Our 30th anniversary celebrations concluded in memorable style on Saturday, 19 November in a joint concert with The Friends of St James, with ‘Heart and Music’ providing a joyous blend of songs, poetry and fun.
It was not so much a concert as a musical show – we could have been in the West End rather than St James’s Church! ‘Heart and Music’, based in Milton Keynes, perform particularly for charity and church events, and having seen their show last night we can’t wait to welcome them back to Biddenham.
They performed, not just sang, songs from a host of musicals, gospel songs and many favourites, accompanied and unaccompanied, solo, in groups and as a whole company. Their versatility was wonderful to see and their obvious joy in performing was infectious. We never knew quite where they would appear from, as the whole church proved to be their stage. The music created by the plastic beakers for the Cup Song will have us all tapping away on the breakfast table for days to come.
There were many watery connections, as it was a concert to celebrate our pond’s 30th anniversary, but nothing had prepared us for the exuberant encore, loudly demanded by the audience, featuring the Frog Chorus – illuminated with little model frogs held high.
Amongst the poems were those written and performed by Milton Keynes’ own poet laureate and member of ‘Heart and Music’, Mark Niel. Did you ever expect to see a church full of Biddenhamites performing the actions to ‘My new teacher is an alien!’? Neither did we, but they did – and with unbounded enthusiasm.
This was truly a night to remember. And after the show, we all retired to the Church Barn for celebratory fizz, nibbles and a slice of anniversary cake. Malcolm Crane, musical director of ‘Heart and Music’, performed for us once more by making the first cut of the cake.
Thank you to ‘Heart and Music’ – you gave us a wonderful evening and the grandest of finales to this anniversary year. And thank you to all those who came along to support the Friends of the Pond and of St James: the proceeds will be shared equally between the two charities. We can say without doubt that you all enjoyed yourselves.