Some concerts just take off and roll from the first notes, others take time to warm up,slowly catching fire as the musical moments ignite, and sometimes concerts are a little flat and never rise above the temperature slightly below an old cup of coffee !
Friday evening's concert was positively combusting from the opening choral piece ! The whole group sang very well with a real sense of focus and purpose and from the opening strains of the lovely negro spiritual 'L'l David Play on your Harp' the programme zipped along. I must say we had a wonderfully reactive audience, and boy does that help.
The duets and ensembles went well, considering how little together time a couple of them had, showing in itself that the more advanced one is, and the more confident the singers, putting parts together and singing sensitively becomes an easy and natural task. The Arne duet with B and A was quite delightful, and so beautifully in tune and musical sync, and the Humperdinck Evening Prayer went well with a lovely sense of line and fervency from the more adult A and M, N and E sang the glorious Strings in the Earth and Air by Christopher Le Fleming, and despite the fact they had never sung it together since the rehearsal it was elegant and very musical. A late runner from the point of view of performance experience was a most amusing and endearing version of Underneath the Arches, complete with straw boater and fur coat, sung by two of our stalwart gents I and G" and it went down a storm, with its casual foot fall and it's easy oazy approach, well done chaps ! L and L sang a hugely funny Charming Weather by Monkton, playing the two strait laced and star crossed lovers in 1920, seated on a park bench, and hoping for some privacy ! Their ability for comedy was brilliant, understated and detailed and thoroughly professional.
The youngsters I Want to Sing in Opera, as I had imagined went down quite beautifully, the audience laughed and the girls reacted, the audience laughed more and they went further down the 'over the top' road, and so the first half ended with a splurge of blinged up humour which clearly took the audience looking for the college bar and some happiness inducing refreshment!
I will describe the solo elements of the evening next time ! I made it to Boarbank Hall by 1pm yesterday, where the kindly sisters had held a fine steak pie lunch for me, after which, having had one hour of light sleep after the concert, I retired to my room with a view, managed to get undressed and lay on my bed. The next thing of which I was aware was the sun streaming through the window overlooking Morcambe Bay, and on checking my phone clock, seeing it was 8.25 am on Sunday morning ! I had slept for 16hours straight.......
I made it down in time for the heartiest breakfast I have eaten in 30 years and am now back in my room writing this and looking at what you can see below. Oh I love my job (well, mostly!)