Patriotic proms goes off with a bang!

Mon, 03/09/2012 - 15:18

Thousands of people waved their Union flags and sang with gusto at this year’s Lichfield Proms in Beacon Park on Saturday 1 September.

Now in its fourteenth year, Lichfield Proms in Beacon Park, organised by Lichfield District Council, is a huge free celebration of classical and popular music, al fresco dining and spectacular fireworks.

The evening's festivities started at 5pm with activities for the children and face painting. Lots of young people had fun on a traditional teacup ride and a series of giant inflatables, including a slide and T-Rex dinosaur.

The City of Lichfield Concert Band kicked off the evening's music at 6pm, playing a selection of popular classics, while the audience found their spaces and set up their picnics. Highlights included an ABBA medley, music from James Bond films, and The Beatles.

Touch FM presenter, Mark O'Sullivan, and local TV personality, Jane Dayus-Hinch, then took to the stage at 7.30pm to introduce the main concert. As comperes for the night, Mark and Jane got everyone into the celebratory mood, with plenty of flag waving and cheering.

The main concert featured The British Police Symphony Orchestra and soloists, Joanne Mayling and Mitesh Khatri. This year's programme celebrated The Queen's Diamond Jubilee with a Great British theme. Musical treats included: an HMS Pinafore Medley, Coates' Dambusters March, Jupiter from Elgar's The Planets, a My Fair Lady medley, and Crown Imperial from Walton's Coronation March.

As part of the concert, five lucky children took the stage with light up batons and were given a mini master class in conducting by BPSO conductor, Tom Hammond. With the conductors help, the children led the orchestra in a perfect rendition of Pomp & Circumstance No. 4.

The evening was brought to a close with a series of proms anthems, with many people joining in with Rule Britannia and Jerusalem. The night ended with a spectacular fireworks display to the stirring sounds of Land of Hope and Glory. 

Councillor Val Richards, Lichfield District Council's Cabinet Member for Leisure Services, said: "Lichfield Proms in the beautiful surroundings of Beacon Park is such a great way to end the summer. The night was wonderful with stirring music, beautiful singing, fireworks and a fantastic crowd that waved their flags, sung along with gusto and cheered throughout the concert.

We were very lucky with the weather as it was a clear and dry late summer evening, which meant this year's concert was more crowded than ever. The night was a huge celebration of British music and it made me feel so proud to be a part of this wonderful night.

"Proms is a huge event to stage and I would like to thank everyone who worked so hard to organise it, as well as our sponsors and everyone who made a donation on the night. A big thank you must also go to the City of Lichfield Concert Band, The British Police Symphony Orchestra, our amazing singers and comperes, who made it such a memorable evening for us all."

Businesses and organisations that sponsored Lichfield Proms 2012 include: Midlands Co-operative, Swinfen Broun Charitable Trust, Secret Garden, Go Mobile Ltd, Thornton Claverley IFA Ltd, Wilcox Refinishers, Chandlers, Chandlers Lakeside Bistro, Moseleys Solicitors, PJS Autos, Beacon Street Garage, Lichfield Gazette, Lichfield Chamber of Trade & Commerce, Touch FM, Lichfield City Council and Staffordshire County Councillors, Steve Tranter, Janet Eagland, and Terry Finn through their Members' Initiative Fund.