THE EDITOR, Sir:
Concertgoers in Kingston were treated to a marvellous and unforgettable concert in the beautiful Holy Trinity Cathedral on Sunday evening, February 24, 2012. This concert was presented under the patronage of the Most Rev Charles Dufour, Archbishop of Kingston, and the Spanish ambassador to Jamaica, Celsa Nuņo.
Playing to a packed house, the Immaculate Conception High School (ICHS) Symphony Orchestra thrilled the appreciative audience with a magnificent performance. Mr Steven Woodham conducted the orchestra with a Barbirolli-style virtuosity that delighted the audience. They were joined by the brilliant Spanish pianist David Gomez, whose rendition of 'Danzas Espaņolas' and 'Malaguena' was flawless. The ICHS orchestra was complemented by the superb Kingston College Chapel Choir and the ICHS Glee Club.
Mr Editor, as a passionate addict to classical music, I can tell you with certainty that we have talent in this country that is equal to many other youth orchestras that I have had the pleasure of seeing perform.
Andrew Lloyd Webber would have been charmed to hear local soloists Gabrielle Chin and Lori Burnett sing his 'Pie Jesu' composition. Their performance of Jules Massenet's 'Meditation from Thais' enraptured the appreciative audience. The 'Pirates of the Caribbean' performance was stupendous. The finale 'O Praise Ye the Lord' so moved the audience that they rose in a spontaneous, prolonged applause, heard only in the great theatres of the world.
Jamaican concert and classical music enthusiasts are being urged to support the development of a world-class youth symphony orchestra. There is no doubt that we can do it. These young people need our support and encouragement through financial contributions and attendance at their performances.
The many sponsors who helped to make this memorable performance possible should be publicly commended for their generosity.
I close by reiterating my appeal to Jamaicans to rise to the occasion. Let us recognise and nurture the enormous talent in our young concert musicians. Thank you, ICHS and your associates, for an evening that will not be soon forgotten.