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Newsletter for November 2008

This is an edited version of the Havant Orchestras newsletter which is provided in printed form to players and Friends of the Orchestra.

From the Chairman ....

The Symphony Orchestra starts their season with a mixture of familiar and unfamiliar music and a new Conducting Bursary Holder, Jessica Cottis.  Jessica is a fine musician and has already made an excellent impression on the orchestra and I shall have the pleasant task of introducing her at the beginning of the concert and presenting her with the scores which are part of her award.  Jessica will conduct the Scandinavian elements of the programme and Peter will take over for the concerto and symphony. 

It will be a great pleasure to welcome back Katya Apekisheva to play the much loved Second Piano Concerto of Rachmaninov and the Russian theme continues with the dramatic and tuneful Sixth Symphony of his contemporary Glazunov.  Grieg’s image of autumn is rather more vigorous than mine.  Perhaps it is the troll-hunting season in Norway.

As you study your programme booklet you will be aware how much of the music we play is supported financially by generous individuals.  Next season’s programme is already planned and if you would like to sponsor some element of the season contact Sandra or myself and we will give you a preview.  The financial situation is difficult for everyone at present but with your help and, most important of all, large audiences we shall continue to flourish. 

The bar will be open after the concert.  This is an excellent opportunity for you to unwind after the concert and to let us know what you think of the performance (and perhaps request that special glimpse at next season’s programme).  I hope as many as possible will join us there. 

And then, although it may seem very early, this is my last opportunity to give you my very best wishes for Christmas and the New Year.

Tony Gutteridge

Remember, please remember!!

The concert is on Saturday 29 November

and please bring your programme voucher (attached to your Season Ticket) with you to claim your Programme Book if you missed the October concert.

Ferneham Hall, Saturday 29 November

6.30 Pre-concert talk by Pauline Buzzing in the auditorium - all welcome
Upbeat Club for young listeners in the Meon
7.00 Interlude by Sway Handbell Ringers in the Octagon Lounge (see below)
plus ...
Books and CDs for Sale in the Meon
7.30 The Concert
Overture ‘In Autumn’  Grieg
Norwegian Rhapsody No 1  Svendsen
Piano Concerto No 2 
Soloist: Katya Apekisheva 
Interval - 20 minutes
Symphony No 6 in C minor  Glazunov
9.35 approx end of concert

... then have a safe journey home

The Pre-Concert Interlude

Sway Handbell Ringers received such a warm reception last December playing seasonal music that we had no hesitation in asking them to come again and they reciprocated by saying they had really enjoyed their visit and would love to accept!

The group includes our double bass Kate Hanks who has organised both visits and they will be staying for the whole evening with some of their friends and families.

Kate wrote this introduction to the group for last year’s Interlude .....

The original group of four enthusiasts began ringing in the village of Sway about 25 years ago.  At that time there were eight bells and the group met in a front room playing change ringing in the style of tower bells.  Members of the group have come and gone and at present there are 13 in the team, some experienced ringers and some very new to this style of music (including Kate who has been a member for only a few years!). 

The group now play on three chromatic octaves of bells and 1½ octaves of hand chimes and have the use of a purpose built ‘bell barn’, courtesy of one of the members.  The team now ring tunes and have many arrangements of classical and popular music. 

After the concert...

Irene, our organiser of Nibbles has had to resign and we have not been able to replace her so on Saturday the Bar will be open but Nibbles will not appear although we hope you will!

Thank you, Irene for your invaluable help and we hope to have news of your successor ere long.

A Suggestion ...

from Evelyn in the viola section. 

If you have e-mail please contact your friends to remind and/or alert them to each concert and encourage them to come and enjoy all our colourful and exciting music.  You could also direct them to our website - address at the top of the page.

Thanks for this helpful idea Evelyn - hope to see lots more folk, especially on Saturday.

Notes from the Conductor...

I think it was the composer and critic Constant Lambert who, in a book he wrote in 1934 entitled ‘Music Ho! - A Study of Music in Decline’, observed somewhat satirically that the only thing you can do with a folksong is to play it again with a modicum of variation and a maximum of instrumental colour change.  Thus folk music is incapable, ipso facto, of providing core material for real symphonic development and no composers worth their salt should - either by endeavour or mere accident - try to cultivate a symphonic folk style.

Such an extreme view at a time when musical nationalism reigned supreme stood out starkly against the background of English musical life, but was much in line with Lambert’s pursuance of the absurd and his frequent outbursts against English provincialism.  Fortunately his minority views had little impact on musical tastes even if, perhaps, they were a little thought-provoking.

Three of the four works in Saturday’s programme come with nationalistic overtones and even in the popular 2nd Piano Concerto of Rachmaninov, where cosmopolitan romantic elements hold sway, you still can’t get Russia out of its system.

Those other three works neatly embody the three basic stages of folk-inspired compositions.  Svendsen’s Norwegian Rhapsody No 1 is nothing more than a loosely organised medley of Norwegian tunes with a modicum of variation and a wide instrumental palette.  Grieg’s youthful Overture ‘In Autumn’ goes one stage further by successfully synthesising folk and folk-like melodies and dances into a coherent and developed symphonic framework.  In Glazunov’s 6th Symphony the material contains no folk quotations as such but its ideas subconsciously reflect the folk style in essence as an absorbed factor.  In all three pieces the country of origin waves its nationalistic flag in greater or lesser degrees, asserting its independence and local colour.  The Grieg, Svendsen and Glazunov appear in our concerts for the very first time, very much in keeping with our wish to champion neglected music that for some reason or another is so rarely heard in the concert hall.  I am sure you will find in them music to delight and uplift you - especially in the lovely variation movement of the Glazunov.

It would be hard to find a more revered concerto than that by Rachmaninov which Katya Apekisheva will play with us on Saturday.  Our distinguished soloist makes her third appearance with HSO and comes with a growing international reputation and fame as a recording artist.  Her latest CD of music by Grieg has just been released on the Quartz label (QTZ 2061 at £13.99).

The line-up of performers for the concert follows closely on that listed in the Programme Book and we especially welcome our new Bob Harding Bursary Holder, Jessica Cottis who will conduct the first two items on Saturday. 

Peter Craddock

CDs for the February concert

Sourced by GE

Mendelssohn Intermezzo, Nocturne and Scherzo from A Midsummer Night’s Dream   Atlanta SO / Yoel Levi
c/w Symphony No 4
Telarc CD 80318   Full Price
Fauré Suite Masques et Bergamasques   RTE Sinfonietta / Georgiadis
c/w : Dolly, Shylock and Pelléas et Mélisande Suites and Berceuse
Naxos 8.553360   Bargain Price
Saint Saëns Piano Concerto No 2   Thiboudet / Suisse Romande Orch / Dutoit
c/w Piano Concerto No 5 & Franck Symphonic Variations
Decca 475 8764 DH   Full Price
Gounod Symphony No 1   Orchestra of St John's Smith Square / Lubbock
c/w Symphony No 2
ASV CDDCA 981   Full price

A Special Section of

Browse before the concert, during the interval and afterwards as well!

10% of Sale Price to Orchestra Funds.

Risk Assessment Survey Update

Peter and Sandra received three very prompt offers of help - Mark Wigglesworth’s Hayling concert programme arrived a few days after the Newsletter was published; then an offer to take on the monumental task of collating all the performance records and the third to sort out their telephone data, but their directory is in daily use and it’s going to be a job finding a gap to hand it over! Many thanks to these three kind folk.

This leaves two ‘jobs’ still available. 

The first is to collate and organise the press releases and press reports which are in ‘hard’ format: i.e. cuttings from local newspapers, etc, which need identifying, dating and probably photo-copying. 

The second is to set up a programme note directory from all the concert programmes.  This will involve typing the early notes from the old programmes although most of the last 20 years’ notes are probably on the computer. 

On a less time-consuming level, would you like to help at concerts either before, in the interval or at the end of the evening? We need programme, CD and book sellers; hosts for the pre-concert music players; hosts for new listeners and hosts to make guests welcome.  Advice and information will be given!

Thanks in advance of your offers of help which should be directed to: Sandra Craddock on 023 9248 3228 or

Bursary Holder updates

Daniel Cohen (Holder 2005 - 6) was recently appointed conductor in Residence of the Jerusalem Symphony Orchestra and chief conductor of the Jersey Chamber Orchestra.

He will be conducting his own Eden Sinfonia at Queen Elizabeth Hall in London on Sunday 30 November in works by Tzvi Avni, Peter Maxwell Davies and Paul Ben-Haim.  Also in the concert, Rivka Golani, a soloist with HSO some years ago will play Noam Sheriff’s Viola Concerto with the Menuhin School Orchestra.

Leo Hussain (Holder 2002 - 3) conducted two performances of Aïda for English National Opera earlier this month.

A message for The Friends

Dear ‘Friends’

As this is the last Newsletter of 2008 - on behalf of Rosemary and myself I extend very best wishes for Christmas and the New Year.

It will be pleasant to have a ‘Friends Get-together’ early in 2009 and I have chosen Saturday 17 January so please put this date in your diaries - as soon as you have a new one! The venue will be my home in Havant and the full details will follow shortly, by letter.

We look forward to seeing you at the concert on Saturday, it is an interesting programme - happy listening!

Very best wishes,

Beryl (BH), Friends’ Secretary
and Rosemary (RS), our very helpful Assistant Secretary

The News Guide Awards

Many thanks to everyone who voted for HSO in the News Awards.  Although selected for the finals, they were not winner or runner-up. 

Congratulations to winners Portsmouth Choral Union and runners-up South-East Hampshire Youth Jazz Orchestra.

News of other musical events

The Renaissance Choir
6 December, 7.30pm
Christmas Mystery at St James' Church, Emsworth
13 December, 7.30pm
Christmas Mystery at Birdham Church, Chichester

Portsmouth Choral Union
13 December, 7.30pm
St Mary’s Church, Portsea
Last Night of the Christmas Pops
with Susan Legg and HCYO
Tickets from 023 9282 2227

Playing Opportunities

Are you a member of a small ensemble that would like to play in public but is reluctant to take the first step?

Do you have / know young players who need a performance opportunity?

We have been approached by a local village hall which is offering the space and a warm, generous and encouraging audience to such groups.

If this interests you please contact Sandra after the concert for more information. 

We look forward to seeing you on Saturday
and wish you all a Very Happy and Peaceful Festive Season!

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