November 2012

No, its nothing to do with Remembrance Day..   What you see is our medal for best ensemble at the Maidstone Festival!!

However it was a bit of a battle  to get there.. Lets outline the journey to this result!!

November has truly been a very good month for the members of the Bromley Guitar Society

.Members of the Society have worked extremely hard in preparation for the Beckenham and Maidstone Guitar Festivals and have achieved great success for their efforts.

Beckenham Festival
 Our mighty band of pluckers and strummers reported to Marian Vian Primary School and provided the judges (Eleftheria Kotzia) and audience with a musical tour of South America, starting with a gentle performance of of Cancao (Trad Brazil) , El Cachimbo followed by a rousing rendition of Alta Vista (Peter Nuttal). Our efforts earned us  the equivalent of  a 'Silver' , being pipped to the post (by one point!!) by the Widmore Consort.  Oh well... as an Australian, coming second is a lesson we understood too well from the London Olympics!!

 The Judge's verdict stated that our performance was "convincing", particularly the Cancao "flowing nicely with an atmospheric feel". She also provided some good advice regarding the use of dynamics and the problems with handling complexities with the rhythmic structures of El Cachimbo (3/4-6/8/3/4  timings) in the performance. Just as well we weren't performing a Seguirias!!  This handy advice was taken on board for the Maidstone Festival. We were also lucky that she didn't spot our intrepid chairman in the ensemble straight away or it may have been the black cap rather that a Distinction!! As you can see from the photo below, the ensemble group was a large one and the sound produced was just as large !

November Meeting
At our last meeting before the Maidstone Festival, we applied the advice given by Ellie and focussed on the dynamics and the rhythmic complexities  on all the pieces- especially El Cachimbo. We also lightened the mood with a couple of festive ensemble arrangements provided by member Freddy Carvallho and  Den Stockton who reluctantly took the baton for the evening in the absence of Ray Butcher. The meeting saw some great solo perfomances from other members

  •  Oh Sweet, Darkest Girl (arr Duarte) and Minuet in D (De Visee) performed by Tom Rimmer
  • Sicilienne (Carulli) and Hugh Christie Pieces II,IV,V, (Geofrrey Twigg) performed by Jenny Wormald
  • Divenire by Ludovic Einaudi (murdered by your correspondent)
  • Capricio Arabe (Tarrega) performed by John Mann
  • Garden Steps (Andrew York) performed by Maron Davis
  • Four Scarlatti Sonatas performed by Rob Sellery
  • plus a musical song 'I wish they would do it now'.. a lament performed (from the heart) by Trevor Pike. (Young ladies beware!!)
Maidstone Festival
Our intrepid band was a little light on numbers due to a variety of commitments from other members. Obviously this had absolutely no effect on their performance and the outstanding result they achieved!!  All in all there were eight players performing at the festival including Tessa, Larisa, John, Dave, Ash, Vince, Rob and Shirley. (It could be argued that the absence of the Chair, the Secretary and the Treasurer may have improved the quality). All the members including the lead John Mann, should be congratulated on achieving a great result. The adjudicator was Gary Ryan and he made the following comments that the BGS performance was "nicely blended and balanced sound, tempo well sustained with good energy". Special thanks to Tessa and Shirley  for their efforts in promoting the participation of the BGS in the Maidstone Festival. Tessa also needs to be thanked for preparing celebratory refreshments for the ensemble members.

We also can't let this report finish without providing a special mention and thanks to John Mann (above)  for the work he put into leading the ensembles for both the Beckenham and Maidstone Festival. And to Ray Butcher for his advice and support during the numerous rehearsals.

December Meeting
Yes Virginia...there IS a Sanity Clause and there will be a December Meeting for the BGS. Only it will take place on the second Saturday of December rather than the third.  Which means that we will look forward to seeing you on the 8th of December at St Marks!!

See you then

Andrew Ferrier
Hon Secretary


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