Surrey Mozart Players

Our Next Concert 

Saturday 7 October 2023, 7.30 pm

Holy Trinity Church

High Street, Guildford, GU1 3RR

Nielsen - Symphonic Rhapsody
Mozart - Piano Concerto No. 9'Jeunehomme' K.271
Brahms - Symphony No. 2

Piano - Ignas Maknickas

Conductor - Philip Ellis


Supported by the Countess of Munster Musical Trust.

Tickets: Adult £21.00; 21 & under £5.00 

Book tickets online via Eventbrite (link below).

Via orchestra members at rehearsals. 

Available on the door.

More about the soloist

Ignas Maknickas 

Surrey Mozart Players are delighted to introduce Lithuanian pianist, Ignas Maknickas, as our soloist for this concert.  His performance is supported by the Countess of Munster Musical Trust.


Born in California in 1998, Ignas was raised in Lithuania. In 2017, graduating from the National M.K. Čiurlionis School of Art in Vilnius, he was honoured by the President of Lithuania, H.E. Dalia Grybauskaitė. With his sister and three brothers the talented Maknickas Family Ensemble has represented Lithuania on National Television and at State Occasions.


Ignas completed his Bachelor of Music at the Royal Academy of Music on full scholarship under Professor Joanna MacGregor.  In July 2021 Ignas Maknickas received “The Queen’s Commendation for Excellence” as the highest-scoring graduate of the Royal Academy of Music. He has taken First Prize at the XIX Fryderyk Chopin Piano Competition for Youth in Szafarnia, First Prize at the XX Piano Competition “Young Virtuoso” in Zagreb, Third Prize at the Aarhus Piano Competition and, in 2021, was the semi-finalist of the Vendome Prize.

In September 2021 he commenced the Master of Arts Programme with Professor MacGregor, also on full scholarship. He is a recipient of the Julien Prize, the ABRSM Scholarship Award, the Imogen Cooper Music Trust Scholarship, Munster Trust Mark James Award, Robert Turnbull Piano Foundation Award, Tillett Trust and Colin Keer Trust Award and Hattori Foundation Award. He is an Artist of the Munster Trust Recital Scheme.

Ignas has appeared with the Aarhus Symphony, Alicante Philharmonic, Dartington Festival Orchestra, Lithuanian National Symphony, Lithuanian State Symphony, Lithuanian Chamber Orchestra, London Mozart Players and Royal Academy of Music Chamber Orchestra.

2023-24 highlights include Mozart K. 467 with London Mozart Players in London, Rachmaninoff Piano Concerto No. 2 with Bloomington Symphony Orchestra in Indiana and solo recital at the Wigmore Hall in London.


He has attended masterclasses with Dmitri Bashkirov, Dame Imogen Cooper, Christopher Elton, Stephen Hough, Yoheved Kaplinsky, Marios Papadopoulos, Menahem Pressler, Geoffrey Simon, Tamás Ungár, Arie Vardi and Ilana Vered. 


As a soloist he has appeared at the Steinway Hall in London, Auditorium du Louvre in Paris, Charlottenborg Festival Hall in Copenhagen, Ed Landreth Hall in Fort Worth, Lithuanian National Philharmonic in Vilnius and Kinross House in Scotland.

More about the conductor

Philip Ellis

This concert will be conducted by Philip Ellis who was appointed as Music Director of the Surrey Mozart Players in March 2023.  Meet him on YouTube here.

Since winning first prize in the Leeds Conductors’ Competition in 1991, Philip Ellis has worked extensively throughout the UK conducting many concerts with the Philharmonia, London Philharmonic, Royal Philharmonic, Hallé, Royal Liverpool Philharmonic, BBC Philharmonic, BBC National Orchestra of Wales, BBC Concert Orchestra, Ulster Orchestra, London Mozart Players, English Chamber Orchestra, Orchestra of Opera North, City of London Sinfonia, Northern Sinfonia and over 400 concerts with English Sinfonia.  He is a passionate supporter of Music Education and has worked extensively with amateur orchestras, community and youth groups throughout his career.  He is very much looking forward to a long and exciting collaboration with Surrey Mozart Players as their new Music Director, working together with this wonderful orchestra on the next stage of their already distinguished musical journey.

He made his international debut conducting the Singapore Symphony Orchestra in 1987, leading to engagements with Hong Kong Philharmonic, Netherlands Radio Symphony, Belgian National Orchestra, Flanders Symphony, St Petersburg Philharmonic, St Petersburg Symphony, National Orchestra of Mexico, Western Australian Symphony, Sydney Symphony, Melbourne Symphony, Würtembergische Philharmonie Reutlingen, Neue Philharmonie Westfallen and many broadcast concerts with the BRTN Philharmonic (Brussels) for radio and television.

Philip Ellis works extensively as a conductor for dance.  As conductor for Birmingham Royal Ballet since 1989, he has conducted the majority of their productions.  He also regularly guest-conducts for international ballet companies: The Royal Ballet at Covent Garden, La Scala Ballet in Milan, Paris Opera Ballet at the Opera Garnier, The Australian Ballet, Finnish National Ballet, Royal Swedish Ballet, Dutch National Ballet, Mikhailovsky Ballet, National Ballet of Canada, Hong Kong Ballet, Tokyo Ballet, Korean National Ballet and Gothenburg Ballet.

On CD, he has recorded Prokofiev Peter and the Wolf and Saint-Saëns Carnival of the Animals with the Philharmonia. Copland Rodeo, Appalachian Spring, Billy the Kid, El Salon Mexico and a series of Concert Classics discs with the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra. Contemporary Clarinet Concertos for Nimbus with Emma Johnson and Tchaikovsky Rococo Variations with Dimitri Ferschtman, recorded live in concert from the Concertgebouw Hall in Amsterdam.   


In his free time, he is a keen artist, particularly interested in portraiture - working in a wide range of media. A selection of his work can be seen on his website and on instagram @philellisart

More about the music

Brahms’s truly miraculous and justly famous symphony 2nd symphony is now so well known and loved that it is easy to forget how daring and revolutionary it remains.  With all his fears and trepidation associated with writing a symphony worthy of Beethoven assuaged by the success of his mighty first symphony - Brahms felt emboldened to produce this glorious work, so relaxed and pastoral, yet deep and exhilarating, it is crowned by his incredible feel for colour and harmony.   


We open our 23/24 Surrey Mozart Players season with something virtually unknown. Right at the start of his compositional career Carl Nielsen wrote a stirring and energetic symphonic movement, intended for a symphony that he never completed.  This work reframed as a Symphonic Rhapsody was premiered in a popular concert in Copenhagen.  Despite a great audience reception to the piece, the conductor was sacked for daring to present such contemporary work in a popular series. But he still had one concert in his contract and really loved this little gem - so he sneaked the Nielsen’s piece into his last programme too and played it twice - before and after the interval!


Between these contrasting works, the brilliant young pianist Ignas Maknickas plays Mozart’s so called “Jeunehomme” Piano Concerto, a true early masterpiece. Mature beyond its composer’s years, it features a scintillating finale with a surprise up its sleeve.

More about the venue

Venue Location

The concert takes place at Holy Trinity Church in the centre of Guildford.

Holy Trinity Church
High Street

By Road

Guildford is reached via the A3 (London or Portsmouth directions).  

By Train

The church is approximately 10 minutes walk from Guildford Mainline Station which is served by regular trains to/from London Waterloo and Victoria, Portsmouth, Reading, Gatwick Airport, Haselmere and Ascot.


The nearest car park is:

Castle Car Park, Sydenham Road, GU1 3RW (for Holy Trinity & Trinity Centre)


A ramp is available at one of the entrances to the church.  Please contact us on if you have any specific requirements.


Drinks will be available before the concert and during the interval.

Our 2023-2024 Season

We are performing five exciting concerts between October 2023 and June 2024 featuring a variety of composers and wonderful soloists.