Fodens Principal cornet leads the Proms celebrations


Manx Last Night at the Proms
Fodens Principal cornet leads the Proms celebrations

Last Saturday the Manx Youth Band and Manx Concert Brass hosted the 2013 Manx Last Night at the Proms at the Gaiety Theatre. An appreciative audience of almost 500 people enjoyed the evening, especially the traditional audience participation in the second half of this increasingly popular annual event.

It was a great privilege for the Band to welcome Mark Wilkinson, the principal cornet player of Fodens Band, the current National champions, as the guest soloist for the evening. The singing of the traditional Proms songs was once again superbly led by audience favorite Allan Wilcocks.

The first half of the concert included 2 wonderful solos from Mark, “Charivari” by John Iveson and “Traumeri” by Schumann, arranged by Howard Snell. The band also played the popular piece “You’ll Never Walk Alone” which Ian Clague, the Band’s musical director, dedicated to the memory of Pam Duchars. Pam played an enormous part in the history of the Manx Last Night of the Proms, accompanying a number of the guest soloists over the years, not least the leader of the evening’s singing, Allan Wilcocks.

After the usual change to very loud shirts for the players in the band (and a very smart waistcoat for the conductor!) the second half traditionally got underway with “Radetsky March”. Mark then played a further two solos “Song” (from Milestone) by Peter Meechan and “The Lazy Trumpeter” by Edrich Siebert before joining forces with Manx Concert Brass’s principal and deputy solo cornets Simon Briggs and James Aire to play a cornet trio “Bugler\'s Holiday”. The concert drew to a close with the Proms favorites including “Jerusalem” and “Rule Britannia” ably led by Allan.

It was an excellent evening enjoyed by audience, Band and soloists alike. The Band would like to thank its honored guests and all of its supporters for making the evening such a success. They would especially like to thank Allan Wilcocks and their guest soloist, Mark Wilkinson who also took the players of the Youth Band through their paces in a Band workshop the following morning.

Be sure not to miss the Band’s next engagement, “Manx Stars in Their Eyes” on the 16th November at the Villa Marina, tickets available now from the Villa Marina Box office on 600555