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Council keeps step with Villa Marina centenary celebrations.

Thursday, 04 July 2013 13:51

In support of celebrations to mark the centenary of the Villa Marina, Douglas Borough Council has commissioned a piece of music - a military march – which will be performed in public for the first time by the world famous Foden’s Band on Saturday July 13th at a concert in the Villa’s Royal Hall.


fodens2012 large MediumFoden's Band will perform the new work by Derek Broadbent at their concert at the Villa Marina


The work ‘Centenary March: Villa Marina 2013’ has been composed by Mr Derek Broadbent, who also wrote ‘Music for a Centenary’ for the Council’s own centenary year in 1996.


Mr Broadbent is a former resident conductor of the Brighouse and Rastrick Band and was responsible for the band’s chart-topping success with its version of ‘The Floral Dance’. He has also been resident conductor, then musical director, of the Black Dyke Mills Band.


Of his latest commission he said: ‘I’ve been coming to the Isle of Man for many years for musical engagements. The Villa Marina is a venue I know well so I am honoured to have been given the opportunity to write a piece which I believe has a suitable sense of occasion to celebrate its centenary.’


In 1910 the then Douglas Corporation purchased the Villa Marina Estate from the trustees of Henry Bloom Noble, the town’s most generous benefactor, and commissioned the construction of the Villa Marina Kursaal, which was opened by the Lieutenant Governor, Lord Raglan, on July 19th 1913.


Council Leader Councillor David Christian MBE JP said: ‘Although ownership of the Villa Marina was transferred from Douglas Borough Council to the Isle of Man Government in March 2000 the Council continues to enjoy a happy association with the complex that has hosted so many memorable occasions and welcomed countless distinguished guests over the years.


‘At the Villa Marina’s opening ceremony in 1913 the Mayor, Alderman Robert Corlett J.P., referred to the event as “an important day in the municipal history of Douglas”. It’s fair to say that, 100 hundred years on, celebrating the Villa’s centenary is an equally important occasion that merited a celebratory piece of music.


‘Derek Broadbent’s commemorative piece written to mark the centenary of Douglas Borough Council in 1996 was a fitting centrepiece to the gala concert on December 8th that year. The Council was therefore delighted that he accepted the commission to celebrate the Villa Marina’s centenary.


‘Accounts of the Villa Marina’s official opening on Saturday July 19th 1913 refer to there being a concert “of admirable quality”. I am confident that on Saturday July 13th 2013 the concert by one of the world’s leading brass bands, Foden’s, when Derek Broadbent’s work is to be premièred, will be a memorable occasion of equally admirable quality.’


Established in 1900 Foden’s Band are holders of the 2012 British Open and National Champions of Great Britain titles. The band has toured the US, Finland, France, Israel, Italy, Ireland, Norway and Switzerland and will be performing in concert at the Villa Marina on Saturday July 13th at 7.45pm. Tickets are available from the Villa Marina box office. See panel opposite for details.