Peter Cooke Memorial Concert

Discussion in 'tMP Site News & Suggestions' started by Chunky, Sep 29, 2005.

  1. Chunky

    Chunky Active Member

    Bandsmen and women from several Norfolk bands recently joined forces to form a massed band to celebrate the life of Peter Cooke, former trombonist with Cawston Band, Aylsham Band and Hellesdon and Sprowston Brass, who died earlier this year.

    The concert was organised by Peter Abbott, a former player with Cawston Band and a lifelong friend of Peter Cooke.

    The massed band was conducted by Colin Swaep and was formed by Cawston Band, whom Peter played with for over 40 years and colleagues from Matthews Norfolk Brass, Aylsham Band, Hellesdon and Sprowston Brass whom Peter had also played with.

    The programme, which was partly selected on advice from Peters widow Valerie, included Peters ‘signature’ solo played superbly by Alan Smith. Alan commented ‘I just tried to play it as Peter would have done, but I feel he would have done it better.’

    One of the more emotional moments was the playing of Pie Jesu. Soprano Cornet Iain Abbott and Peter’s eldest son Martin on Bb Cornet played the duet. What made the performance so memorable was that despite Martin himself was principal cornet with Cawston, until 2 weeks before the concert Martin had not played for 16 years. He retired again immediately after the concert.

    When Peter Cooke first joined Cawston Band, he along with 3 friends, used to cycle the 11 miles each way from where they lived to band rehearsals. All 3 of these friends were there on the night to remember Peter.

    Although it was a memorial concert for Peter it was a celebration of a man who dedicated the bulk of his life to brass banding in Norfolk.

    The proceeds of the concert were donated to local cancer charities.

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