2 Minutes before playing ‘Preludes & Vollenteries 22’ St Margarets Lothbury 12th July 2019 Photo Richard Bram

‘that aristocrat …among violinists, Peter Sheppard Skaerved.’ Musicweb May 2019 (Rob Barnett)

…seemingly inexhaustible energy.’
Fanfare 2019

My home for the evening. Preludes & Vollenteries 18 . A little Westhoff, a little Pisendel, a little Tartini, a little Sculthorpe in the wonderful space of St Botolphs’ Bishopsgate

Welcome to my website.  It’s full of recordings, films, writing, process stories and a lot of drawing.

Robert Saxton – Prelude (for Elliott Schwartz) 2006

Working out some of the shapes in the Saxton Prelude. July 15th 2019

Mozart Sonatas!

Not sure this counts as work. Daniel-Ben Pienaar and I getting ready to film the Mozart Piano/Violin cycle at then end of the month. Yes, I do play from the piano score ( I don’t like to miss out) www.peter-sheppard https://wp.me/pH1iH-5ut

Robert Saxton in rehearsal and concert. 

Saxton on the practice desk, 8 7 19

It’s going to be a week of Robert Saxton. Today, working with him on his wonderful new quartet (that’s the part under solo piece) and Friday, playing the Prelude for Elliott Schwartz which I premiered in 2006. Wonder. Come to the concert!https://www.facebook.com/events/311063193173426/

More recording news (1 7 19)

as we head into the studio today. I will be recording the three Debussy works for violin orchestra completed/reconstructed by Robert Orledge, plus a mighty handful of transcriptions made 1910-1916. Later this year…..more to follow

Concerto recording news! (30 7 19)

Rehearsing with Gregory Rose and the London Jupiter Orchestra. St Johns Smith Square 18 4 18

First of all, I will be recording the fantastic concerto which Gregory Rose wrote for me, and I premiered last year! The recording, with the Royal Ballet Sinfonia, conducted by the composer,will take place in November.

And more news: I will record the three works Debussy conceived for violin and orchestra,in completions by the renowned Robert Orledge, for Naxos. These will be coupled with a group of transcriptions for violin and piano, including those the composer made for and with Arthur Hartmann.

Preludes & Vollenteries 22

The cards have arrived for Preludes & Vollenteries 22. If anyone would like a card (the series seem rather popular), message me and address and it will wing its way to you by wonderful second-class post! Come to the concert!

Anonymous solo works from Italy, Austria, Germany, UK
Robert Saxton-Prelude ESCH
Elliott Schwartz – Soliloquy & Remembrance

St Margaret’s Lothbury 

6pm Friday July 12th

The architecture of Wren counterpointed by anonymous compositions from their era/ Plus works written for Peter by great Plus works written for Peter by great composers from the USA and the UK

Admission: £10 (£5 Concessions) on the door or at www.peter-sheppard-skaerved.com

Preludes & Vollenteries’ explores solo music of the baroque, in churches built & restored after the 1666 Great Fire, which destroyed 89 of them. The Square Mile remains one of the greatest collections of early baroque architecture, testament to the invention of the extraordinary talents gathered around Sir Christopher Wren. This concert explores some of the anonymous Italian, Austrian and British violin works from that period, when authorship was of lesser interest than quality. Two pieces by composers of our time, each reference the 17th and 18th Centuries in their own way. This is the second visit of the series to this remarkable church, which houses some of the most remarkable late 17th Century wood carving to be seen in the UK, and has an especially intimate acoustic & atmosphere.

Over the past 18 months, this wandering thread of salon concerts has found its way to a score of the miraculous churches of the Square Mile, to All Hallows by the Tower, St Anne and St Agnes, St Botolph Aldgate, St Botolph Bishopsgate, St Clement Danes, St Clement Eastcheap, St James Garlickhythe, St Lawrence Jewry, St Margaret Lothbury. St Mary Abchurch, St Mary Aldermary, St Mary Woolnoth, St Mary at Hill, St Michael Cornhill, St Michael Paternoster Royal, St Stephen Walbrook, St Vedast Foster Lane.
The architecture of Wren, Hooke, Hawksmoor and Hooke has been counterpointed by contemporaneous music by Albinoni, Anonymous, Bannister, Baltzar, Barrenclow, Bassani, Bassano, Biber , Bononcini, Colombi, Corbett, Corette, Corelli, Cosimi, Dean, de Machy, Dowland, Eccles, Van Eyck, Finger, Gabrieli, Galli, Gasparini, Gijsbrechts, William Gorton, Handel, Hills, Hotteterre, Hyme, Keller, King, Klagenfurt Handskrift (Anon), Laurentini, Locatelli, Lonati, Marais, Marini, Matteis, Matteis Junr., Mell, Morley, Ortiz, Montanari, Pepusch, Philidor, Pisendel, Playford, Purcell, Riccardo, Rost (Copyist) Saint Colombe, Schemelzer, Simons, Simpson, Smith, Tartini, Telemann, Torelli, Vilsmayr, Utrecht, Vitali, Welltern, Westhoff, Ziani.
Each concert has featured a guest from our time, pieces by some of my treasured collaborators/friends, Richard Beaudoin, Judith Bingham, Nigel Clarke, David Gorton, Hafliði Hallgrímsson, Sadie Harrison, Michael Hersch, Alistair Hinton, Nicola LeFanu, David Matthews, S?d?ka Özdil, Paul Pellay, Gregory Rose, Evis Sammoutis, Peter Sculthorpe, Peter Sheppard Skærved, Andrew Toovey, Mihailo Trandafilovski, and Dafina Zeqiri Nushi.
Instruments have been heard by Andrea, Girolamo and Niccol Amati, Antonio Stradivari, and more from Italy, but, perhaps more excitingly, by the luthiers who lived and worked within yards of this church; Barak Norman, Richard Meares, Collingwood, and there has even been the earliest dated English violin, an anonymous instrument from 1664, inlaid with the crown of Charles II.
I am honoured to work with the various communities and groups who keep these extraordinary buildings alive, and to share this intimate music in the ‘auditorys’ which sprang from the imaginations of Wren, Hooke, Hawksmoor, and Dance.


Anonymous baroque!

Preludes & Vollenteries 22 celebrates the solo works by anonymous composers of the late 17 and early 18th centuries. On my practice desk last night, a wonderful prelude from Dresden. Do come!

Reporting back. Preludes and Vollenteries 21

Rehearsing Andrew Toovey ‘Lament, Strathspey, Reel’ at StJames Garlickhythe, 7 6 19

Inspiration for a concert series…

Two views of the City of London, before and after the Great Fire, in my notebook

These two engravings (copied here)were most responsible for pushing me towards the Preludes & Vollenteries series. I found the smaller one in a 1648 King James Bible in a junk market when I was 14 or 15. The larger engraving is from the 1776 ‘Intellegencer’, and fluttered out of an old book. It might well be labelled, Wren’s Triumph, a century after the Fire. In the earlier picture, the Banksare clearly visible, and the entrance to Bridewell Dock. In the upper picture, I love the wherry or barge, which has lowered its mast to shoot the rapids of London Bridge. Although the page is dated 1776, the engraving predates the renovation of the Bridge in 1757-62. My guess is that it was done in the mid ’40s, when Geo. Dance rebilt some of the houses on the Bridge, but St Thomas Chapel was still in place.Next concert, tomorrow!!! Do come and see the wonder of St James Garlickhythe, https://www.facebook.com/events/439082536920105/

Preludes and Vollenteries – A Bolognese obsession

Time with Bartolomeo Cesi & Calvert 5 6 19

Friday’s ‘Preludes & Vollenteries’ brings together the great violin composers of Bologna and Modena at the time of Francesco II – Colombi, Torelli,Bononcini (senior), G B Vitali, with the architecture of Wren …and a wonderful piece by Andrew Toovey. For me, this 17th Century music is linked to the Bologna based artists of the previous century, especially Cesi & Calvert. That’s just me, I know, but here’s tonight’s practice, anyway. Come to the concert –details here.

Just in. Tartini -30 Solo Sonatas Volume 5 

So proud of this! The cover for the 5th Volume of my complete Tartini Solo Sonatas out soon Buy the first volume here! Link

7th June- Preludes & Vollenteries 21 – St James Garlickhythe

Wonderful to work on this two- stave scordatura violin part from Giovanni Maria Bononcini (1642 – 1678). Come and hear it, plus more from Modena and Andrew Toovey – Preludes and Vollenteries 21. Friday, June 7, 2019 at 6 PM St James Garlickhythe. LINK

1st June-The Dream of the Field Cricket – Back from the Brink

Evening on Farnham Heath 1 6 19

An amazing day- follow the link for blog, photos, recordings LINK

Field Cricket music for two vioins.

Tomorrow. One of the most entrancing projects I have every been part of, with Laurence Rose, Mike Coates, Mihailo Trandafilovski and Gryllus Campestris at RSPB Farnham. It’s going to be a beautiful evening. Here’s part of my Field Cricket piece, derived from the song of this extraordinary insect, the inspiration for our pastoral idyll on the heath. https://naturebftb.co.uk/ev…/the-dream-of-the-field-cricket/

31st May – Coffee by the Plague Pit

The opening of David Riebe’s new work for me. 31 5 19

This just in. A new work based on my painting, by my dear friend and collaborator, David Riebe. Very excited to move this project forward, inspired by the layered histories of Charterhouse Square. Watch out for developments.

Writer Malene Skaerved and composer David Riebe in Universitetshuset, Lund

24th May – Just in – Artwork for the Thomas Simaku Disc!

The new recording of Solos & Duos by my long-time collaborator Thomas Simaku is nearly out. I have triple function here, as performer, producer (as on all of my recordings) and artist. The cover image is my painting of a Grey Wagtail flying along our beach here in Wapping!

First look -At last, our CD of Thomas Simaku Solos and Duos is on the way. With Chris Orton, Joseph Houston, Roderick Chadwick and my recent painting of Motacilla cinerea/Grey Wagtail flight at low tide

Here’s my performance of one of the pieces on the disc.

23rd May Christopher Simpson ‘Prelude’ plus Christopher Wren = Happiness

Rehearsal film 23 5 19 St Lawrence Jewry (Preludes & Vollenteries 20)

Music and Buildings

I have written a page on Vitruvius and playing the violin. Nothing much – just thinking about today’s concert Read here https://wp.me/pH1iH-6OH

With Wren on Cheapside. Scrolls & Smokers 16 217

Preludes and Vollenteries . Next two concerts

St Lawrence Jewry – Preludes & Vollenteries 20

Guildhall Yard, London EC2V 5AA

Thursday, May 23, 2019 at 6 PM

Admission: £10 (£5 Concessions)

Thomas Baltzar, John Jenkins, Anthony Poole, Diego Ortiz
Sadie Harrison – Bavad Khair Baqi!

Detail of a swag from the East end of St Lawrence Jewry

Peter Sheppard Skærved-Violins

‘Hard to imagine a finer advocate for these alluring pieces
than the remarkable Sheppard Skærved.’ Sunday Times

‘Preludes & Vollenteries’ explores the solo music of the baroque in churches built & restored after the 1666 Great Fire. Over the past year, this series has brought hundreds of works from the 17th and 18th Centuries to these extraordinary buildings, which Sir Christopher Wren called ‘auditorys’. Each building offers a uniquely refined acoustic, coupled with breathtakingly architecture & invention. St Lawrence Jewry was rebuilt by Wren between 1670 and 1687, with a Corinthian East wall to adorn the newly built ceremonial King Street. This concert will feature works by John Jenkins, Thomas Baltzar and Anthony Poole, some of it found transcribed for solo violin from the original gamba scores by an unknown late-17th Century musician from London

Each concert welcomes a guest composer from our own time. This time, a work by Sadie Harrison, which celebrates the garden of an ancient mosque near Kabul. The concert will be played on instruments byGirolamo Amati(1628) & an anonymous Brescian maker (ca. 1570)

St James Garlickhythe -Preludes & Vollenteries 21

Garlick Hill, London EC4V 2AF

Friday, June 7, 2019 at 6 PM

Detail from a 16th Century Brescian violin heard in these concerts

Peter Sheppard Skaerved is at his imperious best’ –
ARCANA May 2019

Giuseppe Torelli, G B Vitali, Nicola Matteis, Giuseppe Colombi
Andrew Toovey – Lament, Strathspey, Reel

Admission: £10 (£5 Concessions)

Exquisite 17th Century violin pieces played on great instruments from the period, in one of Sir Christopher Wren’s masterpieces. Counterpointed by a beautiful work by Andrew Toovey, one of the most inventive of today’s composers

The Square Mile remains one of the greatest collections of early baroque architecture, a testament to the invention the extraordinary architects, craftspeople and thinkers around Sir Christopher Wren. They are, as this series has shown, ideally suited for the solo string music composed, played & celebrated across Europe at the this time, published & sold by the music shops and instrument makers that worked within a short walk of this church

18th May. A different view of my work, from Sweden

The view from Sweden. Spring 2019

This arrived in the post this morning. Responding to my collaboration with young Swedish composers. More here Link

17th May – Working on Mozart completions

Tim Jones working with me on his fascinating completions of Mozart sonata movements for piano and violin. 18 5 19

A wonderful afternoon working with Tim Jones on his completions of Mozart piano/violin sonatas (what we do when we ar;en’t teaching at the RAM) An Academy: where artists practice their art-a playground!

17th May Recording Hafliði Hallgrimsson.

First listen from yesterday’s recording, Unedited outtakes of the 15 movement collection ‘Klee Sketches’, written for me from 2004-2019, by the great Hafliði Hallgrímsson, Listen here! https://wp.me/pH1iH-6NM

Peter Sheppard Skaervedand Hallgrimsson, 15 5 19

Hafliði Hallgrimsson is one of the most important musicians in my life. I met hims 25 years ago, and this time 24 years ago recorded his wonderful ‘Offerto’ for solo violin. His musical imagination is miraculous amalgam of lyricism, storytelling, colour, economy and deep expression.

14th May Editing Schubert, Cowie and more!

A day in the editing suite. Here’s part of the outcome.

Edward Cowie 6th Quartet- follow the link https://wp.me/pH1iH-6Nr

Editing edit notes, map, and wave form…

12th May – David Matthews in conversation with Sergei Rachmaninov – Listen to this

David Matthews in a recording session

A few weeks ago, I premiered David Matthews ‘Fantasies’. The fifth is a response to Sergei Rachmaninov’s Prelude op. 23 no. 5 in G minor. It’s wonderful to play. Enjoy!

David Matthews – Fantasia on Rachmaninov’s Prelude in G minor (World Premiere)

Composition & Craft Craft Central at The Forge 25th April  Peter Sheppard Skærved –Violin (Live)

Haydn. THE BIRD 10th May 2019.

As a 19-year old, I had the chance to study this piece with Norbert Brainin (Helen Kamminga, Karen Winkelmann, Ruth Alford will all remember this), and I have never forgotten him singing the menuet with us, whilst waving the melody on and on ‘wie im Himmel’ he smiled, and sang on and on, with his one and only smile. All that he knew was, that music poured from him, and when it was Haydn, this flood was joy itself. So wonderful to play this piece and to say thankyou to my teacher. With Neil Heyde, Clifton Harrison, Mihailo Trandafilovski two nights ago.

Simon Bainbridge – 2nd Quartet Live! 8 5 19

Here it is. Simon Bainbridge’s just astonishing 2nd Quartet, last night, for the composer, at the JDP, Oxford, with Neil Heyde, Clifton Harrison, Mihailo Trandafilovski Hold onto your hats!

A ‘new’ Corant (9th May 2019)

Thomas Baltzar – 1630-1660

And…yesterday’s other little find. I had taken some facsimiles of C17th music copy books to look at on the train yesterday. And then I realised that the Thos. Baltzar ‘Corant’ for solo violin was not the same piece as the one I already know and play (the key being the different and it being 40 bars long, not 22, should have been a clue). So as of yesterday, there’s one more lovely piece for solo violin by this brooding virtuoso. Here’s the G minor Suite:

9th May 2019 – New Publication – Michael Hersch – In the Snowy Margins

The lovely new volume from Presser

A wonderful and unexpected present awaited me when I got home from last night’s quartet concert. The new edition of Michael Hersch’s ‘In the Snowy Margins’, which I premiered in in 2011. with the beautiful engraving from Theodore Presser, and a little introduction which I wrote (had clean forgotten about this!) Listen here, and the VIOLINISTS, yet another piece for you, if you can stray from the well-trodden and – yawn – familiar path. Listen here

The introduction which I wrote for this

8th May 2019 – It comes out differently every time. 

Bach-D minor Partita BWV 1004 (Sarabandes!) VIolin-Peter Sheppard Skaerved 

Critics talk a lot about interpretations. Performers don’t. We know that the deeper our relationship with a piece of music, the less control we will have as to how it comes out. Here are three performances of the Bach D minor Sarabande. All recorded within 20 minutes of each other, five years ago. And they are nothing like how I would play them … today!

The 1698 Strad heard here. Bridge replacement time

More here https://wp.me/pH1iH-44X

7th May 2019 Dividing it up

Two solutions. As you can see, the transcriber has refashioned the contrapuntal texture in the top tight corner, an octave higher, at the bottom

Today, just a scrap of score. A large scale set of Division By Anthony Poole (c1629-1692) . This is one of about 15 sets of divisions transcribed for solo violin in the late 1600s by an anonymous musician. They are fascinating,  revealing an advanced virtuosity resulting from the challenge of the highly refined gamba playing of the time, when applied to the violin. More, and eventually much more, here. https://wp.me/pH1iH-6Ms

6th May 2019 Erik Satie-Chorale Hypoctrite 1914 (Published 1916)

One of the most beautiful pages of score I know. Eric Satie’s ‘Chorale Hypocrite

with Roderick Chadwick, Piano

Eric Satie’s ‘Choses’ are perhaps the most enigmatic set of pieces ever written for piano and violin. Written just before the war, they have fascinated me for many years. And they are exquisitely beautiful. It would be difficult to imagine anything more poised than the ‘Chorale of the Hypocrite’ which starts the set. Satie writes on the score:

‘My chorales are as good as Bach’s. But fewer and less pretentious'(!!!)

To hear the rest of the set follow the link

5th May  2019. Three French Menuets on an extraordinary French Violin

Here are three exquisite minuets by MIchel Corrette, from one his two guides to violin playing, on a fantastic French violin, and a wonderful Bow. With thanks to Ben Hebbert.

The orginal finger board of the 1760 Chappuy -s offering such insight into these pieces

Corrette, Michel-Menuets 1,2,3 ‘L’école d’Orphée’ Op.18
Violin-Chappuy ca. 1760, Bow- FX Tourte ca 1770)

Violin attrib to Gaspar da Salo (doubtful)- 16th century Brescian (?)- originally 3 String

Peter Sheppard Skaerved – Workshop recording (Wapping 14 7 17)

3rd May 2019 – Hafliði Hallgrimsson– Offerto

A morning rune on my working score of Hafliði Hallgrimsson’s ‘Flight of Time’ 4 5 19

It’s always a pleasure, and intriguing to practice the fine detail of a great work which I have played for many years. Today I have been doing fine detail on Hafliði Hallgrimsson’s four movement work for solo violin, which I first recorded in 1995. It’s a magical piece, and this movement is wonderful to perform (and study). Here’s the 3rd Movement on the 1719 ‘Maurin’ Stradivari

The Flight of Time

I will be recording the set again, and the two books of his Klee Sketches, in two weeks. To hear the whole of my VERY OLD recording of Offerto, go to  the LINK

2nd May 2019 -A day in several parts.

Natural counterpoint – Schmelzer and Andrew Toovey

Practising wonderful solo works by Schmelzer (scordatura AEAD) and Andrew Toovey for Preludes and Vollenteries 21 on the 7th June (more details to follow) and finally neatening up the performing materials for my Dream of the Field Cricket (dedicated to Laurence Rose) which will be premiered with Mihailo Trandafilovski (see Mihailo,, it’s legible now!)on 1st June at a wonderfully original event, bringing together issues of ecology, writing, music, landscape and more – follow the link

Finally legible.