Conductor’s Notes – 31st October

It’s November already! With less than two weeks to the concert, we’re in really good shape, but just a few things to practice at home now. Thank you all so much for your incredible work on this programme – at the start it seemed impossible, but it’s safe to say this is going to be an incredible concert!

What we did on Monday 31st October:

We started off by running Star Wars: I. Main Title – it’s really interesting that once we’ve played the first 20 bars once or twice it then takes on a new life. We just need to ensure the first (and only) time we play it in the concert is like we’ve already played it a couple of times. We worked backwards making sure we were all clear with what happens with the cut-off and pause at the end, and then did some really good detailed stuff on the previous sections.

I think we can all agree that sectionals are really useful for covering the fine details, both at the early and late rehearsal stages – Monday was no different. Strings with me, well done on all of the fiddly playing we managed. It’s now just a case of finding 20 minutes every-other-day to go through those crazy sections and lock in what we did. Great work on character, such as the shimmery figure at 19 in II. Princess Leia’s Theme, and the harsh bite of III. The Imperial March. Then some excellent but brief work on Beethoven’s Allegretto.

Wind, from what I heard and what Chris told me, brilliant work on West Side Story. I hope it’s firmed up all of those tricky rhythms and lovely Bernstein-ian harmonic crunches! Looking forward to hearing that next week. Great work on I. Main Title too, that sounded a lot neater.

We ended with going through Pirates of Penzance which, given we haven’t played it since July, was excellent. It’s just a case of being aware of the finer details to ensure the style and character is always there. Maybe just look over it to remind yourselves in the next week.

What we’ll do on Monday 7th November:

We’ll essentially do a run of the concert. Little things will be glossed over to ensure we have enough time, but please do come prepared with everything as perfect as it can possibly be. We’ll also be focussing on the tempo changes to firm up confidence with the huge number of changing sections.

Running order for the concert:
James Bond Medley – Misc.
Pirates of Penzance – Sullivan
Allegretto – Beethoven
Colonel Bogey – Alford
– Interval of around 30 minutes – Bar open and raffle will be run
Star Wars Suite – Williams
West Side Story – Bernstein
Pirates of the Caribbean – Badelt

More details about the concert will be posted next week, but please note that the pre-concert rehearsal will be at St Michael’s Church at 13:30, with set up from 13:00. We’ll then migrate over to The Anstice at 16:30 and set up there.
I fully appreciate that this is a big programme, so the the pre-concert rehearsal will be very relaxed, and will just confirm tempos, timings, and fiddly bits. Please save yourselves for the concert, but do make the most of this pre-concert rehearsal, even if you just sit there and go through the music!


Keep making use of the Spotify Playlist HERE. It contains everything except the James Bond Medley which you can hear if you click HERE.

Other Concerts

As mentioned, our friends over at the Ludlow Orchestra have their concert the week after ours. Do go and support them.

See you all on the 7th November for our final rehearsal!
– Ben