Band At Guildhall Dec 2013The band took part in a Christmas Celebration concert to a packed Portsmouth Guildhall on Sunday 22nd December with two choirs no less!

One with the aptly named title of "AChoired Taste"' directed by Lou Bundy and the other with the more unusual name of "The Art of Dance and Fitness Adult Choir." directed by Naomi Crossley

However, the combined concert resulted in a memorable and thoroughly enjoyable evening from every point of view, and hugely enjoyed by the audience who were most appreciative.

As it was very much a choir oriented concert, it meant that that the band did not have to work quite as hard as they normally do to provide all of the entertainment. This time they could sit back and listen to the choirs working in between numbers, which after five concerts in a month was possibly as well - particularly for the hard working brass sections!

Have to say that whenever they did perform, it was almost embarrassing to receive such exceptional applause on completion of each piece played, as it appeared to upstage the two choirs own superb performances.

The choirs produced some excellent harmonies and treatments to a whole host of songs from the shows, interspersed with various Christmas offerings throughout. These culminated in the finale of carols sung together with the band and a specially arrranged piece for band and choir by our Dir of Music Dave Cole, "It's Beginning to look a lot like Christmas!" that went down extremely well.

Highlight pieces by the band was the opening Gordon Langford arrangement entitled "Christmas Fantasy" that soon had the audience warmed up before the combined choirs took centre stage again!

Later they continued with Ray Woodfield's excellent "Christmas Melodies" a selection to show off the full repertoire of the bands expertise in all genre's of music (classical to big band swing.) This saw the audience cheering for more, and they duly received just that with Leroy Anderson's evocative piece "Sleigh Ride" featuring Flute Player Sid Tanner on Whip! and finishing with the exhausted, whinnying reindeer beautifully executed by Alan Flood on Trumpet!

The Choirs selection of music continued with some superb renderings of music from Les Miserables, Mary Poppins and Sweet Charity - in particular their clever interpretation of the popular and fast moving Rythmn of Life.

Later on their stand out piece was undoubtably the blending of two beautiful melodies. "Ave Maria" and the unforgettable "I Believe" sung together in juxtopostion. Unusual yes, but the chord structures seemed to work very well together. Well done to all.

The Band's stand out was undoubtably their final work by Eric Ball "The Kingdom Triumphant" which received a standing ovation. Prior to this was Barker's Suite and clever twist on well known Christmas Carols, "Past Three O'clock" and the fastest "We Three Kings" you'll ever have heard!!

A great night's entertainment and we have to say, we've never seen two conductors conducting at the same time, which was the case for the choir's renderings. Interesting, and at times amusing to watch both of their individual interpretations! At the finale, we had three conductors, with Dave Cole valiantly ensuring that the Band set the tempo throughout!!

We all take a well earned rest now until next year before we commence rehearsals again on Jan 9th in preparation for our Worthing Concert on Sun 2nd February.

Have a good festive season and all good luck for 2014.

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