Malvern Hill 29th November - 1st December 2019

Kate was hosting this last weekend of the year at Hanley Swan, with two concerts booked, one in the Malvern Cube on the Saturday night and one in Upton-on-Severn on the Sunday afternoon. Unfortunately this time we would have to do it all without Hannah, as she had succumbed to a bad dose of flu and was unable to make it. And Debbie wasn’t arriving until teatime on Saturday, so there was a lot of mixing and matching going on! But everyone rose to the occasion magnificently!

Saturday we rehearsed all day with time for a short walk for some of the group. After a
quick snack at tea time we headed over to the Malvern Cube to set up, sound check and get ourselves ready. We had very smart red and black chairs on the stage which matched our outfits perfectly! We did have to request that the green lighting was taken off though as it made some of the Firsts look really ill! The hall was laid out with tables and chairs in cabaret style so looked nicely full when the audience were seated. Everyone seemed to enjoy it and we had a lot of very favourable feedback. Back to the hostel for a nibble and natter, washed down by wine!

Sunday morning saw us tidying up a few bits of the repertoire and then we were allowed a sneak preview of some of the new repertoire for next year. We aren’t going to let out any secrets but prepare to be blown away!! Then it was a quick hop over to the Memorial hall in Upton – luckily the floods had subsided and all the roads were open again. It was a lovely concert with a really appreciative audience – many of whom were friends or had seen us before and were on a return visit. The cake and merchandise stalls did a roaring trade – especially Liz’s Scottish tablet which sold out!

Huge thanks go to Kate for all her work arranging such a successful weekend, and also to her husband John, who worked tirelessly all weekend, ferrying accordions and people all over the place, all with a huge smile on his face! Sadly we didn’t really get to see the Malvern Hills or surrounding countryside – it was very misty for much of the time – but hopefully we will be back in the future with more time to spare for walks.

So that is it for 2019! What a fabulous year it has been. A big thank you to all who have organised such brilliant weekends, and an even bigger thank you to Jane, who continues to have such faith in us, spurs us on to tackle increasingly difficult pieces and continues to provide us with an exciting and varied repertoire. Now for a much needed rest!

A very Happy Christmas to you all and hope to see you in 2020!