Orchestra Update 31/08/21

I hope you had a good break, and are excited to begin rehearsals for our new season with our new Music Director Naomi Butcher. We resume starting this Monday, 6th September, with the pre-pandemic timings of 7:45pm-9:45pm, but in our more recent venue of Weald of Kent School in Tudeley Lane, Tonbridge. We have arranged to have a car park gate code made available to all members – this is 5856. Please note this so that we don’t have to station someone at the gates (in the rain!) to let people in!

We are, for the moment, retaining some of the cautionary measures we ended last season with, such as socially distant seating (and therefore individual stands in the strings), and the perspex guard in front of the conductor. We will however no longer perform temperature checks on arrival. Masks are recommended while navigating to your seat, and we would also ask you to consider taking regular lateral flow tests, to help protect your fellow players.  We will keep reviewing all of this as the season progresses.

As you will have gathered from the Chairman’s message earlier in the month, we have decided that we need the November concert to be divided into two halves – one for the choir, and one for the orchestra. We will have the second half, which will consist of the Mendelssohn Scottish Symphony (No. 3), preceded by the Overture in C by Fanny Mendelssohn.

The music for the Scottish is from Ann Preston’s library. This is currently out on loan but we can collect it from Orchfest in Eastbourne this weekend. If anyone is going to that event could you please let us know if you could perform this collection for us? This will save Ann from making a special journey.

We are hoping to be able to provide enough parts for everyone, even in the strings with individual stands, but will advise if we need some people to do some printing from Petrucci!

Given the amount of rehearsal time available to us between now and the November concert, we intend to identify another piece to play beyond these two, even though it won’t be used in the performance. This may give us an opportunity to have an early look at something for later in the season (for which the music is tbc), or it could be something to play just for the sake of variety – we will let you know as soon as this piece is chosen.

You will have seen a message from the treasurer regarding subs. We are back to running the usual full-season costs of the society so please attend to this at your earliest convenience.

No doubt I have forgotten something critical and will be sending another email shortly(!), but the main thing is to turn up on Monday with your instrument and music stand! I look forward to seeing you there!


Stephen Minton

TPS Orchestral Chair