Newsletter Spring 2016

It was brilliant to welcome such a good turnout to our Friday Evening with Brahms -it really was a social occasion with the added value of a truly excellent talk by Dr Katy Hamilton. We learnt about Brahms and his background before he grew the majestic beard that Dr Hamilton felt has given people the wrong idea about his character and position. It was fascinating to learn that he was completely self-taught as a composer, that he was very interested in early music and polyphony – an unfashionable interest at the time, he seems to have particularly enjoyed composing for choirs. The Requiem is enigmatic since it was not commissioned; Brahms appears to have written it because he wanted to write a Requiem. He chose the texts which, interestingly, though taken from the Bible do not refer to Christ or the resurrection. Dr Hamilton then gave us some insights into the piece, the patterns, the shape, the connections.
We now look forward to the 26th February our Gala Dinner. If you have not been lucky enough to get a ticket, you can still bid in the auction – see attachment. Here is a letter from Pippa an Felicity as to what to expect

Dear Festival Chorus supporter,

We have now sold out for our dinner and Quiz on the 26th February. We will be having an auction that evening of some lovely things members and their friends have volunteered.

How the auction will work.

If you would like to bid for any or many of the items, please e mail the bid to this e mail address:

We will confirm and then place the bid on a list for that item. If you do not receive a confirmation we have not received your bid!

You may bid before the evening and you may bid if you are not attending the dinner – or even if you have a friend who is interested.

However, bids before the evening, or from people not attending must be delivered to us by midnight on the 25th February. After that, only bids at the event will be accepted.

On the evening, the list of bids received will be displayed and if you are attending, your table number will be shown against the bid. No names.

The day after the dinner we will e mail you if you have been successful and ask for payment.

Please do send this list on to your friends.

We hope it will be very successful and will set our anniversary year and commission on a good financial footing.

Felicity and Pippa

Auction Items

1) 4 Tickets for the Chelsea Flower Show on the first day for Members only – Tuesday 24th May. Face value £200.
Medals are given out on this day and plenty of celebrities attend. These are full day tickets so you can go for breakfast and stay for dinner!

2) 1-1 music lessons, or accompanying/coaching sessions.
Three sessions available (up to an hour each). Face value: £40+ per session.
As well as being the resident accompanist for the Festival Chorus, Elspeth is an experienced chamber musician, teacher and coach. With a busy timetable, this is a rare opportunity for you (or a friend or relative) to spend time with Elspeth, pick up some tips, and discover more of the musician in you! Dust down the ivories for a piano lesson, or bring along your favourite songs or instrumental pieces to play them with the piano. Sessions take place in the comfortable atmosphere of Elspeth’s home (10 minutes’ walk from Stockwell tube station, off-street parking available).

3) An evening at Windsor Races Spring 2016. Two tickets for an evening’s racing at the very popular Windsor racecourse on a Monday in May this year. The evening includes the return train from Clapham Junction to Windsor and Eton Riverside, a boat from Windsor to the racecourse and £20 to bet on your chosen race. You will be joining several friends as part of Antony Lewis-Crosby’s Racecourse Challenge for Cystic Fibrosis.

4) Singing lesson with Andrea Brown. Andrea brings a wealth of experience as both singer and conductor to her own teaching practice. Andrea is offering a 1hr consultation session where she will work on technical aspects of your singing as well as coach you in interpretation and performance. Face value £60

5) A cheese tasting evening for 4. Mark Newman of Hamish Johnston will be pleased to offer this at his shop on Northcote Road. “Come along for a guided tasting of a wide selection of our cheeses. We have done this a number of times and it really is a great evening.” Face value £100

6) Invitation for two to Wandsworth Radio’s Studio for Andrea Brown interview. Festival Chorus director Andrea Brown will be interviewed by Julia Bright as her special guest on ‘Classical Wandsworth’ on a Tuesday (8-9pm) in the spring. Andrea will choose her favourite pieces of music and tell us a bit about her herself and her musical life. You will also have the mysteries of local internet radio unravelled! The studio is in Battersea Park Road. Face value – incalculable!

7) Burn Before Reading, undiplomatic tales by choir member Geoff Gillham. With line drawings by Kate Jones. The book is a collection of fifteen short stories, scribbled in odd moments since he retired from the FCO in 2008. These stories are, loosely, set in the 1980s and 90s and in wide-ranging locations: a Duty Officer gets more than he bargained for; Albert the anaconda stars at a fancy dress party; a dictator is undone by a statue; explosions puncture dignity; Figaro finesses a close shave; and a pig eats the Prime Minister’s trousers! Cover price £10
8) Cookery lesson in your own home. At a time to suit you, we will come to your kitchen and develop your cookery skills. In the lesson you will make a meal for your household (and sometimes more). Lessons can cover a range of subjects and skills, from knife skills and easy cooking tricks to speciality cuisine or catering for dietary requirements. All food will be provided by Pete&Dom.
RRP: £80

9) Garden Design by Ann MacDonald. Anne is a garden designer with 15 years’ experience with a flexible approach to creating and redesigning typical South London gardens in different styles. Extensive plant knowledge. Consultation for 2 hours: face value £120

10) Dinner for 8 cooked by Liz Bracken. Liz will deliver a pre-cooked, three-course meal to your house, which will require minimal attention (just heating up at most). The menu will be subject to a discussion with Liz beforehand to make sure it suits your guests. Face value £80.


The files below are identical but formatted differently. We have been having problems with our links so we hope one of these will work!

Auction Items for printing

Auction Items for printing

One Response to “Newsletter Spring 2016”
  1. Judith Roscoe says:

    Thoroughly enjoyable evening on Brahms on Friday, 5th; Katy was a wonderful speaker and the whole evening was v well organised; thank you to all involved Judith R

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