The orchestra has about 40 members, mostly in the Grade 6 – 8 range. Many of them have picked up again instruments that they played earlier in life; others have taken up their instruments more recently. We also have several music teachers in the orchestra, along with a few who have been professional performers, though not necessarily on the instruments they play here.
Click here to read about the experiences of some of our members.
We rehearse at Kingston United Reformed Church, in Eden Street, Kingston, KT1 1HZ, on Wednesday mornings from 10.15 until 12.30, in three ten week terms.
Our members' experiences
One of the things that did stand out in my memory. We were changing guard at Buckingham Palace playing “Light Cavalry ” when my brother started wandering round playing his clarinet on the parade ground. When they caught him he was taken to the guard room, and sent down to Millbank hospital. They think he had drunk too much the night before. I picked him up from the hospital on my scooter and on the way back was stopped by the police as at the time only had a provisional licence. Good old days!
I am 81 years old still play the French horn regularly with two concert bands and two orchestras + extra gigs.
So I say keep playing as long as you can.
Ps see attached photos – me in the guards (one on end with two stripes) – and me now.
Music keeps me fit as a fiddle
LIKE Averil Mansfield in the How To Be A Super-Ager pullout (Mail), I learned to play the cello when I retired.
I took it up to experience being a learner before becoming a piano teacher, but loved it so much I kept going, passing Grade 7 in 2016.
The cello is more challenging than the piano and has introduced me to many new friends.
I play with the Kingston Third Age Orchestra and find that the ever improving standard of playing keeps me on my toes! We have a number of late starters in the orchestra, as well as professional musicians.
Stiff joints can be a problem, but keeping them moving by playing is a bonus. Don’t be put off by the heavy and unwieldy nature of the instrument — I simply use a flat-pack trolley.
Music is a marvellous way to keep young. Choose an instrument you really want to play and have lessons, or join a choir. You won’t regret it! SUSAN PLUTHERO, Ashford, Middlesex.