It was great to once again be back in St. Alban’s Church for the annual OTMB Summer Show, such a lovely acoustic and setting and somewhere where we all feel very comfortable, having shared so many wonderful performances and memories there over the years.
And this Summer Show was our 10 year anniversary concert as it was 10 years since the first OTMB concert next door in Westbury Park School; things have come on a long way since then!
The Chamber Choir opened the show with the highly challenging and evocative ‘I know that my redeemer liveth’ by Cecilia McDowall. It was a pressurised way to open for the choir but they more than lived up to that pressure and delivered the concert’s opening piece of music with real composure and class. Then followed a varied programme including ‘Choral Dances’ by Britten, a Dowland madrigal, some very controlled and pure singing in two Beatles classics, ‘In My Life’ and ‘Here, There and Everywhere’ before finishing with an inspiring performance of the Housemartins classic, ‘Caravan of Love’ which succeeded in eliciting some enthusiastic audience participation! The Chamber Choir’s singing as always was self-assured, the sound intensely focused, the musicianship first class and they succeeded – as they have done in the past – in getting the show off to the ideal start.
Next it was the turn of the OTM North and South Bristol Community Choirs supported by the always brilliant band of Gareth on bass, Cam on guitar and Zach on drums.
First was the unaccompanied ‘Locus Iste’ by Bruckner followed by Mozart’s ‘Laudate Dominum’. These two classical pieces worked very well in opening the set and you could tell from the feeling in the church that the audience were hooked from the first note of ‘Locus Iste’. Special mention should go to the Part 1s in the Mozart who did amazingly singing the solo soprano part! Then followed songs including a lyrical and emotive rendition of the Sting favourite, ‘Fields of Gold’, an highly energetic performance of the jazz standard ‘Mack the Knife’, sung by many over the years including Bobby Darin and Frank Sinatra, ‘Shallow’ from ‘A Star Is Born’ and a spine-tingling performance of ‘This Is Me’ from The Greatest Showman. The set finished with the all time Queen classic, ‘Bohemian Rhapsody’ followed by ‘Viva la Vida’ by Coldplay. I chose ‘Viva la Vida’ specially as being our 10 year anniversary show, this was the song we closed with at the first concert and so it seemed fitting 10 years on to do the same, albeit with a slightly more complicated arrangement and a much bigger choir and audience! Even though the makeup of the choir is almost entirely different to what it was back then, the spirit of OTMB lives on which was clear to see from the great vibe in the church created by performers and audience alike.
After the show, everybody celebrated outside with a fantastic BBQ provided by Ruby and White and a bar run by Alterego, a lovely way to celebrate a wonderful performance and another great year in the life of Out There Music Bristol.
The concert was once again in aid of the charity we’ve been proudly supporting for many years now – Changing Tunes – and before the Chamber Choir sang, Carla who worked with Changing Tunes in prison, spoke about the very positive impact Changing Tunes has had on her life in the last few years. And from talking to performers and audience members alike afterwards, her story clearly made an impact and helped to bring to life the invaluable work that Changing Tunes does.
I’m delighted to say that on the night we raised £362.39 so thank you to everybody who donated, it is very much appreciated.
Special thanks goes to Dave whose help was invaluable as always. And also Chris who videoed the concert, Paula and Alison who co-ordinated decorating the church and Rob who sorted out the lighting.
And thanks again to everybody who was involved, performers, audience and everyone who helped out – you know who you are and it couldn’t have happened without you….to all those people, thanks for once again making it a great evening. It has once again added something more to the OTMB story – 10 years and counting!
Have a great summer and see you in September!
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