10th Anniversary Gala Concert reviews
An afternoon spent at a sparkling Gala Concert
Tonic is such a good name for the quartet of choirs (1,2,3 & 4) plus Tonic Extra. My partner, Jill Davis, was there at the start of Tonic 2 (2010) and for her, Tonic not only uplifts the spirit and gives a sense of community amongst friends every week but, in many ways, has also become, for her, a raison d’être during both happy and sad times.
For me personally, the many concerts since 2010 have provided hours of happy listening over the 10 years that led to yesterday’s very impressive Gala Concert.
As concert followed concert I have watched and enjoyed a steady increase not simply in choristers’ repertoire and confidence but also performance. Over time there has been a rising intensity and passion in the singing which at its best is transferred to the audiences. For me the afternoon Gala, which I enjoyed hugely, had four special highlights in the first half- One Voice and The Rose and then Ae fond kiss and Come fill my good fellow. I can only speak for myself of course but the choirs’ engagement gave an extra meaning to both words and music. They made me feel that not only were they singing well but also I could see that they were enjoying the moment. They followed (as they should) the conductors’ tight but fluid direction and fused well with the music provided by a twenty strong ensemble for the Scottish Song Medley.
In the second half of the programme the singing reached even higher levels. Sing me to Sleep was a delight and the soloist-supported Zimbabwe Suite was a splendid example of saving the best for last. Once again the singing showed just how much Tonic has matured – and will, I feel sure, continue upward towards new levels.
Thank you Choirs, Composers, Conductors and Musicians for bringing a very special glow to a dull, damp November day.
Wow! What an occasion to remember.
The Barnett/Kesselman Musical Duo have done it again. After 2 years of meticulous planning - a triumph. The atmosphere was electric with a full house of anticipation; the wait was well rewarded.
It was during Drunken Sailor, in particular, that so many animated faces showed their real enthusiasm and were looking enthusiastically at the conductor.
I especially appreciated Jubilate’s performance of Joshua and certainly their highly entertaining rendition of Bloomers. That was a spectacle to behold.
How Tonic Extra managed all the additional rehearsals, lasted the day and still excelled is, to me, a marvel. I very much enjoyed their execution of the cleverly and humorously written composition by Bryan and Philip, Moustaches.
The orchestra, conducted by Michael Cayton, added the dimension of additional professionalism by holding and extending the choir’s beautiful performance; especially when playing Bryan’s composition, Zimbabwe Suite, with the added pleasure of Zimbabwean soloists Mezzo Soprano, Plaxedes James and Baritone, George Tamisiai performing. During Mosi-oa-Tunya, it was noteworthy that each and every ‘Tonicite’ sung ‘ba-----sk’ to perfection!!
We have to remember that Tonic is a non-professional community choir drawn together by the love of music that, if you can hold a note, makes auditions unnecessary, yet the music ‘divine’.
To sum up the 10th anniversary concert - a real TONIC!!