Summer 2005

First Annual General Meeting of The Sittingbourne Music Society Members are invited to the above meeting which will take place on Monday 11th July 2005, at the Avenue Theatre, Avenue of Remembrance, Sittingbourne, commencing at 7.30pm.

A G E N D A 1.

Chairman’s Welcome
2. Apologies for absence
3. Chairman’s Report
4. Secretary’s Report
5. Treasurer’s Report and adoption of accounts
6. Election of Directors/Officers: Chairman Company Secretary Treasurer Artistic Director Artistic Administrator Communications Director Membership Secretary
7. Appointment of Auditors
8. Any Other Business NOTES At the first AGM, all Directors must retire and offer themselves for reappointment.

Any member wishing to nominate someone for appointment as Director must do so in writing not more than 35 clear days and not less than 14 clear days before the AGM, providing full details of the person so nominated, and the signature of that person indicating their willingness to stand.

LOOKING BACK Our first season finished with a flourish on 6 th May with a superb concert by the young Dutch quartet, the Prinse Quartet. Gratifyingly, the Director of one of Kent’s major Music Festivals was present and has immediately engaged the Prinse Quartet for his Festival. Some features of 2004/05:

    • We finished the season with an average audience of 174, which is remarkable for a first season and proves that there’s a need for the SMS in this community
    • We presented established masterpieces by Mozart (2), Beethoven, Brahms, Schumann, Ravel
    • We presented 3 works each, mostly substantial, by Britten and Debussy
    • There was a fascinating, unheralded inner strand of French music (9 works by 7 composers)
    • We programmed a variety of British music from Purcell to the present day, including several composers with Kent associations
    • We gave premières of Matthew Rogers’ a beginning for clarinet in our opening concert, and Chausson’s Les Oiseaux in January – both works are sure to be heard again
    • The programmes included several highly successful “unknowns” – the Sextet for piano and winds by Thuille (November) was particularly well received
  • We have ensnared our first patron, composer and pianist Sir Richard Rodney Bennett

We’ve had a wonderful array of artists, who have generously charged us very low fees. We can’t expect this kind of generosity in future – before long we will have to pay more realistic fees. Meanwhile, to all of them we offer our very sincere thanks for everything they’ve done to help establish the SMS so well.

We are planning what we think is an enticing and varied season for 2005/06:

    • Six concerts instead of five – members will get one concert free (6 for the price of 5)
    • The artists range from brilliant young performers such as the Eimer Piano Trio, and Kent violinist Charlie Brown (whose Ysaÿe at our Launch whetted our appetite for a return), to international stars such as the famous Quatuor Parisi and pianist Malcolm Binns, whose recital will be a highlight of the season
    • We have a special Year of the Sea event in collaboration with the Drama and Art Departments of Sittingbourne Community College – poetry and songs reflecting Swale’s maritime associations
    • The repertoire ranges from Greensleeves and Cherry Ripe through the ages, and we celebrate the centenaries of great British composers with very communicative chamber works
    • Premiéres include new pieces for recorder and guitar from John Joubert (who wrote the carol Torches) and Kent composer Philip Cowlin, and the season is framed by piano trios: Haydn and Dvořák (Dumky) in October, and John Ireland’s warmly romatic Phantasie Trio in May
    • Great masterpieces by Haydn, Dvořák, Beethoven (2), Chopin, Handel (2), Mozart, and Ravel

Please do contact us and let us have your views – that is the only way we can make our work successful. And please, tell us if you particularly liked something – that is just as useful! We are staying with Fridays at 7.45 pm– this has always been discussed quite extensively, but most concerts in the area take place on Saturdays, Sundays are very busy church days for many people, Mondays are normally pretty audience-unfriendly, and midweek is often taken up with local choral or orchestral rehearsals.

Weekends are also more manageable for a small society like ours when it comes to school halls etc. There is no ideal day or time, nor is there an ideal concert venue – we’re very grateful to the venues we have used, particularly Sittingbourne Community College for unfailing hospitality. You will see in our brochure that we have an exciting collaboration with them next November.

We are continuing to investigate different halls, but at the moment the field is limited, and we don’t want to outstay our welcome at any one of those we use.



Trustees will be recommending the following membership fees for 2005/6 to the AGM on 11 July

Corporate Season Ticket £200, Family Season Ticket £100

Individual Season Ticket £50 (that is 6 concerts for the price of 5)

And a continued £5 to receive the Newsletters only.

Completed forms (see below) will be accepted at the AGM (cheque or cash only please)

SMS Membership Secretary: Mrs Jeane Holmes Telephone: 01795 423589

Do renew your membership as soon as possible if you like what we’re doing, and it would be wonderful if most members could entice somebody else to join us. Our Membership Secretary is Jeane Holmes, 106 College Road, Sittingbourne, Kent ME10 1LQ. Tel: 01795 423 589. We think what we’re doing is exciting and worthwhile – do join us on this voyage of discovery!

VOLUNTEERS We are in real need of Volunteers to help run the Society, in all sorts of ways. At present, it is very much a cottage industry and probably always will be, but the burden borne by the Committee is a very heavy one. There are all sorts of things you can help us with – even non-members might find it interesting to be involved with some aspect of running the Society, so please come forward and help.

John McCabe 23rd May 2005 Artistic Director

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