We were all very sad to hear the news of John’s death in February, the very day of our third concert of the season. The concert was given by pianist Malcolm Binns who is a loyal supporter of SMS and a friend of John. The programme included a piece composed by John and also a piece he especially asked Malcolm to play; it was a fitting local tribute to an internationally renowned composer. John was the founder of our society and we will always be grateful for his work as Musical Director; it was his wide musical experience and knowledge of professional musicians that enabled us to provide Sittingbourne with such a high standard of concerts.
Peter Morgan has had to resign from the Chairmanship of the SMS; after a spell in hospital he felt he could no longer carry on. He helped to start the society when he was approached by John and Monica McCabe with the idea of a music society for Sittingbourne. He became Chairman and has worked tirelessly and with great commitment to promote the society. We wish him well.
Marilyn Austen has agreed to be acting Chairman until the AGM when the annual election of officers takes place. At the same time we would very much like to see more members on the committee – if you have any nominations, for a Chairman or committee member, please let a member of the committee know.
OUR 2014/15 SEASON
From comments received everyone seems pleased with our new concert venue and we will certainly be continuing there next season.
All four concerts were well received. The first two concerts featured “Concert Royal”, who gave us an evening with Jane Austen, and the talented young “Aureus String Quartet”. In February Malcolm Binns treated us to a wonderful evening of piano compositions and the season ended with Travelling by Tuba – a very lively and fascinating way to end our tenth season.
We were very pleased to be able to provide outreach work again this year. Travelling by Tuba agreed to spend time at two local primary schools, The Oaks Infant School and Minterne Juniors. At both schools the children thoroughly enjoyed the experience of a performance by the duo. The children were totally captured by the presentation, which was amusing and informative, interspersed by an extraordinary range of sounds and sights. It was totally geared to the audience, and used repertoire and instruments quite different from those used at the evening performance. Two young lads were so inspired that they came to the evening concert as well!
It is hoped that next season more work with local schools will be possible.
Our thanks go to Malcolm Binns for his generous support in giving us a wonderful concert free of charge and to John Penry for the loan of his piano.
We are also very grateful for £500 from Sittingbourne Borough Council Members’ Localism Grants, towards outreach work and £1000 from Kent County Council Combined Member Grant Scheme.
OUR NEXT SEASON
We will again have four concerts in Sittingbourne to look forward to next season. With a variety of artists, it should be very enjoyable. There will be the Thomas Shelbourn Baroque Ensemble – recorder, flute and harpsichord, Prince Bishops Brass Quintet and The Thorne Wind Trio. The season will conclude with Manus Noble guitarist, kindly supported by Making Music’s Philip and Dorothy Green Award for Young Artists scheme.
As a new venture, in April SMS is combining with Faversham Music Society for a joint concert. It will be held in Queen Elizabeth School Faversham (where we will benefit from a decent piano without hire costs!) and will be a piano and viola recital.
A MESSAGE FROM OUR TREASURER
It’s that time of year again for members’ subscriptions to be paid; we have maintained the subscription again this year at £42 for four concerts and, hopefully, you will agree that it is excellent value for money. We are very aware of the need to balance the cost of professional artists against keeping the price of the concerts at a level which is accessible to a wide variety of people; we would, therefore, like to thank all those who add a donation, large or small, to the cost of their season ticket. Any donations received are increased in value as gift aid can be claimed on them helping to keep SMS financially viable.
Internet users – If searching for information, try using www.sittingbourne.easysearch.org.uk – and if shopping register with www.easyfundraising.org.uk and nominate Sittingbourne Music Society. Each purchase will generate a small donation at no extra cost to you and we can claim gift aid as well.
Thank you once again and we look forward to seeing you at the coming season’s concerts.