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As Durham University’s professional concert series, Musicon’s aim is to bring top-class musical performance from across the world to Durham, engaging, delighting and inspiring audiences from both the university and city of Durham and beyond. Rooted in the university’s world-leading Music Department, Musicon draws on the special expertise and enthusiasms of its staff to create programmes which are diverse, inclusive and at the cutting-edge of musical research and knowledge, ranging from Western classical, early and contemporary music to the musical traditions of India, the Far East and elsewhere: a unique cultural resource in the North East.

For our 2021-22 season we are hoping to return to hosting in-person concerts, and will be publishing our list of events here on our website and through Music Durham as soon as they are confirmed. For the time being we will only be offering a limited number of pre-booked tickets, sold through the Music Durham website. However, if you are unable to get a ticket, we will continue to offer excellent online concerts, through our YouTube channel. If you have not already dipped into these, we urge you to have a look at our wonderful past concerts, still available on the site.

We hope to see you in person soon!


Lucy Goddard and Siwan Rhys | Plain Air

Concert postponed due to unexpected circumstances

Venue: Music Department, Palace Green, Durham

Ticket Prices: £10 (adult), £5 (student), £1 (under-18)

Number of Tickets for sale: 40 (total maximum)

Lucy Goddard (mezzo-soprano) and Siwan Rhys (piano) present the world premiere of James Weeks' immersive and transcendental "Plain Air", inspired by Nan Shepherd's masterwork of nature writing "The Living Mountain".


James Weeks: Plain Air (2021)

Widely regarded as one of the greatest works of nature writing in English, Nan Shepherd’s The Living Mountain distils decades of walking among the Cairngorm mountains into a profound phenomenological exploration of being, minutely attentive to every aspect of the landscape and its weathers and their effect on her senses. James Weeks’ new work Plain Air, for Lucy Goddard and Siwan Rhys, sets passages from Shepherd’s text, situating the singer within a vast sonic landscape of piano and electronic sound.

Lucy Goddard and Siwan Rhys first collaborated together on An American Songbook, a programme of avant-garde American song with new commissions by Laura Bowler and Chris Mayo.  The duo prepared and recorded the programme during two residencies at Snape Maltings, before touring it across the country, via Musicon at Durham.  Further performances together include Siren Song at Clapham’s Omnibus Theatre, and Copland’s Twelve Poems of Emily Dickinson at Cambridge University.  Both musicians regularly perform at all the major UK venues and festivals, including the BBC Proms, Huddersfield Contemporary Music Festival, Aldeburgh Festival and Wigmore Hall, as well as touring extensively internationally.  Passionate exponents of new music, they are particularly interested in collaborating with composers and commissioning new works.  This world premiere by James Weeks, a case in point, is generously funded by the RVW Trust.

NB: there are a limited number tickets for this event. Tickets will only be offered for sale online, in advance of the concert (there will be no ticket sales on the door) from the Music Durham website.

Lucy Goddard and Siwan Rhys