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Fountain City

Conductor: Dr Joseph Parisi
St Leonard's Church
Perth
Friday 24th November

As the winter weather began to bite in Perth, Fountain City bravely warmed up for its appearance at the Scottish Open the following day with this enjoyable, if rather low key concert at a decidedly chilly venue.

The Kansas City band had demonstrated their versatile musical credentials at the Brass in Concert Championship the previous weekend, and those with slightly longer memories would have been reminded of their success at this contest in 2009, so it was a shame that only a small, but enthusiastic audience took the opportunity to hear them in action.

Temperature up

The band certainly did its best to keep the temperature up though (helped by some electric fires) with a reprise of much of their Gateshead programme keeping the blood following through the foot-tapping extremities, even if their own choreography was limited due to space.  

Radiohead's 'Creep' and 'Enterprising Young Men' were powerful opening items designed for the job in hand, with guest soloist Les Neish (who was judging the Scottish Youth Championships) on superb form during his solo spots.

The band certainly did its best to keep the temperature up though (helped by some electric fires) with a reprise of much of their Gateshead programme keeping the blood following through the foot-tapping extremities, even if their own choreography was limited due to space.  

Impressive

PLC's enjoyable 'Quicksilver' found him in expansive mood, whilst in the second half he teamed up with Fountain City's Lee Harrelson for a beautiful rendition of 'The Prayer'.  He rounded his contribution off with Cole Porter's 'Leader of the Big Time Band'.

The Americans were equally as impressive: Ballatine's ‘Mid All the Traffic' delivered with sensitivity to provide the aperitif to an energetic, resonating 'Metropolis 1927' (with the composer and his wife huddled together in the pews) that acted as a beacon call to any rivals within earshot of Perth on the night. It was little wonder it captured a podium prize the following day.

Full tilt

Following the short break (Dr Parisi (above) wittily thanking the audience for not seeking warmth outside), the band maintained a high tempo with PLC's 'Horizons', before 'We Seven' inspired by a book written by the pioneering first American astronauts and includes  the strains of 'Un bel dì vedremo' from Puccini's ‘Madame Butterfly’ was delivered with a touch of classy aplomb. 

Queen’s classic 'Who Wants to Live Forever?' neatly segued into 'Brass Machine' with the MD on trumpet, saw Fountain City close the evening in full-tilt mode, and the audience able to head for home warmly entertained, even if their toes still took some time to defrost.

Malcolm Wood

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