Cockermouth Music Society has promoted many concerts by professional musicians and has also been active in commissioning new works. Memorable evenings of music have been provided by soloists and ensembles including:
Soloists: Ilya Itin - winner of the Leeds International Piano Competition in 1996, Nikolai Demidenko - piano, Peter Katin - piano, Peter Donohoe - piano, Martin Roscoe - piano, Joanna MacGregor - piano, Tamas Vasary - piano, Antti Siirala - winner Leeds International Piano Competition 2003, Andrew Brownell - winner of the Leeds International Piano Competition in 2007, Chiao-Ying Chang - prize-winner in the 2003 Leeds International Piano competition, Marat Bisengaliev - violin, Lucy Wakeford - harp, Claire Jones - harp, Nicholas Daniel - oboe, Paul Watkins - cello, David Childs - euphonium, Jennifer Pike - violin, Tasmin Little - violin, Mark Padmore - tenor, Hannah Marcinowicz - saxophone, Leon McCawley - piano, Eleanor Fagg - violin, Rowena Calvert - cello, Alison Balsom - trumpet (with Scottish Ensemble), Matthew Trusler - violin, Anna Tsybuleva (piano) - winner of the Leeds International Piano Competition in 2015, Laura van der Heijden (cello), Tine Thing Helseth (trumpet).
Piano Duet: Anthony Goldstone and Caroline Clemmow.
String Quartets - Danel Quartet, Endellion Quartet, London Haydn Quartet, Maggini Quartet, Vanburgh Quartet, Wihan Quartet, McFarlane String Quartet, Atrium String Quartet, Carducci Quartet and Brodowski Quartet (playing as both quartets and as an octet), Brodsky String Quartet
Chamber Orchestra: The Hanover Band, The City of London Sinfonia, Britten Sinfonia, Northern Chamber Orchestra, Academy of St Martin in the Fields, Scottish Ensemble, Academy of Ancient Music
Other notable ensembles - Fujita Piano Trio, London Mozart Trio, Leopold String Trio, The London Flute Quartet, The Wakeford Ensemble, Pyatt Horn Trio, The Fibonacci Sequence, The Frith Piano Quartet, The Gould Piano Trio
Commissions of new works: To date six new works have been commissioned and given their première in Cockermouth. With the support of the Arts for Everyone (A4E) scheme the society commissioned:
Simon Parkin’s Quartet No. 3 - first performance June 1998 by the Chalabi Quartet (students from the Royal Northern College College of Music);
Errollyn Wallen’s Rhapsody, a piece for viola - performed by Malcolm Allison with Timothy Lissimore at the piano in December, 1998 and recorded live by the BBC;
Philip Wood’s Four Bagatelles performed by Martin Roscoe in September, 1999.
Philip Wood’s Piano Trio No. 1 - performed by the Lorca Piano Trio (Malcolm Allison - violin, Bovidar Vukotic - cello and Timothy Lissimore - piano)
The fifth commission, with funding from Cockermouth Music Society and Cockermouth Neighbourhood Forum (Cumbria CC) was Philip Wood’s Diversions for Cello and Piano performed by Rowena Calvert (cello) and Alison Rhind (piano) in January 2009.
In 2014 Philip Wood was commissioned to write POSTCARDS, a piece for piano and orchestra, which was performed by the Papcastle Community Orchestra and sponsored by the Arts Council.