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Newsletter for May 2016

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 Orchestras

President: The Rt Hon. the Lord Willetts    Patrons: The Mayor of Havant; The Mayor of Fareham

May 2016 Newsletter

From the Chairman …

Our exciting programme of concerts for the 2016-17 season has now been announced, as described in the accompanying brochure and on the Havant Orchestras website.  As for the current season, it includes three main concerts by each orchestra, with Havant Chamber Orchestra at Ferneham Hall, Fareham, and Havant Symphony Orchestra at Oaklands Catholic School, Waterlooville.

We have kept the same ticket prices 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.

Season tickets can now be booked using the accompanying form, which can be handed in at a concert or posted to the Tickets Secretary.  Copies of the form are available at concerts, where you can also pick up additional 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 9th July HSO concert at Oaklands can optionally 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 in September, and HCO will be performing an extra strings concert at the new Emsworth Baptist Church hall in March 2017.  More details of these concerts will be announced soon, and tickets for the Hayling concert will be on sale at the July HSO concert at Oaklands.

Returning to the present, Robin Browning has chosen to open this Saturday’s concert by introducing us to a work which is completely new to HCO but which won its Hungarian composer Leó Weiner multiple awards.  The other two works are much more familiar:  Mozart’s Piano Concerto No. 21, with its famously serene slow movement, and Mendelssohn’s joyous Italian Symphony. We are sure that there must be many more people out there who would enjoy our concerts, so if you have friends who might be interested in live classical music, this would be an ideal opportunity to bring them along!

Jonathan Scott     Tel: 023 8026 1372

We wish Peter Craddock a Happy 80th Birthday!

We have noted that Peter Craddock BEM, founder and for 50 years the musical director of the Havant Orchestras, reaches his 80th birthday later this month.  We would like to congratulate him and pass on very best wishes from everyone who enjoyed the results of his many years of dedication to the Havant Orchestras.

Saturday 14th May’s Programme

at Ferneham Hall, Fareham

6.30 Pre-concert talk in the auditorium by Alex Poulton
7.00 Pre-concert interlude in the Octagon Lounge
7.20 Take your seats in the auditorium
7.30 The Concert
conducted by Robin Browning.
Serenade for Small Orchestra, Op. 3 Leó Weiner
Piano Concerto No. 21 in C major, K467 
 Soloist: Karen Kingsley
    Interval – 20 minutes
Symphony No. 4 in A major, Italian Mendelssohn
9.30 (approx) End of Concert
We wish you a safe journey home.

Pre-concert Talk at 6.30pm in the auditorium

Alex Poulton will be introducing all three of the works in the concert.

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 Meoncross Chamber Choir and Music Scholars will be performing in the Octagon lounge at 7.00pm.

Notes from the conductor…

I’m hugely looking forward to this final concert of the HCO season.  Not only will it feature one of my favourite concertos with a wonderful soloist, and one of the most exuberant symphonies ever penned, but it’s also a great chance to introduce you all to the concert opener – the Serenade for Small Orchestra by Leo Weiner. 

I’ve wanted to programme this lovely piece since I first began working with HCO a few years ago – it’s been on the table often but somehow got bumped by other pieces.  Well, now is its chance!  I came across it on a Georg Solti CD of Bartok about 15 years ago, and fell for it instantly.  Completely unknown to most people, it’s full of gorgeous themes, some real inventiveness, and a rhythmical energy so typical of Weiner’s better-known compatriots Bartok, Liszt and Kodaly. One of the things which immediately struck me, and I hope will you, too, is its charm and touching naivete.  I hope you’ll enjoy it, and look forward to hearing what you think.

Karen Kingsley is well-known to audiences, orchestras and musicians across the region.  I always love working with her – she has such a charisma on stage, flexible and witty but always professional and alert to any possibility.  I first worked with her during my opening season with Petersfield Orchestra on the Rachmaninov 2nd concerto, and the last time we met was over the top of a large orchestra when she played the virtuosic solo part in Bernstein’s “Facsimile” (an amazing piece, if you don’t know it).  Mozart’s 21st concerto, known often as the “Elvira Madigan” due to the Swedish film which features it, contains one of the composer’s most ravishing slow movements - requiring a real legato touch and singing line, something Karen has plenty of.  I can’t wait to share the stage with her again.

Our season ends with Mendelssohn’s Italian Symphony.  An incredible piece, full of mastery and a real coherence of form.  He says so much, with such quality, in what is actually quite a short time.  Over four perfectly-shaped movements, active and dense, it is certainly not lacking any notes, and is a true tour de force all around the orchestra: from the opening woodwind lines (always tricky) to the string writing in the outer movements.  There are many notable gems about the work, not least the finale - containing elements of Tarantella (yes, from the spider!) and Saltarello: it’s in the tonic minor all the way through, despite the whole piece being in the major, and highly unusual at this stage in music history.  The other way around is reasonably common, but then Mendelssohn was more of an innovator than people think.

Robin Browning

CD recommendations for the works in this concert

Sourced by Gordon Egerton (Clarinet)

Leó Weiner – Serenade for Small Orchestra, Op. 3
This is slightly problematical as the only single disc version appears to be available only as a download at present)
   North Hungarian Symphony Orchestra under Laszlo Kovacs,
   c/w 3 Divertimentos, Variations on a Folk Song, and Carnival for orchestra.
   Hungaroton HCD 32424, download only, £8.00
or alternatively
   CD boxed set of 6 discs by Sir Georg Solti,
   c/w Bartok’s orchestral music and popular works by Kodaly.
   Decca Solti Edition, 4783706, £35.50. 

Mozart – Piano Concerto No. 21
   Alfred Brendel, Academy of St.Martin in the Fields under Sir Neville Marriner,
   c/w Piano Concertos nos. 19, 20, 23, and 24, and 2 Concert Rondos.
   2 discs, Decca Duo 4422692, £11.50.

Mendelssohn – Italian Symphony
   Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra, Sir John Eliot Gardiner
   c/w with 5th Symphony (the 'Reformation') and revised version of the 4th.
   DG E4591562, £11.75.

(Prices quoted are from the Presto Classical website).

Next concert

HSO Concert at Oaklands School 9th July 2016
Sunday 19th June, 3.00pm
St Faith’s Church,
West Street, Havant

Beautiful Baroque Concertos

On a Summer’s Afternoon

Members of the Havant Orchestras will perform a FREE CONCERT of Baroque concertos, including:
Bach: Double Violin Concerto
Vivaldi: Bassoon Concerto
Bach: Suite No. 2 in B minor for flute & strings
Refreshments and a retiring collection in aid of THE BIG BUILD CAMPAIGN

Other concerts
by local orchestras

See the Events page on our website for information about many other orchestral concerts and other musical events in the area.

Other musical events

compiled by Geoff Porter

Monday 23rd May, 7.30pm
Portsmouth Guildhall
Matthew Barley, cello and
Alasdair Beatson, piano

Tickets £16

Thursday 26th May, 7.30pm
Stansted House
Rebecca Grove, soprano,
Stephanie Peat, mezzo soprano,
Charles Wood, tenor with
Chris Coote, piano

Tickets £10 from 02392 412265

Saturday 28th May, 7.30pm
Portsmouth Grammar School
Portsmouth Music Club:
Portsmouth District Composers’ Alliance Concert
£8 on the door

Thursday 9th June, 7.30pm
St. Michael’s Church, Chalton, PO8 0BG
Two Victorian Savoy Curtain Raisers “Captain Billy” and “Mr Jericho”
Free admission. Interval refreshments.
Retiring Collection for church funds.

Saturday 11th June, 7.30pm
Portsmouth Grammar School
Portsmouth Music Club:
James Kirby, piano
£8 on the door

Saturday 11th June, 7.30pm
Church of the Holy Spirit,
Fawcett Road, Southsea
Portsmouth Festival Choir’s
Summer Concert:

Singing Shakespeare. Tickets £12

Saturday 25th June, 7.30pm
St Mary’s Church Portsmouth
Portsmouth Choral Union with
Southern Pro Musica Percussion

Orff:  Carmina Burana  and
Dove:  Arion and the Dolphin

Saturday 2nd July, 7.30 pm
The Church of the Resurrection,
Drayton, PO6 2AP
Portsmouth Baroque Choir’s
Summer Programme

including Mozart’s Missa Brevis and Haydn’s Salve Regina, with String Quartet and Organ

Society contact information

Havant and District Orchestral Society (HADOS)
Registered Charity No 288747  Email:  Tel: 023 8026 1372


Contact information can be found on the Contacts page within this web site.

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