The orchestra was saddened to hear of the recent death of John Denny. John had been a faithful member of the orchestra for 11 years, playing soprano saxophone. He also played accordion and played a solo in nearly every concert he appeared at. Mostly recently, he played a selection of his favourite accordion music at our Christmas concert in December of 2019. He was always quick to smile and had a quiet humour that soon would bring a smile to everyone he was talking to. But most of all, he will be remembered for his passion and energy for music and motor bikes. We were all very fond of John, and we will miss his friendship and music.
Our Christmas concert was held on December 5th. The orchestra has grown so large that fitting all 44 members and the audience was a bit of a squeeze. But the sound the orchestra made was amazing, with a Christmas carol, film music and the musical Guys and Dolls all being celebrated.
We played Tchaikovsky's Waltz of the Flowers, and Trepak, both from The Nutcracker. We also played Anderson's famous Sleigh Ride, where 2 members of the audience were invited to join with the orchestra to add the sleigh bells.
As always, the concert was free, but we did collect a voluntary donation for charity. This term, we raised money for a charity that some members of the orchestra have benefitted from and know well; the Thames Hospice, and their Raise the Roof appeal in particular. £440 was raised for this extremely good cause.