By Gig Scene Editor Graham Chalmers
Interest in the Tour de France is certainly picking up pace - even one of the district’s biggest classical music ensembles is getting involved.
HSO’s musical director Bryan Western has revealed Harrogate Symphony Orchestra is to present it’s own Tour de France concert next year in the build-up to the district’s participation in one of the world’s greatest sporting events.
The approach for this exciting event at the Royal Hall is, unsurprisingly, to be based on just two themes - France and speed.
Western said: “It was just an idea which came up in rehearsals but I thought it was a great one. It’s not every year the Tour de France comes here and we’re sure it will make for a wonderful and fun night.”
Well known for its progressive approach to classical music in the modern world; from its choice of pieces to its use of social media platforms, Western won’t reveal the HSO’s programme in full yet.
To be held in June, the HSO Tour De France concert sounds like it’s going to be as spectacular as the sporting event which inspired it.
Western said: “It will certainly include some classical French pieces but we’re also keen to perform John Adams’ A Short Ride In A Fast Machine and we might even have a shot at Bicycle Race by rock band Queen, if we can work out an interpretation which will work successfully!”
In the meantime, the HSO is preparing for a series of major concerts this year at the Royal Hall.
On Saturday, March 23, it will perform a World Music programme which sees this large and versatile amateur orchestra tackle everything from Dvorak to Gershwin to a world premiere of Inca music with the help of Latin American musicians.
Its summer concert on June 22 which will help raise funds for the No Strings charity will see actor Hugo Speer add narration to a performance of Prokofiev’s Peter and the Wolf.
It’s Winter Concert on November 16 will see another world premiere in the form of a new guitar concerto featuring guest musicians The Aquarelle Guitar Quartet.
In another innovation, the HSO will shortly publish its own high-quality newsletter for the general public.
For more information, visit www.harrogateorchestra.org.uk or join them at www.facebook.com/HarrogateSymphonyOrchestra