Andy Jackson

First prize draw

Jean officiated at the first draw of the “100 club” at Consett last night. I got to press a button activating a random number selector on her computer and up came 39, which gave a cheque forf £21 to flautist Helen Mills. Clarinetists did rather well out of the evening as Lesely Wearmouth and Daphne Greves also won.
It only cost £2 (what’s that – a cup of coffee, a newspaper?) a month to be a member of the club and give yourself the chance of winning enough to stand a round at the pub after rehearsal. Cobweb funds benefit too, so contact Jean ( to join up.

Posted by Andy Jackson in General


I just wanted to say a big “thank you” to all the trustees for their help and support over the last year. Having such a strong team running Cobwebs makes my job so much easier and more enjoyable than it would otherwise be.
I’m looking forward to working with the new trustees too. See you all on 5 July.

Posted by Andy Jackson in General


What a wonderful response Cobwebs’ version of Ravel’s “Bolero” has had from Youtube watchers.
We’ve received reviews from around the world:
“I love things that make the world a touch more magical”
“This is simply glorious! It is because things? like this happen, that I will never lose my hope in the goodness of the world.”
No pressure there, then.
Reducing Ravel’s extended masterpiece to under 5 minutes was a complicated task which gave me even more respect for the ingenuity of the original score. Each player had a part specially written for them for the one-off performance in Newcastle bus station and many memorised their parts as well as learning to play whilst walking.
Skill and dedication. Cobwebs at its best, I reckon.

Posted by Andy Jackson in Events, General

Snow update from Consett

Dear all
In view of the dispatch from our local reporter, I think it’s sensible to postpone the start of term at St. Pat’s until next Thursday 14th January. 7.15pm as usual.
I hope to see many of you there to play (amongst lots of other things) Borodin’s 1st symphony. It works best with plenty of trumpets and trombones, so bring along brass playing friends, won’t you?
I also hope you’re not too inconvenienced by the weather and are just enjoying a few extra days cuddling up in a warn home.
Best wishes

Posted by Andy Jackson in General, Group: Consett, Groups

New group at The Sage from 23.9.09 for ten weeks

In September we start a 10 week residency to see if we can establish a daytime rehearsal group on Tyneside. For years, people have been lobbying for two things; a weekly group in Newcastle/Gateshead and a chance to play during daylight hours Monday to Friday. These two requests have magically come together in the Residency, so I hope lots of you will turn up and tell all your friends to come too. As it’s to be a new group, less experienced players will be made especially welcome. There will not be pre-enrolment for these sessions, but please e-mail Liz to say if you intend coming.

Posted by Andy Jackson in Group: Sage Gateshead, Groups

See you soon, I hope

I can’t be at Consett this Thursday (5th Feb), and next week’s half term, so none of us will be there, but I hope to see everyone soon either at the Sage on Saturday or at Ashington on Valentine’s Day or when normal service is resumed on 19th Feb.

Posted by Andy Jackson in Group: Consett, Groups

Cobwebs 2009

Dear players
Firstly, Liz and I would like to wish you all a very Happy New Year.
Next, we’d like to let your know some of the things that are happening over the next few weeks so that we can meet up and play some music together.
On Saturday 17th January, there’s a chance for everyone to join the Guinea Pig Orchestra. For those of you who have never taken part in this before, the GPO is a group who allow themselves to be experimented on by conductors, composers and arrangers. In particular, the GPO has been very important in developing the skills of people who belong to the Leaders’ Group, which is why they will be meeting at Witton Park Village Hall, Wear Valley (DL14 0DX) from 1.30 to 4.00pm. If you’d like to come early (12.30 onwards), there’s a shared lunch (bring a small contribution).
We need people of all levels of skill and experience for the GPO so that our leaders get an authentic experience of what it’s like working with the Cobweb Orchestra. GPO events are always completely free of charge and new players are always welcome.
Then there’s a rare opportunity to play Vaughan-Williams’s “London” symphony in Dalston Village Hall on Sunday 25th January (11am-4pm). It’s a study day – no performance – conducted by John Scott, who some of you will remember pulling together an exciting performance of Borodin’s “Polovtsian dances” in at Bishop Auckland Town Hall last Spring. An enrolment form is attached.
And, of course, all the regular groups start up within the next week or two with a few changes:
The Co. Durham group is moving to Consett, I will be at Middlesbrough every Monday in January, and Noel Bertram will be leading the Tebay group. (Attached is a note from Lesley which gives clear directions to the Consett Hall and car-park for anyone wanting to go to the Durham group.)
2009 is a Tuscany year and Andrew Forsyth has sent information about this year’s visit. You will find it attached to this letter.
Details of all the above, and more, are on the website
Whichever bits of the Cobwebs programme you decide to join in, I hope to see you soon.
Best wishes

Posted by Andy Jackson in General

Urgent – change of arrangements for Sunday's Hartlepool Maritime Festival

I’m afraid that there has been a slight change of plan for the performance in Hartlepool this Sunday (6th July).
Instead of the performance being at 3.00pm, the organisers would like it to be at 4.30pm, so it will be a later finish (but no later than 5.45pm).
For further details please see the forum post about the event.

Posted by Andy Jackson in Events

Harelaw rehearsals

Just a reminder that the Harelaw group is still meeting next week (27 Mar) and the week after (3 April).
It’s because of the school holidays in Co. Durham, which are not the same as in some other LEA areas.
Some people seemed to think we would be stopping because it’s Easter this weekend.
Please pass the word around in case others thought the same.

Posted by Andy Jackson in General, Group: Consett, Groups