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Musical feast for Atherley’s farewell

Gercine Carter

Musical feast for Atherley’s farewell

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It was billed as A Grand Farewell Gala Concert and patrons attending last weekend’s musical send-off for retiring conductor of the band of the Royal Barbados Police Force Dr Christopher Atherley at the Frank Collymore Hall, feasted on a smorgasbord of music.
Choral groups and soloists fortunate to have been backed by the band over the years as well as other musicians who have shared the stage with Atherley, showed their appreciation for his contribution in the two-hour concert staged under the patronage of Commissioner of Police Darwin Dottin and Mrs Dottin.
The band opened the programme with British composer Frederick Joseph Ricketts’ march The Vanquished Army and moved into F. Von Suppe’s Light Cavalry. The latter piece was dedicated to the patrons who, judging from their response, were big fans of Atherley and the band.
The 30 bandsmen and women were outstanding on their boss’ last big night standing before them on the concert rostrum. They played familiar selections that audiences had come to expect at any Police Band concert – Albert Ketelbey’s In A Monastery Garden; the well-loved and familiar Elizabethan Serenade and Bach’s Toccata and Fugue In D Minor.