BCB was delighted to return to the magnificent auditorium which is Symphony Hall in Birmingham for the annual Christmas Concert with the Salvation Army. The concert featured a host of musicians from the Birmingham Citadel Corps (Church) in a varied programme which was well received by a large crowd. It was the largest crowds we had welcomed to Symphony Hall for some years with the near capacity crowds, particularly in the afternoon performance, were enjoying a “Christmas Around the World” journey with the Salvation Army and special guests. We were delighted to be joined by children our own Junior Band and Singing Company (Junior Choir) who were both in fine form as well as musicians from Stafford Grammar and Stafford Preparatory Schools (Choirs and a Big Band) and young voices from Sandwell Music Service. This certainly gave an extra lift to our massed Overture and Finale and added contrast to our programme!
The band featured SA Christmas Classics including Peter Graham’s evergreen “The Shining Star” as well as classics from the secular work such as Leroy Anderson’s “A Christmas Festival”. The band’s major work for the concert was a work by Andrew Wainwright. Andrew, now living and working for the SA in America, wrote “Christmas Fantasia” for the Virtuosi GUS band who featured on their CD of the same name (“Christmas Fantasia”) which featured solely the music of Andrew Wainwright. It was certainly well received by the audience on Sunday and the prolonged applause in both performances certainly confirmed this! It features a number of well known carols from around Europe (which fitted our theme of Christmas from Around the World) each attractively set with an exciting “big” finish. This was certainly appreciated by the audience and band alike!