Athena Hawksley-Walker violin
Tom Fetherstonhaugh piano
Beethoven Violin sonata no. 8 (G major)
Beethoven Violin sonata no. 9 (A major)
Second-year Music undergraduates Athena Hawksley-Walker and Tom Fetherstonhaugh are currently performing the complete Beethoven Violin Sonatas in the Holywell Music Room, Oxford.
This project is a unique endeavour in Oxford, and is a first for student music-making.
Beethoven’s ten violin sonatas are regarded as the cornerstone of the violin and piano repertory, and are hugely important works in the western classical music canon. The pieces demand extreme technical skill from the performers, an ability to communicate across the stage as if they were speaking, and through music they capture the full range of human emotion.
Athena was the co-leader of the National Youth Orchestra. She studied violin and piano at the Royal College of Music Junior Department for nine years with Ani Schnarch and Neil Roxburgh, winning prizes in violin, piano and theory, both at the RCM and from the Associated Board of the Royal Schools of Music. In addition, she was awarded Kingston Young Musician of the Year and Richmond Young pianist of the Year and distinction in both violin and piano dipABRSM diplomas.
Tom is Junior Organ Scholar at Merton, and is responsible for accompanying the college choir for BBC broadcasts, concerts, tours and services. He is a busy recitalist, giving solo concerts around the UK and Europe. Alongside his organ playing Tom is a conductor. He founded Fantasia Orchestra, a group of London musicians whose concerts have won critical acclaim: the Arts Desk has called the strings sound 'already a thing of wonder'. Tom is about to start his second season as conductor of the Oxford University Sinfonietta.
The very first time Tom and Athena played together they were playing Beethoven in 'opposite formation': Tom on violin and Athena on piano. Their artistic partnership continues to grow and this series is their most ambitious yet.