South West Philharmonia and Chorus
The South West Philharmonia and Chorus produced a varied and exciting programme of some of our best celebrated British music along with a taster of everything from movies to musicals. If you are looking to introduce children to a wide range of classical and popular music then SWPC are a must see.
The programme began with Handel’s ‘Zadok The Priest’, an exciting choice to begin the evening. Those who are familiar with the piece will know it begins with a steady and reserved introduction leading to the chorus bursting in suddenly and at full volume. This fortissimo entrance cannot fail to send goosebumps over you and the wall of glorious harmonised sound from the chorus certainly achieved this.
The relaxed second half was perfect for children as stamping, cheering and singing along was most certainly encouraged. Conductor, Marcus Alleyne invited the audience to join in with ‘Dambusters’, leading by example and playing the well-known tune on a kazoo. The audience joined in by humming and playing their own kazoos while the chorus members donned flying masks and did their very best plane impressions. With everyone laughing and sharing music, this evening couldn’t have been more fun. Marcus gained the respect of the audience and handled them as well as he handled his orchestra and choir, even telling us to shush with a finger to his lips when the orchestra was gearing up for a quieter passage.
The programme was quintessentially British and celebrated many of the most famous classical British songs. However, there was one piece of music missing. It would have completed the programme to include the National Anthem. Since the audience were in such good spirit and were enjoying singing along proudly to everything from ‘Rule Britannia’ to ‘Keep the Home Fires Burning’, this would have been equally successful for audience participation.
The South West Philharmonia and Chorus’ Last Night of The Proms had universal appeal. Well done to the orchestra, chorus, choir accompanist and soloist, Anne Sutcliffe. One thing is certain, everyone on stage clearly had a wonderful time and this was certainly also reflected in the audience’s reaction.