Phillip's site is now here! Many thanks to Will. Phillip is now currently working on his first CD, by popular request, which should be ready for sale in 2016. It is entitled: "Songs with and without words for the violin" and will contain many of his favourites. He chose the title because of the innate quality of the violin to imitate the human voice and because of his fond memories of his pupils asking him, after playing a piece to them: "What was the name of that song, sir?" This anecdote, of course, has deep significance regarding the appreciation of music by all human beings. "Music is the universal language of mankind", as Longfellow wrote.
The modern violin and bow can also evoke the timbre of certain instruments - by using the appropriate amount of vibrato, pressure, weight and placement of the bow near to the fingerboard or bridge, Phillip is able to "imitate" or blend with the sound of a flute or saxophone, for example, which he does in his rendition of Debussy's Clair de Lune or his jazz version of Greensleeves. In the opening phrase of The Titanic theme he uses hardly any bow at all and creates a sound which can only be described as breathless and dreamlike. This all changes, of course, as the emotional intensity of the music increases and the full power of the violin is heard with Phillip's usual passion, gradually fading away at the end to the Celtic-influenced dreamworld of sounds.
Other stringed instruments, such as the guitar, zither, bouzouki and mandolin, are also used in his arrangements and, again, Phillip is able to match his sound according to each, most notably in his renditions of Greek syrtaki such as Zorba, Siko Chorepse Syrtaki and Strosse To Stroma Soy Gia Dyo. His repertoire is very wide and appealing and his art represents a perfect union of live and recorded music. Sometime in the near future, he hopes to develop his act further by the addition of a puppet who will introduce the music, "accompany" Phillip on a keyboard and generally add to the more humorous side of the act.
As a former teacher, Phillip regards the issue of music education as important in his life, which is why he also takes his art out onto the streets, as well as into the classroom or concert hall. In fact, many famous performers and composers have "busked" for a living and Phillip strongly believes that street-performers are necessary for the health of the community since it is possible not only to create a fantastic atmosphere but also truly move people in emotional terms and, indeed, physically, too! While holding some deep philosophical beliefs about the power of music and being a so-called "classically trained" musician, Phillip's natural charisma and sincereity, combined with his unique sense of humour - what he does while performing Zorba is indicative of a true clown but also combined with a skilled musician - have an immediate effect upon people. In the words of many who have spoken with him, he makes us laugh, think, cry and gives us great pleasure. In fact, he talks to us through his violin and beautiful music. Such is the most positive perception, and reception, which Phillip receives when performing on the street.
Phillip is based in Claygate, Surrey and is prepared to travel anywhere in this country and abroad.
Please feel free to explore the rest of this site at your leisure. it is now under review and will include videos of live performances.
Phillip is also working on an educational project to challenge young people's and others' prejudices about music, in particular so-called "classical music".