Remembrance and Renewal

Review, charity collection and pictures.

Review – Remembrance and Renewal
Trianon Symphony Orchestra and Choir
Snape Maltings, September 15th

Saturday’s concert by the Trianon Music Group was a timely commemoration of the end of the Great War in 1918 together with a nod to the immediate aftermath of societal change – a clever broadsheet that interwove poignant and reflective choral works with strident orchestral pieces, leading to bits of lighter moments as the programme progressed along its theme of “Remembrance and Renewal”. Just as the sound and impact of emerging and retreating gunfire resonates over the battlefield, so did the evening’s music take us along that journey; from its quiet prayer-like start to the intensity of the orchestra adding dramatic explosive presence, back again to spiritual mass-type pause before moments of post-war evolution and a final flourish of reflection.

This was a splendid compilation put together by the Group and led by Steve Browne under conductor Christopher Green. Included were pieces by Karl Jenkins (from the Armed Man and In Paradisum), Vaughan Williams, Johannes Brahms, Gustav Holst, Ethel Smyth, Dimitri Shostakovich and Charles Villiers Stanford. The centrepiece of the first half was Requiem Op.9 by Maurice Durufle, a nine-part mass-inspired full orchestral choral work which featured guest soloists Muriel Kwint (mezzo-soprano) and Nick Fowler (baritone) both displaying authority and clear diction. This work was performed in Latin by the large choir, swelled for the occasion by 33 additional guest singers from the region which justified the choice of venue for its moving performance. My notes read “powerful, deeply spiritual, serene and intimate”, which it was.

Other notable works included Ivan Gurney’s War Elegy which picked out the subtle “left-right, left-right” marching theme – something that is more noticeable with a live performance; Vaughan Williams’ Symphony No.2 (London) where special mention goes to the various orchestral section soloists, also to the percussion section in their part of the energetic playing of Jupiter from The Planets Suite by Gustav Holst. A nice surprise then followed when choir member Jean Shaw took over the baton to conduct Smyth’s The March of the Women, complete with banners at the back of the stage proclaiming “Votes for Women”!

The concert finished with Stamford’s Farewell from Songs of the Fleet. This was a fitting finale which, together with the Jenkins’ opening from The Armed Man, was dedicated to the memory of four Trianon members who passed away during recent months. It was in effect a signature of the whole evening’s performance – a prayerful start, beautiful delivery and building up to the crescendo of all crescendos that left the hairs standing up on the back of your neck; a wonderful end to an enjoyable concert where the ensemble seemed to be comfortably at ease with performing on the Snape Maltings stage.

Stuart Reid



Charity Collections

The total amount collected by the two charities last Saturday evening (15th September) at Snape Maltings was £228.25. This was split a follows:

Royal British Legion £119.79

SSlAFA The Armed Forces Charity £108.46



Pictures by Geoff Rogers