REVIEW: Merry organ meets sounding brass for Tickhill season opener

Matthew Pitts and David Tonkin played the first concert of the new season for Tickhill Music Society
Matthew Pitts and David Tonkin played the first concert of the new season for Tickhill Music Society

For the opening concert of its 42nd season Tickhill Music Society used the splendid surroundings of the parish church and the talents of two local musicians – Matthew Pitts on the organ and (for the second half) David Tonkin on the trumpet, writes Adrian Hattrell.

Matthew (who had his first lessons on the organ of this church) started in rousing fashion with variations on a theme by Handel, and continued with a varied programme covering different ages (from the 17th century onwards) and different countries of Europe and different styles, including a march, a dance and hymn tunes.

All were performed with the skill you would expect from a past organist of Chichester Cathedral and St Peter Mancroft Church, Norwich.

The first half closed with a major work in three movements by the 19th century organist Josef Gabriel Rheinberger, whose sonorities filled every corner of the magnificent building.

Trumpet and organ joined forces after the interval, for a programme of baroque music, starting with Purcell.

Using a piccolo valve trumpet instead of a natural period instrument, David Tonkin worked his way through pieces by household names like Handel and Telemann and less known but equally satisfying compositions.

He ended in the familiar territory of Jeremiah Clarke, whose work The Prince of Denmark’s March was for many years attributed to Purcell.

All were rendered with great panache and humour, and the contrasting styles of the musicians and the contrasting timbres of their instruments were considered a perfect combination.