Concert: A quartet of musical talent leads Honley Male Voice Choir
ALAN Jenkins must be a glutton for punishment.
He’s back in charge of Honley Male Voice Choir for the third time as they prepare for their eagerly awaited 75th anniversary concert featuring international singing star Lesley Garrett.
Alan, who was MD from 1988 until 1997 and again from 2000 until 2008, stepped in to take charge again at the beginning of May when Keith Roberts decided to leave.
He has taken over as acting Musical Director while the search goes on for a successor to Keith, and has planned the programme for the concert at Huddersfield Town Hall on Saturday, September 24, and arranged much of the music.
He is teaming up again with the man with whom he forged a successful partnership over many years, pianist John Oldfield.
He has also returned temporarily while the choir seeks a permanent replacement for accompanist Sue Ogden, who left in July.
So the old firm of Jenkins and Oldfield are back in business nearly three years after they both said goodbye to the choir at the end of 2008 after John had completed forty years service as choir accompanist and deputy conductor.
Organist George Marsden, who began his association with Honley in 1974, will be playing the Town Hall’s magnificent Father Willis organ and the choir also welcome back highly talented local musician Rodney Pearson, who will be playing the keyboard.
Rodney, who was Honley’s organist for three years before George took over, was organist and choirmaster at a number of Huddersfield churches before retiring three years ago. He was also Musical Director for some years of both the Huddersfield and Meltham Gilbert and Sullivan societies.
Completing the musical team is young Scottish percussionist Graham Proctor who this month began his studies at the Royal Northern College of Music.
Of course the main thrust of the concert is Lesley Garrett, making her first appearance at the Town Hall and singing two twenty minute solo spots as well as appearing on five occasions with the choir in selections from opera and musicals.
That gives the choir and four of their soloists Danny Bullett, Philip Hardcastle, David Lord and Brian Winterbottom the chance to showcase their own talents with help from comedy duo Marina Haigh and Gina Cook and seven other costumed ladies, most of whom have taken leading roles in local amateur theatre, and eight members of the Hade Edge Junior Band.
There will also be plenty of humour and movement directed and choreographed by Pat Graham, who has worked with the choir a number of times.
Compere for the show will be Jeff Goldthorpe, Musical Director of the Wakefield Amateur Operatic Chorus.
The concert programme has been sponsored by local estate agents Simon Blyth who are meeting all the printing costs and all proceeds from the sale of the programme and the adverts in it are going to the West Yorkshire Forget Me Not Trust children’s hospice appeal.
A few seats are still available for the concert which are on sale from Kirklees box offices in Huddersfield and Holmfirth.