Jun 29, 2012, 11:58 AM
AUCTION IN AID OF THE NATIONAL AUTISTIC SOCIETY WITH THE REALLY BIG CHORUS
Charity auction to win chance to conduct at Royal Albert Hall
Sunday 8 July 2012, Royal Albert Hall
At this auction, all proceeds of which will go to the NAS, we will not only be auctioning the signed score and baton used in the first performance of Karl Jenkins' Gods of Olympus, but also the chance to conduct The English Festival Orchestra in a repeat performance of a piece heard earlier in the evening.
The opening work in the concert is the three-movement London Suite by Eric Coates, written in 1933. Its third movement, the perky ‘Knightsbridge’ March, was chosen later that year by the BBC to be the signature tune for its new Saturday radio programme ‘In Town Tonight’, which ran until 1960.
Anyone who has ever had the ambition to conduct at the Royal Albert Hall, and who is prepared to bid in this auction, will have the chance to mount the maestro’s rostrum after the interval, and conduct the English Festival Orchestra in a repeat performance of the four-minute Knightsbridge March.
The work will be very familiar to anyone over 65 who listened regularly to the Home Service (as Radio 4 was then known) on a Saturday evening. Those who don’t know the piece might well have heard it as part of the Thames Diamond Jubilee Pageant (if you were lucky enough to hear any of the music played on that day!), and a CD of all the pageant music, recorded by the LPO under David Parry, is available in all good record shops or online: Diamond Jubilee Pageant (LPO: LPO-0063).
As for the sheet music, the full score is not easy to acquire, but you can easily get hold of a piano version of the Knightsbridge March from the Boosey & Hawkes website. It can be downloaded for the princely sum of £1.50, and you can then annotate it if you wish by listening to the CD. The download link is:
And the winner will have a permanent memento of their moment of glory. The concert is being recorded by Abbey Road Live with CDs being available by the end of the concert, so the conductor will be able to replay his or her five minutes of fame.
PLEASE TELL ALL THE CONDUCTORS YOU KNOW, AND HELP THEM TO BID FOR THIS UNIQUE OPPORTUNITY (you must attend the concert in order to bid)