Ulster Society of Organists and Choirmasters

U.S.O.C. Newsletter - September 1998

IT'S DINNER TIME!

Or, more precisely, it will be on Friday 25 September (7 30 for 8 pm) when the Society's Annual Dinner will be enjoyed at the Dunadry Inn. As this is the only purely social event in the society's calendar organophobic spouses, cousins or colleagues will be welcome. As usual dress will be informal (though matching socks are preferred) and the charge per person will be 20.50 A reply-slip is appended but as your Honorary Secretary expects to spend most of September in Australia this should be forwarded NOT to him but to Dr Barbara Callender (address on slip) not later than 19 September.

To reach the venue follow the M1 and road signs towards the International Airport, and about five miles before it turn off right on to the road signposted "Dunadry Inn"

BUT IT SOUNDS ALL RIGHT TO ME!

At this year's dinner our special guest will be Ian Bell, full-time organ consultant and adviser, and at 3 pm the following afternoon (Saturday 26 September) at St Columba's Church, King's Road, Knock, he will speak to us about his experiences as both organ builder and consultant and also about the possibilities of National Lottery funding for organ restoration. Mr Bell is a well-informed, entertaining speaker so this promises to be a lively session with time left for questions and discussion. Afternoon tea has also been promised.

LET'S HAVE YOUR VIEWS!

Two matters which constantly concern the committee are these:

(a) the fact that the vast majority of Ulster's church organists are not members of the society;

(b) the fact that only a small proportion (probably not more than a quarter) of the society's membership could be described as regular attenders at its meeting.

A sub-committee has recently considered both issues and intends to take active measures to improve the situation.

As a first step, however, it was felt that it would be helpful to have the views of our members and hence the questionnaire enclosed. Would you please be kind enough to complete this and return it to me by the end of September. It is not necessary to add your signature but it is important that we hear from

CHORAL AMBASSADORS

Congratulations to three Ulster choirs which this summer have presented the mainland with a more positive image of the province than that frequently projected by the media: the Choir of St George's Church, Belfast, directed by Nigel McClintock, singing at Buckfast Abbey (and perhaps sampling their 'Tonic Wine'?); the Chapel Choir of Methodist College, directed by Joe McKee, singing at Southwark Cathedral and at Westminster Abbey; the choir of Belfast Cathedral, directed by David Drinkell, singing at St George's Chapel, Windsor. No mean achievement for this little corner of the UK!

A CD TO CONSIDER

Congratulations also to member Christopher Gray, senior organ scholar at Pembroke College, Cambridge, who directs the College Chapel Choir on a CD made earlier this year. In addition to church music by Charles Wood, William Harris, Gustav Holst and Malcolm Archer, the main item in their attractive programme is Hubert Parry's 'Songs of Farewell'. Copies obtainable from Chris Gray - telephone him (01247 466087) for details.
This choir will, in fact, be visiting Northern Ireland in August and September and details of the tour are shown on a sheet enclosed. Copies of the CD will be available at each of these events.

ORGAN VACANCIES

1) At St Mark's Church Lisburn; robed choir affiliated to RSCM; Copeman-Hart organ; further details from Revd W G Irwin, Tel: 01846 662393;

2) At Hamilton Road Presbyterian Church, Bangor, which wishes to appoint a 'Director of Music', a post occupying "not less that 20 hours per week as part of a staff team"; details from Revd D Johnston, Tel: 01247 274452.

REMINDER TO COMMITTEE

Next meeting: Saturday 5 September, 7 30 pm at 1B Beverley Hills, Bangor. Please let me know if you cannot be present.

DEADLINE DATES

September 19: dinner reply September 30: return of questionnaire.

Your Honorary Secretary

RODNEY BAMBRICK

RSB/IAFH
25/08/98


USOC ANNUAL DINNER : DUNADRY INN : FRIDAY 25 SEPTEMBER'98

Member's Name: __________________________

Please reserve ____ place/s for me and for __________________________

Cheque (payable to USOC) for ____ enclosed (20.50 per person).

I should like to be seated at a table with ____________________________________

RETURN NOT LATER THAN SATURDAY 19 SEPTEMBER TO
Dr Barbara Callender, 74 Osborne Drive, Belfast, BT9 6JP.

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