By Chris Wright
THE 24TH Annual Band Festival of Tavira on Monday welcomed bands from Azeitão, Grândola and Lagos who helped the Tavira Town Band to celebrate its 83rd Anniversary.
The celebrations got underway in the morning with the Town Band performing in the Praça de Republica but the highlight of the day was the concert held in the Antonio Pinheiro Theatre during the afternoon and early evening.
The entertainment started with the Sociedade Musical Fraternidade Operária Grandolense under their young conductor Rui Miguel de Araújo e Silva followed by the popular Sociedade Filarmónica Perpétua Azeitonense who were paying their first visit to the festival.
Under their charismatic conductor Carlos Manuel Baúto Medinas their programme included a lively rendition of La Alhambra by Llano.
Next to perform were the Sociedade Filarmónica Lacobrigense from Lagos with many young musicians and of particular note were Ricardo Pires, saxophone soloist, and Luís Casal and Paulo Costa who were superb on the xylophones during Czardas by Vittorio Monti.
Finally the Tavira Town Band took to the stage under conductor Marco Alexandre Sarrudo and the appreciative audience gave the band a standing ovation following their medley of music from around the world including pieces from Mexico, Germany, Brazil, France, Italy, Spain, Austria, China, Scotland, USA and of course Portugal.
There is no doubt that the musical heritage of Portugal is alive and thriving.
The obvious enthusiasm and enjoyment of the 180 musicians, the majority of whom were in their teens, augers well for the future.
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