Garrett Salter plays the last post in the spotlight of the Saraton Theatre at the Anzac Commemorative Concert by the Clarence Valley Orchestra and Chorus.
Garrett Salter plays the last post in the spotlight of the Saraton Theatre at the Anzac Commemorative Concert by the Clarence Valley Orchestra and Chorus. Adam Hourigan

Spotlight on songs of war at Saraton Theatre

THERE were sirens blaring, horns blowing and soldiers marching, but Garrett Salter's lone trumpet set the tone for the Anzac Commemorative Centenary Concert at the Saraton Theatre on Sunday.

His version of the Last Post, arranged over the top of familiar hymn "Abide With Me" specially arranged by musical director Greg Butcher, set the audience on a journey of familiar music with a wartime theme.

It wasn't all serious though, and with musical interludes from the Clarence Valley's version of "Flanagan and Allan", tributes to the popular music of the Vietnam War era, and the ever-popular songs of the Andrews Sisters.

Musical director Greg Butcher leads the crowd in a singalong of war tunes.
Musical director Greg Butcher leads the crowd in a singalong of war tunes. Adam Hourigan

Mr Butcher said that almost 1000 people attended the two shows this year at the Saraton Theatre and the performers from the Clarence Valley Orchestra and Chorus get better each year.

"I'm just overwhelmed at the people who turn up to see the show," Mr Butcher said.

"It's great to see the support of the 70 on stage who have given their time to prepare for the show."

The performers were joined by members of the 24 Army Cadet Unit Grafton, who recreated a battle scene, crawling through the aisles of a dimmed theatre.

The next performance for the orchestra will be the annual "Afternoon at the Proms" concert during the Jacaranda Festival. Tickets will go on sales shortly.

Michele Belharry, Tracy Young, Opal Pastro and Lisa Butcher perform a tribute to songs of the Vietnam war era.
Michele Belharry, Tracy Young, Opal Pastro and Lisa Butcher perform a tribute to songs of the Vietnam war era. Adam Hourigan


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