Young musicians hold first concert in Leamington

A NEW year will be hailed in by a new youth orchestra in a festive celebration concert in Leamington on Tuesday.

The Spires Youth Orchestra, put together by Spires Music, is made up of 60 of the best young musicians from across Warwickshire, Coventry and beyond.

With members aged 11 to 21, the orchestra, which rehearses at Bath Place Community Venture, was formed following the winding up of the Warwickshire County Music Orchestra after its funding was ended earlier this year.

Many of the players were part of the county service, as well as The Michael Williamson and Colin Touchin Partnership, while six are also members of the City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra’s youth section.

Colin Touchin, the former director of music at Warwick University, founded Spires Music in 2005 and has taken on the role of conductor of Spires Youth, while Michael Williamson is orchestra manager. He said: “We are looking to make this the best youth orchestra in the Midlands and we are delighted that so many young musicians are keen to play with us.”

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The first half of Tuesday’s concert, which takes place at the town hall, will include Handel’s Fireworks Music, Strauss’s Blue Danube, Sleigh Ride by Delius and Coleridge-Taylor’s Christmas Overture.

The second half programme features Cesar Franck’s popular Symphony in D minor. Conductors are John James and Colin Touchin.

Tickets for the concert, which starts at 1pm, cost £8 (£5 concessions), with a family ticket for four people costing £15. They are available on the door.

Spires Music was set up to create an opportunity for professional and non-professional musicians to work together to provide high quality choral and orchestral performances in the Midlands. It runs a philharmonic orchestra and chorus and is a not-for-profit company.

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For further details, call Mr Williamson on 07514 284311.