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ARTIST OF THE WEEK - Violinist Harriet Mackenzie

1 March 2021
AOTW Harriet



We are proud to feature a range of artists and friends through this series of Wiltshire Creative Connects films we created during the Spring of 2020.

Shining a spotlight on artists

Each week, through a series of short films, we will profile one of the amazing artists who either live locally or has worked with Wiltshire Creative.

Our next artist of the week is violinist Harriet Mackenzie. In conversation with Festival Producer Fiona Curtis, Harriet and French Choreographer Julien Guérin discuss the impact lockdown has had on creating their new commission Bach & Ballet, and how they have continued to collaborate.  Harriet will also take a look back at some of her previous work and there will be an opportunity to see her perform a new composition by Deborah Pritchard, made in response to artist Maggi Hambling’s painting ‘March 2020’, as recently featured on Grayson’s Art Club on Channel 4. 

Harriet Mackenzie – violin

“Searing Intensity... A performance full of panache.... captivating” - The Strad

Harriet Mackenzie is an internationally renowned concerto soloist and has performed across five continents. Recordings include concertos with the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra, Orchestra Nova and the English Symphony Orchestra and these have received international acclaim, including Five Star review in The Times (Richard Morrison), Editor's Choice in Gramophone Magazine (Richard Whitehouse) and a nomination for 'Recording of The Year' in Music Web International: "There is a completeness, a confidence, an honesty and a consistent lyrical beauty that has moved me again and again. These qualities all emerge in Harriet Mackenzie’s utterly magisterial performance..” - Richard Hanlon.

Harriet graduated from the Royal Academy of Music with First Class honours, M.Mus and DipRAM. In 2015 she was awarded the Richard Carne Fellowship at Trinity Laban Conservatoire of Music and in the same year, she was honoured to be made an Associate of the Royal Academy of Music (ARAM) recognising her contribution to music. In 2020 she was made Associate Artist of the Salisbury International Arts Festival.


Click on the link below from Monday to view an interview between Harriet Mackenzie and Julien Guérin, as they discuss making work during lockdown



Click on the link below from Wednesday to view a Gallery and insight into Harriet’s work.



March 2020 Premiere: Harriet Mackenzie performs Deborah Pritchard in response to Maggi Hambling painting.

Click on the link below from 7.30pm on Friday to see the Premiere of Harriet performing March 2020 written by Deborah Pritchard, in response to Maggi Hambling’s painting of the same name, which she painted at the beginning of lockdown. Maggi appeared on Grayson’s Art Club on Channel 4 and spoke to Grayson Perry about the painting.

March 2020' for solo violin (2020)
by Deborah Pritchard

Deborah Pritchard’s ‘March 2020’ is written after Maggi Hambling’s painting of the same name, responding to the contradiction of the virus against the life force of nature, as Spring returns. It begins with an ethereal melody, like the delicate magnolia in the painting, before suddenly cascading into darkness as the virus descends. However the strength of nature cannot be held back, and as the vaporous virus dissipates, the music ascends to shimmering harmonics that leave us with a sense of hope.

Deborah Pritchard - composer
Deborah Pritchard was awarded a British Composer Award in 2017 and her music has been performed by world class ensembles such as the London Symphony Orchestra, London Sinfonietta, BBC National Orchestra of Wales and the BBC Singers.  She is a synesthetic composer and her violin concerto ‘Wall of Water’, written for Harriet Mackenzie after the paintings by Maggi Hambling, was performed at the National Gallery in 2015. She also paints music and was awarded her D.Phil from the University of Oxford.

Maggi Hambling, Harriet Mackenzie and Deborah Pritchard

Harriet, Deborah and Maggi with 'Walls of Water’ by Maggi Hambling, 2015. Photo credit is Matthew Holley

Maggi Hambling Artist

Maggi Hambling (born 1945, Suffolk). Studied with Lett Haines and Cedric Morris, and then Ipswich, Camberwell and the Slade Schools of Art. In 1980 she became the First Artist in Residence at the National Gallery, London, and in 1995 won the Jerwood Painting Prize (with Patrick Caulfield). In 1998 her sculpture A conversation with Oscar Wilde was unveiled at Adelaide Street, London, facing Charing Cross Station. 

In 2003 Scallop, a sculpture to celebrate Benjamin Britten was unveiled in Aldeburgh, Suffolk which in 2005 was awarded the Marsh Award for Excellence in Public Sculpture for Scallop. Solo museum exhibitions include Maggi Hambling, Serpentine Gallery, London, 1987, An Eye Through a Decade, Yale Center for British Art, Newhaven, Connecticut, 1991, A Matter of Life and Death, Yorkshire Sculpture Park, 1997, George Always, The Walker Art Gallery, Liverpool, 2009, Maggi Hambling - The Wave, the Fitzwilliam, Cambridge, 2010 War Requiem, Installation, SNAP 2013 purchased for Aldeburgh Music by the Monument Trust, Wall of Water, The Hermitage, St Petersburg, USSR, 2013, Walls of Water, National Gallery, London 2014, War Requiem & Aftermath, Somerset House, London 2015, Touch, British Museum 2016 / 17. 


'Edge' by Deborah Pritchard performed by violinist Harriet Mackenzie and harpist Catrin Finch