Bucks Christmas String Quartet Concert in Cheddington – Last night the Manor House String Quartet (consisting of Vaughan Jones violin, Louise Bevan violin, Adrian Smith viola and Julia Graham cello) returned once more to play a concert in St Giles Church, Cheddington. Half the proceeds from the concert were to go towards the upkeep of the Church, with the remainder going towards the Church Bell Restoration Appeal. As always, the atmosphere in the church was magical with a smell of mulled wine permeating the air and the overhead heaters providing a red glow that mingled with the conversation of the audience members.
This year was the third in which we have played an entirely Christmas programme, so the challenge was to come up with a varied selection of pieces which were both fresh and new. This was not a huge problem as we had 23 new Christmas carols from this year’s release ‘It Came Upon the Midnight Clear and other carols’.¬†These included the celebrated ‘Carol of the Bells’, ‘Past Three O’ Clock’ and a lively rendition of ‘Jingle Bells’ for string quartet which you can listen to here:
In the interval many audience members took the opportunity to purchase discs for Christmas presents. The second half¬†started with our arrangement of the ‘Sussex Carol’ and ended with some audience participation. Charles,¬†the bell ringing tower captain at neighbouring Ivinghoe was called upon to provide the shaking of bells during ‘Jingle Bells’. In the final piece everyone had the opportunity to let off steam by¬†grabbing hold of the party blowers and¬†the result was an exuberant end to a very enjoyable evening!