December 27 2015My wife and I attended an excellent concert at the Auditorio Municipal Maestro Padilla in Almería. It featured the Orquesta Joven de Almería and the  Orquesta Infantil de Almería and was conducted by Michael Thomas.

The infants performed the carols “Hark the Herald Angels Sing”, “Joy to the World”, “Silent Night” and “Jingle Bells”. The young children were conducted by Michael Thomas and their performance was quite charming.
Then it was the Youth Orchestra of Almeria’s turn. The youngsters treated us to an excellent concert that began with ‘Finlandia’ composed by Sibelius.
My wife and I attended this concert for three reasons:
(i)     we had attended a previous concert by the youngsters of the Almería Orchestra (OIAL & OJAL) and had thoroughly enjoyed it;
(ii)    we often attend concerts by the Almería Orchestra (OCAL) conducted by Michael Thomas;
(iii)   we wanted to support our friends Colin and John Whyman who were making a presentation at the concert.
Colin & John presented a violin to young Dario Rodriguez Ventura.
This was followed by a speech in Spanish and English by Colin Whyman who, with his brother John, had donated a large collection of records, sheet music and books to the members of OCAL & OJAL.
The Youth Orchestra then performed Edward Elgar’s “Chanson de matin” with young Dario Rodriguez playing the violin.
After a break the orchestra (OJAL) continued their performance  with music by Benjamin Britten, Leopold Mozart, Wolfgang Amadaeus Mozart and Prokofiev before finishing with Leroy Anderson’s “Sleigh Ride”.
The Youth Orchestra were then joined with the infants (OIAL) and performed “Silent Night” and the encore – another rendition of “Jingle Bells” with some of the audience joining in (well I did anyway!)