Delighted to be making their debut at Bath Abbey on Saturday 30th April as guests of The Bath Chorus and Bath Male Choir, the Royal Marines Association Concert Band under the direction of Major (Retd.)
Tony Smallwood opened with music to both challenge and maximise the mighty acoustic. An arrangement of the soundtrack from ET followed by the classic march Soldiers of the Sea and the popular and evocative overture Light Cavalry left the audience breathless. Yet it was not only the close harmony in the gentle mix of spiritual and secular classics performed by the choirs, which provided contrast. When the band played again they showed their versatility through the Cotswold Folk Dance, Constant Billy and the beautiful sacred classic by Cesar Franck, Panis Angelicus aptly arranged by Mac McDermott for solo trumpet and performed by Jonathan Yates (BEM).
Following the concert the choirs’ Musical Director Grenville Jones reported that he had been stopped in town later that week by members of the audience who proclaimed it to be ‘truly amazing’.
Undoubtedly a major contributory factor must have been the rousing patriotic finale which saw choirs and band combining for Finlandia, Jerusalem and Britannic Salute. Rapturous applause could only follow along with the lingering thought that a return visit must surely be “on the cards”.