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Review: Glenn Miller Orchestra
Glenn Miller Orchestra
The Glenn Miller Orchestra
The Plymouth Pavilions took a nostalgic step back in time with a concert by the Glenn Miller Orchestra - and it was almost like listening to the real thing!
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Start quote It was brilliant - it was just a shame we had to stay sitting. We wanted to dance! - Les & Brian, Teignmouth.

It was a fantastic treat for the family. Great fun - Murray Best & family, Par.
End Quote

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Review: Glenn Miller Orchestra
Plymouth Pavilions
Thursday 11th March 2004

It was 100 years ago this month - on 1st March 1904 - that legendary bandleader Glenn Miller was born in Iowa, USA.

To mark the 100th anniversary of his birth, the UK's official Glenn Miller tribute band - the Glenn Miller Orchestra - have embarked on a centenary tour.

Miller, of course, went missing while flying from England to France on 15th December 1944.

The loss without trace of his plane has remained a mystery - and the accident happened just four months after his concerts in Plymouth in August 1944.

Glenn Miller
Glenn Miller
The GMO (for short) are probably as near as you'll get to the original thing. At the Plymouth Pavilions, they put on a flawless show.

In the first part of the concert, the orchestra donned red jackets and black bow ties.

After the interval, they came back on stage wearing the uniform of the Glenn Miller Army Air Force Band.

The show featured all the numbers you'd expect:American Patrol, Over There, Moonlight Serenade, Little Brown Jug, String of Pearls, Chattanooga Choo Choo, Pennsylvania 6-5000, and, last up, In The Mood.

This was musicianship at its best. The band - led by musical director Ray McVay - has 16 musicians and singers Jan Messeder and Colin Anthony.

It's the same stage format that Glenn Miller used - five saxophones, four trumpets, four trombones, three rhythm plus a male and female vocalist.

I particularly enjoyed the trumpet playing, but the other sections were also spot-on.

A special mention must go to the rhythm section - Gerry Butler on piano, Bobby Cleall on drums and Paul Scott on double bass - they did their thing quietly in the background but were integral to the band's sound.

My only quibble was over the inclusion of snippets of Andrew Lloyd Webber's 'Memories' and a piece of Irish music from 'Riverdance.' They were out of place, to my ears at least.

Apart from that it was an unmissable show for those who love big band music. It was just a pity there were not more people there to enjoy it.

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