News and Events Archive

Alton’s Last Night of the Proms!

Saturday 9th of July 2016.  Alton Public Gardens.  

Gates open at 6pm for the performance at approx. 7.30pm

Bring you picnic hampers, deck chairs, family & friends and enjoy an evening of splendid entertainment.

This year Alton Concert Orchestra will be sharing some Latino inspired music, with a medley from Bernstein’s West Side Story, music from Evita, a Spanish dance, the Conga del Fuego and some Jamaican Rum… make sure you bring the appropriate cool drinks!  The second half will be filled with the traditional repertoire, our proms soloists this year are the talented Alison Lewis and Daryl Kellie.

Alton’s Last Night of the Proms is organised by Alton Concert Orchestra and Alton Town Council.


*Wonder of Christmas 2016*


Alton Maltings will be filled with Christmas Music and Carols on the 17th of December this year when Alton Concert Orchestra (ACO), Alton Choral Society and Ancora present their 11th Wonder of Christmas Concert!

This year is set to be a corker, with both traditional and contemporary Christmas music.  The concert will feature the first performance of ACO Conductor Chris Gardner’s Christmas Cantata Brightest and best of the sons of the Morning. This is a new work dedicated to the memory of Mac Newton, who was associated with The Wonder of Christmas from the beginning, as leader of the Alton Concert Orchestra, and conductor of Ancora Female Voice Choir. The piece tells the Christmas story using words from the bible and Christmas Carols and combines original and traditional melodies. It has been written for the combined forces of Alton Concert Orchestra, Alton Choral Society, and Ancora, with soloists, Nick Wright as narrator and a little audience participation.

This popular annual festive event is free, with a retiring collection in aid of Homestart Weywater and the Maltings Charities.  A marvellous array of delicious homemade mince pies and mulled wine is generously provided by the Homestart team during the interval.


Alton’s musicians reunite, on Saturday 16th December at 7.30pm, to perform their annual “Wonder of Christmas” Concert at Alton Maltings Centre. This hugely successful concert has become a much loved event for everyone to get into the Christmas spirit in the run-up to the festive season.

Alton Concert Orchestra, Alton Choral Society and the female voice choir, Ancora, will bring plenty of festive cheer and a little sparkle for an evening of seasonal music, songs and carols.  The orchestra, under the baton of Chris Gardner and assistant Mike Glover, will start the ball rolling with Bizet’s Farandole, the audience will then be invited to join us in a rendition of the First Nowell.

This year marks the centenary of the celebrated composer John Gardner CBE (1917-2011).  We shall be honouring the anniversary with performances of his arrangement of Irving Berlin’s White Christmas and the cheering Holly and the Ivy.

Alton Choral Society, conducted by musical director Wendy Busby, will be singing some traditional Christmas favourites, finishing the first half with Christmas Day by Holst.  The second half commences with Sibelius’s rousing Finlandia, followed by Ancora who take centre stage, conducted by Lii Carr, delighting the audience with a diverse selection of songs, including the Lily and the Rose, by Bob Chilcott.  Throughout the concert, the audience will be called upon to join in and raise their voices in a selection of the best loved Christmas carols.

Mulled wine and bountiful mince pies, generously provided by the Home-Start WeyWater team, will be on offer during the interval, complementing what promises to be a wonderful evening of family entertainment. It is a non-ticket event with a retiring collection.  All the money raised from the concert will go to the local charity; Home-Start WeyWater, providing support for young families in Alton and the surrounding area.  There will be a raffle during the concert with some fabulous gifts on offer to get you in the festive spirit!
The concert starts at 7.30pm and doors open at 7pm.  As this is expected to be a very popular event it is advisable to arrive in good time.  Parking at the Maltings Centre will only be available for people with limited mobility.  People are requested to find alternative car parks around Alton and then walk to the Centre.

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