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THe Bath Orchestral Gala Concert with Bath Philharmonia

THe Bath Orchestral Gala Concert with Bath Philharmonia

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23 March 2018

The fifth Bath Orchestral Gala Concert took place earlier this week in the magnificent surroundings of the Guildhall in Bath and featured performances by the King Edward’s Senior Orchestra playing alongside the Bath Philharmonia, as well as three stunning solo performances by KES musicians.

The Gala Concert is the showcase of the School’s unique side-by-side partnership with Bath Philharmonia, which further involves a year-long programme of workshops, masterclasses and mentoring programmes designed to develop, stretch and inspire Senior School musicians as they play alongside or are guided by the professional musicians of Bath Philharmonia.

Last night’s concert repertoire was chosen to reflect on the lessons learnt since the end of the First World War 100 years ago.  With several pieces chosen to contemplate, mourn and celebrate the end of an agonising period in history – Elgar’s heart-felt Sospiri, for instance, was composed just before the outbreak of war and was performed at the 100th anniversary commemorations at the Thiepval Memorial for the Battle of the Somme - there were also pieces of music further selected to reinforce the collaborative nature of the side-by-side partnership, from Ravel’s Bolero, which saw the musical baton being passed from flute to clarinet to bassoon etc, via a hypnotic rhythmic accompaniment as the piece builds to its crescendo, to the hugely popular Pomp and Circumstance March No. 1 in D, Op. 39 which inspired a gloriously uplifting ‘last night at the proms’ atmosphere at the end of the evening.

In between the joint orchestral pieces, audience members were treated to three superlative solos by KES instrumental and vocal soloists.  In a departure from his preferred repertoire of contemporary music, Cameron Anderson performed Stamitz’s Clarinet Concerto No.8 in Bb in a move that enabled him to explore the musicality associated with playing classical clarinet music.  Cameron was followed by vocalist, Amelia Poole, who chose to perform Mozart’s technically demanding work, Alleluia from Exsultate, jubilate K.165. Year 11 pupil, Morgan Jones completed the trio of soloists, performing Elgar’s sombre and emotional view of World War 1 - Cello Concerto in E minor, Op. 85, Movements 1 and 2 - to a spellbound audience.

Further programme highlights included a performance of Copland’s Lincoln Portrait, with narrated excerpts of Abraham Lincoln’s speeches and letters commandingly read out by Year 13 pupil, Daniel O’Herlihy.

Many thanks to all those involved in making the Gala Concert possible, particularly Director of Music, Mr Drury, and Bath Philharmonia Music Director, Jason Thornton, and thank you too, to our very kind sponsors, Roper Rhodes and Cobb Farr.

In a continuation of the side-by-side partnership, April sees King Edward’s serve as lead sponsor of the Bath Philharmonia’s concert with BBC Young Musician of the Year 2016 finalist saxophonist, Jess Gillam.  In the same week, Bath Philharmonia and Jess will lead a series of creative workshops here at school.  Jess is the third BBC Young Musician finalist the side-by-side partnership has allowed KES pupils to be inspired by, learn from and meet face-to-face.

 

The Bath  Orchestral Gala Concert repertoire

Slow March from Les Huguenots

  • Giacomo Meyerbeer (1791-1864) arranged by D. Godfrey/Rupert Drury
  • Conducted by Rupert Drury
  • Performed by KES Senior Orchestra

Clarinet Concerto No.8 in Bb, 1st Movement: Allegro

  • Carl P. Stamitz (1745-1801)
  • Conducted by Rupert Drury
  • Soloist: Cameron Anderson (Year 13)
  • Accompanied by Bath Philharmonia

Alleluia from Exsultate, jubilate K.165

  • Wolfgang A. Mozart (1756-1791)
  • Conducted by Rupert Drury
  • Soprano Soloist: Amelia Poole (Year 13)
  • Accompanied by Bath Philharmonia

Sospiri, Op.

  • Edward W. Elgar (1857-1934) & Siegfried L. Sassoon (1886-1967)
  • Conducted by Jason Thornton
  • Performed by KES Senior Orchestra and Bath Philharmonia

Lincoln Portrait

  • Aaron Copland (1900-1990)
  • Conducted by Jason Thornton
  • Narrator: Daniel O’Herlihy (Year 13)
  • Performed by KES Senior Orchestra and Bath Philharmonia with KES Senior Orchestra soloists

Cello Concerto in E minor, Op. 85, Movements 1 & 2

(Adagio - Moderato & Lento - Allegro molto)

  • Edward W. Elgar (1857-1934)
  • Conducted by Jason Thornton
  • Soloist: Morgan Jones (Year 11)
  • Accompanied by Bath Philharmonia

Boléro

  • Maurice Ravel (1875–1937)
  • Conducted by Jason Thornton
  • Performed by KES Senior Orchestra and Bath Philharmonia
  • with KES Senior Orchestra soloists

Pomp and Circumstance March No. 1 in D, Op. 39

  • Edward W. Elgar (1857-1934)
  • Conducted by Rupert Drury
  • Performed by KES Senior Orchestra and Bath Philharmonia

 

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