Saturday, 15 November 2014

Exeter Symphony Orchestra Tuesday Rehearsals for "The Pity of War" Gustav Holst 2nd Suite for Military Band, Erich Korngold Violin Concerto (Solo Violin Mihkel Kerem), George Butterworth "Banks of Green Willow", Ralph Vaughan Williams 6th Symphony Full Performance Southernhay United Reformed Church Saturday 15 November 2014

Harp: Alison Sydenham

Conductor: Brian Northcott
Exeter Symphony Orchestra

At a final run-through before the big day, Exeter Symphony Orchestra filled the gymnasium at St Michael's Primary School in Heavitree with impressive sound. Their regular Tuesday evening rehearsal opened with Gustav Holst's explosive Suite for Military Band. Three trombones, tuba and three trumpets were joined by five French horns. There were also impressive solos for bass clarinet and tenor saxophone.

There was also a spellbinding rendition of Vaughan Williams' Sixth Symphony, and an intriguing performance of Korngold's Violin Concerto, without solo violin. (Mihkel Kerem will join the orchestra tonight.) Completing the picture was Butterworth's "The Banks of Green Willow" featuring lilting strings and superb woodwind solos for several players.

The standard of playing is quite extraordinary. Gill Crew leads skilfully, keeping the string section in tight formation while the woodwind and brass sections blow up a storm. It is not just in the Military Suite that the horns amaze with their immense power.

Virtually every woodwind player steps forward for a solo performance during tonight's programme. Ruth Molins (of course) - who is going to play Mozart's Concerto for Flute and Harp with Sally Jenkins next March - and also Caroline Thomas and Tara Fletcher (oboes), Karen Gale (clarinet), Christine Austin (cor anglias), and special solos for Rosie Lester (tenor saxophone) and Robert Stevenson (piccolo). Every one is a joy to hear, and a showcase of passion and precision.

Despite the underlying theme of tragedy and sadness, this concert revives the spirits with its variety and exuberance. Southernhay Church tonight will be the place to experience the highly polished sound of our very own symphony orchestra.

Full details of the concert are on the Exeter Symphony Orchestra Website

Tickets to the concert cost £12 are available at the door.

It is not too late to book in advance at the Tourist Information Centre (opposite the church).

Advance tickets are only £10.

Anyone under 18 and still attending school or college can enjoy the concert FREE.

[Also see Concert Poster in pdf)

Take a look at some of the wonderful musicians at Tuesday's rehearsal, preparing for tonight's perfromance . . .

Tuba: Colin Dance
Tenor Saxophone:
Rosie Lester
Bass Drum: Mark Perry
Snare Drum: John Harlock
Triangle: Daphne Harlock
French Horns:
Paul Bridgman, Tracey Alder
Cecilia Lock, Kate Manners
Horn Duet
Banks of Green Willow
Flute: Ruth Molins
Flute: Sophie Brewer Oboe: Caroline Thomas
Oboe: Tara Fletcher
Cor Anglais: Christine Austin
Karen Gale
Bass Clarinet:
Sarah Vaughan
Andrea Higgins & 
Ian Crew
Trevor Kirkin, Lee Andrea . . .
and Paul Rycroft
(Tuba: Colin Dance)
Solo Trombone: Trevor Kirkin
Myles Taylor, Elizabeth Wood, Joshua Beadon

Keyboard: Mark Perry
Tympani: Daphne Horlock

John Harlock
takes over the tympani
while Daphne Harlock
takes charge of the
Clash Cymbals

Double Basses:
Moira Davenport, Hilary Judd, Garry Lester

Garry Lester
leads a double bass
pizzicato passage
Alison Sydenham
replies on harp
Ruth Molins: eyes front

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