Music For The People.

 Royal Philharmonic At Theatre Severn

One strange thing about man’s existence is his inability to get through life without making classes, groups and distinctions of what is, ostensibly, the same thing. We see classes in our society; we see it reflected in food and sport and of course theatre. What is the real difference perhaps between a pop band, folk group or a barber shop quartet? None at all! It’s all music but there will always be someone around to argue that one is of a higher status or class than another. This is a silly practice because it produces elitism. Elitism acts as a social bar and still today, especially with opera and classical music, one may still find people arguing that listening to Mozart is cleverer or posher than listening to Glenn Miller’s band or a colliery brass band. I for one am glad to slowly see those silly traditions waning somewhat. We are no longer living the Downton Abbey lifestyle. Everyone nowadays rich or poor, ruling class or commoner,  are beginning to mix and mingle together. We are not quite there yet but we will make it and I look forward to that.

I look forward to that, so many more people will realise that there is some wonderful music written by the great composers and they should be for everybody no matter much they have in the bank. Tonight I went to see the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra at Theatre Severn. There were a lot of empty seats disappointingly and I wonder if it was because of the elitist tag. However, I will hear none of that. The orchestra tonight moved their audience emotionally with their beautifully clipped and manicured performance. This was great music being played by wonderful instrumentalists that I am sure wouldn’t hold with any of the archaic preconceptions that classical music should be used an elite platform for the richer classes to see and be seen.

Tonight it was much more about the music, the love of music and the construction of beautifully notated collages that have sprung from some of the greatest minds in our history. Mozart, Beethoven, Boccherini Glinka and Bruch were all lucky enough to have had their music played tonight. I say lucky because every creator wants their work seen at its best. There would be no question of that not happening if the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra were to play it. The music was so utterly moving, such beautiful writing and fantastic interpretation from the musical director and the conductor.

A classical orchestra is like a well oiled machine and a good conductor will know how to drive it. He knows when to push it, he knows when to hold it back and more than that he knows what every piece of the machine does. Clumsy analogy possibly but watching the orchestra tonight was like watching pure perfection. Something that just couldn’t be improved on makes such a wonderful experience. One should leave a concert like tonight’s feeling refreshed and moved. I will proffer that is the way audience did leave tonight. All chatting about one element or other as they left the theatre to go home. One happy audience, one highly fulfilled orchestra and one exhausted conductor I shouldn’t wonder. Hats off to Ivan Setterfield, tonight’s conductor, he was a more than safe pair of hands he gave a maestro performance turning the night from a good one to a great one.

A superb night and if one was to make any grumble it would simply to say we could have listened to so much more. Excellent

This is a four star review.


Owen Lewis Owen Lewis

Owen Lewis was born fifty something years ago in the land of the black puddings. For the geographically challenged that is in Lancashire. Moving to Shropshire From 1970 Owen was brought up in Church Stretton. His first real job was in radio. After starting on BBC Radio Shropshire he became known on Marcher Sound, broadcasting throughout the North West for several years. After a university degree course in Theatre, Owen became an actor and went on to play "Pirate Bill" in The Alton Towers Hotel. He also made several television appearances. Returning to university he took his PGCE enabling him to teach. That saw him on the Essex coast as a drama teacher and latterly as a Creative Educational Liaison Officer making films and creating new teaching methods to employ on children in need of more help in their fundamental learning skills. Published playwright Owen ultimately wants a house boat in Amsterdam to focus on his work as Playwright and Poet.

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