22 May 2024

Full house for concert celebrating local lifesavers

A full house at Withernsea High School enjoyed a Manchester Camerata concert that featured a programme picked by the local community to celebrate the significant anniversaries and work of local lifeboats and the RNLI.

Soundwaves: Music Across the Coast, on Thursday, April 18, paid tribute to both Withernsea RNLI and Hornsea Inshore Rescue.

Robert Guy conducted the orchestra and opened the concert with Pirates of the Caribbean accompanied by a dance solo by Neve. The programme continued with other sea-inspired works, such as Mendelssohn’s Hebrides Overture and The Wreckers by Ethel Smyth, through to Octopus’s Garden by the Beatles.

Residential care homes in Hornsea and Withernsea had been working with Manchester Camerata professionals Janet Fulton and Lynne Fell and volunteers from local choirs since March. All the collected memories, ideas and inspirational words created a suite of new pieces, arranged and composed by Janet and Lynne and orchestrated by Richard Taylor.

Withernsea Ladies’ Choir sang a tribute song entitled RNLI Withernsea, and the Hornsea Choir sang Spirit of Hornsea.

A Withernsea Ladies’ Choir spokesman said: “The real fun started when the care home residents joined in these works, playing a variety of percussion instruments which ended with the orchestra, choirs and audience playing buckets and spades in a water safety samba! It was a joy to see the happiness on the residents’ faces.”

The Withernsea ladies sang their own three-part song, The Seal Lullaby, which portrayed the journey of seal mother and her pup. This was accompanied by Richard Taylor.

Musical director Patrick Pearson amused the gathering by producing a small fishing net, instead of a baton, to conduct with. He then extended this into a telescopic 3ft pole.

The Hornsea Choir under Stan Kell sang their own work entitled Home by the Sea with a chorus for audience participation. Both choirs joined together with the orchestra for a stirring performance of the hymn Eternal Father, Strong to Save.

Pupils at Withernsea High School helped to produce the concert, including designing a striking piece of advertising, and working with the orchestra on programming.

Both Withernsea High and Hornsea School and Language College worked with Kate Pearson, who arranged a major new orchestral piece, Lifeline, which explored the experiences of lifeboat crew and their families and was based on a moving poem written by Mia.

Young musicians, including a rapper and singers, joined the Manchester Camerata to perform their new work.

Withernsea lifeboat operations manager, Darren Hickey, spoke of the work that the RNLI did in the area and he had also arranged for the town’s D-class Mary Beal to be outside the school for public viewing.

Hornsea Inshore Rescue coxswain Steve Hall thanked the audience for their well wishes.

Captain John Pugh, vice-chairman of Hornsea Inshore Rescue, said: “It was a wonderful performance by the choirs and the 14-piece orchestra. Music ranged from Fingal’s Cave through to a number by the Beatles.

“In all it made for a wonderful evening and highlighted the excellent work done by the volunteers of Withernsea RNLI and the independent Hornsea Inshore Rescue.”

A collection and lifeboat stalls raised money for local crews and their vital work. One audience member said: “It was a privilege to see the professional Manchester Camerata engaging with the local music groups.” Another added: “It was an excellent evening’s entertainment that made us proud of where we live – and the talent that surrounds us.”