The Arthur Bliss Society
The Wyastone Lunch 2006
"This is a great day in the short history of
The Arthur Bliss Society. To have a Lunch,
and one so well attended, at a Three Choirs
Festival, in honour of our esteemed
composer, is a tremendous privilege." - our
Chairman's opening words in the Lunch
94 members and friends met together on a lovely summer day to enjoy an excellent lunch
in the most convivial atmosphere of the Wyastone marquee, before crossing to the
Concert Hall to hear Bliss's Music for Strings and works by Finzi, Julian Phillips and
Shostakovich, played by Orchestra of the Swan, conducted by David Curtis. We were
pleased that David was able to join us for lunch after rehearsing.
Perhaps the occasion was made all the livelier by the Gewurztraminer kindly donated by
Lady Bliss. Gerald said that Lady Bliss had often told him that Sir Arthur liked a glass of
this before a concert, and then allowed her to adjust his bow-tie.
It was the largest gathering of members so far, and from this grew the idea of having
informal get-togethers as we do now in places where Bliss works are performed, and
regularly at the Three Choirs Festivals.
During the lunch Gerald welcomed everyone and introduced Andrew Burn, Head of
Education and Ensembles with the Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra, and a member of
The Bliss Trust. His talk, illustrated with musical examples, was called "The Golden
Decade: Bliss’s Music in the 1930s". Terry Barfoot, who has featured Bliss several times
in his highly popular Arts in Residence Courses, closed the proceedings.
(below) LISTENING TO THE SPEAKERS : GERALD TOWELL, ANDREW BURN, TERRY BARFOOT
photographs © The Arthur Bliss Society
The Society’s Lunch was held as part of the Hereford Three Choirs Festival
on Monday 7 August 2006 at Wyastone Leys, Herefordshire: a concert followed.