Wednesday, 10 December 2014

Christmas Concert - Programme - 13th December 2014

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  • Programme Overview

  • Radetzky March 
  • Overture to a Winter Festival  
  • Mary Poppins 
  • Troika
  • Sandpaper Ballet 
  • Fairytale of New York
  • Christmas Roses - Roses De Noel 
  • Themes from The Snowman

  • Interval

  • Christmas Festival 
  • Frozen
  • Highland Cathedral 
  • Masquerade Waltz
  • Ukrainian Bell Carol 
  • White Christmas 
  • Sleigh Ride
  • Fiddler on the Roof

Radetzky March
Johan Strauss Sr
Arr. Norman Richardson
Strauss was commissioned to write the march in 1848 to commemorate Field Marshal Joseph Radetzky von Radetz victory at the Battle of Custoza. When it was first played in front of Austrian officers, they spontaneously clapped and stamped their feet when they heard the chorus. This tradition, with quiet rhythmic clapping on the first iteration of the melody, followed by thunderous clapping on the second, is kept alive today by audience members when the march is played in Vienna.

Overture to a Winter Festival
James Curnow
James Curnow was born in 1943 in Port Huron, Michigan. He now lives in Nicholasville, Kentucky where he is president, composer, and educational consultant for Curnow Music Press, Inc.

Mary Poppins 
Richard and Robert Sherman
Arr. Irwin Kostal
In its 50th anniversary year Disney’s Mary Poppins continues to delight audiences young and old. The film received 13 Academy Award nominations and won 5 awards. This makes Mary Poppins the most Oscar-winning and Oscar-nominated Disney film in history. Julie Andrews won an Oscar for Best Actress and Richard and Robert Sherman won Best Original Song for Chim Chim Cher-ee.

A Spoonful of Sugar | I Love to Laugh | Jolly ‘Oliday | Step in Time | Chim Chim Cheree | Supercalifragilisticexpialidocious | Feed the Birds | Let’s Go Fly a Kite | The Derby (“Jolly Holiday” & “A Spoonful of Sugar” paraphrase)

Troika
Sergie Prolofiev
Arr. Harold L Walters
A “Troika” is a sled or carriage drawn by three horses harnessed side-by-side.
The music was written for the 1934 Soviet film Leiutenant Kije as the fictional Kije (created by a clerical error) takes a trip after his equally fictional wedding.
Prokofiev was a master at using music to tell a story. One of his most famous musical stories is Peter and the Wolf.

Sandpaper Ballet
Leroy Anderson
Anderson's musical style employs creative instrumental effects and his compositions occasionally makes use of sound-generating items such as typewriters and sandpaper. As the title suggests; this item makes use of the latter with great effect.

Fairytale of New York
Jem Finer, Shane MacGowan
Arr. Jock McKenzie
Fairytale of New York has been cited as the best Christmas song of all time in various television, radio and magazine related polls in the UK and Ireland. Although the single peaked at number two in the UK Singles Chart when it was first released (kept from the number one position by the Pet Shop Boys' cover version of Always on My Mind), its popularity as a Christmas song has endured: to date the song has reached the UK top twenty on ten separate occasions since its original release in 1987, including every year since 2005, and was certified platinum for achieving one million sales in 2013.

Christmas Roses
Emile Waldteufel
Arr. Trevor Sharpe
In October 1874 Waldteufel played at an event that was attended by the then Prince of Wales, future King Edward VII. The Prince was enthralled by Waldteufel's "Manolo" waltz, and was prepared to make Waldteufel's music known in Britain.Through these means, Waldteufel's music was played at Buckingham Palace in front of Queen Victoria.
Waldteufel dominated the music scene in London and became world-famous. During this period he composed his best known works, many of which are still heard today around the world. He became best known for the waltz "Les Patineurs" (The Ice Skaters), composed in 1882.

Themes from The Snowman
Howard Blake
Arr. Stephen C Barnwell
A selection of music taken from the animated adventure from 1982 about a young English boy who makes a snowman one Christmas Eve, only for it to come to life that night and take him on a magical adventure to the North Pole to meet Santa Claus.

Interval
Northampton Concert Band performing in November 2014

A Christmas Festival
Leroy Anderson
The famous work by Leroy Anderson against which all other Christmas medleys are judged!
Carols included are: Joy to the World | Deck the Halls | God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen | Good King Wenceslas | Hark! The Herald Angels Sing | Silent Night | Jingle Bells | Adeste Fideles

Frozen 
Kristen Anderson-Lopez and Robert Lopez
Arr. Stephen Bulla
Inspired by Hans Christian Anderson's fairy tale The Snow Queen this Disney animated film tells the story of a fearless princess who sets off on an epic journey to find her estranged sister, whose icy powers have trapped the kingdom in an eternal winter. Frozen won two academy Awards for Best Animated Feature and Best Original Song ("Let It Go").
Frozen Heart | Let It Go | Do You Want to Build a Snowman | For the First Time in Forever | Epilogue.

Highland Cathedral
Ulrich Roever and Michael Korb
Arr. Jay Dawson
Highland Cathedral was composed by German musicians Ulrich Roever and Michael Korb in 1982 for a Highland games held in Germany. The tune has been performed by the Royal Scots Dragoon Guards, and featured in the album, Spirit of the Glen, which won a Classical Brit award in 2009. The song has been performed at numerous Scottish cultural events, including Scotland's Rugby Union games.

Masquerade Waltz 
Aram Khachaturian
Arr. Rocus Van Yperen
The incidental music to Masquerade was written in 1941 by Aram Khachaturian for a production of a play of the same name by Russian poet and playwright Mikhail Lermontov. It premiered on 21 June 1941 in the Vakhtangov Theatre in Moscow. The waltz is the first of five movements of its better known suite.

Ukrainian Bell Carol
Mykola Dmytrovich Leontovych
Arr. Philip Sparke
The Ukrainian Bell Carol is part of a large choral work entitled Shchedryk. It was first performed by students of Kiev University in December 1916. The tune is an adaptation of an old ‘shchedrivka’, a song traditionally sung on Ukrainian New Year’s Eve, Leontovych added his own the lyrics which concern the legend claiming that when Jesus was born, all the bells on earth started ringing in his honour.

White Christmas
Irving Berlin
Arr. Philip Sparke
According to the Guinness World Records, the version sung by Bing Crosby is the best-selling single of all time, with estimated sales in excess of 50 million copies worldwide.

Sleigh Ride
Leroy Anderson
Anderson had the original idea for the piece during a heat wave in July 1946; he finished the work in February 1948. Although "Sleigh Ride" is often associated with Christmas, the song's lyrics (written by Mitchell Parish in 1950) never specifically mention any holiday or religion. Over the years, the song has become a Christmas standard.

Symphonic Dances from Fiddler on the Roof 
Jerry Bock
Arr. Ira Hearshen
The story of ‘Fiddler on the Roof’ centres on the father of five daughters and his attempts to maintain his family and Jewish religious traditions, while outside influences encroach upon their lives. This selection mainly focuses on the instrumental music taken from the show and presents them in a series of dances. Tradition | Wedding Dance #1 (Bottle Dance) | Perchik and Hodel Dance | Chava Sequence | To Life – Dance
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Tuesday, 25 November 2014

Christmas Concert - Strictly NO Carols

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Northampton Concert Band has taken the bold step to exclude traditional carols from its Christmas concert this year following feedback from an audience survey.

We contacted the audience members following last year’s Christmas concert and asked them to highlight the items in the programme they enjoyed the most. All three audience carols in the concert scored consistently low with only 40% of respondents expressing a wish to hear them again.

Brian Crutchley, Concerts Manager said, “I can understand that a lot people do not enjoy singing in public, even with such a great band accompanying them. With the feedback we’ve had from our survey we thought we’d drop carols from the concert altogether, which leaves room for other popular music for our audience to listen to.

“If people want to sing carols they’re better off going to a carol service”.

Stephen Bell, Musical Director said “We will not be short changing our audience. They’ll still get 2 hours of top entertainment. The band will be performing some ‘lighter’ repertoire along with some well-known seasonal music”.

The concert starts at 7:30pm Saturday 13th December at The Holy Sepulchre Church, Northampton and tickets are available from the Box Office 07561 390099 or online from our Tickets page

View the full programme.
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We Did a Platinum

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On Sunday afternoon (23rd November 2014) Northampton Concert Band were the very proud winners of a coveted Platinum award at the National Concert Band Festival - Midlands Regional Heat. Which means we are automatically invited to perform at the National event in April 2015 where we hope we can repeat our success.

Stephen Bell is a very proud man indeed as it has been 4 years since NCB won their first Platinum award.

 Here is the photographic evidence and below is the audio recording of the event, with the adjudicators comments as it happened.

The Certificate
The written comments
The score sheet

The recording - with Adjudicators Comments
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Tuesday, 28 October 2014

A Festival of Music - Programme - 8th November 2014

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  • Programme Overview
  •  
  • The Dam Busters
  • Mary Poppins
  • Zelda - Solo: Chris Cox
  • At Dawn They Slept
  • Sinatra in Concert
  • Slumdog Millionaire
  • Henry Mancini - A Concert Medley
  •  
  • Interval
  •  
  • Barnard Castle
  • Elegy
  • Miss Saigon
  • Frozen
  • October
  • Fiddler on the Roof
A Festival of Music
conducted by Stephen Bell
The Masque Theatre
7:30 Saturday 8th November 2014


The Dam Busters
Eric Coates – 1955
Arr. W J Duthoit
Coates is well known for his contribution to the film score for The Dam Busters (1954). He was unwilling to write the entire score when asked by the film's producers, but warmed to the idea of writing a signature march around which the rest of the film's score was based - in fact, he submitted a piece that he had recently completed, so the famous Dam Busters March was not itself composed with the film in mind. The final film score was completed by Leighton Lucas

Mary Poppins
Richard and Robert Sherman - 1963
Arr. Irwin Kostal
In its 50th anniversary year Disney’s Mary Poppins continues to delight audiences young and old.
The film received 13 Academy Award nominations and won 5 awards. This makes Mary Poppins the most Oscar-winning and Oscar-nominated Disney film in history. Julie Andrews won an Oscar for Best Actress and Richard and Robert Sherman won Best Original Song for ‘Chim Chim Cher-ee’.

A Spoonful of Sugar | I Love to Laugh | Jolly ‘Oliday | Step in Time | Chim Chim Cheree | Supercalifragilisticexpialidocious | Feed the Birds | Let’s Go Fly a Kite | The Derby (“Jolly Holiday” & “A Spoonful of Sugar” paraphrase)

Zelda
Percy Code – 1928
Soloist: Chris Cox.
Edward Percival “Percy” Code was born in Melbourne, Australia in 1888 and grew up playing in a brass band which his father, Edward Thomas Code, conducted. He became a skilled cornet player and in 1910 he won the soloist prize at the grand Royal South Street Competition that was held in Ballarat. Several of his cornet solos were named after women, Lucille, Zanette, Miranda, and of course Zelda which is supposedly dedicated to a ballet dancer.
Zelda is undoubtedly the most famous of Codes cornet solos, expertly performed tonight by Chris Cox

At Dawn They Slept
Jay Bocook - 2002
Jay Bocook is a prolific composer and arranger of concert band music. This musical remembrance pays tribute to fallen heroes of that fateful day at Pearl Harbour that launched the USA into World War II. Opening with a peaceful, flowing woodwind melody, the day is heralded in by a lone bugler. Ominous undertones, powerful scoring, dissonant themes and bombastic percussion capture musically the chaos that followed. It's a powerful musical statement that concludes ultimately on an optimistic note that looks to a brighter future.

Sinatra in Concert
Various – Arr Jerry Nowak
This selection of four songs made famous by Frank Sinatra opens with ‘New York, New York’, originally sung by Liza Minnelli in the 1977 film of the same name that was a box-office flop. After retiring for the first time in 1971, two years later Frank Sinatra returned to work and recorded several albums and in 1980 had a top 40 hit with the song with slightly different words to the original.

New York, New York | It Was a Very Good Year | The Lady is a Tramp | My Way

Slumdog Millionaire 
Various – 2008
Arr. Jay Bocook
Winner of the 2009 Academy Award for Best Picture, Best Original Score, and numerous other awards, this movie took the country by storm. The driving soundtrack of A.R. Rahman played a major part in bringing this powerful and uplifting story to the silver screen.

Songs: O, Saya | Aaj Ki Raat | Dreams on Fire | Jai Ho

Henry Mancini – A Concert Medley
Arr. John Moss
Pink Panther | Moon River | Baby Elephant Walk (1961-1963)

Mancini had a long collaboration with the film director Blake Edwards and won numerous Academy Awards for the songs in Edwards’ films, including “Moon River” from Breakfast at Tiffany’s. This arrangement by John Moss sandwiches the melancholy of Moon River between the cheerful and goofy slices of The Pink Panther and Baby Elephant Walk

Interval

Barnard Castle
Goff Richards – 1982
Goff Richards, sometimes credited as Godfrey Richards, was a prominent English brass band arranger and composer. He was well known for his original brass compositions such as “Trailblaze”, “Doyen”, “Exploding Brass!” and the marches “The Jaguar” and “Barnard Castle”. He died on 25 June 2011 in Cheshire, following an illness, at the age of 66. Barnard Castle is a market town in Teesdale, County Durham, England. It is named after the castle around which it grew up.

Elegy (On an RAF Theme)
Barrie Hingley OBE – 1994
The original score for the Royal Air Force March Past was completed by Sir Walford Davis in 1918. The second part of the march, the trio, was composed by Sir George Dyson. It is this trio section that Wing Commander Barrie Hingley OBE used as inspiration for this reflective Elegy. Barrie is a former Principal Director of Music at the Royal Air Force and one of the service's most prolific composers.

Miss Saigon
Claude-Michel Schonberg - 1987
Arr. Warren Barker
Based on Puccini’s opera Madame Butterfly, Miss Saigon similarly tells the tragic tale of a doomed romance involving an Asian woman abandoned by her American lover. The setting of the plot is relocated to the 1970s Saigon during the Vietnam War, and Madame Butterfly's story of marriage between an American lieutenant and Japanese girl is replaced by a romance between an American GI and a Vietnamese bar girl. The musical was premièred at the Theatre Royal, Drury Lane, London, on 20 September 1989, closing after over four thousand performances, on 30 October 1999.
The show was revived this year on the West End in May.

The Heat is on In Saigon | Sun and Moon | Morning of the Dragon | The Last Night of the World | The American Dream | I Still Believe

Frozen
Kristen Anderson-Lopez and Robert Lopez – 2013
Arr. Stephen Bulla
Inspired by Hans Christian Anderson's fairy tale The Snow Queen this Disney animated film tells the story of a fearless princess who sets off on an epic journey to find her estranged sister, whose icy powers have trapped the kingdom in an eternal winter. Frozen won two academy Awards for Best Animated Feature and Best Original Song ("Let It Go").

Frozen Heart | Let It Go | Do You Want to Build a Snowman | For the First Time in Forever | Epilogue.

October
Eric Whitacre – 2000
Commissioned by the Nebraska Wind Consortium; Eric Whitacre composed October with the intention of evoking a peaceful musical representation of the month he has called his favourite, and the feelings this month evokes for him.
Whitacre writes in a programme note: "Something about the crisp autumn air and the subtle changes in light always make me a little sentimental, and as I started to sketch I felt the same quiet beauty in the writing. The simple, pastoral melodies and the subsequent harmonies are inspired by the great English Romantics, as I felt this style was also perfectly suited to capture the natural and pastoral soul of the season. I'm happy with the end result, especially because I feel there just isn't enough lush, beautiful music written for winds."

Symphonic Dances from Fiddler on the Roof
Jerry Bock – 1964
Arr. Ira Hearshen
The story of ‘Fiddler on the Roof’ centers on the father of five daughters and his attempts to maintain his family and Jewish religious traditions, while outside influences encroach upon their lives. This selection mainly focuses on the instrumental music taken from the show and presents them in a series of dances.

Tradition | Wedding Dance #1 (Bottle Dance) | Perchik and Hodel Dance | Chava Sequence | To Life – Dance

Read more about this concert

Read More »

Tuesday, 14 October 2014

A Festival of Music - 8th November 2014

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Northampton Concert Band is taking their fabulous music making to the Masque Theatre in Kettering in a concert titled ‘Festival of Music’.

Featuring many popular classics, The Dam Busters, Mary Poppins, Miss Saigon, Frank Sinatra selection, Pink Panther, Fiddler on the Roof, and music from the latest Disney blockbuster: Frozen.

Read the full programme online.

The concert will also feature performances of music that the band will be hoping to win another award at the annual National Concert Band Festival regional heats later in November.

It will also be the official launch of the band’s new CD, Imperial Echoes, which was recorded earlier this year by World of Sound based in Wellingborough.

This is the first time the band have produced a concert at the Masque. As their audiences, and the band, have been growing they have been looking for larger venues to help continue this growth.

Stephen Bell, Musical Director, said “I’m excited to be bringing the band to Kettering and the Masque Theatre, we have such a great selection of music everyone will have a personal favourite. The band continues to go from strength to strength. You won’t want to miss this performance!”

‘Festival of Music’ is at 7:30pm Saturday 8th November and tickets are available from the Masque Theatre Box Office 01536 414141 or by visiting www.masquekettering.co.uk and are priced at £10 Adults, £5 Children.

£1 from each ticket sold will be donated to BBC Children in Need.
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Tuesday, 23 September 2014

30th Last Night of the Proms concert

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This Saturday (27th September) will the the 30th annual Last Night of the Proms concert at the historic Holy Sepulchre Church in Northampton.

Again featuring Northampton Concert Band and the Cantare Singers under the battons of Stephen Bell and Andrew Howes respectively.

The evening will feature popular music from both the band and the choir alike with a finale of all you favoutire 'Last Night-Union Flag Waving' songs. 'Jerusalem', 'Rule Britannia' and 'Land of Hope and Glory'.

The concert starts at 7:30pm at the Holy Sepulchre Church, Northampton and the doors open at 7pm.
Tickets are £10 and are available from John Kightly on 01604 754782 or email crusader.round@btinternet.com

Money raised from the evening will go towards the continuing restoration of this amazing 12th century church.
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Monday, 21 July 2014

Band and Choir join Forces to Commemorate Start of First World War

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Northampton Concert Band will be performing alongside the Northampton Male Voice Choir on Saturday 2nd August at the Church of the Holy Sepulchre, the forces Church for Northamptonshire, to help raise money for the Royal British Legion and Combat Stress to commemorate the centenary of the start of the Great War in a concert titled "For King and Country".

Music from the time will include many military marches, Mars from Holst's Planets Suite, Elgar's Nimrod and a selection of popular songs including "It's a long way to Tipperary" and many more.

Stephen Bell, who conducts both the band and the choir, said “Both groups are honoured to be invited to share their talents at this event. They will also be performing together in a special arrangement of songs dedicated to all those who served their country during the First World War“.

John Kightley MBE, concert organiser at the Holy Sepulchre church, said; “It’s a great cause to be raising funds for and although reflective at times the evening will also be about having a good time. I’m certainly looking forward to a wonderful performance from both the choir and the band.”

As well as music and song the evening will also include readings relating to the Army, the Navy and the Royal Air Force with a final reading by Ltd. Col. David Walsh for SSAFA.

The evening starts at 7:30pm. Tickets are £10 and are available from John Kightley Tel: 01604 754 782
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Monday, 23 June 2014

Concert: Family Film Favourites 2 - the Sequel - Feedback

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Another great night of film music delighted an audience young and old on Saturday evening and here are a few comments we have received. The first from Gary Wilson from Autism Concern who is already looking forward to working with us again next year.

"On behalf of the members and trustees’ of Autism Concern I would like to thank you for all the hard work that you put into making Saturday’s event so enjoyable. Please pass on our thanks to all the band members for a wonderful show."

Gary Wilson, Fundraising Manager, Autism Concern

"We all had a wonderful evening last night at the Family Film Favourites concert - you were awesome! Looking forward to next year's!!!"

G. Price

"Thanks for a really great evening. It has inspired me to keep on with the clarinet practice! :)"

Shan Goodridge
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Wednesday, 18 June 2014

Family Film Favourites 2 - Programme - 21st June 2014

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Programme Overview

Luftwaffe March
Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban
Love Theme from The Godfather
James Bond Selection
Don't Cry For Me Argentina
Aladdin
The Hunchback of Notre Dame
Pirates of the Caribbean - Dead Man's Chest

Interval

633 Squadran
The Lion King
Skyfall
Toy Story 2
Star Trek
Titanic
Sweeney Todd
Frozen
Conducted by Stephen Bell

Luftwaffe March (Battle of Britain - 1969)
Ron Goodwin
Arr. Desmond Walker
We kick-off tonight’s concert with Ron Goodwin's "Luftwaffe March" for the 1969 film Battle of Britain. The "Luftwaffe March", later re-titled "Aces High", is in the style of a traditional German military march in 6/8 time.
The march has become a popular British march tune, like the Dambusters March; an adaptation was first played by a British military band in 1974 by the Corps of Drums of the Royal Pioneer Corps and is now frequently played at military parades and by marching bands throughout the UK.

Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban (2004)
John Williams
Arr. Victor Lopez
This was the third and final score in the Harry Potter series to be composed by John Williams. This film's music is not as bright as that of the previous films, with distinct medieval influences in the instrumentation.
One of the new themes, "Double Trouble," was written during production so that a children's choir could perform it in Hogwarts's Great Hall in one of the film's earlier scenes (accompanied by giant toads).
The lyrics of "Double Trouble" are from a ritual performed by the ‘Weird Sisters’ in Act 4, Scene 1 of Shakespeare's Macbeth.“Double, double toil and trouble; Fire burn, and cauldron bubble.”
Hedwigs Theme | Hagrid the Professor Double Trouble | A Window To The Past 

Love Theme from The Godfather (1972)
Nino Rota
Arr. Robert Longfield
The Godfather is widely regarded as one of the greatest films in world cinema and as one of the most influential, especially in the gangster genre.
Nino Rota's score was removed at the last minute from the list of 1973 Academy Award nominees when it was discovered that he had used the love theme in Eduardo De Filippo's 1958 comedy Fortunella. Despite this, The Godfather Part II won a 1974 Oscar for Best Original Score although it featured the same famous love theme that made the 1972 score ineligible.

James Bond (Selection)
John Barry
Arr. Johan de May
Born in York in 1933, John Barry Prendergast wrote the scores to the award winning films Midnight Cowboy, Dances with Wolves and Out of Africa in a career spanning over 50 years. He is probably most famous though for his work on the James Bond franchise.
John Barry was brought in to arrange the “James Bond Theme” composed by Monty Norman for Dr No (1962) and went on to compose the soundtracks for eleven more James Bond films. As well as the film scores he also wrote the title songs for Goldfinger (“Goldfinger” 1964) and Octopussy (“All Time High” 1983). This selection includes all these and “For Your Eyes Only” (1981) by Bill Conti and Mick Leeson.

Don’t Cry for me Argentina (Evita - 1996)
Andrew Lloyd Webber and Tim Rice
Arr. Michael Sweeney
Written for the 1978 musical Evita the song was sung by the title character Eva Perón, it was titled "It's Only Your Lover Returning" before Rice settled on the eventual name.
It was not until 1996 that Evita came to the big screen. Alan Parker directed the film with Madonna in the title role. Madonna received mixed reviews but received a Golden Globe Award for Best Actress – Motion Picture Musical or Comedy for her performance.

Aladdin (1992)
Alan Menken
Arr. John Moss Composer Alan Menken and songwriters Howard Ashman and Tim Rice were praised for creating a soundtrack that is "consistently good, rivaling the best of Disney's other animated musicals from the '90s." Menken and Ashman began work on the film together, with Rice taking over as lyricist after Ashman died in early 1991. Although fourteen songs were written for Aladdin, only six are featured in the movie, three by each lyricist.
Arabian Nights | One Jump Ahead | Wedding Announcement | A Whole New World | Jafar’s Hour | Prince Ali | On A Dark Night | Friend like Me | Happy Ending 

The Hunchback of Notre Dame (1996)
Alan Menken
Arr. Calvin Custer
The 34th animated feature in the Walt Disney Animated Classics series, the film is based on Victor Hugo's novel of the same name. The plot centres on Quasimodo, the deformed bell-ringer of Notre Dame and his struggle to gain acceptance into society.
The Bells of Notre Dame | Out There | Topsy Turvy | God Help the Outcasts | Hellfire | The Bells of Notre Dame (reprise) 

Pirates of the Caribbean Dead Man’s Chest (2006)
Hans Zimmer
Arr. Jay Bocook
This highly anticipated sequel was the biggest movie of the year and features an exciting and dramatic soundtrack from the pen of Hans Zimmer, plus familiar themes from the first movie.
Jack Sparrow | The Kraken | Davy Jones | I've Got My Eye On You | Wheel Of Fortune 

INTERMISSION

633 Squadron (1964)
Ron Goodwin
Arr. Goff Baldwin
This British film depicts the exploits of a fictional WW2 British fighter-bomber squadron. While critics derided the wooden acting and hackneyed plot, the aerial scenes were considered spectacular, and with Ron Goodwin's music, remained the main attraction.

The Lion King (1994)
Elton John, Hans Zimmer
Arr. Calvin Custer
Lyricist Tim Rice, who was working with composer Alan Menken on songs for Aladdin, was invited to write the songs and accepted on the condition of finding a composing partner. As Menken was unavailable, the producers accepted Rice's suggestion of Elton John. John and Rice wrote five original songs for this film additional music was written by Hans Zimmer.
This Land | Circle Of Life | To Die For | Be Prepared | Can You Feel the Love Tonight | Hakuna Matata | I Just Can’t Wait To Be King 

Skyfall (2012)
Adkins & Epworth
Arr. Jay Bocook
Written for the 23rd James Bond film by British singer-songwriter Adele and her regular collaborator Paul Epworth the song was released online at 0:07am BST on 5 October 2012, a day dubbed "James Bond Day" by the producers as it marked fifty years to the day of the release of Dr. No.
The song won the Academy Award for Best Original Song. It was the first time a Bond song had won, and only the fourth time one had been nominated. "Skyfall" also won the Brit Award for Best British Single at the 2013 BRIT Awards.

Toy Story 2 (1999)
Randy Newman
Arr. Jay Bocook
For the sequel to the 1995 film Toy Story Randy Newman wrote two new songs for Toy Story 2 as well as the complete original score: "Woody's Roundup" and “When She Loved Me" which was nominated at the Academy Awards in 2000 for Best Original Song.
The film also carried over one song from Toy Story, "You've Got a Friend in Me”.
This selection features all three songs from the film. (Listen out for the flutes performing Jesse’s signature yodel and the trumpet performing Bullseye’s neighing during “Woody’s Roundup” theme tune) 

Star Trek (2009)
Michael Giacchino
Arr. Jay Bocook
Giacchino admitted personal pressure in scoring the J.J. Abrams 2009 Star Trek film, as "I grew up listening to all of that great [Trek] music, and that's part of what inspired me to do what I'm doing. You just go in scared. You just hope you do your best. It's one of those things where the film will tell me what to do.”
To Boldly Go | Enterprising Young Men | End Credits 

Titanic (1997)
James Horner
Arr. Calvin Custer
Directed by James Cameron, Titanic became the highest grossing film of all time in 1998 and remained so for 12 years, until Avatar (2010), also written and directed by James Cameron.
James Horner additionally wrote the song "My Heart Will Go On" in secret with Will Jennings because Cameron did not want any songs with singing in the film. Horner waited until Cameron was in an appropriate mood before presenting him with the song. After playing it several times, Cameron declared his approval.
Southampton | Take Her to Sea, Mr. Murdoch | Hard to Starboard | My Heart Will Go On 

Sweeney Todd (2007)
Stephen Sondheim
Arr. Stephen Bulla
Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street is a 2007 musical horror film directed by Tim Burton. It is the second film in Burton's directing career not to include music composed by Danny Elfman (the first being Ed Wood.). It is an adaptation of Stephen Sondheim and Hugh Wheeler's Tony Award-winning 1979 musical of the same name and re-tells the Victorian melodramatic tale of Sweeney Todd, an English barber and serial killer who murders his customers with a straight razor and, with the help of his accomplice, Mrs. Lovett, processes their corpses into meat pies.
The Ballad of Sweeney Todd | A Little Priest | My Friends | Pirelli’s Miracle Elixir | Not While I’m Around 

Frozen (2013)
Christophe Beck, Kirsten Anderson-Lopez and Robert Lopez
Arr. Stephen Bulla
Inspired by Hans Christian Anderson's fairy tale The Snow Queen this Disney animated film tells the story of a fearless princess who sets off on an epic journey to find her estranged sister, whose icy powers have trapped the kingdom in an eternal winter.
Frozen won two academy Awards for Best Animated Feature and Best Original Song ("Let It Go").
Frozen Heart | Let It Go | Do You Want to Build a Snowman | For the First Time in Forever | Epilogue.
Read More »

Tuesday, 27 May 2014

"High School Music Cool"

The band prepare to welcome the guests.
(click image to enlarge)
On Friday 23rd May 2014 Northampton Concert Band attended their first School Prom.

Northampton Concert Band was delighted to be invited to perform for the 6th Form leavers of Bishop Stopford School, Kettering at their end of year prom which was held at Sywell Aerodrome.

The band welcomed the young revelers to the black tie event in Hanger One with music from the movies and later provided a selection of big band numbers that proved very popular.

Despite the high level of excitement the students were very well behaved and appreciative. The band finished their set, quite aptly - considering the location, with the march from The Dam Busters.

The evening was organised and co-ordinated by Jayantilal, a special events planning company. Priya Thanki, director for Jayantilal, said; “Northampton Concert Band were truly wonderful to work with - a hidden gem within the Northamptonshire entertainment scene. A fantastic sound with a great repertoire. We can't wait to book them again!

If you have a special event and would like to book the band to play for you and your guests please see our Book Us page.


..and from the front. (photo: Alex Pipkin)

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Tuesday, 13 May 2014

CD Recording Day (11th May 2014)


The band during recording.
Photo : Keith Crompton
On a sleepy Sunday morning members of Northampton Concert Band and a few invited guest players convened at the Cripps Recreational Centre to record Imperial Echoes, a follow up to their first CD Platinum Celebration (2011).

This time however the stakes were higher as, learning from the previous recording, Northampton Concert Band decided to put themselves in the very capable hands of World of Sound, a highly regarded recording company owned by Salvation Army Trading Co. Ltd. based in Wellingborough.

Starting at 10am we quickly recorded a number of marches kicking off with Imperial Echoes by Arnold Safroni the title track for our new CD. By 1pm a few film selections had been added and it was time for a well-earned break, all-be-it a short one.
Stephen, as viewed by the tuba section.
Photo : Brian Crutchley

With lunch over, and bellies full, the bands energy levels slowly started to wane and it was down to Stephen Bell, musical director, to energise the band into continuing to give their all. During the last 30 minutes the band performed their last 2 pieces and then it was time to pack our instruments away.

Adam Goldsmith, Producer and Senior Recording Engineer, World of Sound said, “I really enjoyed working with the band.”

Stephen Bell posted on Facebook later that day, “What an incredible day we had recording together. The band played right out of its skin. Good work everyone and a massive thank you from me. [I] can't wait to hear the results of our efforts.”
Taking a break.
Photo : Sarah Mason

It is hoped the first copies of the CD will be available by mid-July and the band plan a full launch at a later date.

Special thanks go to Michael Watkins for organising the tea, coffee and biscuits and the Cripps Recreational Staff for supplying our buffet lunch and support throughout the day.
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Wednesday, 2 April 2014

Charity Hosts Sequel to Film Music Concert

Tickets for the second Family Film Favourites concert have gone on sale today in time for International Autism Awareness Day (2nd April).

After last year's success Autism Concern have asked Northampton Concert Band to perform their magic again and in true Hollywood style we're imaginatively titling this concert "Family Film Favourites 2 - The Sequel"

Some of your favourite music from last year is back as well as some new music. Returning will be The Lion King, Pirates of the Caribbean and Star Trek. New this year is Toy Story 2, Titanic, The Godfather, The Battle of Britain and many others.

Tickets are £10 and proceeds will go to Autism Concern; a Northamptonshire charity that provides help, guidance and advice for people and families living with autism.

Stephen Bell, musical director, said "I'm really looking forward to this concert. Film music is always popular with our audience members as well as the band. Last year was such a great success and this year I'm sure we can help Autism Concern raise even more money."

The concert will take place in the excellent Hunter Hall, a 200 seat theatre, at Spratton Hall School, Spratton, Northampton at 7pm on Saturday 21st June 2014. You can buy your tickets on line from our tickets page or call our box office 07561 390099 (Answer phone).

Read audience feedback from last year's Family Film Favourites concert


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Monday, 3 March 2014

Concert: We've Got Rhythm - Feedback

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Helen Jones, Stephen Bell and
Mayor of Northampton, Cllr. Les Marriott
At the "We've Got Rhythm" concert on Saturday 1st March the Mayor of Northampton, Cllr. Les Marriott, presented Helen Jones, a student from Tresham College, with a gift on behalf of Northampton Concert Band for her winning logo design in front of an audience of over 120.



The evening was a great success and below are a few of comments that have been received. The first being a letter of thanks from Helen Jones.

Please accept my thanks for such a memorable evening at the concert on Saturday. It was such a lovely gesture, and big surprise to be presented with my prize by the Northampton Mayor and to receive such an amazing introduction by Steven.

Many thanks for my CD and £50 of Amazon vouchers, which have already been gratefully spent on Graphic Design related books. The additional presentation of my logo was the icing on the cake ... I will keep this, and look back on it affectionately in years to come knowing it was my first success in design.

I look forward to following how you develop my logo into the NCB branding.

You sounded amazing on Saturday, my foot was tapping ....keep up the good work! I hope to see you at the Latimer Masque concert in November.

Kind regards,
 Helen Jones

"It was a great night, must have been something for everyone. Among my favourites were Hoagy Carmichael, Frank Sinatra lots of memories of listening to music on the radio with my parents in the 50's. Thanks for a wonderful evening :))"

"What a wonderful concert tonight, it was one of the best. Thank you x" - S. Boyce

"Thank you for an excellent toe tapping evening :-) still didn't win the raffle!! Maybe next time eh?" - (via twitter)

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Saturday, 1 March 2014

We've Got Rhythm - Programme - 1st March 2014

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Conducted by Stephen Bell

Imperial Echoes 
James Ord Hume

Originally composed as a piano piece by Arnold Safroni in 1913 it was later adapted into a march by James Ord Hume in 1928. In 1940 the opening and closing parts were used to introduce the BBC’s daily news programme Radio Newsreel. As such it became inextricably associated with the BBC’s output during the war. The theme continued to be used by the BBC in Britain until 1970.

Egmont Overture
Beethoven
Written as the opening piece to the play Egmont, the story follows the heroism of a 16th century Dutch nobleman, the Count of Egmont. Beethoven expressed his own political concerns through the exaltation of the heroic sacrifice of a man condemned to death for having taken a valiant stand against oppression. The Overture later became an unofficial anthem of the 1956 Hungarian revolution.

At Dawn They Slept (December 7, 1941)
Jay Bocook

Jay Bocook is a prolific composer and arranger of concert band music. This musical remembrance pays tribute to fallen heroes of that fateful day at Pearl Harbour that launched the USA into World War II. Opening with a peaceful, flowing woodwind melody, the day is heralded in by a lone bugler. Ominous undertones, powerful scoring, dissonant themes and bombastic percussion capture musically the chaos that followed. It's a powerful musical statement that concludes ultimately on an optimistic note that looks to a brighter future.

Clarinet on the Town
Ralph Hermann
Born in 1914, Ralph’s musical career began at high school and culminated in concerts with famous American bands. From 1954 he also wrote works for concert band.
Originally composed for clarinet and piano ‘Clarinet on the Town’ tonight gets the full band treatment.

A Tribute to Glenn Miller
Glenn Miller
Arr. Henry Gass
Probably the most popular of all the big band musicians he was the best-selling recording artist from 1939 to 1943.
This small selection of Millers music, arranged by Henry Gass, was published after Glenn Millers aircraft disappeared in bad weather over the English Channel in 1944.
The songs included in this arrangement are:
Tuxedo Junction | Little Brown Jug | Jersey Bounce | American Patrol

I Would That My Love
Felix Mendelssohn
Jakob Ludwig Felix Mendelssohn Bartholdy (1809 –1847), widely known as Felix Mendelssohn, was a German composer, pianist, organist and conductor of the early Romantic period.
I Would That My Love (Ich wollt’ meine Lieb’), published in 1836, is the first of 6 Duets that make up Opus 63.
Originally scored for two sopranos and piano this arrangement is for two cornets.

A Concert Medley
Henry Mancini
Arr. John Moss
Mancini had a long collaboration with the film director Blake Edwards and won numerous Academy Awards for the songs in Edwards’ films, including “Moon River” from Breakfast at Tiffany’s.
This arrangement by John Moss sandwiches the melancholy of Moon River between the cheerful and goofy slices of The Pink Panther and Baby Elephant Walk

INTERVAL

Barnard Castle
Goff Richards
Goff Richards, sometimes credited as Godfrey Richards, was a prominent English brass band arranger and composer.
He was well known for his original brass compositions such as “Trailblaze”, “Doyen”, “Exploding Brass!” and the marches “The Jaguar” and “Barnard Castle”.
He died on 25 June 2011 in Cheshire, following an illness, at the age of 66.
Barnard Castle is a market town in Teesdale, County Durham, England. It is named after the castle around which it grew up.

Hoagy Carmichael in Concert
Hoagy Carmichael
Arr. Warren Barker
Born Howard Hoagland Carmichael in 1899, Hoagy is best known for composing the music for “Stardust”, “The Nearness of You”, and “Heart and Soul”, three of the most-recorded American songs of all time and all featured in this selection.
“Heart and Soul” has a simple chord progression that is taught to beginning piano students as an easy two-had duet.
In the Cool, Cool, Cool of the Evening | The Nearness of You | Heart and Soul | Stardust | Lazy River

Alice in Wonderland
Danny Elfman
Arr. Michael Brown
Tim Burton’s 2010 film version of Alice in Wonderland was scored by long-time collaborator Danny Elfman. Most famous for The Simpsons theme Danny has scored for many films including writing the song and providing the singing voice for Jack Skellington in Tim Burton’s The Nightmare before Christmas.
Alice Returns | Bandersnatched | Alice’s Theme

Sinatra in Concert
(Various)
Arr. Jerry Nowak
This selection of four songs made famous by Frank Sinatra opens with ‘New York, New York’, originally sung by Liza Minnelli in the 1977 film of the same name that was a box-office flop.
After retiring for the first time in 1971, two years later Frank Sinatra returned to work and recorded several albums and in 1980 had a top 40 hit with the song with slightly different words to the original.
New York, New York | It Was a Very Good Year | The Lady is a Tramp | My Way

Big Bands in Concert
(Various)
Arr. Bob Lowden
This selection of ‘Big Band’ music features music from four greats:
Glen Miller’s A String of Pearls, Duke Ellington’s Satin Doll, Intermission Riff by Ray Wetzel, Duke Ellington’s Sophisticated Lady, and Open One.
A String of Pearls | Satin Doll | Intermission Riff | Sophisticated Lady | Opus One
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Tuesday, 11 February 2014

We've Got Rhythm

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Tickets are already on sale for our first concert of 2014 – We’ve Got Rhythm on Saturday 1st March.

Featuring a wide selection of music "We’ve Got Rhythm" will include a range of “Big Band” music. Also in the programme will be Barnard Castle by Goff Richards and Egmont Overture by Beethoven, specially selected for this concert by our musical director Stephen Bell.

Talking of Big Bands, Northampton Concert Band held an “open rehearsal” in January where we recruited some new members so the band is now even bigger than ever; now numbering about 50 performers (I’m not sure we will all be able to get onto the Abington Park bandstand this summer). Please come along and support our new members in their first concert with us.

Tickets are available online from our website priced at £10 adults and £5 children, though you can save £1 per ticket if you buy yours before Sunday 15th February. Or you can call 07561 390099.

We’ve Got Rhythm will be held at the Cripps Recreational Centre (NGH) where there is a licenced bar to which you will be able to purchase drinks throughout the evening. There is also plenty of parking on site which will cost 50p for the evening.

We’re all looking forward to seeing you there.
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Northampton Concert Band re-brands with winning design

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Helen Jones presents her design at Tresham College
A mature graphic design student from Tresham College of Further and Higher Education’s Kettering Campus has designed the winning logo for Northampton Concert Band following the challenge put to students at the start of the term.

Established in 1919, Northampton Concert Band were looking for a fresh new look to bring them into the 21st Century to ensure that they had a logo that could be used in multiple formats in print and on the web.

Students studying a two year HNC leading to HND Graphic Design course at Tresham College often get the opportunity to work on real projects as part of their course work which they can add to their portfolio when looking for a job in their chosen career or to support university applications.

The winning design was awarded to Helen Jones who returned to college at the age of 41. She had wanted to pursue a career in Graphic Design before having children, but bringing up her two children, along with being diagnosed with the long term chronic illness, Fibromyalgia, meant this was put on hold for 15 years. She had previously had several jobs, the last being in marketing where she realised her creative talent for design. Helen chose to pursue this and enrolled on to the Graphic Design course with a view to gain employment in a career she wants.

Helen Jones, 41 from Barton Seagrave, Kettering said
''I was thrilled my design was chosen by the Northampton Concert Band for their re-branding. I'm grateful for this opportunity and for the amazing feedback I received during my design presentations. This project confirmed my decision to return to education after 25 years. Studying Graphic Design has been the right one''.

Stephen Bell, principal musical director said,
“Helen's design was very eye catching, clean and fresh. The band committee were unanimous in its selection from the short list provided by the college lecturers. The band are looking forward to meeting her at the award presentation at our next concert.”

Stephen Bell will present Helen with her prize during “We've Got Rhythm” on Saturday 1st March, at the Cripps Recreational Centre, Northampton.
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Sunday, 12 January 2014

Open Rehearsal Attracts New Musicians

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Northampton Concert Band were joined by new members at an open rehearsal held on Sunday (12th January) in Northampton.

Joining the 40 strong band on the day were 6 new musicians consisting of 3 flutes, 1 clarinet, 1 French horn and a trumpet. The rehearsal involved a wide variety of music to give the new members a feel of what the band is like.

Kathrina Perry (33), a flautist, hadn't played her flute for 5 years and 15 years since she had played with a band. Kathrina said "I saw the event via a Chronicle twitter feed and decided to give it a go. I really enjoyed the rehearsal and was made to feel very welcome. The band made an amazing sound and I will be going again."

Stephen Bell (50), principal conductor, said "The open rehearsal went very well and all those who took part seemed to thoroughly enjoy themselves. Hopefully they will be joining us for our first concert of the year in March."

The non auditioning community band perform throughout the year at many events and concerts in Northampton, including taking part in the "Bands in the Park" season at Abington Park bandstand in the summer.

The band is still on the lookout for more members so anyone interested in joining the band is asked to contact the band secretary Michael Watkins on 01604 845 885 or email members@northamptonconcertband.org.uk
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Friday, 3 January 2014

New Year - New Band Members Welcome

Northampton Concert Band are inviting local musicians to join them for an open rehearsal.

The award winning band formed in 1919 currently has just over 40 members, aged from 15 to 75, and are looking for new members to join their ranks.

Playing a range of different musical styles from marches to musicals, classical and contemporary the band are looking for woodwind, brass and especially percussionists who are, or used to be, grade 5 or above and who are looking for an opportunity to play again.

Stephen Bell, principal musical director, said “We have a brilliant music education service in Northamptonshire that produces some top quality musicians. After school and university many people stop performing to focus on their careers and family life.

“We are a friendly group that gives adults, young and old, a space where they can meet to continue to perform and develop their musical talent. I urge anyone who has decided to take up making music again for their new year, to come and join us.”

The open rehearsal will take place on Sunday morning January 12th from 10:30 to 12:30 at the Cripps Recreational Centre (Northampton General Hospital), Cliftonville, Northampton and those interested in attending are asked to register by sending an email to Michael on members@northamptonconcertband.org.uk, or call on 01604 845 885
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