Anne Denholm at our Christmas Concert last year (photograph by Michael Crabtree)
We are delighted that Royal Harpist Anne Denholm is once again giving a performance at our Annual Christmas Concert in Mayfair. We had a chat with her about the importance of music, its power to affect people and our concert of course!
What makes our concert different to anywhere else you perform?
“I played at the Christmas Concert last year and it was a lovely event. I think the main thing that’s different is the atmosphere. It’s a positive event because everyone is there to celebrate the work of Royal Voluntary Service but also to raise money for a good cause.
For me Christmas time is always really busy as a musician. So it’s nice to go to a concert where you feel part of something bigger, where you can offer something good that will help the event and the charity.
What motivates you to play music?
“I started taking music very seriously when I was around 13 and I started playing in small groups with other musicians and I just loved it. It was social interaction with other people but I also loved the musical interaction. You can make music that’s bigger than each of its individual parts in a group.
Now I perform as a soloist as well and I enjoy that – but the thing that made me fall in love with music in the first place was playing music with other people. I just think that’s really special and one of the best things in life.”
Sounds like it’s a feeling that it goes beyond yourself?
Exactly! it’s partly because you’re part of something that’s much bigger than you and it’s also in some ways more exciting because when you’re playing on your own you can see where it’s going whereas if you play with other people you’ve got so many more variables. It makes it more live, more different. I think that’s part of what makes it fun.
Do you think that’s the power of music?
I don’t think the power of music is limited to just people that play. I think music is accessible to everyone. I think the power of music allows us to express things that we can’t put into words and allows us to access a whole range of colours and sounds that are beyond normal communication but are still understood by everyone. With spoken language you are limited by the words and if someone doesn’t speak the same language then that’s a barrier. With music, not only do you have a language that goes beyond words but it can also be shared by everyone, which is amazing.
How do you think music can affect people?
I see it in all the work I do, whether it’s playing in an orchestra, playing recitals, playing with schools or when I teach. You can always see that the music has touched people in some way and it always looks different depending on where you are and who’s involved. It is incredible and it’s a really valuable tool to reach people, to entertain people or to give them relief from emotions.
We are so excited that Anne is playing at our Christmas Concert!
You can still buy tickets for our festive evening with choral performances, a solo by Anne Denholm and readings from special guests. It takes place on 6th December in Grosvenor Chapel with a drinks reception after the event, in the stunning Chapel as well.