Holidays

Funny how you keep going as long as you have to and then just when the holidays are in sight, you go down with a bug!

I was going to go and sing on Palm Sunday at Chipping Campden in their “Sing-along-a-Stainer Crucifixion” – but I had a bad throat all the week before and by Sunday, had lost my voice completely. Bugger!

I have spent the first week of Easter Holiday trying to catch up on all those little things which don’t get done in term-time (including housework!!) – I’ve finished cataloguing my CDs (until I buy some more!) and I’ve catalogued the DVDs which are starting to accumulate. As I write this, it is Easter Monday and I am listening to the countdown in the Hall of Fame on CLASSIC FM – so much gorgeous music packed into 4 days….just heard Allegri Misere, followed by Shostakovich 2nd Piano Concerto, followed by Bach Double Violin Concerto, followed by Rodrigo Concierto de Aranjuez – all would be among my top choices.

So how am I supposed to tear myself away and put the vacuum cleaner on? AH! so THAT’s what adverts are for!!

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Published in: on April 17, 2006 at 2:21 pm  Leave a Comment  

Chipping Campden

One of the schools I teach in every week is CHIPPING CAMDPDEN SCHOOL in the very pretty Cotswold town of the same name.


Last week, they performed, very successfully, the Rutter Requiem in the local church. The Head of Music, Leon James, did an excellent job of training the school choir, named “Canzona”, and with the inevitable import of a few tenors and basses, they did justice to this wonderful music.

The instrumentalists consisted of a balance of school pupils supported by more experienced players. I played harp – I was very glad to have Stephen to haul it up the path for me!

The organist, Richard Sephens, was very keen to demonstrate the capabilites of his instrument, a pipe organ (basic pitch is at A444) which recently had to have a new console. They took the decision to use this opportunity to add some digital abilities. The organ now has a section which can be played at A440 – thank goodness! – or at Baroque pitch. It can also play alongside the original pipework, enhancing and providing 32 foot sounds for which there would not have been room even if there had been the money to put extra pipes in. There is also a “satellite” console, which on this occasion was placed in among the instrumentalists, allowing the organist to actually see the conductor! The cost of this project was a fraction of what it would have been for a full new pipe organ.

Bravo!! Common sense, good housekeeping and a practical solution for the church.

Richard invited me to go and play there any time and was delighted to find someone who might be willing to go and play occasionally and give him a day off.

Pershore Abbey still doesn’t have a new organ.

Published in: on April 4, 2006 at 2:40 am  Leave a Comment