Lazy Sunday Afternoon Courtesy Of Birmingham Philharmonic Orchestra!

Birmingham Philharmonic Orchestra,

The Silver Screen

 Theatre Severn

Sunday 29th January 2017

There’s something rather special about a matinee performance, there seems a certain kind of decadence to be watching a show when others are either working or trying to recover from the week they had working. Such was the scheduling of this rather exciting concert with The Birmingham Philharmonic Orchestra.

Named Silver Screen; it did what it says on the tin, delivering  a highly eclectic homage to the great composers of Hollywood. The score included works of Bernstein, John Williams, Matthew Arnold, Shostakovich and Eric Korngold. The music was from films such as West Side Story, Bridge Over the River Kwai, Gadfly and Star Wars, Also including John William’s new Star Wars score, The Force Awakens.

Conductor Richard Laing informed the audience that this was in fact, an English premier of The Force Awakens so there’s a nice little notch on the Shrewsbury yardstick of claims to fame!

The unique selling point of BPO is the fact that they are the country’s largest non-professional Philharmonic Orchestra and it has been running for seventy seven years it is undoubtedly every bit as polished and professional as any other symphony orchestras in Europe.

One must not make the mistake of attaching thoughts of inferior performances to amateur groups. Those days are gone and naturally if one has the confidence to fill a theatre on a Sunday afternoon then one realises you would have to be brilliant:  And they are!

Laing controlled these some seventy musicians with his entire body. A joy to watch.  He brought every note up from the soles of his feet  to the tip of his baton. He was living the music and with his expressive moves and gestures he stood before the Orchestra like a toreador having calmed a bull. One knows there is immense power there but it is all in the hands of the maestro and will be controlled and delivered to the crowd that are lapping it up.

One of the highlights of the show was the wonderful score from Berstein’s West Side Story. The audience  really did feel the power of the orchestra and in one’s mind’s eye The Sharks and The Jets sprang into view to dish out their street culture. Lovely to hear.

Today’s performance was lively, fresh, pensive at times, exhilarating at others. It was a real journey through the classics of our movie world.

The programme from today’s event appealed for members  to play or to get involved in a plethora of ways. They are our local symphony orchestra . Based in King’s Heath, Birmingham;.they truly are local If you are interested you can call them on 07759186198 or email them at [email protected].

This Orchestra is modern, entertaining, dynamic and great fun. What a pleasant way to spend a rainy Sunday afternoon.

This is a Four Star Review

Owen J.Lewis

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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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