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Shirley guide funds in the right direction

The Shirley Band has been helping guide funds in the right canine direction...

Guide Dogs

 

The Shirley Band from Solihull near Birmingham has helped to raise more than £600 for the charity, Guide Dogs by performing in what is believed to be the national organisation’s first ever concert featuring a brass band.

Tread the Boards

The event also included the choir of Kingsley School from Leamington Spa, which was conducted by former Jaguar Land Rover Band trombonist, Julian Smith, as well as actors from Stratford-based fringe theatre company, Tread the Boards.

Premiere

Shirley played a range of Christmas music, including the premiere of ‘Jingle Swing’ by MD Dave Bishop-Rowe, whilst the choir performed Benjamin Britten's ‘Festival of Carols’ and Tread the Boards provided excerpts from Charles Dickens' ‘A Christmas Carol’, which was written specially for the concert by well known music journalist Alan Jenkins.

The band was invited to perform at the invitation of baritone player Richard Robinson, a volunteer fundraiser with Guide Dogs and who with his wife Sharon, also boards Guide Dogs during their training.

Guide Dog's first ever concert featuring a brass band was a huge hit, and we've already had requests from the near capacity audience to hold another event next yearRichard Robinson

Huge hit

Richard told 4BR: "Guide Dog's first ever concert featuring a brass band was a huge hit, and we've already had requests from the near capacity audience to hold another event next year."

He added: "The lifetime cost of a Guide Dog is around £50,000. With no Government funding for the charity, Guide Dogs relies on the generosity of the public which helps the charity to provide mobility and freedom to blind and partially sighted people."



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Ian Holmes

BA (hons), PGDip (RCM), ARCM, ALCM
Conductor, piano accompanist and educator