Saturday, 31 December 2011

Mendelssohn Nocturne

On November 12th, Hillingdon Philharmonic played a concert - 3 movements from Mendelssohn's A Midsummer Night's Dream (the Overture, Scherzo and Nocturne), Bruch's 1st Violin Concerto and Beethoven's 4th Symphony.

Bob Paxman, former owner of Paxman Musical Instruments, Britain's leading manufacturer and seller of French horns, died during the summer after a short illness. Paxmans have put up a tribute to him on their website. Bob was a regular member of our audience at Hillingdon, and would always come round and say "hello" and "well done" to the horns after the concert. This was our first concert after his death, and Stuart, our other regular horn, suggested it would be good to dedicate the Nocturne to Bob, since it is mostly a horn solo. I thought that was a wonderful idea, and so Stuart arranged with the conductor and the chairman that there would be a short announcement at the start of the concert about Bob Paxman and his connection with the orchestra, and how the Nocturne was being dedicated to his memory.

So, I played the solo and made it sound as beautiful as I knew how, to show the audience what a wonderful instrument the horn is and how much horn players need good instrument makers in order to produce those beautiful sounds. At the end, Stuart put his hand on my shoulder and quietly said "Bob would have enjoyed that."

1 comment:

  1. Congratulations!

    It's a marvel to me what a small world (in some ways) you have over there, that can provide the connections for such a moment. I still think you should write a musical memoir - in your spare time, of course ;-)