On Tuesday 5th December, as part of Cranleigh Music’s community Outreach Programme, an orchestra of 20 music staff and musicians from the Merriman Concert Orchestra gathered to rehearse and perform Howard Blake’s touching musical score for the film of The Snowman by Raymond Briggs.

After morning rehearsals, the ensemble loaded up a van and embarked on a hectic schedule of three separate performances given at Cranleigh Primary School, Park Mead Primary School and finally at Cranleigh Prep School. In all, over 700 local children were held spellbound by the musical story, superbly narrated by David Hitchen.

The famous ‘Walking in the air’ was sung confidently and with beautiful tone by Cranleigh Prep School pupil Hannah Scriven. Marcus Pashley conducted the performances, introducing the children to the various instruments of the orchestra, particularly the more unusual Bass Clarinet, Harp and Celeste.