Haverhill Arts Centre concert review

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Polished Brass

Review by Carol and Allan Charnwood

Did the people of Haverhill who attended The Polished Brass concert in the Arts Centre realise how lucky they were to have such a wealth of talent, much of it home brewed, performing on the stage in front of them?

The cornet section even included one of the top judges of band contests, David Read.

The Polished Brass Band had been gathered together on the occasion of the tenth anniversary of such a similar gathering arranged by Richard and Diane Pannell, to celebrate their silver wedding.

They invited one of the Brass Band World’s top Conductors, John Berryman to direct , and they had the idea to set up a trust fund to help young musicians with the very expensive costs incurred while training, in memory of the original ‘Polished Brass’ quintet and sextet.

This fund is now in need of reviving, thus ten years on the packed audience again welcomed John Berryman to direct proceedings, ably assisted by compere Antony Sanders.

After a rousing brass band classic to start off the concert, the very musical Pannell family took centre stage!

The big classical piece of the evening was the overture to the opera ‘Le Roi D’ys’ by Lalo in which Richard performed a very fine solo.

Sons Tim and Chris followed with, first a more jazz style piece ‘Hejre Kati’, and then a well know band piece ‘Misty’.

Both Tim and Chris delighted us all with their fine musical playing. Mum Diane, joined them to form a very beautiful quartet version of the well know ‘Irish Blessing’ accompanied by the band, later in the second half.

The whole concert had a tremendous variation of styles, with very versatile, lyrical and musical playing displayed by all.

From the beautiful hymn tune ’The Day thou Gavest’, to Disney film music, to beautiful well loved melodies, to very grand opera, to Jazz and blues, as well as traditional brass band music.

It all added to the success of a very entertaining evening.

The Pannell family must be admired for the enormous amount of endless enthusiasm they have and the work that is put in to benefit young musicians in Haverhill.