This season's programmes
|Society history||Beginnings||Programmes and presenters||Venues|
|Social activities||Playing equipment||Conclusion||Afterword|
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Gramophone society? Surely gramophones went out with 78 rpm records! Is that all you play? We don't often actually hear anyone say this, but people who hear about us perhaps wonder just who we are and what we do. To set the record (no pun intended) straight, all our programmes are on CD these days - apart from the rare occasions when a presenter wants to include a vinyl disc. It's many, many years since we've played a "78" and, if someone wanted to do so, we'd have to make special provision. But the oldest and best-known classical record magazine in Britain still calls itself Gramophone and "gramophone society" is a well-established name for organizations like ours.
So what is Nelson Gramophone Society all about? We are a group of people who love classical music and enjoy hearing it well-reproduced in the company of others. From late September to early April we meet on alternate Fridays at the Salvation Army Citadel on Stanley Street to hear someone present a programme of recorded music. About half of these programmes are presented by our own members, visiting presenters accounting for the remainder. Some programmes contain a lot of well-known works, others explore the by-ways. Sometimes the music is straightforward and immediately likeable, occasionally it is more challenging. If a presenter chooses to include jazz, spoken word, or humorous items that's fine with us; we want people to play what they like, tell us why they like it, and give us the opportunity to get to like it too. Although most of the music we play is on CD, presenters still sometimes bring LPs. We possess our own hi-fi equipment which ensures a high standard of reproduction, and regularly review our facilities to see whether further improvements are desirable. Such a review some years ago led to the purchase of a new amplifier, made possible by a grant from the local Community Chest managed by Pendle Community Network.
Founded in 1950 (see Society history) Nelson Gramophone Society has enjoyed an uninterrupted life right up to the present, apart from the interruption caused by the Covid-19 lockdown. Membership stands at around 15, of whom around 12 are likely to be present at any of our Friday meetings. We start at 7.00, hear about an hour of music, then have a break for refreshments and a chat. The interval is followed by about 45 minutes more music, finishing around 9.15. (Very much like a classical concert really, except that the music is recorded rather than live.) The meeting room is on the ground floor with toilet and refreshment facilites and easy access from the adjoining car-park