Cobweb News

We are having a really great time seeing you all in the Book Clubs and in the Virtual Orchestra. We are absolutely delighted to announce that the CVO: Encore will be premiering on Saturday 20th June at 7.30pm. The link you need is is here: – please share with your friends and family!
Once again, there’s a lot to get through….
In this weeks Cobweb News:
Cobweb Orchestra Virtual Concert Party
Cobweb Orchestra Musical Book Club
Large Collection of Music Works Available
News from A Cobwebber: Cobwebs, Guinea Pigs and Composers

A quick note from Andy:
Just to say what a delight it has been to keep in touch with so many Cobweb players through the Music Bookclub, the WhatsApp group and the Cobweb Virtual Orchestra. It’s not, of course, as satisfying as actually being in the same room with you playing music for real, but at least it allows us to stay in contact with each other and have the opportunity to engage with some of our wonderful repertoire. Over 100 of you have become involved in these online/digital/virtual events in the last few months, and it would be lovely to see even more of you over the next few because it looks as though it’s going to be a while yet before we are allowed to become a live orchestra again. In the meantime, if you have any more ideas about how we might keep in touch and keep playing music, please let Lorna and me know.
Cobweb Orchestra Virtual Concert Party! 
Saturday 4th July, 7pm
FREE – Donations are gratefully received
To enrol, please click here

**AUDIENCE NEEDED!**On Saturday 4th July, we will host our very first Virtual Concert Party, celebrating the music of our players. We are delighted to have 6 performers who are bravely going to showcase their  music, ranging from Brahms to Faure to contemporary works. We’re now looking for audience members who can support such a wonderful programme! For those of you who feel like you’d like to perform, but at a later date, please do get in touch and we’ll add you to the list for a future performance. The event will take place on Zoom, and Lorna will send a meeting link a few days before the event, so please do encourage your friends and family to join in to watch and support your colleagues. If anyone has any questions, please don’t hesitate to get in touch.Cobweb Orchestra Musical Book Club
Thursday 25th June, 6pm
£4 Members, £5 Non Members
TO ENROL, Please click here
Any Cobweb player is invited to join the Musical Book Club, even if you haven;t already been part of it. We’ll meet online to discuss a piece of music.This week’s Book Club will begin with us playing the music, then we’ll discuss it, then we’ll play it again. All on mute, of course.
We will meet on Zoom, which works on all computers, tablets and smart phones. You don’t need to have any special programmes or apps on your device to make it work, you just follow a link which will be sent to you from Lorna the day before the meeting.
The work to be played and discussed will be the 3rd movement Scherzo and Trio from Schubert Symphony No. 9
The link below has clarinet parts in Bb and F horns, but no Bb trumpets. All the parts have bar numbers and rehearsal letters, so no marking up is required: Symphony No.9, D.944 (Schubert, Franz) – IMSLP: Free Sheet Music PDF Download

Large Collection of Music Works Available
A message from Graham Jarritt:
We now have a large collection of music pieces, (about 2500 items), that were withdrawn by a local authority library service as the material was no longer being borrowed much. Many of the pieces are of interest. Barbara has carried out a pilot test and items have proved popular. She has also spent many “lockdown” hours recording details of items onto an online catalogue. The task is not yet complete, but a significant part of the collection is available to view. The largest part of the collection is choral and there is also a lot of piano music, but also music for solo instruments, often with piano accompaniment, duets, ensembles, tutor materials and some unusual items. There are a lot of scores, but no complete orchestral sets. A mixed bag and some excellent material. Some, e.g a lot of organ works, have already been distributed in the pilot. If you are interested in viewing the catalogue please contact:
I will then send you all relevant details to create an account and password to browse the catalogue and decide if you want anything.
All items are free, but at the moment the easiest way of distributing items has been by post, which means we have to ask for post and packing costs. To keep a record of the project we ask all participants to take a photo of themselves holding one piece music. Assuming you will be delighted with what you receive, you can if you wish make a donation to Cobweb or a charity suggested by the library the music has come from.

News from A Cobwebber: Cobwebs, Guinea Pigs and Composers.

This week, rather than news from the groups we’re going to hear from Emily Feldberg, who some of you may remember used to be a regular part of The Cobweb Orchestra:

The Guinea Pig orchestra and Composer Arrangers in Stanhope Village hall is not a very illustrious setting for life changing moments. (Even though it is to my memory, a beautiful hall in a wonderful setting).  Thanks to Andy’s “yes why not let’s try it” approach to setting up new groups, the Composer Arrangers group started in, I don’t know 2003 ish….?
The Composers Arrangers group was exactly that.  I remember Andy going through advising us on the full range of multiple instruments that each part should be available for. Straightforward advice was mixed in with encouragement and permission to go ahead and try it.  Or was it more than permission, was it in fact very strong encouragement to just give it a go… and by “it” I mean both arranging and composing. 
In true Cobwebs style, we all approached both the composing and arranging in completely different ways and also in true Cobwebs style the results were received seriously, critically  but without crippling negative judgement. I think this was the greatest encouragement we could all have. 
Our deadlines to produce the finished article were real. The need for understandable notation was obvious because the pieces were going to be played and played by our colleagues in our presence. Enter the Guinea Pig orchestra comprising anyone who wanted to be in it with the express purpose of trying out what the composer arrangers group had come up with. There was no hiding, but equally there was no need to hide because we were all equal, taking turn and turn about to be Guinea pig orchestra playing each other pieces. It was (and I hope still is) a brilliant set up. 
And then add to that another great Cobwebs idea…The Conducting course (using the Guinea pigs again) What superb advice: detailed rehearsal planning, warm ups, need for clarity, communicating with the body not the voice, and wonderfully Cobwebs even allowed me to conduct left handed…which I do to this day. 
Now living in the South West these skills have been used again and again. 
I am now the proud conductor of Minehead Community orchestra. We have an eclectic mix of symphony orchestra with alto and tenor saxes bass clarinet and no cello… Am I phased by this? Not at all… although the transposition to get playable and suitable parts for them all can be quite long winded….
I have continued composing: lurching one hopes, to a slightly better standard each time. Fragments Voices from the First World War an hour long piece:  for choir and orchestra took 4 years to compose. The rehearsals which occupied both choir and orchestra all year, were a complete joy, with all my cobweb skills (and those from Gill Coop, once conductor of Northumberland Orchestral Society) used to the full. In fact, due to popular demand the whole thing was repeated the following year.
Now in lockdown Cobwebs has again come up with those life stretching ideas. The Book Club has got me playing and practising my cello again… 
The Cobweb effect certainly stretches far and wide.

Emily Feldberg now of Carhampton near Minehead Somerset once of Chopwell Tyne and Wear

Lorna Wright
Event Coordinator, Cobweb Orchestra

Posted by Tracy Reed