Rehearsals over, and before the Showcase Concert, the delegates, tutors and volunteers enjoyed cheese and wine on a glorious summer’s evening. The University of Nottingham has been a generous and helpful host of an amazing few days of music making. What a rich experience has been had by all – rehearsals of repertoire perhaps not encountered before, small ensemble workshops for instrumentalists, a singing masterclass with Carris Jones followed by a recital, insights into ensemble playing from the Cox Quartet and Equinox Saxophone Ensemble open rehearsals and concerts by both groups, a fascinating talk about Shakespeare and music by John Florance, developing technique sessions, the opportunity to ask advice from the experts in voice and instruments, making new friends, and performing in a concert.
The concert gave each group an opportunity to showcase its Shakespeare inspired repertoire to the other delegates of the School and a small audience (fire regulations limiting the number of people allowed in the space). A slight hiccup preceeded the concert, which led to some relieved and kindly singing fun – Oh dear, what can the matter be… etc etc!
The full orchestra played a medley from Kiss me Kate, Mendelssohn’s incidental suite A Midsummer Night’s Dream (often known as The Wedding March, sometimes played as the couple leave the church), music from William Walton’s Henry V suite (for the Olivier film of the same name, and with a movement for the String Orchestra only), and Vaughan Williams Serenade to Music. The last two pieces included the choir. The windband played both within the orchestra and on their own with a lively performance of a medley from Westside Story, Bernstein. As well as singing both the choir and solo parts of Serenade to Music, the choir performed two of Rutter’s Birthday Madrigals, Emma Lou Deimer’s Three Madrigals, The Agincourt Song from Walton’s Henry V and William Harris’s tender and poignant And Will A’ Not Come Again.
We hope all the delegates enjoyed the Summer School as much as we all did. Thank you for your hard work, friendliness and for making it such a wonderful few days. Here’s to the next one!
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