Our next event will be the Annual General Meeting which will start at 6.15pm on Saturday, 25th February 2017 in Toddington Village Hall. This will be followed at 7.30pm by a concert by Alexander Pullen (marimba) and Jasmine Brown Saxophone) joint winners of the 2016 Young Musician Competition.
Admission – Members £5, Non-members £8
Caritas Harmony Choir gave our Christmas concert on Saturday, 3rd December 2016 in St George of England Church, Toddington. It was a wonderful evening which prepared us all for the festive season in style.
Well! What a treat we had. Seven excellent young musicians competing for our annual award. They were all wonderful and our adjudicator had a very hard time trying to decide the winner. In fact, he felt that two of them were so good that the first prize should be shared by them. Alexander Pullen (playing the marimba) and Jasmine Brown (playing the saxophone) were the worthy winners and will give a concert at our AGM next February. Don’t miss it!
Alan Durman provided us with a wonderful evening of the music of George Gershwin, arranged for the piano, based around Gershwin’s visits to and shows produced in London. Alan has had a lifetime interest in Gershwin and while researching for a book on the composer’s visits to London came across the music for piano selections from the shows being produced. He enjoyed playing these arrangements of Gershwin’s melodies and, in some cases, they were the only way of hearing music from forgotten shows. These had never been recorded and Alan realised that, if he wanted to listen to them, he would have to record them himself – which he has done. These recordings have featured on Classic FM.
It was a fantastic evening described by one of our members as “both educational and entertaining” while another member of the audience commented that she felt that she had had “a real night out!”. Alan talked about Gershwin’s visits to London in the 1920s and played piano arrangements from shows such as Mayfair & Montmartre, Primrose, Lady be Good, Tip-Toes, Oh, Kay! and Funny Face. A real trip down memory lane.
Cristian Grajner De Sa (violin) and Susana Gomez Vazquez (piano) provided our first concert after the summer break. They provided a wonderful selection of music including Beethoven’s Violin Sonata No. 5 in F Major, Op. 24 “Spring” and Debussy’s Violin Sonata in G Minor. A real treat.
Our President Adrian Boynton provided an evening of music with guests Holly Cook (flute) and Addison Wray (clarinet). The wonderfully varied music spanned the periods from the 18th to the 20th century and was a real treat.
Cantores Choir from Luton, accompanied by Peculi8 gave us another fabulous evening of music. This young choir always provide a wonderful concert and their enthusiasm is infectious.
On Saturday, 19th March 2016 we welcomed back the Reigate Wind Quintet formed of professional orchestral musicians, who have performed with orchestras such as the London Philharmonic, BBC Symphony, BBC NOW, Britten Sinfonia and Royal Liverpool Philharmonic. The performers will be Helen Bennett – Clarinet, Anna Durance – Oboe, Stephen Nicholls – Horn, Daniel Emson-Jukes – Bassoon and Gemma Emson-Jukes – Flute. Their programme included the Quintet by Carl Nielsen, La Chimnee De Roi Rene by Milhaud and Kleine Kammermusik fur funf blaster by Paul Hindermith. What a splendid evening! You can learn more about this group by visiting their website
Our AGM was held on Saturday, 13th February 2016 in the Village Hall, Toddington. This was followed by a concert organised by our 2015 Young Musician of the Year winner, Rachel Ridout. And what a concert she provided! She sang a variety of songs and arias herself, which were wonderful, but in addition she had two of the other Young Musician contestants as guests. First, Jasmine Blackshaw-Britton (who played some beautiful pieces an the cello) and Charlotte Sleet who sang in a trio of voices with two other girls (Rebecca Osborn and Francesca Carroll). It was a very lovely evening and we are sure that we will hear more of these talented young artists.
As always, our President Adrian Boynton, treated us to a wonderful concert to end the year. The New English Singers were joined by Emily Mowbray (violin) and Andrew Gray (oboe) to give us a varied concert with a Christmas theme. A lovely way to end our programme year and put us in the mood for Christmas.