West Berkshire Performing Arts Society

October 13th, 2016

Derek Ansell, Newbury Weekly News

Violinist Captivates Bluecoat Audience

Charlotte Rowan, violin and Charlotte Stevenson, piano at the Old Bluecoat school, Thatcham, Sunday October 2nd

Beginning with Wieniawski’s ‘Polonaise de Concert’, Charlotte produced crisp, bold strokes from the start and vivid tone colours. The purity of sound from her instrument was remarkable indeed, but allied to that was a technique that was breathtaking. Glazunov’s Meditation is a romantic melody, here played with warmth and considerable precision. Polish Caprice and Oberek by Grazyna Bacwicz required Charlotte to engage in some rapid bowing and fingering which, no surprise by now, rattled off all passages here with brio. <br><br> Her great skill and sensitivity were further demonstrated with Six Roumanian Folk Dances by Bartok, a sensuous ‘Lotus Land’ by Cyrill Scott, ‘Chaconne’ by Vitali, Boulanger’s ‘Nocturne’ and a rousing ‘Carmen Fantasy’ by Sarasate.

It was arguably one of the finest virtuoso performances ever given at the Bluecoat building, as Chairman Clive Williams pointed out at the end of the recital.

Charlotte Rowan is a considerable talent and her playing was enhanced on this occasion by the sympathetic, unobtrusive accompaniment supplied by Charlotte Stevenson at the piano.


Sidney Sussex Music Society, Cambridge University

October 2015 

William Searle, President 

Charlotte Rowan is a violinist who combines a thrilling virtuoso ability with a profound and emotive approach to the music. The audience were treated to a spellbinding programme of challenging works from Liszt, Kreisler and Wieniawski, the fingers of both soloist and accompanist dancing rapidly around the entire range of their instruments. Charlotte’s technical proficiency has not compromised her emotional integrity, as works such as Elgar’s Salut d’Amour brimmed with passion, making for a hugely enjoyable concert for all present.