Keele Concerts

Mēla Guitar Quartet

Mēla Guitar Quartet

Matthew Robinson | George Tarlton | Daniel Bovey | Jiva Housden

“An exalted level of perfection” -

This program traverses the ages with the Mēla guitar quartet’s scintillating arrangements of much-loved classical works and original compositions. Join us for the last concert in the run up to Christmas 2022.

The works by Saint-Saëns, Debussy, Ravel, Glinka and Holst all look back to a previous age with their own artistic voice. Bacchanale by Saint-Saëns is biblical in its inspiration, depicting Samson being dragged into the temple of Baccus as the priests are dancing this frenzied, exotic dance. The Debussy Arabesques written in his early 20s are some of his first impressionistic works and are full of exoticism and beautiful filigree. The Ravel is a dreamy evocation of a Pavane (slow processional dance) that a little princess may have danced at the Spanish court in a previous age. Gustav Holst’s Fugal Overture reimagines the baroque form of the Fugue, in exciting, modernist way and the Glinka looks to the medieval fairytales of knights heroically rescuing princesses with the exuberant Ruslan and Ludmila Overture.

The original works are colourful, dramatic explorations of the possibilities of four guitars.

My Clock is Broken! by British composer Laura Snowden was commissioned by the quartet in 2019 and explores the idea of trauma and acceptance, with an achingly beautiful ending reminiscent of Pink Floyd.

The title track from the quartet’s 2018 album is Pluck, Strum and Hammer and combines the music of Jimi Hendrix and G.F. Handel. Their houses are on Mayfair’s Brook Street, separated by a wall and 300 years, their music passes each other in the score like two good neighbours passing each other in the street.

Opals by the Australian composer Phillip Houghton is a mini masterwork, every movement of which depicts a different opal and its unique characteristic through the use of texture, colour and rhythmic layers. A musical tour-de-force!

The concert ends with a trio of Brazilian pieces full of lyricism, fun, and percussive virtuosity.

Standard - £16
Students and 16 & under are FREE

Memberships also available if you are interested in booking multiple concerts please contact 

Event date
Event Time
Westminster Theatre, Chancellor's Building, Keele University
Contact email
Contact telephone

Book event