates so you can maintain professional standards. Our volunteers find it very enjoyable and fulfilling. Why don’t you give it a try?

Sunday, 14 April 2013

The Harling Christ – New Medieval Art at East Harling Church Norfolk

The Rt Rev Graham James, Lord Bishop of Norwich dedicated The Harling Christ, a new painting by local artist Maz Jackson at St Peter & St Paul’s Church, East Harling, Norfolk on Sunday 14 April.

The painting, in egg tempera on a gilded oak panel (50cm x 65cm), created using the same methods as the medieval craftsmen who worked in Norfolk’s historic churches, is the first egg tempera painting at East Harling Church since the 15th century. The painting rests on a contemporary stand made by Mike Dolling.

Norfolk-born Maz Jackson is an East Harling resident with an international reputation. Her award-winning work is in permanent gallery and museum collections in UK, Beijing, Bologna and Detroit. One of her many solo shows was in Donatello’s Crypt, Basilica di San Lorenzo, Florence in 2011.She has also represented the UK 3 times at the Florence Biennale and at Salon Des Independants, Grande Palais, Paris.

Rev. Nigel Kinsella initially commissioned The Harling Christ, half through the private patronage of the late Jane Bowyer, and being a local artist, Maz Jackson donated the rest towards the commission.

This painting has inspired local writers Sally and John Wallace-Jones to write an anthem with music by Tom Hilton, organist and Director of Music at East Harling Church and Head of Music at Old Buckenham High School. The church choir gave the anthem its premiere at the dedication on 14 April.
Rev'd Sarah Oakland, Maz Jackson and The Bishop viewing The Harling Christ 

The Harling Christ depicts Jesus’ joyous resurrection. On his wide exaggerated arms he carries disciples and apostles including St Matthew, St James, St Bartholomew and St Luke. St Peter and St Paul, to whom the church is dedicated, standing at Jesus’ feet are larger than the figures on the arms, symbolising their greater importance. This device is evident in many pieces of medieval and primitive art.  

Jesus stands in a frail basket; this type of basket, still in use in the Middle East, was made and used by local tradesmen in the Middle Ages, and can be seen in carvings in the church.

The basket holds a squirrel, marking the link with the Lovells and Anne of Harling (Lovell) the 15th century benefactor; the last time the church had contemporary egg tempera paintings. The woman in Hans Holbein's painting A lady with a Squirrel and Starling is thought to be Anne of Harling. The Lovell family coat of arms features three red squirrels.

A lamb is also included in the basket; East Harling was famous for its lamb market, which ended in the early 20th century, a carved lamb is included on the village sign.  

Rev’d Sarah Oakland, Rector of Harling Benefice said: “Maz Jackson’s painting gives us a vibrant image of Christ, whose arms encompass the world and hold up the people of his Church. The strength of this image will encourage many in their journey of faith. It is entirely fitting that this substantial piece of art finds a home in East Harling’s medieval parish church, which has for so long been a place of Christian prayer and worship. We are delighted and honoured by this gift.”

Maz Jackson said; “It has been a great privilege to complete this commission for East Harling Church. I visited the church many times to sketch and gather inspiration. The Harling Christ symbolises Jesus and the Church reaching out to the world. I feel both honoured and humbled that my art is alongside the work of Harling’s medieval artists and craftsmen.”

“Egg tempera is an ancient method,” continued Maz Jackson, “going back as far as cave paintings and championed by early Christian icon painters as well as works by Leonardo, Michael Angelo and Botticelli. Painting can be a spiritual journey, whatever your faith. I respect the materials I use, pure pigments mined worldwide, 23 1/3 carat gold leaf, as well as seasoned oak that is the ‘canvas’ for my work”

Cennino d’Andrea Cennini (c. 1370 to c. 1440) wrote The Craftsman’s Handbook in 1437, documented the methods for egg tempera painting and gilding, and is referenced by artists today. Egg yoke is mixed with powdered pigment that has been ground in distilled water to build up paintings with small brush strokes enabling the tempera to harden and last for centuries.

“A childhood of visiting the region’s churches and cathedrals with my father introduced me to these traditions, that also influence my sense of colour and technique,” added Maz Jackson.

Professor Giampaolo Trotta described Maz Jackson’s work at the opening of her Florence exhibition in 2011 as: “A post-modern medievalism that is fragmented and mixed with modernity. The use of the past for critical reflection is clear in all the artist’s works.”

For more information about East Harling Church see www.harlingunitedbenefice.org.uk  and Maz Jackson www.mazjacksonart.com.

Wednesday, 10 April 2013

The Hostage Handbook by Anthony Grey, published by The Tagman Press 11 April 2013

The Hostage Handbook by Anthony Grey, published 11 April 2013 by The Tagman Press.

 What it's like to be a hostage and the positive after-effects!

Anthony Grey, working then for Reuters, was the only British journalist in Beijing at the height of the Cultural Revolution. In 1967, he became the first international hostage of the modern era, 'courtesy' of the Red Guards. 

This new edition of The Hostage Handbook, contains the verbatim secret shorthand diary of his two-year ordeal in solitary confinement China.

It is published on 11 April to mark the 45th anniversary of a profound metaphysical experience during his confinement. And in extensive 'Reflections' interleaved between the diary entries, he now writes about it for the first time, explaining how it has had an enduring impact on his subsequent life as an international best-selling author, broadcaster and publisher. He says he now sees the experience as 'a huge delayed action privilege'. 

Anthony Grey first returned to China in 1988 to make a TV documentary film for the BBC and the Foreign Ministry in Beijing welcomed him to a small banquet as 'an old friend of China'. 
He now lives in his home city of Norwich. 

'A brilliant book by a brave and brilliant man.' Stewart Holmes , author of Nothing Really Serious

'Has much in common with The Diary of Anne Frank - and will greatly inspire readers in the same way.' John Clements , author of Aspire to Greatness.

Buy The Hostage Handbook here

Friday, 5 April 2013

A Musical Frolic – Chamber Orchestra Anglia at Norwich Castle

Chamber Orchestra Anglia's (COA) wind sextet will bring to life Joseph Stannard’s painting, Thorpe Water Frolic (1824) with music by Rossini, Haydn, Mozart, Moore and Weber in a lunchtime concert at Norwich Castle Museum & Art Gallery on Saturday, April 20, from 12.30pm to 1.30pm.  The concert will be staged in the gallery that features the Stannard painting.

Thorpe Water Frolic Afternoon: Joseph Stannard 1824 - Norwich Castle Museum & Art Gallery

Art historian, Dr Anna Green will tell the story of the painting, including the music played, with reference to contemporary accounts of Thorpe Water Frolic from 28 August 1824, in the Norfolk Chronicle  & Norwich Gazette and the Norwich Mercury.

Commenting on the music played by the band of the 2nd Dragoon Guards at the Thorpe Water Frolic, the Norfolk Chronicle reported: “And certainly it claims to be mentioned that a high zest was imparted to the day’s enjoyment by the correct, delicate, and tasteful manner in which these superior instrumentalists, performed a variety of beautiful airs, including some of the most admired compositions of Haydn, Mozart and Rossini.”

Tickets for the concert are adult £15, young person £12, museum pass holders £13,
t 01603 495897 or available in person at Norwich Castle reception.

Anna Green said: “Since I’ve worked at Norwich Castle Museum, I’ve always wanted to do a concert based on Stannard’s Frolic. It’s wonderful to have the opportunity to do this with such a fabulous ensemble.”

Sharon Choa, Artistic Director, COA said: “COA continues our Norwich 12 concert series in the unusual setting of the Colman Gallery in Norwich Castle with six of our principal wind players. For the first time, we will be able to hear Stannard's great painting, as the artist heard the scene in 1824!"    

For more information about Chamber Orchestra Anglia see www.chamberorchestraanglia.co.uk.

For more information about events at Norwich castle see www.events.museums.norfolk.gov.uk.

Tuesday, 2 April 2013

Wymondham Arts Centre Norfolk 2013 Exhibitions

Wymondham Arts Centre's full exhibition programme for 2013, running until the beginning of December, is now in place.

The launch exhibition, Deep South, featuring work inspired by Antarctica runs until 14 April. Other shows include Norwich Print Fair (16 to 28 April), Drawn Together – Katarzyna Coleman (21 May to 2 June), Diversity in Clay 3 (11 to 16 June), Wymondham High Academy (9 to 14 July), Wymondham Art Society Summer Exhibition (23 to 28 July), The Peacemaker and related works – Maz Jackson (30 July to 4 August) and Earth and Sky – Kerry Buck, Liz Mace and Ruthanne Tudball
(6 to 18 August).

                                          Wymondham Arts Centre

Arthur Lucas, Director of the Arts Centre project said: “Led by artist Kerry Buck, the exhibitions group has produced a programme that demonstrates the vitality of the fine arts in the region. The season includes artists working in most media and styles. There are artists new to the gallery, as well as regular exhibitors. Some are planning new work with the gallery in mind, using the space and light to great effect; others who have exhibited as part of a group are returning to mount a solo show.”

“I am very pleased with the response from visitors, and expect to see comments in the visitors’ book similar to this one from last year: 'If I had travelled to London to see this show I would have been very pleased with it. So lovely to have it on the doorstep’.”

Wymondham Arts Centre is at Becket’s Chapel, Church Street, Wymondham NR18 0PH. Opening times: Monday to Saturday 10am to 5pm and Sunday 12noon to 5pm: full exhibition programme at www.wymondhamarts.com.

Full Exhibition Programme
To 14 April: Deep South, Antarctica exhibition, curated by Krys Leach
16 to 28 April: Norwich Print Fair
30 April to12 May: Spring Open Show
14 to19 May: Abstracts – group show
21 May to 2 June: Drawn Together – Katarzyna Coleman
4 to 9 June: Terry Coppin
11 to 16 June: Diversity in Clay 3 – curated by Heather Graham
18 to 23 June: Jane Macintosh
25 to 30 June: Paintings, Pastels and Photographs – group show
2 to 7 July: Primary School Cluster
9 to 14 July: Wymondham High Academy
16 to 21 July: Encore Six Norfolk Artists return
23 to 28 July: Wymondham Art Society Summer Exhibition
30 July to 4 August: The Peacemaker and related works – Maz Jackson
6 to18 August: Earth and Sky – Kerry Buck, Liz Mace and Ruthanne Tudball
20 August to 1 September: Shelley Marshall-Nichols and others
3 to 15 September: Space and Form, mixed sculpture exhibition curated by Dominique Bivar Segurado
17 to 22 September Iceni Botanical Artists
24 Sept to 6 October: Recent paintings and drawings – Christine Allman
8 October to 20 October Paintings and Sculpture – Brüer Tidman and Bridget Heriz
22 to 27 October: Sticks and Stones – Annette and Dan Morgan
29 October to 3 November: It’s Not All Black and White – Jacquie Petrie and Dee Evans
5 to17 November: Autumn Exhibition Breckland Artists
19 November to 1 December: Celebrating the Crafts, curated by Julie Hurst