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Band of the Scots Guards

Burns Night Concert
Conductors: Major Mark Aldridge & WO2 Joe Barrett
Guards Chapel
Saturday 25th January


The Band of the Scots Guards presented this concert to mark Burns Night. They were accompanied by four pipers from the 1st Battalion, with the splendidly kilted Musn Neil Mark introding the items.

Following the 'National Anthem', the band continued with an excellent performance of 'Fingal's Cave', almost orchestral in approach with great control and attention to balance and articulation.

They then presented the whimsical 'Brigadoon', a melodious score even if the only memorable tune is 'It's Almost Like Being in Love'.

Pipers

The four pipers marched in to 'Edinburgh Castle' before presenting a medley including 'A Man's a Man for Awe That', 'Ye Banks and Braes' and 'Bonnie Dundee'.

It seemed strange to hear them perform without any drums, and some of the changes in style and tempo seemed a little uneasy. They were joined by a dancer for 'The Highland Fling' before marching off to 'Scotland the Brave'.

'Wild Mountain Thyme' was written as a memorial to two-year-old Garrett Mangelson, opening atmospherically with vibraphone and flutes. Gentle rises and falls heralded the entry of the full ensemble, with a well-balanced sound once the brass had joined in.

'Wild Mountain Thyme' was written as a memorial to two-year-old Garrett Mangelson, opening atmospherically with vibraphone and flutes. Gentle rises and falls heralded the entry of the full ensemble, with a well-balanced sound once the brass had joined in.

Considerable skill

L/Cpl Robbie Henderson has recently been made a Licentiate of Trinity College, London, and showed his considerable skill on the euphonium with a fine rendition of 'The Blue Bells of Scotland'. The Scottish theme continued with music from the Disney cartoon 'Brave', with its driving rhythms and the obligatory scotch snaps.

The last part of the concert was led by the ceilidh band, consisting of accordion, fiddle, flute, guitar, bass guitar and drums, later joined by piano and a vocalist. 'Charlie is my Darling' was introduced by the James Bond theme, and they continued with 'A Burns Medley', 'A Man's a Man for Awe That' and 'Rory MacLeod'.

The pipers returned for the finale, with 'The Crags of Tumbledown Mountain' preceding 'Hector the Hero'. 

Synthesiser and tin whistle were featured as the ceilidh band again took the lead before the regimental marches drew the evening to a close.

Peter Bale

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