I AM a fan of so-called light music, and that dates me. Give me arrangements by Nelson Riddle, David Rose and Robert Farnon, and the CDs sit in the machine playing as I write this. One source of nostalgia and a growing supply of reissued tracks is Guild Music. Each month it seems there are new issues with titles such as Fiddles and Bows (GLCD 5201), and Salon, Light and Novelty Orchestras (Guild GLCD 5204). Typically of these releases, each contains 24 or more tracks and good sleeve notes telling you about the individual composers together with dates of releases. In the case of Fiddles and Bows, most of the tracks date from 1950 and 1960 when stereo was in its infancy. Some companies were more successful in studio recording whilst others favoured a swimming pool acoustic. David Ades and Alan Bunting have been responsible for compiling and re- mastering and the finished goods were prepared for release by an Essex company. Excellent value for money.
One of the tracks is titled A Man with a Dream, and that leads me to another man with a dream. The year is 1897 in which Blackeyed Theatre's production of Dracula is set.
Bram Stoker's Gothic story is given a slightly contemporary twist accompanied by live music in this theatre production being staged for one night only at Braintree Arts Theatre on 4 October (01376 556354). Cafe-owner, Rene, had plenty of dreams as he ran his little cafe, and most of them involved his waitresses. 'Allo, 'Allo has arrived at the Dixon Studio in Southend and runs until Saturday night with a matinee that day at 2.30pm.
I am off to France next month with members of the Anglia Singers from Chelmsford. I wonder whether or not we can find Rene's cafe? One thing about which I am sure, you can come and join the Anglia Singers as they have started preparing for their next concert in Chelmsford. Rehearsals starts at 5.15pm and finish at 6.45pm in the Sawyer's Building (Room 307) of the University. There is free parking in the University car park for singers.
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