Winter @ Wesley another lunchtime series

The Crofton Flute Ensemble

Arthur Sullivan: Arrangement of music from the Savoy Operas; Poulenc: Suite Française (four movements from the Suite); Robison: André’s New Shoes; Daquin: Le Coucou; Leroy Anderson: Sleigh Ride

Wesley Methodist Church, Taranaki Street

Wednesday 14 July, 12.30pm

The ensemble is made up of seven players, and features flutes from piccolo in the high treble to bass flutes, which most of us seldom see. 

Poulenc’s series of French dances, arranged for the flutes by Brian James, leader of the ensemble, was full of lovely slithering harmonies, and ended with delightfully discordant quirky cadences.

Popular flutist Paula Robison’s André’s New Shoes was a pleasant little piece, in this case incorporating a baritone saxophone as substitute for a double bass (the group’s bass player having gone overseas), but this didn’t really work: it was too dominating.

Louis Daquin’s well-known piano piece Le Coucou went extremely well on flutes: 2 bass, 2 alto, 2 ‘standard’ flutes and 1 piccolo, as did Leroy Anderson’s well-known Sleigh Ride. The very skilled arrangements were by Brian James.

As an finale, the ensemble played a jolly, rhythmic Japanese piece about the adventures of some octopus dumplings, the piece being a theme from a Japanese children’s television programme.

Despite some intonation wobbles, this was a creditable concert by an unusual but competent amateur ensemble.

The series of concerts continues at 12.30pm on the next two Wednesdays: 21 and 28 July.  As part of Winter @ Wesley, there is an art exhibition (mainly painting and photography) in the foyers connecting the church with the hall.



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