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22 November 2020 -
Well, it’s been some time since I did a news update for the band website and Facebook pages. Like everyone, I’ve found 2020 to be a very strange year indeed and from a banding point of view, everything stopped in March.
Our last performance in public was at the regional contest in Torquay on 15th March and soon after that all our concerts with the senior and training band were gradually cancelled. As things started to get a bit better we did manage to do a few outdoor rehearsals during September and October until the new partial lockdown came into effect.
Anyway, we’ve still been busy and if you click here you should be able to watch some of the online music that was recorded remotely for the 2020 Wye Valley River Festival. This included a wonderful new piece of music that the band commissioned from our composer-in-residence, Liz Lane, called ‘River of Time’ with narration and animation - I hope you enjoy it.
Also, you can meet many of the band members with the video ‘We Met in the Band’ - a poem written by Beth Calverley which we’ve set to music showing all the family relationships we have within the band.
Some of the Training Band members were involved as well with a Soloist Showcase which was edited by one of our former members, Jack Lythaby. The piano accompaniments were provided by Tracey Gwynne and many thanks to both of them for their help with this project.
As Christmas approaches we are usually very busy with both our bands, but this year all those concerts (to include the very popular one in Lydbrook Church) have been cancelled.
So, the question we posed ourselves was “what can we do instead?” One of our members, Ellie, came up with the idea of an Advent Calendar and so from 1st December until 25th December you’ll be able to access the band website/Facebook page to find some Christmas cheer with a different piece of music each day. This has all been brought together by husband and wife band members Paul and Jo Ainsworth.
I’m still clinging onto the hope that we might be able to play in the village on Christmas morning, if only a very small group of us. This tradition has been going since 1923 and it’s not something we want Covid to prevent. However, we’ll have to see if this is allowed when the new guidelines are announced after lockdown.
Finally, the band has not been able to raise any income this year with the cancellation of all our concerts and therefore if you would like to make a small donation to our funds please click here.
I’ll be in touch again before Christmas, but until then, please stay safe.