#MiddayMusic presents Madeleine Pickering (violin) and Julia Hwang (violin)

This week our Young Artists Madeleine Pickering (violin) and Julia Hwang (violin) performed for #MiddayMusic. You can read our exclusive interviews with them and watch their videos below. Subscribe to our YouTube channel to catch all our upcoming videos.  Details of their repertoire can be found in the details section on YouTube, and  all of our #MiddayMusic videos can be watched on our exclusive playlist.

Next week you can look forward to performances from Margarita Balanas (cello) on Monday and Artur Haftman (piano) on Wednesday, both at midday.

Madeleine Pickering: Finding joy in Bach

Musicians’ Company Young Artist, Madeleine Pickering, is a multi-award winning violinist studying for an MA at the Royal Academy of Music. Madeleine regularly performs as a soloist, chamber and orchestral musician, and plays professionally for the LSO. She is also first violinist of the Ametza Quartet.

“It’s great to be back at the Academy in person now, rehearsing with other students and having face-to-face lessons”, says Madeleine, who spent lockdown with family, and playing chamber music with her brother, sister and mum. “The online violin lessons my RAM tutor gave also kept me motivated during lockdown, as did my string quartet. Since August, Ametza Quartet has recorded two online concerts and given a livestream concert at the Royal Academy.

For my #MiddayMusic concert I chose Bach’s D minor Partita for solo violin, BWV 1004: III. Sarabanda and IV: Giga. Bach’s solo violin repertoire brought me a lot of solace over the lockdown period while playing music with others was out of the question. This Sarabande is beautifully calm and reflective, with moments of brightness and hope breaking through from the overall melancholy mood. The Giga in contrast is great fun; a whirlwind of semiquavers that travel along Bach’s ingenious harmonic writing.”

You can find out more about Madeleine at ametzaquartet.com and on the Company’s Artists’ Profiles page.

Julia Hwang: A time for reflection and change 

Julia Hwang is a Concordia prize winner and sought-after violinist on the international stage. She made her professional solo debut with the English National Baroque Chamber Orchestra at the age of nine, and recently gave her Wigmore Hall debut. Julia also supports social causes and charities. She is a cultural ambassador for BRACE Alzheimer’s Research and the Concordia Foundation, and through her performances has helped raise money for The Prince’s Trust, Pakistan Earthquake Relief, the NSPCC and Macmillan Cancer Support.

“The past few months have been a time for reflection but also change. I’ve moved house (not recommended during a pandemic!), started my final studies at Yale University remotely, and become a Fulbright Scholar for my studies in the US. I’m hoping the situation will improve so I can go to the US as part of the cultural exchange programme soon.

Many of my friends have contracted the virus, which has made me realise health is the most important feature in our lives. This is reflected in my #MiddayMusic choice, Clair de lune. Debussy’s Clair de lune is calm and soothing yet intense in places reflecting the emotional ups and downs many of us are currently experiencing.”

You can find out more about Julia on her Artist Profile page and at juliahwang.com.