Saying Goodbye to Rhoda,
9th July 2020.
As the Covid-19 Lockdown eased, we were able to say a final Goodbye to Rhoda Ballantyne, our longest serving church member, who died in November 2019.
Tony Corfe, had arranged for a cherry tree to be planted in her memory in our church grounds, and we held a short service to mark the moment – suitably distanced of course.
Tony, Frank Palmer and David Ramsay all read poems and Tony closed with a blessing. A moving ceremony for the surprisingly large group who came in Rhoda’s memory.
The timing was perfect – no sooner had Tony offered the final blessing, the heavens opened to water in the new cherry tree.
Rhoda would have approved!
Lunchtime Recital 3rd July 2020 – Stephen Jones plays William Byrd and other harpsichord music.
Stephen’s harpsichord was in quarantine at a school where he teaches so we were shown a picture – so we could imagine. Stephen’s harpsichord was made by Andrew Woodeson.
Stephen’s programme was based around the Virginalists – English keyboard composers of the late Tudor and early Jacobean periods. He’d first encountered the music whilst still at school and it had made a lasting impression on him. The pieces were mainly by William Byrd, but he included a piece by Thomas Tomkins and finished with ”Loth to depart” by Giles Farnaby.
Stephen’s first piece was “The Carman’s Whistle”, by William Byrd, a raunchy piece as he described it. In the 16th century, a Carman was a man with various sorts of horses and carriages for hire. Carmen were known for their habit of whistling, which apparently helped them manage their horses. The bawdy lyrics have survived, and Stephen started us off but after “At length he spied a fair maid Under a myrtle tree” – we were left to our imagination!
Stephen gave us a detailed introduction to each piece and showed us and example of the handwritten music of the time.
The second piece was Pavan and Galliard also by William Byrd and dedicated to the Earl of Salisbury, Robert Cecil and from the publisher Parthenia.
The third piece, La Volta, was a dance for Queen Elizabeth which involved some jumps (exposing the Queen’s ankles we were told – scandalous!). The piece ended with a reverence – a complex chord – and Stephen showed us an example of the chord and the complicated 6-line per stave music in the Fitzwilliam Virginal book.
The fourth piece was “The Queene’s Alman” – a stately garment – also by William Byrd.
The fifth piece was The Lady Folliots Galliard, by Thomas Tomkins, organist at Worcester Cathedral until the cathedral was desecrated and his own home destroyed by a Parliamentarian cannon ball. He went to live with his son Nathaniel, married Isabella Folliott, a wealthy widow. He composed his Galliard, The Lady Folliot’s in her honour aged 82.
The sixth piece was “Pavan & Galliard Earl Strafford” written in memory of Thomas Wentworth.
The seventh piece was “Toy made at Poole Court” , a pavan also written by Tomkins.
The last piece was “Loth to Depart” by Giles Farnaby – but first Stephen sang us a Loth to depart from a stage production of the time. A Loth to depart was a piece of music played when it was time to go home – perfect for us and for Stephen who had to go straight on to a session with one of his pupils.
Highly enjoyable and informative for us all.
You can view or relive the recital here.
Lunchtime Zoom Recital
5th June 2020 – Anna Le Hair
We were so pleased to have Anna back with us (digitally) for another lunchtime piano recital. Anna was playing in her studio on her grand with her husband Edmund acting as sound engineer – many thanks! We couldn’t see the lovely garden outside (curtains drawn to avoid backlight problems), but from Friday’s “tester” session, I can tell you it was charming!
Stephen Jones introduced Anna and following a brief muting glitch all went to plan.
Anna gave us a short introduction to each piece. Her Programme was:
Bach – Prelude and Fugue in B flat major from Book 1
Beethoven – Adagio Cantabile from Sonata in C minor op. 13
Rachmaninov – Prelude in E flat major
Tschaikowsky – June from ‘The Seasons’
MacDowell – To a wild rose
Grieg – Wedding Day at Troldhaugen
It was a lovely programme, much enjoyed by all of us. If you missed it or would like to hear it again click below
Friday 1st May – our first Zoom Lunchtime Recital featuring Ivan Linford on the organ.
Another memorable moment, I think for our self-isolating community. We are so grateful to Ivan for having the courage to be our first “guinea pig” in performing a Lunchtime Concert on Zoom.
We had 18 “log-ins”, some were couples, so we were probably about 28 all in all, a number of whom are non-church members but regular Lunchtime Recital attendees.
Ivan introduced the pieces from his kitchen and was not interrupted by his cat – who normally likes to be close by when Ivan plays.
He played four pieces:
- A Trumpet Minuet Alfred Hollins (1865-1942)
- Largo from Serse George Frederick Handel (1685-1759)
- Mélodie in F Anton Rubinstein (1829-1894), arr William Faulkes (1863-1933)
- Sortie in E flat Louis James Alfred Lefébure-Wély (1817-1869/70)
If we missed the particular ambiance of our church sanctuary for the performance, the intimacy of a recital from Ivan’s kitchen made up for it.
Of course us all being on Zoom exposed a number of glasses of wine on peoples tables, which sparked a fairly wry comment from Ivan – and an ‘aide memoire’ for some others of us to prepare better for the next recital on 5th June, when we’ll welcome back Anna Le Hair to play for us.
Stephen Jones piano recital 6-3-20
Stephen stepped in at the last minute with a piano recital after Ivan Linford was unable to come to us as planned. The programme included:
Chopin Mazurkas op.17 no.4, op.24 nos 1 &2
Bartok Rumanian Folk Dances
Debussy Danse de Puck (Preludes no.11, bk.1
La fille aux cheveux de lin (Preludes no.8, bk.1
Stepehen Jones Lullaby for the Infant King
P A Grainger The man I love (Gershwin song)
Joseph Cooper Hidden Melodies
A real church Party – just like we used to have!
To celebrate his 75th Birthday our Church Secretary David Ramsay and wife Christina entertained 96 guests to an afternoon of country dancing, silly golf and football, Karaoke style songs and jokes, rounded off with music and dancing.
There were friends from the church and Synod, the Community Choir, numerous golf Clubs, U3A Country dancing and geology groups all reflecting David’s wide range of interests. And of course, the extended Ramsay family and friends.
Great fun for all (helped by copious Prosecco, and sandwiches from the Wyllyotts Centre catering). A rendering of Our Favourite Curmudgeon by Revd John Steele, previously performed on David’s retirement from URC Synod employment, was carefully re-mastered to reflect his 5 years as our Church Secretary.
Nobody could miss all the preparations put in by David and Christina to make the afternoon the resounding success it was. The extended Ramsay family was on hand for support, setting up, and clearing up – what stars!
We were able to express our thanks in monetary form as donations to David’s 3 charities. About £300 was collected.
You can get a flavour of the afternoon from the following video clip.
Alan Dorn – Lunchtime Piano Recital – 7-2-20
Alan delighted us with his piano recital on 7th February, entitled “The Spanish Connection”. His CV says “he enjoys constructing themed piano recital programmes” – and he certainly does!
The recital was performed from memory – an impressive feat (for us, at least!).
Alan is presenting “The Spanish Connection” at a number of venues this year and we were so pleased he came to play for us.
If you’d like to hear the recital again, play the video clip below.
Lunchtime Concert – 3rd January 2020
The cello duet lunchtime recital was a rare treat for those of us lucky enough to be present. Molly Parsons-Gurr and Lydia Dobson opened their programme with a beautiful Handel sonata, and were accompanied at the piano by Lydia’s father Jonathan Dobson, Director of Music at Queenswood School. That was followed by a sonata by Barriere, a leading 18th century French virtuoso cellist, for just the cellos alone. The final item was a suite by the Bohemian virtuoso cellist David Popper: this showed off our performers’ prowess to amazing effect and proved to be a stunning showpiece, again for just the two cellos, which at times sounded like an entire section of the orchestra, such was the complexity of the music. We hope to see these talented young ladies again in the not too distant future! One of our audience members today was Gay Potter, enjoying this wonderful recital on the day of her 90th birthday.
Quorum Singers Concert – “On Christmas Night” – 14th December 2019
A great evening of festive singing. We raised £375 for DIPPs (Defibrillators in Public Places), the charity that provided our church Defibrillator.
If you missed it, or would like to refresh your memory, see below.
Festive Community Open Day – 7th December 2019
Our first Festive Community Open Day was held on Saturday 7th November. It was an opportunity for all members of our Church Community to meet and to “showcase” the activities they hold in our church – to each other, to church members and to the public.
To give an added festive fling, church members manned a couple of our traditional stalls (a few echoes of Darkes Fayre) and provided tea, coffee, juice and biscuits. Local small enterprises added their ideas and their wares to the mix.
The dance demonstration events on the Tilbury Hall stage proved a real crowd pleaser. Angie’s Dance School, Nick’s Dance School and the Rythmix Dance Academy each provided a mix of dance styles to great acclaim. The U3A Country Dance Group kicked of the demonstrations in stately style, but then the tempo increased!
Angie’s Dance demos included her work with Special Educational Needs groups.
Our regular hirers – Kumon Maths, Angie’s Dance School UK, Nick’s Dance School & Rythmix, the Potters Bar Society and U3A Dancing all had stalls in the hall. Other stalls featured Flamingo Papiere (Greeting Cards), Usborne Books, Curly Swirls Bakes, Lucy Barnes Hair Scrunchies, Christmas Hampers, Face Painting, Face Glitter & Bows – the Patient Participation Groups of our three Potters Bar GP Practices combining for promotions on Health and Wellbeing.
The Open Day was planned and organised by our Lettings Team – Jane Wood and Caroline Sutherland.
You can see highlights of the day in the video below.
Simon Worley 8th November 2019
We ended the 2019 Lunchtime Concert Programme with a very enjoyable organ recital from Simon Worley, who is Music director at King Charles the Martyr in Potters Bar.
Our video clip (see below) picks up the concert at his second piece – Prelude, Fuge, et Variation, Op. 18 – Cesar Franck.
Simon finished up with Mozart Changes – Zsolt Gardonyi – a title which he suggests an association with jazz harmony. And indeed it did! – a light-hearted piece that was much appreciated by all.
If you would like to revisit the concert, or missed it, please click on the triangle on image the below.
Carrie Daggett 26th July 2019
We were delighted to welcome Carrie (and her mother Helen who accompanied her) to sing for us. Carrie certainly provided the flourish with which to end our series of lunchtime concerts, which now enters its summer break. We restart in October.
Carrie’s Programme was as follows;
• Ombra Mai fu – from Handel’s ‘Serse’
• Habanera – from Bizet’s ‘Carmen’
• Go lovely rose – Quilter
• King David – Howells
• A Chloris – R.Hahn
• L’enamouree – R.Hahn
• Tu n’est beau – from Offenbach’s ‘Perichole’
• So in love – Porter
• I could have danced – Lerner and Loewe
• The man I love – Gershwin
• Mister Snow – Rodgers and Hammerstein
• Can’t help lovin’ dat man – Kern
• My love is like a red red rose – Trad. Scottish
If you would like to revisit the concert, or missed it (eat your heart out!), please click on the triangle on image the below.