A dazzling concert performance from David and Oliver

Oliver Cuttriss, left, and David Hedley.Oliver Cuttriss, left, and David Hedley.
Oliver Cuttriss, left, and David Hedley.
The Morpeth St George’s URC Lunchtime Concert audience in January enjoyed an outstanding performance by two young prize-winning musicians, David Hedley (oboe) and Oliver Cuttriss (piano).

David, who hails from Ashington, served in The Royal Marines Band for six years then studied music at Durham University before moving to the Royal College of Music – graduating with a Masters distinction in 2021.

Oliver, having initially studied at Royal Holloway (University of London), completed a Performance Masters at the Royal College of Music in 2021 and is now one of that institution’s approved accompanists.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

After a delightful opening with a short playful piece by French composer Pierné, they continued with a splendid performance of Poulenc’s very challenging Oboe Sonata written in memory of Prokofiev.

The unusual slow-quick-slow movements were smooth flowing with a masterful use of the extreme dynamics; the central scherzo a really punchy contrast to the elegiac outer movements.

Oliver then played three solo piano works that were transcriptions by virtuoso pianists. These were ‘The Swan’ by Saint Saens, a late Chopin Etude and then a wonderful modern song by Trenet, ‘En Avril, a Paris’ with a feeling of the 1950s with jazzy overtones.

The duo then performed arrangements of songs by Fauré and although the following concerto oboe showpiece also demanded use of ‘circular breathing’ to deal with the non-stop phrasing, the two performers had perfectly balanced dynamics.

Related topics: