28 Feb: James McVinnie

Opening Concert of the Refurbished Organ
Sunday 28 February at 3pm

Admission free: retiring collection for the organ fund
More information about the organ appeal and the organ at King Charles.

Some years ago, a Sevenoaks schoolboy appeared at KCM hoping to practise the organ here. He went on to study at the Royal College of Music before becoming Organ Scholar at St Alban's Abbey, Clare College Cambridge and St Paul's Cathedral, and being appointed Assistant Organist at Westminster Abbey. During his time there he played for many important state services including the Royal Wedding in 2011.

By that time, James McVinnie had won a reputation as one of the country's best solo organists as well as being an excellent continuo player in several leading baroque ensembles both here and abroad. He made his debut at London's Royal Festival Hall in March 2014, giving one of the six opening recitals on the refurbished iconic 1954 Harrison & Harrison organ. He made his solo debut in the Salzburg Festival at the age of 26, performing alongside the Freiburg Baroque Orchestra under Ivor Bolton, and more locally to Tunbridge Wells he was on stage in Barrie Kosky's production of Handel's Saul at Glyndebourne in 2015.

James always plays interesting music. His recent sell-out concert at the Festival Hall included folk, electronics and improvisation as well as Bach. On 28 February he will be playing a couple of pieces so early they were written by "anon", than an early 17th century piece from Amsterdam by Sweelinck, the massive Prelude and Fugue in E Flat by Bach and ending with a transcription of the end of Stravinsky's Firebird.

James has been a particular champion of the music of Nico Muhli and we are lucky to be able to hear a new piece dedicated to the memory of John Scott, former Organist of St Paul's Cathedral, who died very suddenly last year.

Michael Bacon, Organist, King Charles the Martyr


Masters of the Baroque

Saturday 6 February, 7:30pm
Temenos Chamber Choir, director Charles Vignoles

Temenos return to King Charles the Martyr with a sparkling programme of Baroque masterpieces, which range from the early Venetian Gabrieli's eight-part Jubilate to Bach's most exuberant motet Singet dem Herrn, and culminating in Monteverdi's spectacular 1640 Magnificat. Superb motets by English composers Blow and Purcell are also included.

Temenos are joined by the talented Ensemble Hesperi on period instruments, directed by Thomas Allery (organ). They will be playing Handel's Opus 5 Trio Sonatas, and sonatas by Turini and Uccellini.

Tickets are £12 (£6 for students) on the door or by phone 01732 452715.


King Charles Festival concerts

Sunday 24 January, 5:30pm: ORGAN RECITAL by Michael Bacon
First concert on the newly restored organ. Dupre, Durufle, Whitlock and Bach. Admission free

Saturday 30 January, 7:30pm: MUSIC OF THE STUART AGE
The Chelys Consort of Viols, with the King Charles Singers
Music from Lawes to Purcell, from the reigns of the Stuart kings in the 17th century, including Dido's Lament and final chorus of Dido and Aeneas.
Tickets £12 (£6 students) online here (discounts for advance booking) or call 01892 547835

Saturday 6 February, 7:30pm: MASTERS OF THE BAROQUE
Temenos Chamber Choir, with Ensemble Hesperi
Bach Singet dem Herrn, Gabrieli Jubilate for three choirs, Monteverdi Magnificat a 8, Blow Salvator mundi, Purcell Jehovah quam multi sunt
Tickets £12 (£6 students) from 01959 523765 or visit Sevenoaks Bookshop

Presented as part of the annual King Charles Festival, which marks the commemoration of the execution of Charles I in 1649.

The completion of the renovation of the church's fine Walker organ will also be marked by a celebrity organ recital by Jamie McVinnie on Sunday 28th February, at 3pm.

Temenos chamber choir started life in 1988 as the Sunday Singers, a group of ten singers singing motets and madrigals in the village of Shoreham, near Sevenoaks, in Kent. Since then, the choir has extended its repertoire from early music up to that of the present day: from Guillaume de Machaut to James MacMillan. Concerts are held in the Sevenoaks area and further afield. The choir is directed by Charles Vignoles.

The members of the Chelys Consort trained at Trinity College of Music, London, and the Royal Academy. All are now experienced and enthusiastic players and teachers, and their busy concert schedule has recently taken them to the Holywell Music Room in Oxford, Fitzwilliam College Cambridge, and the Worcester Early Music Festival. The word 'Chelys' is derived from the ancient Greeks and referred to a bowed lyre, said to have been invented by the god Hermes. The players are active in the wider early music world, playing with leading ensembles such as the Rose Consort of Viols, the Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment, Phantasm and Charivari Agreable.


King Charles Festival 2016

As part of the annual commemoration of the death of King Charles I, who was executed on 30 January 1649, we present two special concerts of music of his time, as well as two organ recitals celebrating the recent renovation of the church's splendid Walker organ.

Sunday 24 January 5:30pm: Organ Recital by Michael Bacon

Saturday 30 January 7:30pm: Music of the Stuart Age

Saturday 6 February 7:30pm: Masters of the Baroque

Sunday 28 February 3pm: Organ Recital by Jamie McVinne

Booking information will be posted here in January.


Past Performers 2006-2016

Music at King Charles has been privileged to host so many distinguished artists over the last ten years. As a matter of record, they are:

Adriano Graziani  | Aiso Quartet  | Alessandra Testai | Alex Metcalfe | Amanda Pitt | Anthony Zerpa-Falcon  | Archduke Trio | Barbirolli Quartet | Callum Smart | Cambridge Taverner Choir | Cantabile | Cellists of the RPO | Charles Wiffen | Chelys Viol Ensemble | Chris Hatt | Clio Gould | David Campbell | Daniel Tong | David Owen-Norris | David Maw | David Owen Norris | Decimus Consort | Dulcinea Quartet | Eleanor Alberga | Ellen Smith | English Cornett and Sackbut Ensemble | Felicity Lott | Follia | Frances Yonge | Gary Branch | Giles Davies | Gilfillan family | Greg Tassell | Guy Johnstone | Jamie McVinnie | Jane Gomm | Jennifer Snapes | Jong-Gyung Park | Karina Lucas | Kate Semmens | Katie Stillman | Kokoschka Trio | Konevets Quartet | Ken Aiso | King Charles Singers | Lianna Jeffrey | Liz Partridge | London Bridge Ensemble | Margaret Faultless | Martin Fogel | Matchbox Opera | Michael Bacon | Michael Collins | Michael Grant | Michael McHale | Nigel Clayton | Owen Rees | Paul Clark | Paul Jeffrey | Paul Guinery | Pentagon Ensemble | Peter Arnold | Peter Barker | Rachel Stroud | Raphael Wallfisch | Richard Egarr | Richard Uttley | Robin Jeffrey | Roselyne Martel-Bonnal | Rose Trio | Sara Lois Cunningham | Sarah Stuart-Pennink | Sasha Grynyuk | Simon Lane | Sophia Lisovskaya | Steven Devine | Temenos Chamber Choir | Teresa Caudle | Tim Gill | Tim Lines | Tom Bowes | Tom Foster | Trajecti Voices | Unexpected Opera | Yeo Yats Soon | Yukiko Shinohara


Ellen Smith and Michael Grant 12 Dec 2015

Music at King Charles is delighted to recommend a lovely concert at St Luke's church in Tunbridge Wells on Saturday 12 December, at 7pm.

The wonderful harpist and soprano Ellen Smith, who is a regular performer at King Charles, is joining saxophonist Michael Grant to play Christmas favourites, folksongs and other classics.

Definitely a great evening's entertainment!

St Luke's church is on St Luke's Road, TN4 9JH. Tickets are just £10 including refreshments and are available from the church or from Britten's Music, or on the door.

Meanwhile, details of concerts in early 2016 at King Charles will be released very soon.


Concerts this Autumn

As well as another superb line-up of concerts at King Charles, we look forward to similarly high-class chamber concerts at nearby venues by our friends in neighbouring venues.

Music at King Charles

Saturday 19 September: Music by the Bach Family, with Margaret Faultless and Rachel Stroud (violins) and Tom Foster (harpsichord).

Thursday 24 September: Recital by Felicity Lott, Michael Collins and Michael McHale (in partnership with Tunbridge Wells International Music Festival)

Saturday 10 October: "Evening in the Palace of Reason" - Johann Sebastian Bach at the Court of King Frederick the Great, with "Follia" (flute, violin, viola da gamba and harpsichord.

Saturday 17 October: Carl Nielsen 150th Anniversary Recital, with Peter Arnold (piano) and Liz Partridge (violin).

Booking information at https://www.ticketsource.co.uk/mkctw

Tunbridge Wells International Music Festival

TWIMF is in full swing from 11 September with a jazz concert at Trinity, and including on Sunday 4th October the RTW Symphony Orchestra with Leonard Elschenbroich (cello) at the Assembly Hall Theatre featuring Dukas - Fanfare for La Peri; Dvorak - Cello Concerto; Holst -The Planets.

CODA at Rose Hill School

Sunday 13 September: recital by James Noble (clarinet) and Simon Callaghan (piano) presented by CODA.

At West Malling

20-27 September: 'Music at Malling' festival includes a number of Bach Pilgrimage recitals, concluding with a Family Concert 'Nordic Myths and Legends' on Sunday 27 September.


Saturday 26 September: The King Charles Singers present 'Music of the English Cathedral Tradition' at the church of St Mary the Virgin, Buxted.


Friday 2 October: Jazz at the Oast presented by Beult Concerts.


Music by the Bach Family

Saturday 19 September, 7:30pm

Music for Awhile - Margaret Faultless and Rachel Stroud (violins) and Tom Foster (harpsichord) -  present music by JS Bach, his sons, cousins and extended family.
Tickets £15.00 (£12.50 in advance)
Book tickets here

Since its first performance in 1996, and continuing under its Artistic Director Margaret Faultless, Music for Awhile continues to inspire audiences and performers alike with concerts in a variety of venues and at its own Summer Festival in the magical setting of All Saints, Alton Priors. Musicians from Europe's most acclaimed ensembles come together to perform a wide range of repertoire spanning over two centuries. Music for Awhile has specialised in performing English Opera from Purcell's time and thanks to sponsorship from the Cecil King Memorial Foundation it also features the music of J S Bach in churches around the country. Tonight's recital is one such concert. Music for Awhile expands to form a larger orchestra enabling it to perform major works in venues such as Westminster Abbey, Bath Abbey, Exeter, Gloucester, Hereford and Bristol Cathedrals. It also has its own chamber music series, formerly held at Conock Manor.

Margaret Faultless is co-leader of The Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment and regularly directs the orchestra. For twelve years, Margaret led the Amsterdam Baroque Orchestra under Ton Koopman, as concert-master and soloist in their ten-year project to perform and record J.S Bach’s Cantatas. She is a regular director of the European Union Baroque Orchestra (for whom she is Director of Studies), Philharmonie Merck, and is the Artistic Director of Music for Awhile. A passionate chamber musician, she was a member of the London Haydn Quartet for ten years. A graduate of Clare College, Cambridge, she is Director of Performance Studies at the Faculty of Music at the University of Cambridge, Artistic Director of the University Collegium Musicum, a Bye-Fellow of Girton College, and Musician in Residence at St John's College. She is an Honorary Fellow of Birmingham Conservatoire and Head of Historical Performance at The Royal Academy of Music.


Dame Felicity Lott

Thursday 24th September, 7:30pm

With the Tunbridge Wells International Music Festival we are immensely privileged to present a unique opportunity to hear three of the country's most eminent and celebrated stars of the classical music world, with a stunning programme tailored for this intimate, historic setting.

One of Britain’s best-loved sopranos, Dame Felicity Lott, will be joined by world renowned clarinettist Michael Collins and accompanied by the brilliant Irish pianist Michael McHale.

Their programme includes music by Schubert (The Shepherd
on the Rock), Spohr, Poulenc, Saint-Saens and Offenbach.  This will be a very special evening of exceptional music.

Book your tickets here
£15 (£13.50 in advance, with a limited number of £5 tickets for under-18s)