Saturday 3rd December 2016
Venue: Emmanuel Church
Hess A Christmas OvertureDelius Sleigh Ride
Torme & Wells The Christmas Song
Tchaikovsky Waltz from the Nutcracker Suite
Humperdinck Evening Prayer
Irvine Berlin White Christmas Selection
SOUTHPORT BACH CHOIR
Rutter Nativity CarolBerlioz Shepherds’ FarewellRutter Candlelight CarolWarlock Benedicamus DominoTodd The Lord Has Come
WOODLANDS JUNIOR CHOIR
J Rimmer arr. A Nativity MedleyM & H Johnson Christmas Has StartedBlake arr. J Rimmer Walking In The AirM & H Johnson Rock around The Shops
The audience at Emmanuel Church, Cambridge Road, Southport, were treated to an exceptional concert by the Southport Orchestra and Guests last evening, Saturday, December 3rd 2016. A Festive Overture by Nigel Hess based on variations of seasonal songs and carols, opened the proceedings at 7.30pm, setting the scene for that which was to follow and the orchestra, under the direction of the conductor Jeff Rimmer, responded to the intensity of the score with enthusiasm. There followed a wide variety of seasonal music which included Mel Torme’s Christmas Song, three pieces associated with Sleigh Rides, The Waltz of the Flowers from Tchaikovsky’s Nutcracker Ballet, ending with Berlin’s wonderful music from the film, White Christmas.
A welcome addition to the event was provided by the Southport Bach Choir. Their strength of voice added to the general ambience, especially when the audience were pressed into participating in the carol singing, whilst the orchestra maintained a sympathetically restrained accompaniment.
A highlight of the evening was the appearance of songsters of the Woodlands Junior School Choir from Formby, who enchanted the audience with their versions of a number of seasonal songs. The enthusiasm to give of their best was most apparent and the youngsters, aged between seven and eleven years, must have made their music teachers really proud especially with their performance of Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer.
The final Sleigh Ride was Leroy Anderson’s, a fitting end to an amazing concert, to which the appreciation of the audience was so evident.
Messages from our guest performers following the concert:
The Chair of Southport Bach Choir –
” It was a thoroughly enjoyable evening, full of fun and calculated to get everyone into the Christmas spirit. Thank you for allowing us to join Southport Orchestra; the choir look forward to working with you on future occasions.”
The headteacher of Woodlands Primary School-
“I would like to thank you on behalf of the pupils, parents and staff at Woodlands for inviting us to be part of such an incredible evening. The children had a wonderful time; they were thrilled to be able to sing with your orchestra – it was an experience they will never forget. We were made to feel so welcome and really felt part of the whole experience.
I am glad your orchestra enjoyed the performance of our Junior Choir – the feeling was mutual! The children were fascinated being able to see the orchestra work at such close quarters I know this has inspired our musicians to reach even greater heights with their own instruments. Please pass on our thanks and appreciation to Jeff and the whole of the orchestra.”
Saturday 25th June 2016
Venue: The Atkinson
SO DAZZLINGHolst Jupiter from the PlanetsGrainger Country Gardens
Sousa Washington Post
Gluck Dance of the Blessed Spirits
Gounod Funeral March of a Marionette
Berlioz Hungarian March
Coates By the Sleepy Lagoon
Márquez Conga del Fuego Nuevo
Throughout its long history it has been the practice of The Southport Orchestra to present three public concerts each year using a range of venues including churches, The Winter Gardens, Palace Hotel, Leyland Arcade, The Prince of Wales, The Floral Hall and The Cambridge Hall. Over time the Orchestra’s summer concerts have become the highlight of their year and their 2016 concert, presented in June, was no exception.For the second time since its refurbishment The Atkinson was this year’s concert venue which was a nostalgic choice as the Orchestra marked its founding 130 years ago. Back in 1888 their first major concert was in the Cambridge Hall, beginning a long association stretching over many years.This year’s summer concert was played to a near capacity audience. Resident conductor Jeff Rimmer focused the programme on light classical music, successfully achieving his aim of pleasing everyone from the youngest to the oldest. The programme included Strauss’ Blue Danube, Holst’s Jupiter, Grainger’s Country Garden, The Washington Post March by Sousa and The Conga del Fuego Nuevo by Marquez. The Orchestra is now rehearsing for its next concert to be held in Emmanuel Church, Cambridge Road, Southport, on Saturday 3rd December commencing at 7.30 pm. Not surprisingly Christmas music will be a feature of the programme and the audience is sure to have an enjoyable experience.
Saturday 12th March 2016
Venue: St Johns Birkdale
Vaughan Williams The Wasps – Overture
Tchaikovsky Piano Concerto No.1 in Bb Minor
Soloist – Tom Kimmance
Vaughan Williams Symphony No. 2 ‘A London Symphony’
A fund raising concert in support of the local branch of the Motor Neurone Disease Association was held in St. John’s Church, Birkdale, Southport, on Saturday last, 12 March 2016 at 7.30pm where the Southport Orchestra gave a performance to a capacity audience. The concert included three works, two British and one Russian.
The Orchestra, leader Melanie Foster, as usual under the baton of its popular musical director, Jeff Rimmer, set the scene with the bright and lively Overture, The Wasps by Ralph Vaughan Williams.
This was followed by Tchaikovsky’s great B flat minor Piano Concerto in which members of the Orchestra were delighted to welcome once again the local virtuoso, Tom Kimmance. Following the mighty opening chords in the first movement, Tom astounded everyone with a bravura performance, combining power with tenderness. The poetry of Tom’s immaculate interpretation was matched by the players under the watchful eye of the conductor Jeff, who guided the performance through the final movement to a monumental ending, at the conclusion of which the audience rose spontaneously to its feet in rapturous applause.
After a short interval, the Southport Orchestra performed the Symphony No.2, by Ralph Vaughan Williams, entitled, ‘A London Symphony’ in which the composer explored in musical form the variety of moods to be experienced in the capital. It is a work which requires absolute concentration from opening to conclusion. The players rose to the challenge and received well deserved audience appreciation. All in all, this was a concert which will live long in the memory.
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