‘Poll’s tone is warm, rich, and full!’


“In the dignified simplicity of Shrewsbury’s Unitarian Church, Shropshire Music Trust presented a Thursday lunchtime recital which was a fine example of their adventurous planning in this welcome season after too long an absence. The solo performer was guitar virtuoso Michael Poll, a musician with an international reputation who gave a performance which was a true connoisseur’s delight.

And how the music and the venue were the perfect complement for each other! The music of Johann Sebastian Bach is surely the art which conceals art; its architecture, its precision and unfailing beauty demand technical skill yet are nothing without that intangible thing called soul. Soul was there in abundance in Mr.Poll’s  playing which filled this beautiful space with his warm, full tone. His brief introductions were illuminating and very welcome.

These two suites for solo lute were composed at a relatively early age at a time before the emergence of the symphony; brilliant though these works are, they give a foretaste of the miraculous suites for the cello which came later in Bach’s career. Each Suite consisted of six movements some of which offered an almost Puckish lightness of touch whilst others, particularly mthe final giga or gigue set toes tapping! In these and the other movements Mr. Poll’s superb control of his instrument and his constant maintaining of the forward momentum of the music-regardless of the tempo-made this a superb musical occasion.”

-Andrew Petch 19/05/22