Paula's Place

Paula's Place

Friday, 25 February 2022

A Post With No Name

It's been a few days (well ten actually) since my last post, it's not that I've been idly sitting on my hands not writing or doing anything, unsurprisingly I have found myself rather busy! Not too much gardening, but I have a lot going on on the music front at the moment ~ and that's the way I like it. In some ways it almost feels that as though  as I am starting to wind down my gardening business in anticipation of at least semi-retirement later this year a whole new career conducting may be opening up.

For the next few weeks as well as playing with the Horsham Borough Band in a couple of brass band competitions, a concert with the Croydon Symphonic Band, rehearsals conducting Croydon Brass and Allegra Concert Bands, building up to a concert with LGSO and trying to fit in some time with my Jazz/Blues band I will also be conducting the Phoenix Concert Band. I have no wish to benefit from others misfortunes, but I have been asked to step in on a temporary basis while their regular MD is unavailable.

Phoenix are a local band made up largely of "Adult Learners", there are plenty of opportunities for young players through schools bands and youth music groups, there are plenty of opportunities for more accomplished adult players with community bands and and established groups, but for those who are taking up a new instrument or learning to play music for the first time there are less opportunities. Phoenix is a groups set up specifically to allow these people space to improve their playing. This will be a slightly different sort of band for me, but I'm really looking forward to joining them all for the first time this evening as we work towards a concert in just two weeks time!

The big news all around the World at the moment is of course the Russian invasion of Ukraine, I do not plan to comment much, there are plenty of wiser, more informed commentators around to do that, until one of them would have been my friend Sophie. Only recently did I add a link to her blog here, her foul mouthed comments and rants were always underlaid with wisdom, knowledge and experience belying some of her rather punk vocabulary. Over the last couple of years we grew to know each other better as I was pleased to be able to help her as her mobility became more limited. I knew she was not well ~ as did all her friends, but it still came as a great shock to us all to hear that she had died quite suddenly last week. All of us who knew her will miss her rambling random phone calls, her iconoclastic rants and her very good company.

I will leave the link here for a while yet, I just don't want to "delete her"


LL Cool Joe said...

I'm glad you are busy with your musical activities, especially if you are hoping to semi retire later this year.

The war is both frightening and depressing.

Unknown said...

I'm glad that music is opening doors for you, Paula.

I'm sorry for your loss; I didn't know Sophie well, but we met a couple of times at BBC demonstrations and we had chatted on Facebook only a few days before she passed away. I liked her passion for activism. RIP, Sophie.

Best of luck as "interim MD". I'm sure that you will do well.