A Walk in the Woods - Saturday 1 December 2018

David Morris introducing the next piece of music to the appreciative audience

The Bloomsbury Band of Flutes and Clarinets took a 'Walk in the Woods' during its conert at Lumen URC. The forst part of the programme included an arrangment of The Banks of Green Willow by George Butterworth together with a fine arrangement by Roger Cawkwell of six of the eight Woodland Sketches by Edward McDowell.


The second half began with a charming arrangment by Carolyn Franklin called Say it with Flowers featuring the familiar tunes: We'll Gather Lilacs, The Flower Duet and Tiptoe through the Tulips. The final work was Ian Harrold's own arrangement of his version of a folk song: Variations on the Frog and the Crow.

The Baker Street Quartet performing

There weree two chamber pieces. One in each half of the programme.


In the first half, the Band's Flute Trio played the Gypsy Song from Bizet's Carmen.


In the second half, the Baker Street Quartet played Evening Prayer by Engelbert Humperdinck and an arrangement of melodies from Into the Woods by Stephen Sondheim.

Festival of Lights - Saturday 1 December 2018

BB flute trio playing later in the day at the Band's concert

A clarinet quartet and a flute trio from the Bloomsbury Band played a selection of seasonal and lighthearted pieces, both old and new, as part of the musical programme for the Beckenham Place Mansion's annual Festival of Lights celebrations. This was a free community event funded by Lewisham Council.


The seven players gave the premiere performance of Norwegian Wood. You can watch and here them play on this video in Google Photos.

A Space Odyssey - Saturday 24 November 2018

BWE rehearsing with one of the videos that illustrated one of the pieces in the programme

BWE entertained a large audience with a journey into space with a varied programme that featured the première of a BWE commission from Christopher Hussey called Child of the Wandering Sea


Four of the items in the programme were illustrated with videos on the themes of Earth and Space.


In 2018 BWE has been celebrating 25 years of BWE music making. This concert was also a celebration of the sustained impact of a flourishing collaboration with Chris Hussey. This began, ten years ago, with the Making Music's Adopt a Composer Scheme. 

Chris Hussey has been composing and arranging music for BWE concerts for ten years


The programme included:

Gustav Holst The Planets – Venus: The Bringer of Peace

György Ligeti Lux Aeterna 

Claude Debussy Clair de Lune

Roger Cawkwell Space Oddity

Christopher Hussey Child of the Wandering Sea      

John Williams In a Galaxy far, far away (Star Wars)      



Our November concert is, by tradition, a charity concert. In our 25th year of music making, we chosen to support 'Music For All'.


BWE at Ruskin Park - Sunday 1 July 2018

BWE playing on the Ruskin Park Bandstand, July 2018

BWE, directed by Shea Lolin, returned to Ruskin Park on a warm, sunny afternoon to entertain a family audience with a wide ranging programme that included:

  • A West Side Story selection, Leonard Bernstein
  • The Padstow Lifeboat, Malcolm Arnold
  • Prague Waltzes, Dvorak
  • Pavane, Fauré
  • Russian Sailors Dance, Gliere
  • March Past of the Kitchen Utensils, Ralph Vaughan Williams

Flowers, Dogs and Midsummer - Saturday 23 June 2018

Bloomsbury Band at Beckenham Place in June 2018

This was a new event for the Band.


On a sunny Saturday they entertained the participants at the first ever flower and dog show at the mansion in Beckenham Place Park.


The programme of music was inspired by the themes of the show and the proximity to midsummer.

A Midsummer Night’s Dream - Saturday 9 June 2018

The Bloomsbury Band of Flutes and Clarinets performing on the Isle of Wight in 2018

The Bloomsbury Band returned to the Isle of Wight to play at a charity event. This year, music from Mendelssohn's A Midsummer Night's Dream was interspersed with readings from Shakespeare's play of the same name. 


Other dream-like music, played by a variety of large and small ensembles - including a clarinet quartet and a group with recorders, bass clarinet and voice. The players infused the outdoor concert with magic as night fell. A large audience was entranced.

Russian Fire Saturday - Saturday 12 May 2018

Sarah Markham performing the Glazunov concerto

Shea Lolin inspired BWE to rise to the challenge of an exciting programme of music by Russian composers. The concert attracted a large audience to St James's Church, Sussex Gardens.


The programme opened with Nikolay Rimsky-Korsakov's Russian Easter Festival Overture, followed by the BWE saxophone section playing Alexander Intermezzo and Mazurka from Borodin's Petite Suite.  


Colin on soprano sax as soloist in an atmospheric work by Cui

The programme continued with Igor Stravinsky's Russian Dance from Petrushka.  


The climax of the first half of the concerto was Sarah Markham's electrifying performance of Alexander Glazunov's Saxophone Concerto.


BWE opened the second half of the programme by playing the first movement of Alexander Borodin Symphony No.2 in B minor.

A BWE wind quintet playing a Waltz by Shostakovich

The celebration of all things saxophone continued with Colin playing the solo part in César Cui's Velichit Dusha Moya Ghospoda with sections of BWE spread to the four corners of the church - thus creating a wonderful effect of music in the round.


Next a wind quintet played Waltz no. 2 from Dimitri Shostakovich's Suite for Variety Orchestra. The second half ended with Alexander Borodin's Polovtsian Dances from Prince Igor followed by the rousing Red Poppy – Sailors Dance by Reinhold Glière.

In Your Dreams - Saturday 28 April 2018

One Charming Night

The Bloomsbury Band of Flutes and Clarinets presented a nocturnal ramble through the images of the night. David Morris conducted the concert at Lumen URC. The music featured Mendelssohn’s music for A Midsummer Night’s Dream, plus nocturnally-themed works by Schumann, Fauré, Mozart, and Cage. The Band gave the premiere of Phantasmagoria - a new work by Roger Cawkwell.


The Band's clarinet quartet played Fleetingness by Prokofiev and Puck from Lyric Pieces by Grieg. The flute quartet performed Clair de Lune by Debussy. New for the Band was a performance of Purcell's One Charming Night from The Fairy Queen by a recorder trio with soprano.


The whole programme was recorded and is available on SoundCloud.

BWE celebrates its 25th anniversary year

Graham Lyons founded the London School of Pharmacy Flute & Clarinet Choir in 1995. This group evolved into the Bloomsbury Woodwind Ensemble.


More details about the development of the ensemble over these years are given on the BWE and BMG pages of this web site.



Food Glorious Food

Saturday 18 May 2019

The Bloomsbury Band will celebrate food and drink in its next concert.


A Walk in the Woods

Saturday 1 December 2018

The Bloomsbury Band played a selection of pieces celebrating trees, woodlands and a few of the creatures that live in them.


Festival of Lights

Saturday 1 July 2018

A clarinet quartet and flute trio from the Bloomsbury Band took part in the festival's music programme at Beckenham Place Mansion.


A Space Odyssey

Saturday 24 November

BWE journeyed into space with a varied programme that featured the première of a BWE commission by Christopher Hussey.


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