“Male Voices at the Minster” – 23 March 2019 – Southwell Minster, Nottinghamshire (by kind permission of the Dean and Chapter of Southwell Minster.)
A Concert presented by The Rotary Club of Southwell and Mansfield & District Male Voice Choir featuring the male voice choirs of Mansfield, Bestwood and St Edmundsbury in celebration of the 75th Anniversary of the Mansfield & District Male Voice Choir.
Special guest musician for the evening was Christopher Hill accompanied by Margaret Ball.
The Concert programme for the event has now been published on this blog separately for the record.
Mansfield & District MVC were delighted to support the charitable work of the Southwell Rotary Club at this event and in particular that the Concert attracted a full house. Full details of the financial contributions which will be made to Reach and Live at Home will be published in due course.
“We salute them and hope that, as current custodians, we have delivered a concert worthy of you” -Geoff Mansfield.
The Concert had been, in fact, some 18 months in preparation and thanks for the effort, enthusiasm and care involved in this work should be placed on record. Those qualities were evident in abundance; from David Ince’s erudite link presentations, the skilful guidance and interpretation of the music by the Musical Directors (who transformed three choirs into one), the sensitive and accurate accompaniment of the supporting musicians, the rare talents of both Chris Hill and Margaret Ball together with the tenacious, inimitable organisation skills of Geoff Mansfield, Harold Huxtable, Paul Cox and Paul Bennett.
We would particularly like to thank the St Edmundsbury Male Voice Choir for travelling at their own expense to join us. We are most grateful and proud to witness the depth of your capability in your performances: truly spellbinding, Our long history of making music together will continue as we have a return match in June 2020 and we are already looking forward to it. Our local mates from Bestwood MVC gave their usual professional and accomplished performance and it was great to sing with them once again.
Enormous thanks are extended for the gracious and enthusiastic presence of our friend the Mansfield Mayor Kate Allsop and her husband Keith, together with Councillor Stewart Rickersey and his wife Sharon. Their public advocacy and support for what we do places Mansfield & District MVC in an advantaged position and has lit up our 75th Anniversary year.
To many of the audience our guest musician, Christopher Hill and accompanist (our very own Margaret Ball) stole the show with an astounding performance of rich variety. Chris shares some thoughts with characteristic grace following the concert:
“Firstly please accept my deepest thanks for asking me to perform at your wonderful concert. It was a real honour and privilege to be asked.”
“I am so proud to have been involved performing alongside so many wonderful singers, generous and warm individuals, helpers, accompanist’s, musicians and organisers.”
“I am truly sincere in saying that I have met so many wonderful people associated with male voice choirs. Male Voice choirs, their music and friendship, mean so much to me and I hope that I will always have a strong connection with them.”
“I am so proud to have been involved performing alongside so many wonderful singers, generous and warm individuals, helpers, accompanist’s, musicians and organisers.” – Chris Hill
“The concert was amazing, the choice of repertoire perfect and the singing outstanding and it is so good to be be a part of raising funds for such good causes.”
“It is very hard to single people out to say thank you as everyone is so important, but there are a few people that I owe so much to; Ian and Geoff , thank you for your belief in my ability and for being so welcoming and supportive, I am truly grateful for this.”
“Harold: thank you for asking me to play at the Concert and being so warm and supportive and to the Rotary Club of Southwell and its representatives for kindly involving me.”
“The Choirs, and MDs, Your warmth and kindness has meant so much. I now definitely want to sing with Male voice Choirs!”
“And to Margaret: what can I say, other than I am so grateful to you for all your hard work, taking on pieces that are so challenging and doing such a fantastic job. Your kindness and warmth and friendship I will never forget. I feel I have made a real lifelong friend.”
“It was a real honour to perform the pieces with you, your support and professionalism made my job of playing so much easier, and I thoroughly enjoyed every minute of it.”
Final words go to Geoff Mansfield. No one deserves more praise than Geoff for his vision, leadership and tireless work in bringing the Concert to realisation. He hits just the right note on this occasion:
“In our anniversary year we remember the foundations on which we build. We honour the ‘hidden’ Mansfield and District Male Voice Choir family; the former musical directors, accompanists, committee members and over 320 choristers whose membership of the choir has kept us in perpetuity for the last 75 years. We salute them and hope that, as current custodians, we have delivered a concert worthy of you.”