6th January: 6pm – Amahl and the Night Visitors

Peterborough Opera presents Carlo Menotti’s Amahl and the Night Visitors.

The Three Kings are on their way to see the baby Jesus. As the sun sets, they decide to stop and rest, and knock on the door of a humble dwelling to ask for warmth, shelter and food. The mother and child who live there have nothing, but call on their shepherd friends to bring food and wood. The mother is desperate, and thinking of begging for the survival of herself and her son. She is tempted by the riches brought by the kings, and what follows is the result of her trying to take just a few coins, thinking the kings would never miss them.

Amahl is sung by a boy soprano, in this production played by James Turner. Liz Williams plays his mother, and the kings are sung by Mark Ellse, Martin Muir and Simon Sivadas Thompson, with Mark Lee as their page. The performance will be semi-staged, and accompanied on the piano.

Tickets price £7 (adults), or £5 (under 19s) will be available on the door, and are also available online.


21st December: 6.30pm Evening Concert – A Christmas Garland

After the success of our “Christmas Treasures” concert last year with soprano Gabriella Pineda-Rodrigues, St John’s CIC is proud to present “A Christmas Garland”, an evening of Christmas music and readings, songs and carols featuring the outstanding talents of Gabriella and accompanist Kate Wishart, the sounds of The City of Peterborough Concert Band, the voices of a choir of children from Stilton Schools trained by Gabriella, and unusual but very Christmassy interval refreshments from the Tuesdays Till Two pop-up café team.

Further details of the programme for the evening will be announced soon.

Book nowLast year Christmas Treasures was our biggest evening event of 2017, enjoyed by well over 120 people, and we are expecting this year’s event to be even more popular. Advance tickets are available online for only £9 online, and a limited number of tickets are available at a special early-bird price of £8 until 25th November. Tickets are also available from St John’s,  priced at £7.50 until 25th November, and £8 afterwards.

15th November at 8.30pm: Austin Gold – Acoustic Night

Austin Gold return to St John’s to perform their favourite songs in a relaxed acoustic setting – you can watch video from their March concert in St John’s.

Tickets, price £5, are available from wegottickets (50p booking fee applies). Doors open at 8pm, the performance starts at 8.30pm and will end around 10pm.

9th November: 7.30pm Evening Concert – A Ploughman’s Tale

To commemorate the centenary of the end of World War One, a story of an everyman who fought in the trenches, told through songs by composers or with words by poets who lived through the time of The Great War.

Performed by Robert-John Edwards (Bass-Baritone) and Sara Wilander (Piano).

The concert will take place after a short first half featuring a performance of Elgar’s songs based on Kipling’s “Fringes of the Fleet” and readings by local poets Viv Foster, Ron Graves, and Toby Wood, who will help us to remember the war and some of the local men who took part in it. We will also remember those commemorated on the two war memorials at St John’s. There will then be a twenty minute interval and a chance to view images of Peterborough from the time of the war during it.

Book nowAdvance tickets will be available from the welcome counter in St John’s when the church is open at £8, or online for £8.50. Tickets will also be available on the door for £10. Doors open at 7pm. Interval refreshments will be provided by The Green Backyard pop-up café team. Any profits from the interval refreshments will be donated to the War Memorials Trust.

Beginning with Ivor Gurney’s setting of “I Will Go With My Father A-Ploughing” and ending with the heart-breaking setting of Housman’s “Is My Team Ploughing?” by George Butterworth, himself killed in the trenches, twenty songs by a variety of composers tell the tale of a ploughboy, perhaps born around 1890. We start with him as a child, watching his father plough the fields and learning the farmer’s trade. The songs progress through his youth, where he becomes ambitious and then meets the girl of his dreams, woos her, marries her and has a child. He then joins the army, singing uplifting war songs before the horrors of the “Great” War begin to bite. He becomes home-sick, sees death up close and then, at his last hour, is desperate to go home.. The recital also includes a new original setting of McCrae’s “In Flanders’ Fields” composed by Robert-John Edwards.

Originally performed in 2014 as a 14 song recital “A Ploughman’s Tale” was expanded to a 17 song recital for BirminghamFest in 2015 and then again for an Armistice Day recital to its current 20 song format.

About Robert-John Edwards:

Stamford-born Robert-John Edwards originally trained as a pianist and composer at Middlesex University and he later trained as a singer, attending the Royal Birmingham Conservatoire. Since winning the post-graduate course prize there, he has gone on to sing roles for Pavilion Opera, Heritage Opera, Buxton Festival Opera, Opera Minima, Operamus,
Stanley Hall Opera, Opera Seria, Secret Opera, Saffron Opera Group, Hashtag Opera and Apollo Opera. He was a member of the professional chorus at Buxton for five years.

About Sara Wilander:

Sara Wilander was born in Sweden and started playing the piano at the age of eight. At the age of 15, she made her debut as a soloist with the Sinfonia Classica of Brussels, Belgium.
After preparatory studies at the Conservatoire National de Région of Chalon sur Saône, France, she completed her education at Royal Birmingham Conservatoire. She has participated successfully in Swedish, German, English and French competitions, as a soloist as well as an accompanist. She is an experienced performer and has appeared in both solo and chamber settings throughout Europe. She is in demand as a soloist, chamber musician, and as an accompanist.

25th October at 6pm: Peter Pan – Lamphouse Theatre

A professional production of Peter Pan, inspired by J.M. Barrie’s novel, produced by Peterborough based theatre company Lamphouse Theatre.

The Darling family’s life is changed forever when Peter Pan, the boy who wouldn’t grow up, appears at their window one night. Wendy, John and Michael follow Peter to Neverland, meeting Lost Boys, mermaids and crocodiles along the way! But will their adventure be sabotaged by Captain Hook or can they outwit his nasty pirate crew and save Neverland?

Jam-packed with live music, humour, adventure and energy. The production will appeal to both boys and girls and discusses important morals; family, responsibility, friendship, bravery, trust and ambition.

Suitable for all ages 6+.

Tickets for the performance at St John’s are available from the Eastern Angles booking page. There are also two performances at The Undercroft.

28th September: 7.30pm Evening Concert: Emma Besselaar and Antonio Oyarzabal (Cello & Piano)

This duo recital by Dutch cellist Emma Besselaar and Spanish pianist Antonio Oyarzabal features music composed in times of war.

Book nowAdvance tickets will be available from the welcome counter in St John’s when the church is open at £8, or online for £8.50. Tickets will also be available on the door for £10. Doors open at 7pm. Interval refreshments will be provided by The Green Backyard pop-up café team.


Debussy – Cello Sonata (1915)
Janáček – Pohádka (1910-1923)
De Falla – Suite Populaire Espagnole (1914)
Martinu – Sonata No. 2 (1941)

About Emma Besselaar:

Emma Besselaar is currently a Guildhall Artist Fellow at the Guildhall School of Music & Drama, London. In June 2017, she completed her Masters Degree at the same institution with Distinction, studying with Louise Hopkins. Previously, she studied with Quirine Viersen at the Conservatoire of Amsterdam, graduating in June 2014 with ‘very good results’. During her studies, she followed regular lessons with Dmitri Ferschtman and studied baroque cello with Viola de Hoog. From the age of 15, Emma attended the Young Talent Class at the Conservatoire of Amsterdam, where she took lessons with Maarten Mostert.

Emma attended masterclasses including with Raphael Wallfisch, Troels Svane, Adrian Brendel, Anner Bylsma and attended the International Musicians Seminar at Prussia Cove in April 2015, following masterclasses with Ralph Kirschbaum. She is a laureate of various competitions in the Netherlands and an active chamber musician – her piano trio was awarded the first prize in the St. James Chamber Competition and in July 2016 she performed Messiaen’s Quartet for the End of Time at the Torroella Festival (Spain) with another of her chamber groups, the Idiomelo Ensemble. In May 2017 she performed chamber works by Mahler and Webern in the Barbican Hall, London. In the Netherlands she regularly gives concerts for Kunst in de Kamer and Live Music Now and is involved in the Dutch chamber music initiative Cugnon Project. As an orchestra musician, Emma has been a member of the European Union Youth Orchestra, the Britten-Pears Orchestra (at Aldeburgh Festival) and the Dutch Youth String Orchestra, where she was the principal cellist.

Emma plays on a cello (Francesco Toto, Cremona, 2007) given on loan by the Dutch National Instrument Foundation. Her study in London is made possible by a scholarship from the Dutch Prins Bernhard Cultuurfonds.

About Antonio Oyarzabal:

Antonio Oyarzabal is a concert pianist born in Bilbao (Spain) in 1989. He studied in Musikene with Marta Zabaleta and Miguel Borges. Later he graduated in Masters as a piano soloist at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama, where he recently finished the Artist Diploma, studying with Caroline Palmer. Antonio combines solo piano and chamber music performances. As a chamber music pianist, Antonio has recently made his debut in Barbican Hall performing Webern piano quintet for a pre-LSO performance . He has also performed with clarinetist Andrew Marriner, and with the Allegri Quartet and Southbank Sinfonia. As a soloist with orchestra, he has played Mozart Piano Concerto nº23 with Aldwych Sinfonia, Mozart 9th Piano Concerto with JOL in Spain, Shostakovich Piano Concerto in F with London Euphonia Orchestra and Poulenc Concerto for two pianos and orchestra (Spain). Antonio has also performed Gershwin Rhapsody in Blue with European Union Youth Orchestra in Grafenegg, Austria. In January this year he performed Ravel Piano Concerto in G with YMSO at St John Smith Square.

As a solo pianist, Antonio performs recitals around the UK, in Spain, and abroad; and has recently presented his CD The Inner Child around Spain, in St Martin in the Fields (London) and in many cities around UK. This debut CD was recorded with Orpheus Classical international record label and has very recently been awarded the Golden Melomano prize in prestigious Melomano magazine.

Antonio received the Audience Special Prize and Finalist Prize in Campillos International Competition 2015, and the 2nd prize at the “Concours International d’Ile de France” in Paris, 2008. Antonio was the pianist of the London Philharmonic Orchestra – Foyle Future Firsts Programme 16/17.

10th August: 7.30pm Evening Concert – Summer Winds (Wind Quintet)

Join wind quintet Summer Winds for an evening of exciting and varied programme of music from the 1700s to the present day including works by Nielsen, Malcolm Arnold, Ligeti, Ibert, and Danzi.

Summer Winds is a wind quintet from the Royal Academy of Music in London consisting of Sally Jane Palmer (Flute), Emily Stephens (Oboe), Elliott Howley (Horn), Olivia Palmer-Baker (Bassoon) and Sam Gillespie (Clarinet).

Doors open at 19.00 with music beginning at 19.30, there will be an interval and two halves of about 40 minutes each. Refreshments will be available both before the concert and during the interval.

Tickets (£7.50 each or £20 for two adults and two children) are available in advance by emailing summer.winds.uk@gmail.com or by phoning 01572 787856.Summer Winds will also be playing at ChristChurch Grantham the previous evening and outdoors at Wymondham Windmill, Leicestershire the following evening, when a barbecue and tearoom tea/cakes will be available from around 6pm.