REVIEW: An evening with Chichester City Band, Selsey Centre

Chichester City Band
Chichester City Band
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The Band proudly welcomed their audience to their first concert of the new season, sporting brand new uniforms generously purchased by band member Craig Younger-Sword and his wife Jill, and introducing their new Musical Director, Rom Stanko.

Rom presented a truly varied programme of music, ranging from marches to musicals, classical to popular, ancient to modern, from home and abroad, thus ensuring that there was indeed something for everyone to enjoy. Many of the pieces played were special arrangements by Rom himself, who is widely experienced in all fields of music- making and education up and down the country

The first half of the evening began with three fine British pieces - a stirring march by Gustav Holst, followed by a Rhapsody on Negro Spirituals by Eric Ball and then the immortal Hey Jude by Lennon & McCartney. Next we enjoyed I Dreamed a Dream, the Hustle, Singing in the Rain, Hey Look me over, and ending with two ultra-romantic English offerings: A Nightingale sang in Berkeley Square and a stunning selection from “the most perfect Musical of all” – My Fair Lady

Next Sunday Rom is taking his band to the Hawth Theatre in Crawley, to participate in an Entertainment Contest. He has chosen pieces representing six centuries, ranging from Pastime with Good Company by Henry VIII, no less, through pieces by Rameau, Clementi, Dvorak, Stanko himself (Back to the 20s) and William Mathias, whose Jubilate was written for the Queen’s Silver Jubilee. (The Clementi Piano Sonatina formed the basis for A Groovy Kind of Love, by Wine & Sager) Cornet Soloist Iona Harrison enthralled everyone with her exquisite playing of Dvorak’s Song to the Moon from his opera Russalka, and if tonight’s Chichester performance was anything to go by, they stand a very good chance!

The concert ended with the lovely All through the Night, Copa Cobana (not the Barry Manilow version), and When Johnny comes marching Home (arr. Stanko) No Sussex concert would be complete without the exuberant Sussex By The Sea, with the audience happily clapping along!