! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! !
Volume 2. Issue 2
Welcome . . . Before I started this issue, I thought I was going to struggle to find sufficient quality material. It was therefore a great feeling to realise that there is always something to talk about and lots of information to keep everyone up to speed with developments. So sit back and relax and see for yourselves just what has been going on since the last newsletter. It has been a busy time: adding to the local birth rate with 4 new babies, collecting the profiles of 3 of our string players and reviewing the 3 concerts we’ve had since November. By the way, don’t forget to enter our Spot the Logo competition: if you don’t enter you won’t have a chance to win! Find out our last issue’s winner below. Bryan Ps you might notice that the newsletter isn’t quite up to the professional design standards of the past. The reason is simple. I am doing it myself now rather than going to our wonderful printers: an attempt to save money whilst keeping me off the streets at the same time! ! !
Spot the Logo The winner of the last newsletter logo competition was our very own Viv Bird (leader of the 2nd violins) who spotted Bryan on Lake Titicaca. Pair of complementary tickets go to Viv.
! ! ! ! ! ! !
The next competition is a little trickier. Any ideas where Bryan is this time? Entries: go to the website!
A Viola tale For some strange reason, viola players have become the blunt end of some vicious (and yet excellent) jokes. The question is, how do people so young know about these things? It was written by Jocasta Perry’s son Alex and Jocasta did point out that the window in the kitchen did actually break (although she was sure it wasn't anything to do with her viola playing!) “I was putting my birthday cards away earlier this evening and thought you might find my son's artwork amusing”:
! ! November concerts overview The first concert was on Sunday 10 th at Leeds University at the Clothworkers’ Hall. This was an experimental concert: our first for a long time out of our Harrogate comfort zone. Certainly the 90 or so people who came to hear us enjoyed the programme and particularly the atmosphere created by Alfredo Coral and Alberto Portugheis. Alfredo was particularly impressed by the way we performed and especially how the players followed his instructions. The acoustics in the hall were excellent and the organisers were pleased with the turn out. It was a very interesting 4 days at the Western household: with 2 Argentineans in residence! Alfredo especially couldn’t get over the open spaces of Pateley Bridge and Harrogate town centre but didn’t think much to our cold, wet weather. Our second concert at the Royal Hall was a great success with a reasonably sized audience but nevertheless very appreciative and enthusiastic. Semiramide was stunning, so I am told (as good as any professional performance) and the Tchaikovsky went unbelievably well. As you might have guessed, there were mixed reactions to the Koshkin with the Aquarelle Guitar Quartet. Some people thought it was really atmospheric and enjoyed the dark qualities in the music. Others just didn’t like it at all. All were in agreement though that the Rimsky Korsakov encore was excellent. December at the HIC Once again, a great evening and didn’t the children rise to the occasion as always? It is always a pleasure to do this concert in such fabulous surroundings. It is just a pity we failed to capture a capacity audience, despite our efforts to organise ticket collections for the schools. Some 17 schools took part and we sold just short of 900 seats. Time will tell if we can afford to plan such a concert at the HIC in the future.
A regular feature now of our newsletters, this time
focussing on some string players: John Richards 2nd violin . John joined The Harrogate String Orchestra (one of the forerunners of the HSO) in the 1970s and is therefore the longest serving member of the HSO. In his time he has played in both the 1st and 2nd violin sections. Born and educated in Harrogate, he spent most of his working life in administration: chiefly in export/shipping and latterly in retail. He is interested in a wide range of music but thinks all of his desert island discs would be firmly rooted in the classical tradition. Now in retirement he counts among his other interests going for country rambles and visits to theatre and cinema. Caroline Frazer (2nd violin) I joined the HSO in April last year after moving from London to Yorkshire, where I’m just about getting over the shock of people actually speaking to each other! I grew up in Coventry (the less said about that, the better), escaped to the States and spent 10 years there teaching Spanish in Charlotte and Boston. Homesick, I returned to the Midlands, where unfortunately teaching wasn’t quite so much fun (think flying textbooks and you get the picture). So it was another exit, to London this time, and a long period of transition into a new career. I’m now an organisational and career coach, with a focus on supporting people through transitions. I started playing the violin aged 8, and it’s been my constant companion as I’ve played in orchestras all over the place, including the US and Germany. Once, I was even involved in entertaining a Pope. Musically, I mean. But by far the best orchestral experience in every way is the HSO…must be that Yorkshire gobbiness that makes it so brilliant ☺!
Jocasta Perry (viola) I started playing the violin at school and after a break of a number of years I started playing again with the North London Sinfonia, rediscovering my love of making music as part of a group. We moved up north three years so, the HSO being one of the reasons we chose to live in Knaresborough! I started learning the viola two years ago, as I have always liked its richer tone, and the idea of being the middle of the musical harmony. It was certainly a mental challenge – after a few weeks I wondered if I’d ever get the hang of it – but I think I’ve just about got there now (although my son seems to disagree!). When I’m not playing the viola (or listening to my children’s music practice!) I enjoy making things – I am currently making a leather bag inspired by the artwork of Sonia Delaunay, and have also made a bag from crisp packets and one from crocheted supermarket carrier bags.
Other news Katharine Blease (1st violin) Shortly after the November concert I set off for Ho Chi Minh City (formally Saigon) in Southern Vietnam. The contents of my hand luggage caused an additional search at Heathrow security but they were satisfied to find it was just a cycle helmet, padded shorts and a gel seat cover! On arrival in Vietnam I met up with some like-minded individuals and a local guide who would take us on a varied, exciting route to the border with Cambodia and then on to Angkor Wat - an incredible world heritage site. After experiencing the madness of the city with mopeds flying in every direction frequently with 3 or more passengers on board, we cycled through the mainly lush green landscape of the Mekong Delta. There were numerous river and canal crossings on ferries and wooden plank bridges, which proved fun to negotiate on two wheels! The border crossing into Cambodia involved a relaxing boat trip and a day for the legs to recover. The landscape in Cambodia was much drier with countless temples and colourful pagodas dotted throughout. The people were equally friendly– children and adults alike didn’t seem to tire of waving at us strange people on bicycles! Angkor Wat temple complex was a stunning backdrop for the finish after 450km on the bikes. I also visited Ta Prohm, a temple with giant tree roots breaking through which was used as a location in the Tomb Raider film. I’d thoroughly recommend a visit to both these countries. The food is fantastic and the people very welcoming. Cycling was a great way to get off the beaten track although I appreciate it’s probably not for everyone! Katharine in action Congratulations to Nathaniel Elcock (violin2) and Rebecca Robinson (flute/piccolo) who have announced their engagement. Nathaniel said, “The HSO was instrumental in bringing together our relationship”. Music to our ears!
HSO continues its reputation
growing concern, with 4 new babies arriving this year: Anna Sutherland (oboe and cor anglais) Just a note to let you know that Lucy Althea Sutherland arrived on Friday 3rd January at 9:30am weighing 5lb 15oz. We have just got home today as she needed a little TLC due to her small size. All doing well now as you can see.
Emma Shea our leading lady managed to avoid the hospital by delivering son Brody in the kitchen. Dad was the impromptu midwife and Brody weighed in at 7.lbs 9oz. Emma and Brody
Katie Western (ex violin 1 and soloist but hopes to return at some point) 4 weeks after the dates she was originally given, Katie and Kevin were relieved to announce the birth of another son to brother Harry. Ralph (and wait for it . . . ) Bryan Western was born on January 19th weighing 7lb 3oz. Harry has suddenly grown up to big brother at the age of 5 and simply adores Ralph but has to be continually restrained from trying to carry him and play with him with his Batman cave and action figures. Katie and Ralph Bryan, Harry and Ralph
Jenny Rhodes (2nd violin) our baby boy eventually arrived on Tuesday 21st January at 1.12am. (It seemed a long wait from our due date of the 8 Jan!) He is called Alfie Clark Rhodes and weighed 9lb 3oz. We are all doing well and Sophie says he is "the best thing in the whole wide world!" Jenny and family
Hot off the press: Bryan’s South American escapades will continue at the end of November this year when he will be conducting amongst other items Beethoven’s Triple Concerto. Incidentally Alfredo Corral , who is a fabulous concert pianist, has offered to make a return trip to Harrogate to perform for us. He will be playing either the Saint-Saens or Rachmaninov 2 nd piano concerto. HSO Sales: (please go to the sales stand where all the following are available) HSO logos for the car: free! CDs: March 2013 world music programme with Inca @ £8 (double cd) DVDs; March 2012 Carmina Burana with St Aidan’s community Chorus and Chamber Choir with Carloine Heard playing Bruch’s violin concerto. £10 (double dvd) June 2014 “No Strings” concert. This is a fantastic recording of the evening programme: a wonderful Peter and the Wolf with Wayne the Wolf and a fabulous Beethoven Pastoral performance. A charity fund raiser for a bargain £10 (double dvd) Ps we will be recording professionally the March 2014 concert Other items: T-shirts @ £7 or £10 for a polo shirt Fleeces @ £20
Friends Great news on the friends front: Kathy has managed to break the 100 mark: we now have 103 ‘ Friends of HSO’. Well done to Kathy Incidentally the knitted toys and egg cozies she made for Christmas raised £27. New members A warm welcome to: Rebecca Todd (trumpet). Although we have seen her on many occasions she will be joining us on a more regular basis. Elizabeth Waters (violin) Rob Varley (double bass). Rob played with us a few years back, but it is great he is on board again.
Dates for the diary March 15th : Beethoven Egmont Overture, Beethoven violin concerto (Bartosz Woroch YCAT) and Sibelius Symphony 1. 7th June: Tour de France Gala Concert British and French National Anthems and a new commission by Nick Salmon to celebrate the event Copland Fanfare for the Common Man, Offenbach Can Can (Orpheus in the Underworld), Wagner Ride of the Valkyries (Die Wakure), Adams A Short Ride on a Fast Machine, Williams Flying theme from ET, Herold The Clog Dance (La Fille Mal Gardee), Schonberg Les Miserables (extracts), Elgar Nimrod and Pomp and Circumstance March no. 1, Henry Wood/Malcolm Sergeant Fantasia on British Sea Songs and Rule Britannia and Parry Jerusalem.
15th November: Beethoven Coriolan Overture, Brahms piano concerto no.2 (Julian Saphir) Rachmaninov 2 nd Symphony 13th December Family Christmas Concert to be confirmed 2015 21st March: Sibelius Karelia Suite, Shostakovich Cello Concerto no 1 (Laura van der Heijden, BBC Young Musician of the Year 2012 winner), Salmon Air and Fandango and Respighi Pines of Rome. 20th June: working on a songs from the shows theme 21st November: by popular request, Elgar Enigma Variations, Mozart Clarinet Concerto (Chris Armitage) and the concert starts with the Berlioz Roman Carnival Overture
. . . and finally: " Developments on the proposed tour to Spain have come to a grinding halt I’m afraid. Like the Swedish idea, it is easier said than done to organise flights to Coruna. There is no direct flight from Leeds so we’d have to go down to Heathrow and fly from there. It is at the moment also very expensive and the companies won’t give a reduced price until next year. Life isn’t simple is it? " Andy Williams our principal horn has been working hard to secure his place in the London Marathon. “Training is going well despite sore tendons and soggy weather! I'm aiming for £2,500 for www.leukaemiacare.org.uk and following great efforts of my Parents’ friends I now have £1,199. I would be immensely grateful for any support my friends in the orchestra could offer either through www.virginmoneygiving.com/Deedasmarathon or catching me at rehearsal”. " Although we were not successful in securing a grant for our June ‘Le Tour’ concert, we are included in the publicity as a fringe event. Have a look on the Grand Depart website for details. " Did you read Bryan’s article in the Harrogate Advertiser as guest columnist writing about the HSO? " We are to be in the paper again: this time highlighted on the ‘club focus’ page. " Help! We need someone who would be able to run our sales desk at concerts. It is not an onerous job, collecting the programme money from the air cadets, having spare programmes ready to sell and to sell our CDs and DVDs. The person is still able to hear all the concert: it is just as the audience arrives and departs and during the interval when we need the help. Is there anyone out there? " Many happy returns to Doris Beaumont in the 2nd violins. I’m sure she won’t mind everyone knowing (as we have already celebrated her birthday) that Doris is oldest playing member of the orchestra. I wonder if Vanessa May will be this good at the age of 85? " You are aware of the old saying ”any publicity can be good publicity” so please forward this newsletter to all your friends and relations.