[DWJ] CORRECTED LINK!!!! RE: Howard's School Orchestra in ARCHER'S GOON

Gili Bar-Hillel gbhillel at netvision.net.il
Mon Sep 21 03:50:23 EDT 2009

> Correct link should have been:  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-wiRivDMIYM

Now that I've read a bit more about the Portsmouth Sinfonia, and if the
information on Youtube can be trusted, It seems not impossible that DWJ
actually based her ARCHER"S GOON  schoolband on this orchestra:

"The Portsmouth Sinfonia was a real orchestra founded by a group of students
at Portsmouth School of Art in Portsmouth, England, in 1970 - however, the
Sinfonia had an unusual entrance requirement. Players had to be either
non-musicians, or if a musician, play an instrument that was entirely new to
them. Among the founding members was one of their teachers, English composer
Gavin Bryars. The orchestra started as a one-off, tongue-in-cheek
performance art ensemble but became a cultural phenomenon over the following
ten years, with concerts, record albums, a film and a hit single. The impact
of the Portsmouth Sinfonia was considerable and their name and reputation
has endured even though they last performed publicly in 1979. "

And just to remind you of the description in the book:

"they played just as they usually did. It was terrible. Everyone who could
played a different wrong note. Howard wondered how it was possible, without
the law of averages producing at least one right one. He had not thought
there WERE so many notes you could play. And of course, everyone was so busy
searching his or her music for his ... Read Moreor her wrong note that no
one had time to look at Mr. Caldwicks baton at all. The music swiftly became
a race to get to the end first. The first violins won the race, by a
triumphant short bar, from the cellos, with the trumpets beating the flutes
breathlessly into fourth place. The drums came last because the drummer had
lost his place in the music and never hit the drums at all."

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