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Wed, 22 May



Laurence & Joanna (1)

Laurence Cummings is currently conducting as well as playing harpsichord in Julius Caesar at Glyndebourne. Join us for an incredible evening in the intimacy of Melford House as Laurence pairs up with up actress Joanna David Bar/ door opens 5pm Performance starts 6pm

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Laurence & Joanna  (1)
Laurence & Joanna  (1)

Time & Location

22 May 2024, 17:00 – 21:00

Mayfield, Melford House, Fir Toll Rd, Mayfield TN20 6NB, UK

About the Event

Laurence Cummings (Harpsichord) & Joanna David (Actress) in Mayfield

Tickets on Sale soon!  Watch this space.

Laurence Cummings is one of Britain's most exciting and versatile exponents of historical performance both as a conductor and a harpsichord player. He is currently Music Director of the Academy of Ancient Music, Musical Director of the London Handel Festival and Music Director of Orquestra Barroca Casa da Música in Porto. He was Artistic Director of the Internationale Händel-Festpiele Göttingen from 2011 - 2021. A noted authority on Handel, the Guardian has written of him “he now ranks as one of the composer’s best advocates in the world. Self-effacing on the podium, faithful above all to the score, he matches Handel’s energy and invention with unmistakable lyricism, generosity and dignity.”

Frequently praised for his stylish and compelling performances in the opera house, his career has taken him across Europe where he has conducted productions at houses including Opernhaus Zurich (Belshazzar, King Arthur), Theater an der Wien (Saul), Gothenburg Opera (Orfeo ed Euridice, Giulio Cesare, Alcina and Idomeneo). Théâtre du Châtelet (Saul) and Opera de Lyon (Messiah). In the UK he has been a regular at English National Opera (Radamisto, L’Incoronazione di Poppea, Semele, Messiah, Orfeo and The Indian Queen), Glyndebourne Festival Opera (Saul, Giulio Cesare and The Fairy Queen) and Garsington Opera (Vivaldi cycle: L’Incoronazione di Dario, L’Olympiade and La Verita in Cimento, Orfeo), as well as conducting at the Royal Opera House’s Linbury Theatre (Berenice and Alceste), Opera North (L’Incoronazione di Poppea and Orfeo in a version for both western and Indian classical musicians), and for Opera GlassWorks (The Rake’s Progress).

Equally at home on the concert platform, he is regularly invited to conduct both period and modern instrument orchestras worldwide, including Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment, The English Concert, Handel and Haydn Society Boston, Croatian Baroque Orchestra, La Scintilla Zurich, Juilliard415, Zurich Chamber Orchestra, Musikcollegium Winterthur, St Paul Chamber Orchestra, Basel Chamber Orchestra, Wroclaw Baroque Orchestra, Scottish Chamber Orchestra, Washington National Symphony Orchestra, St Louis Symphony, Kansas City Symphony, Frankfurt Radio Symphony, Jerusalem Symphony and in the UK with Royal Northern Sinfonia, Hallé Orchestra, Bournemouth Symphony, Royal Liverpool Philharmonic, Ulster Orchestra and Royal Scottish National Orchestra.

His recordings include discs with Emma Kirkby and Royal Academy of Music on BIS, Angelika Kirschlager and the Basel Chamber Orchestra for Sony BMG, Maurice Steger and The English Concert for Harmonia Mundi and Ruby Hughes and the Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment on Chandos, as well as a series of live opera and concert performances recorded at the Göttingen International Handel Festival and released on Accent. He has also released numerous solo harpsichord recital and chamber music recordings for Naxos.

As well as his regular commitments his future plans include productions for Royal Opera House Covent Garden, Theater Basel, Glyndebourne Festival Opera and at Dutch National Opera.

He was an organ scholar at Christ Church Oxford where he graduated with first class honours. Until 2012 he was Head of Historical Performance at the Royal Academy of Music which led to both baroque and classical orchestras forming part of the established curriculum. He is now the William Crotch Professor of Historical Performance.

Joanna David

Born in Lancaster and the matriarch of an acting dynasty, Joanna trained at London's Webber Douglas Academy of Dramatic Art. A stalwart of the London stage, both on and off West End, some of her best known roles include The Family Reunion at the Vaudeville Theatre, Breaking the Code and The Cherry Orchard  at the Theatre Royal Haymarket and Hobson's Choice at the Regent's Park Theatre. She has also appeared in numerous regional theatre productions, including The Innocents, The Heiress and The Deep Blue Sea for Northampton Royal Theatre; The Rivals, Dear Antoine and The Stepmother at Chichester Festival Theatre; and The Family Reunion, The Importance of Being Earnest and Uncle Vanya for the Manchester Royal Exchange.

Joanna's breakthrough television role was as Jane Austen's protagonist Elinor Dashwood in the BBC's dramatization of Sense and Sensibility, followed by the BBC production of War and Peace in which she played Sonya. She played the girl in Rebecca for BBC TV and the role of Aunt Gardiner in Pride and Prejudice in the 1995 BBC TV production. Also, Joanna played the Duchess of Yeovil in the hugely popular Downton Abbey and the long lost love of John Thaw's Inspector Morse. Recent television roles include HBO's The House of the Dragon and Dawn French's show Delicious. Her film appearances have included roles in Rogue Trader, These Foolish Things and The Cleansing Hour.

Joanna recently returned to the stage at the National Theatre in Absolute Hell and in Alys Always at the Bridge Theatre. Alongside her work as an actress, Joanna is an experienced broadcaster and featured in BBC Radio 4's Home Front and a recording of the biography of King George V. She also appears alongside Lucy Parham, concert pianist, in programmes Beloved Clara and Liszt and his Women.


  • Laurence & Joanna David

    Laurence Cummings (Harpsichord) pairs with Joanna David (Actress)

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