IT’S A magical bond and one that spans the generations.
As 73-year-old Stuart Reed stands side-by-side with his 19-year-old grandson Mitchell Rock, both smart in their suits, the two have found a common interest – music.
The two violinists, from Fareham, are practising hard ahead of a concert, organised by Stuart, in the hope of raising £1,000 for a cancer charity.
Stuart, a retired MoD press officer, was inspired to put on the event after his friend Carole Hope, from Scotland, was diagnosed with bowel cancer.
‘Carole and I used to work together and went on lots of assignments together,’ said Stuart. ‘When she was given the all-clear, she asked me to do a charity gig as she knew I used to play in bands. However, she didn’t know it’s evolved a bit from there and I now play in three different orchestras.’
Stuart was once part of the Sunderland Youth Orchestra and Wimbledon Symphony Orchestra and he also played fiddle in country and western and Irish bands all over the world. He now plays violin in the Havant Symphony Orchestra, the Portsmouth Philharmonic and leads the Meon Valley Band.
Stuart’s grandson Mitchell, who hopes to become a Royal Marines musician, also plays in the Portsmouth Philharmonic and said he is proud to be able to help his grandfather.
He is studying A-level music at South Downs College and also plays fiddle in The Day of The Rabblement, an indie-Irish folk band.
He said: ‘Although he’s never been my teacher, my grandfather and I have practised together since I began learning aged eight.’
They will perform together at the Grand Charity Concert on Saturday, March 15 at the United Reformed Church, Osborne Road South, Fareham.
All the money raised will go to Ninewells Cancer Campaign, which is bringing together more than 150 research scientists and clinicians to improve cancer treatments.
The Portsmouth Philharmonic and the Meon Valley Band will play a varied repertoire ranging from Gilbert and Sullivan and Vaughan Williams to Duke Ellington and Fiddler on the Roof.
Tickets cost £8 and include refreshments. To book call 01329 286256.