The White Rose Orchestra based in Leeds
In the days before the commercialisation of the gramophone, the turn of the 20th century, the only occasions when theatre music was heard would have been at expensive monthly concerts, or Sunday afternoons in the local park where they were performed by a local brass band on the bandstand .
To fill this need, arrangers like Godfrey and Winterbottom would arrange and orchestrate theatre music selections.
A number of these have found their way into the collection of Christopher Irvin Browne, conductor of the White Rose Orchestra.
This visit brought a new dimension to the Society's November meeting with a programme tailor-made for the society. Since recordings of the Winterbottom and lesser-known 'Selections' had not been made, the audience was treated to a delightful performance of this music from the operas, from a different viewpoint embodied by these orchestrations with Sullivan's music in a form only rarely heard. The society appreciated the energy and commitment of the White Rose Orchestra, which normally rehearses in Leeds, with two of its number coming from York to play for this occasion.
The conductor also included some pieces of his own theatre music which have been recently recorded by the Royal Ballet Sinfonia. (Christopher Irvin, Midsummer Moods, Cameo Campion 2086).