“When Judith asked me whether I would want to premiere Variations for Judith, I did not hesitate for one second! Each variation respects the brevity of the aria, and is in many ways a very personal musical letter to Judith. There are however a huge variety of moods: some are quirky and humorous, others more sombre; some pay tribute to the acoustics of Shoreditch Church where the variations were first performed, others to the choral writing of Bach. Each one of them is a unique gem in a wonderful collection that commemorates Judith’s precious involvement with Spitalfields Festival.” – Melvyn Tan 2012
Melvyn Tan has established his international reputation in the 1980s with pioneering performances on fortepiano and continues to cast fresh light on music conceived for the piano’s early and modern forms. Tan’s work as recitalist, chamber musician and concerto soloist has been heard at many of the world’s leading concert halls, from the Amsterdam Concertgebouw, Vienna Konzerthaus AMUZ in Belgium, London’s Wigmore Hall and Royal Festival Hall and New York’s Lincoln Center, and at major festivals including Salzburg, Edinburgh, La Roque d’Anthéron as well as Bath’s Mozartfest, City of London festival and Hatfield House Chamber Music Festival.
As a concerto soloist Tan has performed with such prestigious ensembles as the London Philharmonic Orchestra, the Academy of St Martin’s in the Fields, the Hong Kong Philharmonic Orchestra, the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra, Stuttgart Radio Symphony Orchestra, Salzburg’s Camerata and Mozarteum orchestras, Bruckner Orchester Linz, Melbourne Symphony, Singapore Symphony Orchestra, London Chamber Orchestra, and Australian Chamber Orchestra.
Recent and forthcoming appearances include performances with the Orchester Wiener Akademie in Vienna, a Beethoven Marathon in Belgium as well as recitals/tours in Singapore, France, Italy and South Africa. Regularly appearing in venues across the UK his recent Wigmore Hall performance as part of Kevin Volan’s 70th Birthday celebrations was described by The Telegraph as a “triumph for him as much as Volans”. Melvyn was privileged to perform as part of the Wigmore Hall and BBC Radio 3 special series of concerts, livestreamed during the COVID-19 pandemic with the cellist Guy Johnston. With violinist Paul Boucher, he has also continued his role in devising Music and Word at Charleston, a combination of music and readings in the unique setting of the East Sussex Farmhouse made famous by artists Vanessa Bell and Duncan Grant.