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Music@Malling festival returns to West Malling with world class musicians and children performing a Roald Dahl story

The town of West Malling will be inundated with world famous musicians next week for the ninth annual Music@Malling festival, combining music with historic venues, which this year includes a specially-commissioned piece.

Founder, composer and local man Thomas Kemp commissioned James Pearson - artistic director of Ronnie Scott’s in London - to write a new interpretation of Stravinsky’s The Soldier’s Tale for its 100th anniversary.

Charles Dance reading the poetry of Siegfried Sassoon at Music@Malling last year Picture: Malling Photographic Society
Charles Dance reading the poetry of Siegfried Sassoon at Music@Malling last year Picture: Malling Photographic Society

The result, Stravinsopation, will be played by pianist James and Chamber Domaine, conducted by Thomas and narrated by actor Charles Dance OBE, as part of the programme of 29 concerts running from Sunday, September 15 to Saturday, September 28.

Thomas said of the piece, where the devil tempts a soldier to part with his violin: “It is something I had at the back of my mind to do for years as I am a particular fan of Stravinsky’s music.

"It is virtuosic and a really effective piece - and a timeless tale about greed too. Charles is a superb actor and you could hear a pin drop last year when he performed. He has incredible presence.

"The devil uses gentle persuasion, but fundamentally he is evil, so it will be interesting to see.”

The performance will be on Friday, September 27 at St Mary's Church in West Malling.

Rachel plays the violin last year as part of the festival's performance of The Great Enormo Picture: John Westhrop
Rachel plays the violin last year as part of the festival's performance of The Great Enormo Picture: John Westhrop

Children from 15 local schools will also take part in workshops based on Roald Dahl’s The Three Little Pigs. For more go to musicatmalling.com

Conductor Thomas Kemp, founder of Music@Malling
Conductor Thomas Kemp, founder of Music@Malling

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