Popular music pieces from the world of ballet feature strongly on the British Police Symphony Orchestra’s latest CD. Aptly titled Blues & Tutus, the CD was recorded at Ingestre Hall Arts Centre, near Lichfield in April this year.
The orchestra has attracted thousands of fans in the area, having performed at Lichfield Proms in Beacon Park for many years.
The new chairman of the orchestra is Staffordshire Police Chief Constable Mike Cunningham.
The CD will be on sale at this year’s Lichfield Proms on September 1.
Opening with Elgar’s Pomp and Circumstance March No 4, a ceremonial British piece much enjoyed by the orchestra, the CD continues with music from Tchaikovsky’s Swan Lake, Act ll.
In this Diamond Jubilee year, BPSO Music Director Tom Hammond chose Sir Malcolm Arnold’s Homage to the Queen Suite from the ballet for the main focus of the CD. This new ballet premiered at the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden, on June 2, to celebrate the coronation of Queen Elizabeth ll.
The CD contains a selection of pieces from the score, including Earth – Dance of the Insects, Water, the rousing Fire Dance, Air – Pas de Deux and the spine-tingling Finale.
The album closes with Prokifieff’s Montagues and Capulets (also known as Dance of the Knights) from Romeo and Juliet and Saint-Saëns’ Bacchanale from Samson and Delilah.
Two of the tracks were conducted by two members of the orchestra, father and son Malcolm and Alexander Webb. Malcolm, who conducted the Elgar, is a noted flautist and currently conductor of the Swindon Symphony Orchestra. Percussionist Alexander, who conducted Swan Lake, is a graduate of Birmingham Conservertoire and has performed with some of the country’s most prestigious wind orchestras and brass bands.
Over the last 22 years the BPSO has established itself as one of the truly national amateur orchestras, performing in major concert halls up and down the country.
Its musicians are all members of the greater police family from the UK and include police officers, support staff and retired members, who come together in their own time and at their own expense each month for detailed rehearsals or expert sectional tuition. Their combined efforts over the last 11 years have raised in excess of £100,000 for charities all over the country.
Tom Hammond, an Associate of the Royal Academy of Music, has been MD for BPSO for four years and conducts several professional orchestras and ensembles both here and abroad.
The CD, costing £7.50 will be available through the orchestra’s website www.bpso.org.uk from mid-September.