University of Aberdeen Symphony Orchestra
St Andrew's Cathedral, Aberdeen
26 November 2016

Ravel: Boléro
Gershwin: Rhapsody in Blue
Stravinsky: Firebird (1919)

"I have been attending University of Aberdeen Symphony Orchestra concerts for over forty years. Saturday’s was the very best ever - and that by a really long way. The standard was pretty much up there with many professional orchestras. First of all, this was a huge symphony orchestra playing some of the most colourful and exciting pieces in the repertoire. All three pieces in Saturday’s programme demanded not only the best in ensemble playing but an abundance of demanding and essential instrumental solos. Under the masterful direction of John Frederick Hudson that is exactly what we got. He really is some machine! Aberdeen University Music is so fortunate to have someone so gifted working with them."

"John Frederick Hudson’s piano solo was both bluesy and rhapsodic, always very exciting. He, like Bernstein played entirely from memory…" 

- Alan Cooper


Spectrum New Music Ensemble
8 October 2016

an opera in one act
(World Premiere)

Composed and conducted by John frederick hudson
libretto by James Kenon Mitchell

"This was the World Première of his [John Frederick Hudson's] latest work in a Concert Performance conducted deftly by the composer himself who has wide experience in the conducting of opera. John Frederick Hudson’s score was magnificent. I was impressed at how he managed to put across quite violent crashes of timpani, powerful piano runs, or thrilling complexities of tuned percussion without ever getting in the way of the voices. The music was firmly within the tonal style but quite new and not like anything else I could pin down. That is a good thing because it means that John Frederick Hudson has developed his own unique musical voice and will be able to take it further in so many different ways. What about a symphony John, or ballet music perhaps?" 

- Alan Cooper


Spectrum New Music Ensemble
 in collaboration with the Sound Festival
James McKay Hall, ABERDEEN
22 february 2015

Jake Heggie: To Hell and Back
(UK Premiere)

“The ten players in the orchestra masterfully conducted by Spectrum’s current musical director John Frederick Hudson were tremendous. He really has brought the ensemble on apace. In the overture the little orchestra sounded like a far bigger ensemble. The strings, the woodwind (flute, oboe and bassoon) with an important role for harpsichord certainly suggested a link with the baroque…”

"Above all, the orchestra and the musical colours they projected raised the simple language of the libretto into the realm of the meaningful and even the mythological. There were only two singers but they carried the weight of musical emotion and dramatic outpourings with what can only be called two absolutely heroic performances."

- Alan Cooper


University of Aberdeen opera society
cowdray hall, ABERDEEN
23 april 2014

purcell: dido and aeneas

"The music itself is of course central to the whole production and the orchestra conducted expertly by John Frederick Hudson was terrific."

- Alan Cooper