Sixty years of Gosport and Fareham Youth Orchestra marked with show

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GOSPORT and Fareham Youth Orchestra celebrated its 60th anniversary with an extensive set of pieces.

The orchestra put on a performance at Ferneham Hall in Fareham on Sunday, July 5 to mark the special occasion.

Mayor of Fareham Mike Ford was at the show. He said: ‘It was fabulous, a superb event. The music was excellent, the arrangement and the direction with various conductors all made for a super event. It showcased all that’s best in youth music.’

Former musicians from the orchestra, who played as far back as the 1950s, were welcomed on stage to perform in a reunion set. The night culminated with 230 performers on stage at once.

The orchestra itself arose from the Fareham Junior Orchestra, initially a string ensemble, founded by Louis Fussell in 1955.

After many years of support and guidance from parents and teachers, as well as fellow founder Ben Bernard, the orchestra began to evolve and in 1977 became a part of the Hampshire Music Service.

Today it consists of a fully-fledged symphony orchestra, a concert band and training groups for both wind and string instruments. It is one of 72 groups run by the Hampshire Music Service.