“A Glorious Era of Popular Music”

THERE was a fitting end to a wonderful season of entertainment for the members of Clacton Art and Lits Society, provided by Michael Law’s Piccadilly Dance Orchestra.

A packed audience relived some of the most popular music composed between the two World Wars, when dance bands were at their height.

The evening’s entertainment began with two Cole Porter classics from the 1930s musical Anything Goes – You’re The Top and I Get A Kick Out Of You.

This set the scene for the evening with many other foot-tapping melodies interspersed with interesting and amusing anecdotes about both composers and performers by Michael.

We were introduced to singer Karla Beare and the four Gatsby Girls dancers during a beautiful performance of Over The Rainbow from The Wizard of Oz.

Michael explained that this song was originally cut from the film and only included at the last minute, going on to win an Oscar for best song.

A second Oscar-winning song, The Continental from the show Gay Divorcee, featured a trumpet solo by Chris Snead. Incidentally, when the film was made of the show, the studio linked up Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers for the first time.

There was great deal of audience participation during the playing of The Teddy Bears Picnic, the original – performed by Henry Hall and the BBC Orchestra – becoming the first record to sell over a million copies.

The music, singing and dancing concluded with all performers and the audience joining together to sing the Vera Lynn classic We’ll Meet Again.

A happy audience left the Princes Theatre eagerly awaiting the start of the society's new season in October.