Martin James Bartlett RPO Hastings Piano Festival

RPO Gala Concert With Martin James Bartlett

7pm, Saturday, February 29th, 2020
White Rock Theatre

Our Resident Orchestra is joined by the BBC Young Musician Of The Year, and two of our 2019 Hastings Piano Competition Prizewinners: 2019 Winner Fumiya Koido and 2019 Prizewinner Sylvia Jiang.


Liszt Piano Concerto No. 2 – with Sylvia Jiang, Ravel Piano Concerto in G – with Martin James Bartlett, Rachmaninov Piano Concerto No. 2 – with Fumiya Koido

Conductor: Jessica Cottis

For more than seven decades the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra (RPO) has been at the forefront of music-making in the UK. Its home base since 2004 at London’s Cadogan Hall serves as a springboard for seven principal residencies as well as more than forty-five concerts per year in long-term partnership venues across the country, often in areas where access to live orchestral music is very limited. In London, the Orchestra’s regular performances at Cadogan Hall are complemented by a distinguished series at Southbank Centre’s Royal Festival Hall and a hugely popular series at the Royal Albert Hall. With a wider reach than any other UK large ensemble, the RPO has truly become Britain’s national orchestra.

Alongside its concert series, the RPO embraces twenty-first-century opportunities, including appearances with pop stars and on video game, film and television soundtracks, whilst its artistic priority remains paramount: the making of great music at the highest level for the widest possible audience. This would have been lauded by its Founder and first conductor, Sir Thomas Beecham, who set up the RPO in 1946, leading a vital revival in the UK’s orchestral life after World War II. Since then, the Orchestra’s principal conductors have included Rudolf Kempe, Antal Doráti, Walter Weller, André Previn, Vladimir Ashkenazy, Yuri Temirkanov, Daniele Gatti and Charles Dutoit; and its repertoire has encompassed every strand of music from the core classical repertoire to music of the twentieth and twenty-first centuries, and works by leading composers of recent years, such as Sir Peter Maxwell Davies and Sir John Tavener.

Tickets £22.50, £27.50, £42.50, £82.50 (VIP)

The RPO’s commitment to working with the finest conductors continues and in July 2018, the RPO announced Vasily Petrenko as the Orchestra’s new Music Director, assuming the title of Music Director Designate in August 2020 prior to commencing the full role in August 2021. Vasily Petrenko joins the RPO’s roster of titled conductors which includes Pinchas Zukerman (Principal Guest Conductor), Alexander Shelley (Principal Associate Conductor) and Grzegorz Nowak (Permanent Associate Conductor).

The Orchestra maintains a busy schedule of prestigious international touring throughout Europe, the Far East and the USA. It appears regularly at major festivals, including, most recently, events in Poland, Austria and Italy. Highlights of the 2018–2019 season include an extensive tour of Germany and three performances at the new Sheikh Jabar Al-Ahmed Cultural Centre in Kuwait.

In 2018, RPO Resound, the Orchestra’s community and education programme, marked its twenty-fifth anniversary. Throughout its history it has thrived on taking music into the heart of the regions that the Orchestra serves. From Azerbaijan to Jamaica and from Shanghai to Scunthorpe, the team – comprising the majority of the Orchestra – has worked with young people, the homeless, recovering stroke patients (in the award-winning STROKESTRA project in Hull) and in settings ranging from the Sea Life London Aquarium to hospitals, orphanages and children’s hospices.

In 1986, the RPO became the first UK orchestra to launch its own record label. The Orchestra has embraced digital advances and continuing its tradition of entrepreneurial innovation, in 2017 the RPO teamed up with the concert-enhancing app, EnCue by Octava, becoming the first orchestra in Europe to offer its audiences real-time programme notes for selected performances delivered to their mobile or tablet devices. The Orchestra has become increasingly active on social media platforms, inviting audiences to engage informally on Facebook and Twitter (@rpoonline) and to enjoy behind-the-scenes insights on the RPO website (, YouTube (RPOOnline) and Instagram (@RPOOnline).

As the RPO proudly looks to its future, its versatility and high standards mark it out as one of today’s most open-minded, forward-thinking symphony orchestras.

Martin James Bartlett

Martin James Bartlett possesses a fearless technique and plays with a wisdom and elegance far beyond his years. He won BBC Young Musician of the Year in 2014 since when he has performed with orchestras including the BBC Symphony Orchestra, BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra, Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra, Royal Philharmonic Orchestra and Tokyo Symphony Orchestra. In 2017 Bartlett was one of the thirty competitors in the final rounds of the Van Cliburn Competition, held in Fort Worth, Texas.

In the 2018/19 season Martin James Bartlett will participate in the Verbier Festival’s short winter residency at Schloss Elmau, Germany and has been invited by Sir Andras Schiff to participate in a public masterclass at the Salzburg Mozartwoche. He makes his debut with the BBC Philharmonic, BBC National Orchestra of Wales and Philharmonia, and will also perform in recital in the UK, at St John Smith Square and the new Birmingham Conservatoire and in many other venues across the country. At the beginning of the season Bartlett competed in the Bad Kissingen Klavier Olympiad competition, winning both second prize and the audience prize.

Last season, Bartlett made his Japanese debut performing with the Tokyo Symphony Orchestra and in a sold out recital at the Musashino Cultural Foundation. He was Sir Bernard Haitink’s soloist with the Royal College of Music Symphony Orchestra playing Mozart Piano Concerto No. 24 K.491 in concerts which were recorded and are currently streamed on Medici TV and performed with the London Mozart Players, the Manchester Camerata and in July 2018, he returned to the BBC Proms as part of the BBC Young Musician of the Year 40th anniversary celebrations. He was invited to the Verbier Festival Academy, performing in public masterclasses with Sir Andras Schiff, Richard Goode and Sergei Babayan. He played recitals across the UK and also gave recitals in Madrid for the Fundación Juan March and at the Duszniki International Chopin Festival: “This was without doubt one of the most extraordinary recitals ever to have taken place in the Dworek. The musical range of this ambitious programme was remarkable – from Bach to Scriabin. Here we have a complete musician and surely, a pianist that is almost faultless…” Michael Moran.

As part of the Chinese State visit in 2015, Bartlett performed a private concert for the First Lady of China, Peng Liyuan, and other dignitaries. In June 2016 he performed at Her Majesty The Queen’s 90th Birthday thanksgiving service, which was broadcast live on BBC One from St. Paul’s Cathedral.

At the BBC Young Musician of the Year competition, Bartlett’s performance of Rachmaninov’s Rhapsody on a Theme of Paganini, with conductor Kirill Karabits and the BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra, received overwhelming acclaim from Edinburgh’s Usher Hall audience and from those tuning into the live recording broadcast on BBC4 and BBC Radio 3. He made his BBC Proms debut in 2015 performing Gershwin’s Rhapsody in Blue with the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra. He also performed Gershwin’s Rhapsody in Blue with the Ulster Orchestra at the BBC Proms “Last Night” celebrations which was broadcast live from Belfast on BBC Four and BBC Radio Ulster.

Following Bartlett’s success in the BBC Young Musician Competition, he received support from the Young Classical Artists Trust (YCAT). In the same year, he began his undergraduate studies with Professor Vanessa Latarche at the Royal College of Music, where he is a Foundation Scholar.

Fumiya Koido

Fumiya Koido was born in Kamaishi City, Iwate Prefecture in 1995. After graduating from Morioka Daiichi High School, he entered Toho Gakuen School of Music Piano Department as a scholarship student in 2014. Koido graduated from the School top of the class. He performed in the graduation concert and the concert before the Emperor at Tokagaku-do in the Imperial Palace. Currently Koido is in the first year of the soloist diploma course at Toho Gakuen School of Music.

He won First Prize in the high school division of the Tokyo District at the 67th Student Music Concours of Japan in 2013, S Course Grand Prix in the piano solo division of the 48th Kawai Music Competition in 2015, First Prize at the 21st Hamamatsu International Piano Academy Competition, First Prize at the 2nd Coimbra World Piano Meeting (Portuguese), and Second Prize at the 4th Victor Merzhanov International Competition (Bulgaria) in 2017. In 2018, Koido won First Prize at the 5th KIPA International Competition (Korea) and First Prize at the 87th Music Competition of Japan, and Argerich Arts Foundation Prize. He participated in the 37th Kirishima International Music Festival and won the Music Award.

In 2015 and 2016, he won the scholarship from Aoyama Foundation. Koido is studying the piano under Mamiko Suda.

Fumiya is the winner of 2019 Hastings International Piano Concerto Competition.

Sylvia Jiang

Sylvia Jiang is a young pianist from New Zealand who is currently studying with Robert McDonald at the Julliard School. She has won top prizes at a numerous national and international competitions and has performed as a soloist with the Royal Philharmonic, Music Academy of the West, and Queensland Symphony and Aotea Youth Symphony.

As an avid soloist Sylvia has given performances across Asia, Europe, Australasia and the U.S, including recent performances at Kennedy Center in Washington DC and Alice Tully Hall in New York City. Sylvia was a prize-winner at the 2019 Hastings International Concerto Competition.

Jessica Cottis (Conductor)

The “gifted” (The Times) Australian-born conductor Jessica Cottis has captured international attention for her intellect, innate musicality and easy authority. Hailed as “cool, contained, super-articulate and engaging” (The Scotsman), she is a charismatic figure on the podium who brings dynamism and clarity of vision to all her performances.

Jessica Cottis made her BBC Proms debut at the Royal Albert Hall in 2016, returning in 2017 with the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra. She returns to the Proms again this summer, and this season makes important debuts with the LA Philharmonic, London Symphony Orchestra, Danish Radio Symphony Orchestra, Singapore Symphony, and English Chamber Orchestra. Cottis will also return twice to the Royal Opera House: to conduct the premiere of ‘The Monstrous Child’ by Gavin Higgins; and again for a new production by Gerald Barry for their 2019/2020 season.

Frequently in demand as guest conductor, highlights of recent seasons include performances with the Sydney Symphony Orchestra, London Philharmonic Orchestra, BBC Symphony Orchestra, Royal Philharmonic Orchestra, BBC National Orchestra of Wales, BBC Concert Orchestra and much more.


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