Review: The Band of Her Majesty’s Royal Marines, Portsmouth, Ipswich Regent, Sunday

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THE theatre may not have been full to bursting point but the unmistakable sounds of the Portsmouth-based “Royal Band” filled the auditorium with a sparkling selection of music.

Directed by Capt Peter Curtis he led the musicians through a selection of marches, overtures, solos, big band and film arrangements which delighted the dedicated followers and supporters of one of the top military bands in the UK.

The charity concert, held in aid of Seafarers UK, culminated in a grand finale featuring much-loved nostalgic pieces including Sunset, the patriotic Britannic Salute and the stirring Heart of Oak and A Life on the Ocean Wave. And Capt Curtis picked up the trumpet for the encore to lead a rousing rendition of Fanfare for the Common Man.

But it was the duo of Ellie Lomas, vocals, and Andy Platt, guitar, who stole the show with their take on the Stevie Nicks’ song Landslide. The pair sound destined for big things and a couple of names to watch for the future. Also memorable was Dan Page, xylophone, and Alice Hudson, violin, with a thrilling, and at times electric-paced, rendition of Vittorio Monti’s Czardas. Capt Curtis was able to inject a great deal of humour and amusing anecdotal stories into the programme and the familiar and recognisable sight of the Corps of Drums on stage in their smart navy blue and red uniforms and white helmets helped to make it an unforgettable evening.

Russell Cook


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