After a couple of days of rather dramatic weather we were keeping our fingers crossed for more settled conditions for Willoughby Open Gardens yesterday – and we were not disappointed!
The sun was out, but there was enough cloud cover to stop our Sunday Afternoon Flute and Swing groups from melting as they performed in the stunning surrounds of the pretty village of Willoughby. Visitors and musicians alike enjoyed a lovely afternoon of garden gazing, plant buying and cake eating while being entertained by the variety of music performed by these two groups.
A share of the proceeds from this event will be going to support our Open Voices groups for adults with learning difficulties. Thank you and well done to all those who took part.
A big thank you also to Beeston and Chilwell Opens Gardens last weekend, who are donating some of their proceeds to Open Voices as one of their supported charities!
‘A Midsummer Night’s Dream’
Tomorrow – 22nd June – marks the Summer Solstice here in the UK, aka the longest day from sunrise to sunset. Midsummer’s eve is traditionally celebrated on 23rd June, with Midsummer’s day on the 24th. With this in mind, we thought we’d offer you a small playlist for the week with which to perform your sun salutations and enjoy these extra-long days.
First up, you might welcome the dawn with the soundtrack to the Pride and Prejudice remake of 2005. Yes we know that Jennifer Ehle and Colin Firth were the ONLY Lizzie Bennet and Mr Darcy worth remembering, but the soundtrack to the remake is pretty spellbinding, composed by Dario Marianelli and played beautifully by Jean-Yves Thibaudet here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-vYY0aRH46I
Now, we know that we could continue in a gentle manner with ‘Sunrise’ from Grieg’s Peer Gynt Suite, but we thought you might appreciate something a bit more impressive… and who better to give us that than Richard Strauss and his epic opening to ‘Also Sprach Zarathustra’ https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Szdziw4tI9o
After all that excitement, we probably need to calm down with an English art song… and although you’re probably all thinking of Ralph Vaughan-Williams’ soporific and shimmering ‘Silent Noon’ https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZI36pV7JfNs but have you ever come across this charming offering from a contemporary of RVW’s at music college, the enormously talented Rebecca Clarke https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oajJJmBk_Gc ? ‘June Twilight’ delivers us gently into that magical time of dusk when the moon grows and a pair of star-crossed lovers (or two!) might appear, and perhaps some mischievous fairies, a king, a queen, a tinker, a tailor and an unfortunate ass… it’s Mendelssohn’s Overture to A Midsummer Night’s Dream of course! https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SEkcP8lZvZA
- Finally, you might like to know that A Little Night Music composed by Stephen Sondheim, also plays upon the themes of Midsummer’s night. Set in Sweden around 1900, it involves a weekend in the country where a number of romantically entangled characters appear and all sorts of chaos ensues. At one point, an older member present at the party describes how the summer night “smiles” three times: first on the young, second on fools, and third on the old, and this is portrayed musically throughout in the returning theme of the Waltz https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=t4MwJh7dRKY – it is also most famous for the timeless and heart-wrenching ballad Send in the Clowns, which we will leave you with, sung here by the inimitable Dame Judi Dench… try not to cry! https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yvZex3Qf7QQ
Have a good week!
Your friends at MfE.
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#MfEMondays are Music for Everyone’s weekly emails designed to keep you up to date with MfE events & to circulate interesting finds, special features, and motivational moments for your Mondays! We are aiming to send out something new each week.