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Manchester music reviews
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Manchester music reviews

La Soiree Concert SeriesChopin & The Poet @ La Soiree

Piano (Benny Hui, piano) and Poetry Recital (David Tait, poetry)

Reviewed by Charlotte Starkey September 2010

This was a wonderful evening in a beautiful setting, the Unitarian Church on Cross Street, Manchester, to mark the bicentenary of Chopin’s birth. A varied selection of Chopin’s piano music, played with great deftness of touch and variety of mood by Benny Hui, was juxtaposed with poems by David Tait in which aspects of Chopin’s life provided a main theme. The combination of some of Chopin’s piano music and the poetry of David Tait was an exciting and new way of inviting an audience to celebrate the anniversary– and in a setting that truly suggested the atmosphere of a salon where, of course, Chopin himself was most at home when performing his music (he hated performing in public to large audiences, apparently, considering his music more suited to the salon atmosphere - and he suffered from nerves before performing).

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Manchester music reviews

Garry Christian

The Christians at The Liverpool Philharmonic

Reviewed by Jane Turner September 2010

It's back to the music of the 1980's with The Christians. A band from Liverpool fronted by Garry Christian, singing soulful songs with "socially aware" lyrics, likened by many to The Temptations and with a vast back-catalogue of great hits including "Ideal World", "Forgotten Town", "What's in a Word?" and many other great hits.


Autumn is my favourite season; too fair-skinned and hay-fever prone to really appreciate the Summer (even a British one), I like it when the air becomes a little cooler, the leaves turn to gold and red and there’s that “back-to-school-feeling” in the air and everywhere feels just that little bit more mellow…  but not this week. Instead of the usual gentle seasonal change, it was as if I was suddenly back in the ‘80’s with a thud as loud as the crash of the Berlin Wall.


It was déjà-vu-ish alright, with talk in the news of the North-South divide, redundancies, rising unemployment, benefit cuts and “scroungers”, the TUC declaring war on the Government and TV listings full of programmes with a distinctly ‘80’s theme all set against the backdrop of multiple debt crises. It was vaguely familiar to someone who lived once-upon-a-time in the real-live 1980’s.

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Manchester music reviews

La Soiree Concert SeriesDiaspora from the La Soiree Concert Series

Hosted at Cross Street Chapel, Manchester

Reviewed by Yvonne Cawley August 2010


To say I was 'blown away' by the evening's experience is a little bit of an understatement!


I was invited along to La Soiree's concert featuring Diaspora on Friday 27 August at the Cross Street Unitarian Chapel, Manchester. Now I've lived and worked in Manchester all my life but had no idea where the Unitarian Chapel was. Also I must confess that Jazz isn't really my cup of tea, but hey, I'm as open minded as the next gal and so was prepared to give it a shot - gets me out of the house!


Arriving at the venue I was surprised that I had walked passed this building lots of times without really 'seeing' it or realising that it was a place of worship. The entrance is modern and light and extremely welcoming. We were greeted by a couple of friendly ladies who offered us a free glass of very palatable wine and told to make ourselves at home. Whatever picture you have in your mind of what a 'church' is, well rip up that picture. 

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Music Reviews

The scope of this category is to publish reviews of musical experiences - perfomances by people based around Manchester, music relating to Manchester, and reviews of musical performances written by people around Manchester. As this is a new initiative on the site, contributions and suggestions on how best to structure and solicit these reviews are welcome. 


Suffice to say that the site cannot pay for contributions, but links from the reviews are possible where they are relevant. Please Email me your music reviews to This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it .

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