Stage and Screen

Sunday, 23 June 2019 19:00

Fairlop performed what could be their last ever performance at the Kenneth More Theatre in Ilford in it’s current format on Sunday 23rd June. Some wonderful music (chosen by Kevin) was enjoyed by the sizeable and appreciative audience.

The first half started with the heart-thumping, toe-tapping fanfare; ‘Gonna Fly Now’ from the ‘Rocky’ films. A lively warm up followed by the heart warming ‘Singin in the Rain’. Next came the soulful Eva Cassidy version of ‘Somewhere Over the Rainbow’, with Adam Cuttell (Principal Cornet) playing a beautiful solo. Kevin then described the next piece ‘The Imperial March’ (from Star Wars) as the perfect ‘Wedding’ song. Not sure about that one, but the lovely ‘You’ll Never Walk Alone’ played as as two peice solo by Linda Barber (Principal Euphonium) and Lynne Hunt (Cornet) would have perhaps been more romantic. 

Procedings paused while The K. C. Jordan 'Bandsman of the Year’ award was presented to my wife, Sarah Rogers for the second year running. I could not be more prouder. 

The less prestigeous ‘Fool of the Year’ Toilet Seat award was presented to Gary Thwaites. I am not sure whether to congratulate him or sympathise. I will perhaps be more tactful and say that he was a worthy winner that received the award with as much grace and dignity that being handed a toilet seat on stage can muster. 

The first half ended with the band playing an amazing compilation ‘Queen Greatest Hits’ taken from the back catalogue of one of the greatest rock bands of all time.

The lights dimmed just as I was finishing my rather excellent salted caramel ice-cream and the familiar countdown of ‘5-4-3-2-1..Thunderbirds are Go!’ reverberated around the auditorium. A good Brass Band concert always features a March or two and ‘Theme from Thunderbirds’ was the second in this concert. The beautiful ‘Nobody Does it Better’ from the James Bond Movie ’The Spy Who Loved Me’ came next (sadly Kevin did not deploy a Union Jack parachute at the start of this one). This was followed by the smile inducing ‘The Pink Panther Theme’. 

The hauntingly beautiful ‘Don't Cry for me Argentina’ followed, the melody of which is superb. (side-note here: the amazing Tim Rice’s lyrics should also not be forgotten when listening to an instrumental version of the song, ‘mourning all day and mourning all night’ being one of my all time favourites. I can’t be the only one who sings the lyrics in my head while listening).

The fast paced action peice ‘Mission Impossible’ followed which showed off the band’s talents fantastically and was my personal favourite of the night. With the band ending the programme with the chilling ‘Eve of the War’ taken from Jeff Wayne’s ‘War of the Worlds’ interpretation. Another of my favourite recordings of my youth re-examined.

The standing ovation warranted a return to the stage for the Fairlop signature tune ‘Aces High’, aptly played here as it is also the ‘Luftwaffe March’ from Ron Goodwins ‘The Battle of Britain’ soundtrack.

All in all an excellent concert with some masterful individual talents on display, and a wonderful collective band performance. The whole band did amazingly well but a special mention to the percussion who were spot on (as usual). Well done All.