In 2020, we had to cancel both our live concerts, due to the coronavirus pandemic but in May 2020 we posted an alternative online version of our Beethoven and bassoon concert. We hope to celebrate our 50th Anniversary a year late, in November 2021.
Saturday 2nd November 2019 at 8.00pm in St. Laurence's Church, Ludlow
Jonathan Lyness conductor Rebecca Afonwy-Jones mezzo soprano
Smetana Overture to "The Bartered Bride" Sibelius The Swan of Tuonela Mahler Lieder Eines Fahrenden Gesellen (Songs of a Wayfarer) Dvorak Symphony No. 7 in D minor
This programme from the Ludlow Orchestra under our newly appointed conductor, Jonathan Lyness, exploded into life with Smetana’s scintillating overture to his most famous opera, The Bartered Bride, and ended with another Czech masterpiece, Dvořák’s mighty seventh symphony, a work full of contrasts, from dark passion and fiery storm to celebration and triumph.
In between we performed one of Jean Sibelius’s most popular works – his wonderfully atmospheric tone poem The Swan of Tuonela with its evocative cor anglais solo. And to complete the programme, the orchestra was delighted to welcome the acclaimed Welsh mezzo soprano Rebecca Afonwy-Jones, who traveled from just across the border to sing Gustav Mahler’s hauntingly beautiful and uplifting song cycle ‘Songs of a Wayfarer’, the folksong-inspired story of a jilted young man in search of forgetfulness.
Thank you so much for yesterday - what a lovely evening and so much praise and enthusiasm for the programme and playing - and Jon seemed very pleased.
Well done and thank you to Jon for his first concert now that he is officially our conductor! And a very good choice indeed to choose to do the Mahler and with Rebecca Afonwy-Jones.
Thank you all. Thank you to our guest players for all your fabulous playing.
As I left St Laurence's, the church team were telling me "It was your best concert ever", "You sound like a professional orchestra!" Ha ha! Maybe not quite but we are doing very well!
I hope you had a rest today.
a remarkable achievement to produce such an interesting and challenging programme
From Rebecca: Please pass on my thanks to everyone in the orchestra for making me feel so welcome and do send my congratulations on a really wonderful evening - all the hard work (and counting!) is always worth it when you experience such a warm audience response. It reminds us all why indeed we make music together.
One of your best yet - fantastic ensemble playing
Saturday 25th May 2019 at 7.30pm in St Laurence's Church, Ludlow And a fond farewell to Tom!
A great concert last night and a good send-off for Tom!
Congratulations to all. A truly memorable evening, a fitting finale to Tom's time with the orchestra.
A standing ovation. Wasn’t that amazing? The strings were the best we have ever heard them play. In the Prok slow movement and throughout the Shost I thought I heard luscious, rich strings which I do not recall having heard before. Fantastic... An atmosphere of warmth, togetherness and joy.
A big thank you to you and the committee, for yet another excellently prepared concert.
Without doubt, it was the best thing I have heard in St Laurence's Church.
Standing ovation!! Many curtain calls; friends/neighbours searching me out at the end brimming over with congratulations "Shostakovitch playing more enthusiastic than the CBSO's!" "Best concert ever" ; "So glad I came" (this from a neighbour who was extremely doubtful that the programme would be her kind of music.) So... a triumph! We're all thrilled.
Thank you for introducing me to Prokofiev's Piano Concerto No.1. I love it. And the Shostakovich was a thrilling experience.
You pulled off the big one without a doubt... so smooth and well oiled
Such a wonderful farewell concert for Tom. He can be in no doubt of his popularity after the standing ovation at the end! As we walked back to the car last night, several people came up to us and said what a wonderful concert/evening/event it had been. We have never had that happen to us in the street before!
Saturday was immense and such a huge achievement for the orchestra
It was a wonderful evening and Ive had a lot of positive feedback. One person said we sounded like a professional orchestra. I thought your speech for Tom was pitched just right. I do hope he was pleased with the way it all went. He really did us proud and it was great that he had enough confidence in us to play such challenging music.
Accolades all round, then. Very very well deserved indeed.
What a lovely concert – fantastic choice of music and such a lovely atmosphere
Just a note of thanks for last night's concert. A most professional sound, I thought. I hope that you enjoyed it as much as I did. Here's to the next programme.
A fantastic performance all round
Another great concert… it was a memorable evening
What a triumph! Saw a dozen or so friends in the interval and they were all hugely enthusiastic (as indicated by the increased number of curtain calls at the end)!
I thought the concert was brilliant
The orchestra is going from strength to strength
Beethoven, Symphony No 9 'Choral'
28 April 2018 in St Laurence's Church, Ludlow Joelene Griffith soprano Chloe Pardoë mezzo Soprano William Branston tenor Derek Henderson bass Ludlow Choral Society
A triumph! Thanks so much to TLO for having the bravery to programme such a masterpiece and to perform it so well. Lots of praise from the audience including those from away. And a pleasure to take part in as well. Please pass on thanks to all those who worked so hard to bring it about.
The concert was a triumph for you and your conductor. I was so excited watching it. Well done!
What a triumph! Well done playing such a mighty work. It must have been quite a journey for you. I really enjoyed listening and I am still humming.
Didn't it go excellently well? Certainly well received. Well done for all your very, very hard work - it really paid off.
What a stupendous performance!
A stunning and memorable performance
A truly exciting performance and overall, a great night's entertainment.
I have never heard the contrabassoon part played so well.
And the last word from the man himself, Beethoven (in response to a contemporary violinist who complained about the difficulties of his writing): "Do you suppose I am thinking about your wretched fiddle when the spirit moves me!"
Brahms - Eine Deutsches Requiem
9 December 2017 in St Chad's Church, Shrewsbury
Davidona Pittock soprano Jack Holton baritone with Shrewsbury Cantata
From Shrewsbury Cantata Choir: "Thank you for getting yourselves so well organised and set up within that limited space that we had. But thank you especially for your lovely playing! It was a great experience to have such a strong orchestra playing so well in front of us, and we've had plenty of very positive feedback about the balance and quality of the performance. I agree with Thomas that it's lovely to be able to collaborate with Shropshire musicians in that way."
English music for Remembrance Day
11 November 2017 in Ludlow Assembly Rooms
George Butterworth - A Shropshire Lad Vaughan Williams - The Lark Ascending - Tom Payne - violin Vaughan Williams - Symphony No. 5 in D Major
Congratulations! It all went very well... and Tom played beautifully. Well done. Looking forward to the next one.
Wagner, Rachmaninov and Brahms
13 May 2017 in St Laurence's Church, Ludlow
Wagner – Overture Die Meistersinger Rachmaninov - Piano Concerto No 2 in C Minor Op18 Soloist Liang Shan Brahms – Symphony No 3
I got there early, expecting to get a good seat, but the place was more or less full already. Not to worry - I heard every note from the back. A dazzling, most competent display - and what a piano! I thought, too, that the Orchestra was in tip-top form and performed beautifully throughout. You must feel very proud of all the players.
Every concert just gets better and better.
The orchestra has improved so much under your conductor.
The whole concert was wonderful, every section of the orchestra was just marvellous, I've never heard you play so well.
A massive congratulations to everyone involved in last night's concert on a truly wonderful performance. Audience numbers were over 200 and several people said that they'd never heard us play so well. When I get a minute I will collate the feedback and send it out, along with a link to a recording of the concert (the bit we listened to at 1am after coming in from the pub last night sounded amazing!). Thanks to Liang for a mighty performance of the Rachmaninov - it was a joy to play alongside him. - Catherine Brown, Chair 15/5/17
Laing wrote after the concert, "I'd just like to say thanks to you and the orchestra. It was such a pleasure to play with you! I always enjoy working with Tom and it was also a great opportunity for me to play with an orchestra with such good quality."
Don Giovanni - Mozart
3 December 2016 in Ludlow Assembly Rooms This production of Mozart’s dramatic opera, Don Giovanni showcased some of Britain’s finest young singers from amongst the top Conservatoires in the UK.
The opera charts the shocking infidelities of the infamous libertine Don Giovanni, as he works his way through a dizzying array of would-be suitors. Narrated between arias by Peter Road-Knight, this intimate semi-staged version of the opera enticed the audience every step of the way.
Don Giovanni was completely fab, what a wonderful group of singers. Has this opera the highest ratio of prestissimo to any other tempi ? The orchestra did really well, I loved the trombones coming from the back ...surround sound indeed. The Commendatore in the final scene never fails to be a total goosebump moment. Saturday was certainly no exception. Totally joyous evening !
Don Giovanni - Jack Holton Donna Anna - Eleanor Parsons Donna Elvira - Eloise Fabbri Zerlina - Davidona Pittock Leporello - Sam Carl Commendatore/Masetto - William Thomas Don Ottavio - Steven Swindells