Market Harborough Band and Kettering Citadel Band joined forces on Saturday 7th May 2016 for a charity concert in aid of the Mental Health Charity MIND. Stephen Grainger had arranged the concert, being involved with both bands and decided upon the charity because of a connection with a member of Kettering Citadel Band.
Bandmaster Richard Phillips compered the first part of the programme, which consisted of six pieces by the Kettering Citadel Band. Starting off with a foot-tapping ‘Call of the Gospel’ by Martin Cordner. This led nicely into the “Golden Pen”, a March Fantasy, which was originally a piano duet by Wilfred Heaton centered around an old chorus but was then turned into a band score by Paul Hindmarsh in 2001. Bandsman Gary Rose then brought a Euphonium Solo “Napoli” which was arranged by Jeffry Bellstedt who was once the conductor of the famous Black Dyke Band. Once again Gary made this difficult solo look very easy, playing without music, his mesmerizing tone and musicality shone through. Gary Fountain and Chris Hunt followed with the cornet duet, Synergy, which includes the tunes attached to the songs; I shall not lose the fight of faith and My Jesus I love these. Richard told the congregation how he was handed a brown envelope back in 2015 a few weeks before the band were due to visit Lavenham to present a concert for their 130th Corps Anniversary. The music enclosed turned out to be a piece, which had been specifically written to celebrate this special occasion by Geoffrey Nobes. The band was requested to play this piece during their visit to the town and has since turned into one of their favorites. “Prelude on Lavenham” was played as the words were shown on the screen above. Played sensitively, what many would say Kettering does best. Kettering’s final solo piece was “Quintessence” written originally for the Melbourne Staff Band by Robert Redhead.
After a quick changeover, Market Harborough Band took to the platform. Led by Stephen Grainger, they started their part of the programme with “Cornish Cavalier” a stirring March. A number of the congregation and band are supporters of a fairly local football team, Leicester City, and following their unexpected success during the 2015/16 football season, which ended in them winning the Premier League Trophy, the band played “We Are The Champions” an arrangement by Frank Bernaerts of the Freddie Mercury song. Thankfully no-one in the congregation fell asleep during the bands next piece “Sleep” as it was onto another foot-tapping “Hungarian Dance No.5” arrangement by John Clarke, a friend of the Market Harborough Band. The band took us to the banks of the River Tyne next, with Philip Harpers “Water of Tyne” a lovely melody depicting the story of two sweethearts separated by the River Tyne. The reflective mood flowed into the next arrangement by Philip Wilby of the tune associated with the words of the hymn “As The Deer Pants For The Water So My Soul Longs After You”; once again the band captured the mood of the piece. Looking every bit like James Band himself, the Bandmaster introduced the finale “The Essential James Bond” by Darrol Barry, a collection of the various James Bond movies theme tunes.
As the band prepared to play massed, a short presentation was shown of the work the charity MIND undertake. With the NHS being worryingly short of funds and resources and unable to cope with the every increasing demand for services in the mental health sector, it is increasingly important to raise funds for charities such as MIND, who are often left to bridge the gap left by long waiting lists. Their services, which include online information, phone lines and local support groups etc. are often the lifelines that those suffering with a mental illness, or indeed their friends and family who try to support need. To say that those charities such as MIND are lifesavers would be truly appropriate. It was therefore great to know that those attending the concert were able to raise over £438 to help the work of this charity in the local area of Kettering.
The platform was fit to burst for the massed bands section of the concert on this warm evening but the bands got this section underway with “RAF March Past” and followed with the majestic “Procession of Nobles” by Rimsky Korsakov and arranged for brass band by James Curnow. Next Darren Harris and Michael Barratt who played “The Impossible Dream”, possibly the highlight of the evening for many, treated the congregation to a Flugel Duet. Colonel Jack Hazard spoke about dreaming the impossible dream during his thoughts before the evening ended with another impressive piece, “Elsa’s Procession to the Cathedral” by William Himes.
All in all, a very enjoyable evening of music by these two bands all in a good cause. Thank you Stephen Grainger for arranging this, we look forward to the next one!
Kettering Citadel Band
Bandsman Gary Rose plays “Napoli”