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Musical World

Joseph Middleton

  • Accompanist
  • Pianist

Reviews

Joseph Middleton Press Reviews

IN RECITAL

"The cream of the new generation."
The Times

Chan Centre, Vancouver - Recital with Sir Thomas Allen

"The pianist, Joseph Middleton, a star in his own right, was in perfect sync with Allen throughout the concert. There was a camaraderie and a mutual delight in the music being shared by these two artists that added a very special tone to the evening."
Nancie Ottem, Vancouver Review.

'Songs to the Moon' - The Myrthen Ensemble

“For sheer joy – for youthful panache and heartfelt commitment – nothing I have experienced musically this year comes near to matching this lovely soirée, given in the salon of a private house in South Kensington before a small invited audience. What a privilege to be there!

The concert marked the inauguration of a new group, The Myrthen Ensemble, named after a song that Schumann sent to his wife Clara and modelled on the fondly remembered Songmakers’ Almanac. Like the latter, it consists of a pianist and a quartet of singers functioning as a team of friends rather than stand-alone stars – here they are Joseph Middleton, and soprano Sophie Bevan, mezzo-soprano Clara Mouriz, tenor Allan Clayton and baritone Marcus Farnsworth.This line-up represents the crème de la crème of young British-based musical talent…

The programme was most intelligently devised by Joseph Middleton, an unfailingly sensitive accompanist. 

The Myrthen Ensemble will be performing at the Wigmore Hall next season. I hope and predict we will be hearing a lot more of them over the coming years.”

Rupert Christiansen, The Telegraph

Westminster School - Recital with Katarina Karnéus

'Swedish mezzo Katarina Karnéus has made all this repertoire very much her´┐╝ own...Joseph Middleton, often noted by Musical Pointers as a special musician, impressed throughout as her equal partner.' Musical Pointers

Oxford Lieder Festival - Recital with Sir Thomas Allen

"Sir Thomas’s performance of this raw and direct depiction of young love [Schumann's Dichterliebe] was exactly tailored to the intimate Holywell ambience, with every note and gesture considered and made to count...Prizewinning young accompanist Joseph Middleton provided excellent, unshowy support throughout."

Giles Woodforde, Oxford Times, 26 October 2011

Toronto Summer Music Festival – Recital with Sir Thomas Allen

"Pure musical magic…Allen and pianist Joseph Middleton put together a recital of German Lieder from the 19th century as well as a selection of 20th century art songs. To call this a class act would be a huge understatement. It was a living, breathing, example of what it means to effectively communicate in song…Allen’s approach [to Dichterliebe] was to keep the emotions from frothing up too mightily, while Middleton’s liquid-velvet work at the piano maintained a discreet counterweight."

John Terauds, Toronto Star

Westminster School - Recital with Wolfgang Holzmair

'Joseph Middleton, who is already established as an outstanding accompanist of some distinction, showed his burgeoning reputation is fully deserved. He would seem to have a flawless technique and provided Wolfgang Holzmair with nuanced support that was alert to his veteran singer's every whim.'

Jim Pritchard, Musicweb International

Pembroke College, Cambridge' - Recital with Geraldine McGreevy
"Joseph Middleton is as classy a Lieder pianist as can be found anywhere in the world... McGreevy and Middleton's first half built inexorably to a magnificent climax with “Mignon: Kennst du das Land.” Goethe's headily ecstatic vision of a paradise in the south was powerful stuff indeed...the final selection of characterful and lively Chabrier songs again brought out the best of both performers’ musicianship, humour and stagecraft."      
Sebastian Scotney, www.bachtrack.com

Barber Institute of Fine Arts - Recital with Sir Thomas Allen and Geraldine McGreevy
"Their wonderfully supportive pianist Joseph Middleton, so sensitive and subtly shaded in the quieter numbers, dashed off the glittering Hexenlied (Witches’ Song) with virtuosic relish."
Birmingham Post

Belfast Festival at Queens - Recital with Andrew Kennedy
"Joseph Middleton was an outstanding accompanist throughout, providing musical and sensitive support with a formidable pianistic technique."
Belfast Telegraph

Wigmore Hall - Recital with Clara Mouriz
“The contribution of unassuming and beautifully phrased musicianship that Joseph Middleton brought to the accompanists role must impart confidence to a singer in no small measure … Exciting times are ahead for this talented musical partnership.”
Musical Pointers

Adrian Boult Hall - Yamaha Accompanist of the Year Prizewinner’s Concert
“What is it about the UK that produces such good accompanists? … Following the immortal steps of Benjamin Britten and Gerald Moore, we now have the likes of Malcolm Martineau and Roger Vignoles. How far will Joseph Middleton go? Very far, I hope. He seemed equally at ease with Schubert and Debussy … May his promising early career continue to flourish.”
Seen and Heard: www.musicweb-international.com

Barber Institute of Fine Arts - Recital with Katarina Karnéus
“The burbling accompaniments inevitable for northern scenes were sensitively matched by pianist Joseph Middleton, never underplaying any truly dramatic moments: a genuine partnership of musical talent … covering all emotions from the no-holds-barred, angst-ridden fortissimo piano in Soul and Landscape to a truly delicate interpretation of A Wish.”
The Birmingham Post

St. John’s, Smith Square
‘I was captured…delighted in the first half with a wonderfully executed, stylistically aware account of Haydn’s D Major Piano Trio Hob XV No 24. A rare outing of Sir Malcolm Arnold’s 1956 Piano Trio Opus 54 kept me in my seat to the end of the concert. … pianist Joseph Middleton played the work with such dedication, enjoying the score as much as I was. … The jazz influences were fun and the dextrous writing in the Vivace energico was fast and finely co-ordinated. … worthy of any concert-goer’s ears.’
Musical Opinion

Norwich and Norfolk Festival
“Extraordinary young player … the delicate accompaniment demonstrated Middleton’s great command over his instrument.”
Eastern Daily Press

Swansea Festival
“Pianist Joseph Middleton … showed that sensitivity to the keyboard as well as the voice is what marks out the ideal duo performer.”
South Wales Argus

South Bank Centre ‘Max’ [Sir Peter Maxwell Davies Festival] Festival
“Pianist Middleton superbly delivered Schoenberg’s frighteningly calm dissonance.”
classicalsource.com

Wigmore Hall - Recital for Worshipful Company of Musicians Concordia Prize
“Pianist Joseph Middleton was with both his partners in every bar, helping to highlight their performances but never remaining in the background as an apology for a pianist; a fine and intelligent musician… A stunning show well appreciated by the Monday night audience.”
Musical Pointers

Extract from interview: Sally Burgess – ‘Art is an adventure’, Chelsea Schubert Festival‘
Burgess describes her accompanist, Joseph Middleton, as 'fab - a tremendously musical pianist, wonderfully sympathetic to work with'. He has also recently won two of the most prestigious prizes available to accompanists in the UK - one at the Kathleen Ferrier Awards and the other at the Wigmore Hall/Kohn Foundation International Song Competition - and Burgess hopes that they will have further offers to give recitals together in the future.’
MusicalCriticism.com

IN CONCERT

Great Hall, University of Birmingham
“Joseph Middleton provided a sparkling performance [of Shostakovich’s Second Concerto], powerful and steely fingered.”
Birmingham Post

IN RECORDING

"Joseph Middleton's accompaniments are full of colour"
Classic FM, October 2010