Coronation Prom

MICHAEL DRAKE St Nicholas Church, Yarmouth

MICHAEL DRAKE

The 50th anniversary of the Coronation, emotionally celebrated locally last evening, was tinged with sadness – it being the last prom for Yarmouth Choral Society's heart-on-sleeve conductor John Roper after 17 years. His Welcome Ode, written for HM's 1985 visit, was included.

What were the highlights of 17 years for John Roper?

"Lloyd Webber Requiem, Vaughan Williams' Sea Symphony, but there has been so much wonderful music and programme variety. The thrill for me has been getting my 'seaside choir' to respond and extend themselves with an ambitious repertoire.

John Roper wants to slow the pace but will continue as a music teacher and examiner. So the concert was of more than one celebration with choir and orchestra (leader Frances Allright) giving Parry's I was Glad extra feeling.

Glad to have been conducted by John Roper in typical flamboyant style in a programme which took in Rutter's Gloria in Excelsis. Amen to that. New conductor Tony Bussell takes over in September.

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