Spring Concert at 19.30 on Saturday 7th March 2020 in Blandford Parish Church.


  •                         Mozart – Cosi Fan Tutti Overture
  •                         Mendelssohn – Two Concert Pieces for Clarinet and Bassett Horn
  •                         Berlioz – Symphony Fantastique.
Conductor: Arturo Serna
Soloists: Russell Shipley & Nigel Salmon

Cosi Fan Tutte Programme Note

Mozart’s opera Così fan tutte is the third work to result from the composer’s collaboration with the librettist Lorenzo da Ponte ).  The title translates many ways, but “All Women Act That Way” is perhaps the most accurate.  The plot is convoluted and silly, and revolves around two couples and an instigator.  The opera opens in a coffeehouse where Ferrando and Guglielmo are confidently stating that their fiancées  would under no circumstances ever be unfaithful to them.  Enter the cynic, Don Alfonso, who wagers the men that he can get their women to prove that they are fickle.  The boys pretend to be called off to war, but in actuality, return in disguises and try to seduce the others’ fiancée.  The ladies ward off the advances of their disguised suitors for quite some time, but eventually fall prey to the prank.  Wackiness ensues, but eventually all works out in the end and the couples forgive each other for their indiscretions.

Mendelssohn Programme Note:

When at the end of 1832 the Munich court musicians clarinettist Heinrich Joseph Baermann and his son Carl who also appeared as basset hornist, stopped by for a bite to eat at Mendelssohn’s home in Berlin, an odd deal was struck: They promised their composer friend to cook up an ample portion of steamed dumplings and sweet-cheese strudel, if he would write them a piece to use on their concert tours. The piece Opus 113 was originally written for clarinet basset horn and piano but was orchestrated by Mendelssohn a week later. The result was so popular with the musicians that it was repeated a few days later and Opus 114 was produced.

Berlioz Programme Note

Symphonie fantastique: Épisode de la vie d’un artiste … en cinq parties (Fantastical Symphony: An Episode in the Life of an Artist, in Five Parts) Opus. 14, is a programme symphony written by the French composer Hector Berlioz in 1830.

Leonard Bernstein described the symphony as the first musical expedition into psychedelia because of its hallucinatory and dream-like nature, and because history suggests Berlioz composed at least a portion of it under the influence of opium. According to Bernstein, “Berlioz tells it like it is. You take a trip, you wind up screaming at your own funeral.”

Summer Concert at St Mary’s Swanage Saturday 20th June 2020 7.30pm

Programme: Weber Peter Schmoll Overture, Mendelssohn Violin Concerto and Dvorak Symphony No 9 ‘From the New World’ . Conductor: Arturo Serna. Soloist: Sally Aiko Dando