Guest Blog: Owain Park Director of the Gesualdo Six

Gesualdo Six

We have wanted to perform in the North since the group began singing together, and especially since Nicola became involved with us. We would like to bring our professional music-making to Blackburn, Bolton and Manchester between 31 March and 2 April this year, working with local choirs as well as giving concerts for the general public.

When trying to organise this trip it became clear that access to the arts in the North is not as easy as in the South. It seems that audiences tend to be smaller meaning that there are fewer concerts on offer.  This in turn means there are fewer opportunities for people to hear and get to know a variety of music and the vicious circle turns this into lower still demand. I feel very privileged to have come from areas in the South-West where there is access to a very wide range of live music for people of all ages, sometimes participating and sometimes just sitting back and listening.

I remember being inspired as a young singer by older voices, and its well-documented that such inspiration is really important to helping young (and older) musicians develop their interest.  We are therefore determined to put together a short series of programmes and workshops as our first “mini-tour” in the North.

We plan to hold a workshop with the group for the choristers at Blackburn Cathedral on Friday 31 March.  This will be followed by a public concert which will include performances from both them and the Gesualdo Six.  The next day, on Saturday 1st April we will be working with the Bolton Music Service in the Victoria Hall, offering encouragement and guidance as part of their Community Choirs Festival. This too will be followed by a public concert. We then hope to perform an afternoon concert in Manchester on Sunday 2 April, perhaps working with another local choir there.

All the members of the group are professional musicians and earn their crust through performing music. It is often quite difficult to do this and several of us supplement our income with other jobs. Its expensive to put on a series of concerts like this but half my family come from Lancashire and I have fond memories playing the organs around Glasson Docks and also in churches around Cockerham and Thurnham so I am determined to make it happen; we are just looking for a little bit of help.  If we had the support of five local businesses or individuals who were each willing to make a contribution of £200 we could make this short northern tour a success.  We have already got an offer from thiNKnow Ltd so to make this work we need just four more.   Our supporters will be offered advertising space in the mini-tour programmes and publicity through our twitter and Facebook social media activity. We will also provide you with complementary tickets if you would like to bring clients to any of the concerts. If there’s something else we could do for you in return that would persuade you, please don’t hesitate to suggest it.

It is music that unites us as our main passion and focus – every time we meet we have such a fantastic time singing and making music together and we thoroughly enjoy inspiring younger singers. We would be delighted if you would consider joining us as a partner in this venture.  Please get in touch using the contact details below and I we can discuss our plans further. It would be fantastic if you could help us realise our ambition to perform in the North, and build a relationship with musicians and venues that will continue into the future.

Many thanks


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