News Column

Memories evoked by Pat Boone and friends ; Seen & Heard

May 23, 2013


IT WAS when hearing Pat Boone sing April Love again after so my years, that a whole lot of adolescent memories came flooding back.

I was listening to a compilation in the Retrospective series from Wyastone Estate, a Welsh-based company, featuring 25 songs covering a period from 1932-1956 and featuring artists of the highest calibre including Ella Fitzgerald, Doris Day and Nat King Cole.

Frank Sinatra and Perry Como are there crooning along and, of course, Pat Boone sings Friendly Persuasion, a great song written by Dmitri Tiomkin, a major figure in Hollywood and included in the film of the same name about American Quakers.

The compilation My Funny Valentine has evergreens that retain their freshness over the years (RTR4197).

Wartime memories were evoked by the 70th Anniversary last week of the Dambusters raid, and more will be evoked by the matinee performance at Clacton's West Cliff Theatre on Sunday, May 26.

We'll Meet Again is for one performance only at 3pm (01255 433344), and if you think the memories stop there, you are wrong - Braintree Musical Society presents Julian Slade's 1954 musical Salad Days from June 4 for the rest of the week at the Braintree Arts Theatre. Get tickets from the box office on 01376 556 354.

Contest Before then the Cramphorn Theatre in Chelmsford hosts the Eastern semi-final of the All England Theatre Festival in which companies presenting one-act plays compete to go through to the Final in Bournemouth in June.

The semi-final on Sunday, June 2 starts at 6pm and you can also hear the professional adjudication.

My vocal adjudication goes to Mission, a DVD from Decca, which features one of my favourite classical singers, mezzo-soprano, Cecilia Bartoli who, with the period instrument group, I Barocchisti, recreates an imagined life of Italian priest, composer and spy, Agostini Steffani (1654-1728), and an imagined visit he may have made to Versailles.

Beautiful photography and staging is matched by immaculate, feisty performances of arias from some of his operas (Decca 074 3604).

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