Category Archives: music

You Never Walk Alone in St Ethelwold’s garden

The garden of St Ethelwolds House, in Abingdon, is open all year round for people to enjoy the quiet and the flowers.
A lot of the flowers, including the lupins, are at their best in June and July.

Volunteer gardeners keep it looking good, and there is a notice saying they need more keen gardeners. Vegetables grow in one corner, and there are large compost heaps in another.

In the corners are two rooms for the use of people wanting a quiet solitary retreat. Beyond them boats are moored where the River Thames drifts slowly.

There are also events in the garden. Starting next week there will be an art exhibition.

This term the ‘Singing for Pleasure’ group can only sing outdoors and are using St Ethelwold’s garden. Since the garden is near the River Thames the songs today had a nautical theme, which included a couple of songs from South Pacific. One of those chosen was ‘Never Walk Alone’.

I recorded an extract with thanks to the Abingdon Music Centre. They had a smaller ‘Singing for Pleasure’ group this week and will welcome new members. Thanks also go to the copyright owners who will get any money from YouTube if adverts placed on this video make any money.

His Dark Materials to Peter Rabbit

Abingdon Concert Band has made a few virtual videos over the last year during the pandemic. The individual players record themselves, and then Neil Brownless (Musical Director of Abingdon Concert Band), puts it altogether into one video. The latest video is the theme from the TV series His Dark Materials from the books by Philip Pullman, and has some special effects. Many of the band enjoy this series and so were glad to have a special arrangement of the theme tune.

Such projects give musicians a reason to keep practicing through the Covid-19 pandemic.

The books of The Dark Materials are not currently on display in the Abingdon’s Independent bookshop windows. Looking at their shop windows today I can see that children’s books are the main focus at Mostly Books.

The Book Store has Peter Rabbit, some jigsaws, and a mix of books. Both shops have click and collect services and, according to the government roadmap out of lockdown, we should be able to go inside on or after 12th April.

Virtual Abingdon – Make Music Day

Virtual Abingdon
Today was not only Father’s Day, but also the Virtual Make Music Abingdon Day. There were people performing from rooms in their houses. One group performed from a unknown field. The group called No Horses played from the Brewery Tap – which was otherwise empty.
Virtual Abingdon
Then there were groups that had recorded separately and been put together by the wonders of technology. The event was hosted by Make Music Abingdon. There was a virtual tip jar on paypal.

There are lots of virtual events happening in Abingdon. I found out about this from the Abingdon-on-Thames Town Council virtual events page. If you want more people to know about your virtual event then let them know.

Abingdon Concert Band – Together while apart

Thankyou to Neil for this …
Abingdon Concert Band have been finding ways to keep playing during the Coronavirus lockdown. They’ve just put together a video of everyone playing their parts for Do You Hear the People Sing? from Les Miserables which can be found on YouTube here:

The band has around 55 players, 29 of which are playing in the video. They are planning to keep doing these videos until lockdown ends to make sure they can all still play when rehearsals start again. They hope you enjoy their first isolation performance.