This is an edited version of the Havant Orchestras newsletter which is provided in printed form (or e-mailed in PDF format, if requested) to players and Friends of the Orchestras.
The Havant OrchestrasPresident: The Rt Hon. the Lord Willetts   Patrons: The Mayor of Havant; The Mayor of Fareham
February 2018 Newsletterwww.havantorchestras.org.uk
From the Chairman …
It’s the time of year when we reveal our plans for next season! Our programme of main concerts for the 2018-19 season is described in the brochure included with this newsletter and on the Havant Orchestras website. We are continuing our usual scheme of three main concerts by each orchestra, with Havant Chamber Orchestra continuing at the convenient location of Ferneham Hall, Fareham, and the larger Havant Symphony Orchestra performing in the excellent hall at Oaklands School, Waterlooville.
Ticket prices remain unchanged again for this season, with separate season tickets available for the three main concerts at each venue and an additional discount when buying both season tickets to cover all six concerts. Please book season tickets using the form included with the brochure, which can be handed in at a concert or posted to the Tickets Secretary. Additional copies of the form are available at concerts, where you can also pick up more printed copies of the brochure for yourself and your friends. A PDF copy of the form, suitable for printing on A4 paper, can be downloaded from next season’s “Tickets” page on the website.
Season tickets booked before the 7th July HSO concert at Oaklands can be collected at that concert, otherwise please enclose an SAE so that the Tickets Secretary can post them to you. Tickets for individual concerts normally become available about two months before each concert, but for the first concert in October booking does not usually open until around mid-September in order to allow preferred seats to be allocated for season tickets. (Season tickets will still be available after that date, but the seating choice may be more limited).
In addition to the six main concerts described in the brochure, HSO has its usual “Popular Classics” pre-season concert at Hayling Island Community Centre on Saturday 22nd September, selected and conducted by our current Bob Harding Bursary award holder, Richard Miller. This year’s programme, described on the back page, features cello soloist Ruth Hallows playing the Haydn C major concerto. Details of how to obtain tickets will be made available shortly before the July concert.
Meanwhile, we are looking forward to our concert on Saturday, with brilliant violin soloist Rose Hsien, who will also be giving the pre-concert talk at 6.30pm. There are not many opportunities to see live orchestral classical music in this area, so please make the most of it and bring along lots of friends to share the experience!
Saturday 19th May’s Programme
at Ferneham Hall, Fareham
|6.30||Pre-concert talk in the auditorium with our soloist Rose Hsien|
|7.00||Pre-concert interlude in the Octagon Lounge|
|7.20||Take your seats in the auditorium|
conducted by Robin Browning
|9.30 (approx)||End of Concert|
|We wish you a safe journey home.|
Pre-concert talk at 6.30pm in the auditorium
Our soloist Rose Hsien will be talking about the violin works.
We recommend taking seats at or near the front so that you can easily hear the speaker and musical excerpts. If you miss the start, please feel free to enter quietly.
Pre-concert interlude at 7.00pm in the Octagon Lounge
The pre-concert interlude in the Octagon Lounge will be given by students from Meoncross School, under the direction of Paula Barnes. Pop in to the lounge to listen to these talented youngsters, who appreciate the opportunity to perform in front of a friendly audience.
Notes from the conductor
I’m writing this piece over the bank holiday weekend, enjoying the gorgeous sun. Both are equally rare: the bank holiday sun, and my schedule allowing a sufficiently long enough break from conducting and travelling to enjoy it. This weather brings to mind the sunny, spring-like nature of the next HCO programme: Dvorak and Mozart, both at their best here - fresh, uplifting and spirited.
I always particularly love programmes that exhibit a coherent balance, shape and overall connectivity, as this one does. Full of symmetry, and both musical and geographical cross-connections, it appeals on so many levels. And, quite apart from anything else, it’s always enchanting to get a “double-dose” from such a wonderful soloist, especially in such contrasting works.
Rosie Hsien and I first met over a pert and articulate Mozart No 4 a few seasons ago. I was immediately struck by her dazzling technique, clarity of both tone and thought, and engaging personality on stage. Coming from such a tiny frame, her sound fills the hall, and her tone in turn smiling, or melancholic, as befits Mozart or Dvorak. I’m certain you'll find her as breathtaking as I have done when I’ve shared the stage with her.
The Mozart concerto has always been one of my favourites, being perhaps the first proper concerto I learned, and later performed, as a young violinist at the start of my career. The young Wolfgang packs so much into it: from the wide sweep of the opening movement, through a central adagio of almost unbearable beauty and restraint, into a rondo finale filled with invention, and nearly improvisation.
The Mozart/Czech theme continues with Dvorak’s Romance, one of the highlights of the shorter solo repertory, and the same composer’s Czech Suite, full of some singularly Bohemian signatures: buoyant, articulated rhythms, long-flowing cantabile lines and a real joy of life - even when in a minor key. Touches of melancholy, yes - as Dvorak could do so well - but always eventually turning to a smile, if not even a grin.
And we end in Prague, although not in Dvorak's time, but that of Mozart: one of the most perfectly-formed of all Mozart symphonies. Opening with one of the most intricate slow introductions of its time, it eventually yields a first movement of real depth and virtuosity. Some scholars even contest that the slow movement contains the kernel of Edward Elgar’s famous, yet eternally veiled, Enigma theme. If you listen carefully, you can spot it nested in the codetta of each half.
Mozart, Dvorak and Prague. What can be better for spring? Plus it’s such a wonderful coda to our season. Thank you all for your support throughout the year and I look forward to sharing music with you again next year.
Robin Browning www.robinbrowning.com
CD recommendations for the works in this concert
Sourced by Gordon Egerton (Clarinet)
Dvořák - Czech Suite
Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra, Jose Serebrier
(c/w Symphony no.9 'From the New World' and 2 Slavonic Dances)
Warner Classics 2564 666 563 £12.75
Mozart - Violin Concerto No. 3
Arthur Grumiaux, London Symphony Orchestra, Sir Colin Davis
(c/w the other 4 violin concertos, the Sinfonia Concertante, the Adagio in E, and the Rondo in C)
Decca Duo 438 3232 £11.50
Dvořák – Romance
Josef Suk, Czech Philharmonic Orchestra, Vaclav Neumann
(c/w Violin Concerto, Suk Fantasy, and 'A Fairy Tale' Suite)
Supraphon SU40472 £9.75
Mozart - Symphony No. 38
English Concert, Trevor Pinnock
(c/w Symphony no.39)
DG Archiv 4491 422 £12.75
(Prices quoted are from the Presto Classical website).
Other musical events
Sunday 10th June 2018, 3.00 to 4.00pm
St. Faith’s Church, Havant
The Dolce String Quartet
Mozart: Quartet in A, K.464
Haydn: Quartet in G, Op.6 No. 1
Refreshments will be available; retiring collection in aid of The Big Build Campaign
Thursday 14th June 2018, 7.30pm
Petersfield Festival Hall
Rossini: Overture ‘The Thieving Magpie’
Bruch: Concerto for Clarinet & Viola, with Rob Blanken & Malcolm Porter
Beethoven: Symphony No. 3 ‘Eroica’
Saturday 16th June 2018, 7.30pm
Turner Sims, Southampton
Southampton Concert Orchestra
Arturo Márquez: Danzón No. 2
Brahms: Piano Concerto No. 1, with soloist Jinah Shim
Malcolm Arnold: Symphony No. 2
If you enjoy attending live classical music concerts, there isn’t an enormous choice in the Havant and Fareham area, especially as there are few suitable venues, but there may well be more than you think.
See the Events page on our website www.havantorchestras.org.uk for listings which include not only Havant Orchestras concerts but also many other amateur and semi-professional orchestral concerts and chamber music events in the region. The area covered includes Havant and Fareham and adjoining areas such as Portsmouth, Southampton, Winchester, Petersfield and Emsworth, and even further in some cases (including Basingstoke, Chichester and the Isle of Wight).
See also the ‘Music in Portsmouth’ website www.musicinportsmouth.co.uk for listings of amateur instrumental and choral concerts in the Portsmouth area.