A most successful and enjoyable concert wr«s given last evening m St. Stephen's schoolroom m aid of the Fabric Fund. The attendance was gojd, and the audience appreciative. The concert opened with the favorite Welsh chorus, "the March of the Men of Harlech," admirably rendered by the Ashburton Choral Society under the baton of Mr H. Gates, with orchestral accompaniment, piano Mr Alfred Orr, double-bass Mr J. Gamble, cornet Mr Leitc'i, violins Miss B. Gates, Mr E. Ward, Master R. Cullon. The soprano vocalists mustered m great force, but the tenor and bass were weak m number. The item was an excelleut one. Then came a treat of a very high order m the shape of the delightful rendering of " The Good Shepherd " by Mr W. B. Dixon (Rakaia) whom we never heard to better advantage. This was followed by another really exquisite performance, Mrs CM. Brooke's interpretation of Handel's charming morcmu "Angels ever bright and fair," for which that lady deservedly received ah enthusiastic encore —a compliment the more marked m that for once (as we were glad to see) encores were the exception and not the rule of the evening. The Choral Society followed with Mendelssohn's "How lovely are the Messengers," from the oratorio of St. Paul, which, owing to flatness of the instrumental accompaniment, was not;
altogether successful. Mrs Crisp then gave iv capital . voice the pretty «ong, " The Snow ', that hushes all." Mrs Mayne (who almost at an hour's notice had kindly consented to fill the gap m the programme caused by the indisposition of Miss Traumann) followed with a pianoforte sole (" Spinnlied") brilliantly executed, and the first part cloattd with " The Bellringer " (Mr MilH'jm). This item was nicely sung, bur. was not a happy selection, m that to do it full justice needs a voice of somewhat wider range. After a brief interval the second part opened with the glee "May Day " well rendered by the Choral Society, who, however, will perhaps excuse the hint that clear enunciation of the words helps to heighten the enjoyment of an •ndience— a point which is only too frequently overlooked by vocalists. Mr Stevenson then gave very pleasingly indeed Iteicbarfc's favorite song "Thou art so Near," and m response to an encore, "Rocked m the Cradle of the Deep." The old-time duet "I know a Bank," suited admirably the voices of Mrs Brooke and Mr Milsom, and was a delightful performance, and the same may be truthfully said of the succeeding number, Mrs Crisp's, "The touch of a Vanished Hand." Next came an exceedingly creditable violin solo by Miss Simmons, who is rapidly coining to the front a.s a performer on this most perfect of instruments, the theme' chosen being the old-fashioned air "Life, let us Cherish," a series of elaborate variations upon which were admirably executed, and earned for the young lady an enthusiastic recall, m respon.se> to which tho Cuckoo solo was very cleverly rendered. Mrs Brooke next gave very archly the Irish ditty "Thady O'Flynn," and Mr Bfees the.amusing comic song "Betsy Waring," with encore "Giles' Courtship." "Awake /Eolian Lyre " by tho Choral Society was an excellent number, and a most delightful rendering by Mr W. B. Dixon of "Come into the Garden Maud," deservedly encored, brought a most pleasant musical evening to a 'close. A vote of thanks to the performers was carried by acclamation on the motion of Major Steward, and a ver.se of God Save the Queen terminated the proceedings.
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CHURCH CONCERT., Ashburton Guardian, Volume VII, Issue 2528, 26 September 1890
CHURCH CONCERT. Ashburton Guardian, Volume VII, Issue 2528, 26 September 1890
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