Vocal training

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Well, we’re professionals now!

Last weekend Earls Barton Music put on a vocal training course for members, run by the fantastic Kate Eckersley and Joanne Hanson, vocal coaches from Sussex.

35 members attended the course which started with a Friday evening class where we were introduced to some techniques and singing tips and one or two new songs. The course continued bright and early Saturday morning up until lunchtime, when we shared a buffet lunch, and ended with a brief performance to family and friends at 3pm.

We learnt about breathing, range, diction, intonation and were introduced to a varied selection of music:

  • ‘Missa ‘cum jubilo’ (12th century) and ‘Veni veni, Emanuel (13th century)
  • ‘Happy together’ – a 1960’s song
  • A spoken piece
  • ‘Hashivenu’, an Israeli folk song
  • ‘Vine and fig-tree’, another Israeli piece
  • ‘Wondrous love’, a hymn from the 19th century
  • ‘Tandem’ by Alan Simmons – a humourous piece in two parts

Kate and Joanne were great coaches and brought a great wealth of experience and music history and theory which made the course interesting as well as useful.

If you weren’t able to attend the course this time but would be interested then please do let us know as we may try to run another.

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Gilbert and Sullivan: Trial by the Merryman and the Lass that loved a Slave of Duty of Titipu

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This very special concert of music by the Victorian writer W.S. Gilbert and composer Arthur Sullivan took place over two nights in Earls Barton Methodist Church.

We were proud to perform these concerts in memory of Andy Hart, a loyal singer and committee member of Earls Barton Music, who sadly passed away just over a year ago. Andy was a keen amateur singer but was a real G & S enthusiast. Andy sang with us right up until his death and in his last years suffered from Parkinson’s disease. It was his widow Margaret’s wish, who sings in the altos, that monies from these concerts be donated to Parkinson’s (Wellingborough) and we were pleased to be able to present a cheque for £1000 to David Hudson, regional chairman at the Saturday concert.

We welcomed singers from other societies in this show who made a huge difference with their knowledge of the works.

The shows featured music from Trial by Jury, HMS Pinafore, The Mikado, The Yeomen of the Guard, and The Pirates of Penzance. The programme was created by Vivien Caldwell who picked the music, wrote the links and directed the show. Viv’s impressive knowledge of G&S was invaluable in making the show a success.

 

Small screen, Big screen – a concert of TV and film music

""Jonathan Reynolds was the MC for the Saturday evening and Sunday afternoon performances of a range of film and TV theme tunes.

The programme began with two Disney medleys and We Belong Together from Toy Story 3 sung by soloist Paul Whiteman – these were much enjoyed by the younger members of the audience.

Next a rendition of Raindrops Keep Falling on my Head from Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid, sung beautifully by Jonathan. This was followed by an ensemble performance of Lara’s Theme from Dr Zhivago, and My Favourite Things from The Sound of Music sung by Jeanette Houghton, then the very high-tempo Chitty Chitty Bang Bang and another Disney medley sung by the full choir.

Rita Gee treated us to a rendition of Smile from Modern Times, despite her broken foot, and the choir performed My Heart will Go On from  Titanic, followed by Silent Witness – arranged by Jon Rees.

The first half finished with a gallop as the choir delivered themes from The Vicar of Dibley, Red Dwarf, Mr Bean and Blackadder.

James Bond (aka Jonathan Reynolds) made an appearance after the interval and the choir sang Goldfinger, From Russia with Love and Nobody Does it Better. Claire Radd sang For Your Eyes Only, and the choir accompanied Stacey Bee as she sang Skyfall – arranged by our very own Jon Rees.

Next Jonathan and Claire treated us to Music of the Night and Phantom of the Opera, followed by Vois Sur Ton Chemin from Les Choristes and Hallelujah from Shrek performed by our ensemble group. May it Be from Fellowship of the Ring was sung hauntingly by soloist Hannah Flanagan, and the choir finished up this section of French and Fantasy with I’m a Believer from Shrek.

The concert came to a close with Always Look on the Bright Side of Life from Life of Brian, which the audience couldn’t resist joining in with!

Thanks to musicians Kate Oram (Piano), Kevin Flanagan (Drums), Andrew Loake (Guitar), Steve Hollingshurst (Bass Guitar) and Stacey Bee (Saxaphone/Flute).

Needless to say much fun was had by all.