On the afternoon of 11th January the Band returned to Eaton Bray for the New Year Concert. This was the 7th year we’ve been there, or the 8th if you include the children’s concert in February 2013, and it’s gratifying that the band’s popularity seems undiminished, with a capacity audience filling St Mary’s church. Fortunately the weather wasn’t so cold as in some years, although it was overcast with showery rain.
The concert was conducted by Chris Doyle. It opened with the lively Yorkshire Overture by Philip Sparke, followed by Adam Gorb’s fusion of Jewish music and ragtime in Eine Kleine Yiddische Ragmusik. A quiet interlude with the second movement of Theatre Music by Philip Sparke was followed by the lively London Bridge March by Eric Coates and Waltz no. 2 from the second “Jazz Suite” by Shostakovich. The first half ended with two of the Aylesbury Dances by Rob Wiffin, Pavane: The Town and Frolic: Ducks in a Row.
The second half began with Mozart, the overture to The Marriage of Figaro. Next came a work which would be unfamiliar to the audience, The Eighth Candle – Prayer and Dance for Hanukkah by Steve Reisteter. Of course Hanukkah is hardly a New Year festival, but the music is worth playing, consisting of a slow solemn section followed by a lively dance with irregular time signatures. No such unfamiliarity with the next piece though, music from the Disney film Frozen. The rest of the concert returned to the dance theme, with Lord of the Dance, the Can-Can from Orpheus in the Underworld by Offenbach, and (just in case anyone thought we’d forgotten it was New Year) The Beautiful Blue Danube by Johann Strauss.
That was the last piece in the programme, but the audience demanded an encore, so we played another traditional piece for New Year, the Radetzky March by Johann Strauss.
The Band has already been invited back for another New Year concert in 2021. It’s very pleasing to think that our efforts to entertain should be so appreciated.