GSO’s principal clarinettist Katy Wenham had the audience spellbound at their Summer Concert when she gave a virtuosic performance of Aaron Copland’s Clarinet Concerto. Her cadenza was faultless and her finale glissando perfect.
Hosted by GSO patron the Rev Sarah Todd at St Barnabas’ Church, Gloucester, the concert was conducted by musical director Glyn Oxley who kept the orchestra on track with this tricky, jazzy piece commissioned for Benny Goodman. There was a superb piano section performed by Chris Guild interweaving with harpist Cathy White, who also featured in Elizabeth Maconchy’s Overture ‘Proud Thames’ providing the watery feel of this coronation piece. The second half comprised Tchaikovsky’s popular Symphony No 5 giving horn player Graham Binns a chance to shine.
It was an outstanding concert all round – led by Marie Roberts-Watkins and featuring a 240-year-old violin bequeathed by the late Trevor Pleass, who stepped down from the orchestra at the age of 93. One of the youngest orchestra members, Natasha Ludlow, was playing his violin. The retiring collection was for the county-based Toucan for Children Play Therapy charity for youngsters with emotional issues.