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Margaret Fingerhut’s fundraising finale

Renowned pianist, Margaret Fingerhut, has concluded a tour of Britain fundraising for City of Sanctuary. Her final concert was live streamed earlier this month and can be viewed online here.

Norwich City of Sanctuary’s, Terry Dunning, reviewed the highlights.

In 2019 Margaret Fingerhut toured 32 venues around the country, including Norwich, giving piano recitals to raise money for City of Sanctuary. Her target was £88,000 representing a £1000 for every key on a piano. On Friday 5th June there was a live streamed final concert and it is likely that the target will be reached. The concert opened with four pieces for the piano. Margaret plays with great sensitivity and musicality that enraptures the listener, and we were not disappointed on this occasion. For the following item Margaret was joined by Peter Fisher a violinist who is Director of the Chamber Orchestra of London.

They played music by the Jewish Viennese émigré Erich Wolfgang Korngold who became famous as a composer in the United States especially for film music. This was the incidental music from Much Ado about Nothing and was both romantic and joyful.

Next came Arian Hu playing the Arabic Oud, this is a stringed instrument played like a guitar. Arian is a refugee from Syria living in Beijing with his Chinese wife. He played two pieces, the second his own composition, Memories. This had a special poignancy given the title of this concert. Raghad Haddad is a violist who we heard perform in Norwich in 2019. She was a member of the National Syrian Orchestra before seeking asylum in the UK. Raghad performs with I speak Music and Stories of Sanctuary. She is an accomplished musician and together with Margaret they performed an ancient Syrian song On the sea waves. This was a heart-wrenching piece played so beautifully. Coming to the end of the concert Sam Slatcher sang with his guitar a song from his recent album, Chaos and Solitude. Sam is curator of the refugee community project Stories of Sanctuary and had been the compere for the evening. The musicians joined together for the final song Let us be together which was an uplifting end to the evening even though we could not see the participants because of a technical glitch! Thank you all for a truly wonderful evening. I enjoyed it so much I watched it twice!