Making his debut since being appointed the new Director of Music of the Royal Marines Association Concert Band, Lt. Col. Chris Davis opened this joint concert with the Portsmouth Grammar School Senior Brass Band at Portsmouth Cathedral on Wednesday 12th July 2017.
A tight and assured opening of three contrasting marches; Hall’s New Colonial, Tchaikovsky’s resplendent Marche Militaire and Goff Richards’ Marchamba established the precision and accuracy which clearly embodies Chris’ style of leadership. Further highlights in the band’s programme included the famous Khatchaturian Masquerade Waltz and then later a personal favourite of the Director of Music an arrangement of Vaughan Williams Prelude to the film 49th Parallel.
As well as presenting a range of impressive and entertaining feature pieces themselves including a Wild West! Selection, the Strauss Zarathustra Fanfare and a brass arrangement of the William Tell Overture, the bands also collaborated in a powerful tour-de-force style finale; Barraclough’s contest march Simoraine conducted by PGS Brass Band director, Graham Brown followed by the mighty and regal Elsa’s Procession to the Cathedral from Wagner’s opera, Lohengrin.
Yet this summary would not be complete without mention of a further fundamental aim fulfilled for the Royal Marines’ Association Concert Band. Before the finale, a cheque for £10.000 was presented to the corps charity marking the band’s commitment to the well-being and recuperation of injured members of the armed forces and their families.