Ulster Society of Organists and Choirmasters

U.S.O.C. Newsletter - December 2000

For the year 2001 the Society's Annual General Meeting will be held at Hillsborough Presbyterian Church (Minor Hall) at 3 pm on Saturday 13th January. At it Plans for the year ahead will be revealed, office-bearers elected, and an opportunity offered for discussion about any aspect of the Society's affairs members care to introduce. Afternoon Tea will follow.

For next year's overseas weekend a three-day trip to Edinburgh is being planned, leaving Saturday 5th May and returning the following Monday evening. Please note the dates and await full details in the January circular.

Your Annual Subscription to the Society (17.50; students 10.00; overseas members 5.00) is due in January and should be forwarded to the Honorary Treasurer (address below).

Readers of Organists' Review should note that their annual subscription is now due. If you are not already a subscriber to this excellent quarterly journal let me commend it to you; it is undoubtedly much the best publication of its kind, containing well written articles of interest to both organists and choirmasters (of any gender), and useful reviews of new organ and choral music, and of recordings. If you'd like to see a sample copy let me know. As we are a society affiliated to the Incorporated Association of Organists, USOC members can subscribe at the concession rate of 14.00 for four issues (5.00 less than the published price). This should be mailed directly to Ron Bayfield (25 Rowan Close, Portslade, Brighton, BN41 2PT) indicating that you are a member of the Ulster Society; alternatively contact me and I'll send you an application form.

This was established on the basis of a bequest made by Arthur Beggs to enable assistance to be given to student members wishing to attend music courses or to participate in the Society's own overseas tours. Some time ago it was decided to consolidate the fund and to make grants only from interest gained. At the moment, however, the capital invested (around 3,000.00) is still too limited for this to be done so further contributions are requested. Members might also like to do as Arthur himself did and include a bequest to the Student Fund in their wills.

1 As new members we are pleased to welcome:
a Miss Elsie Creen, who is deputy organist of Tassagh Presbyterian Church; her address is .;
b Mr Albert Smith, organist at Holy Cross Church, Ardoyne, of and
c Mr & Mrs McCadden, .. Mrs McCadden is organist of 1st Presbyterian Church, Holywood.

2 Timothy Morrow informs me (I should have known!) that KILLYLEA VILLAGE (where he resides) is situated in County ARMAGH and not in County Antrim as incorrectly shown on our Membership List. Please amend!

1 At Sinclair Seaman Presbyterian Church, Belfast; they have a new Makin organ, a small choir and two Sunday services; further details from Revd Tom Green. Tel: 9086 8568.

2 At St Dorothea's Church, Gilnahirk, Belfast, there is a small single manual Wells-Kennedy organ and a keen "traditional Anglican parish church choir" with two Sunday services. Enquiries to Revd Timothy Kinahan, tel: 9079 1748.

The organizing committee would like to thank members who helped to make this such a successful event, and particularly those who participated in the open console scheme. We were greatly encouraged by the number of visitors who took advantage of this, and also by the good attendance at Gordon Stewart's Ulster Hall concert.

Details are attached about two locally recorded CDs. Either (or both if you're feeling generous) could make nice Christmas gifts for your musical friends.

The publishers Stainer and Bell are currently running a competition inviting entrants to write a limerick of which the opening line is: OUR VICAR HAS BOUGHT A NEW THING. In the hope that they might produce even the shadow of a smile, some possible (?) completions are shown below. If you can do better (and that should hardly overstretch the poetic prowess of any USOC member!) I'd be delighted to hear from you.

By 13th January the ill effects of a surfeit of carols, candles and Christmas cards should have receded so I look forward to meeting you then in Hillsborough. (If you've already forgotten why, re-read the first paragraph!).

Meanwhile, my best wishes to you for Christmas and the year ahead.

Sincerely yours

Honorary Secretary


-------------------------------------- OUR VICAR HAS BOUGHT A NEW THING --------------------------------------

Our vicar has bought a new thing; Our vicar has bought a new thing;
It's a canary he's teaching to sing. And it's held together with string;
As it chirps in its cage When it took to the air
The choir's in a rage He was heard to declare:
As they've now been told to take wing! "I'll come home on a prayer and a wing!"
Our vicar has bought a new thing; Our vicar has bought a new thing;
"Oh, No! Not again!" cried the dean, And in it will have his last fling.
"For there's naught makes me sicker It's a two-seater 'plane,
Than to live like a vicar So conceal your disdain
Whilst the vicar can live like a king!" As the fellow flies off to Beijing!

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