Rousing recitals in orchestral season

Northampton’s Royal & Derngate’s orchestral season kicks off with this year’s Malcolm Arnold Festival on Saturday and Sunday, October 19 and 20.

The music of the prolific Northampton-born composer is celebrated in a whole weekend of concerts, talks and events, under artistic director Paul Harris, who lives in Buckingham.

The festival culminates in a spectacular Gala Concert of Movie Classics on October 20, featuring acclaimed young British clarinettist Julian Bliss performing Arnold’s Clarinet Concerto No 2.

The Worthing Symphony Orchestra, performing as the Malcolm Arnold Festival Orchestra, will be conducted by John Gibbons.

The concert also includes film music by Arnold from The Inn Of The Sixth Happiness and You Know What Sailors Are, along with music from Pirates Of The Caribbean by Badelt and Out Of Africa by Barry, and other classical favourites such as Ravel’s Bolero and Rimsky-Korsakov’s Flight Of The Bumblebee.

The Royal & Derngate’s 2013/14 Orchestral Season also features six concerts by its resident orchestra, the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra, with renowned soloists such as classical guitarist John Williams and pianist John Lill.

The first concert is the spectacular Tchaikovksy Gala, on Sunday, November 17, paying tribute to the well-loved Russian composer with a programme that ranges from his sunny Capriccio Italien to the romantic Romeo And Juliet Fantasy Overture and Sleeping Beauty Waltz, ending with the rousing 1812 Overture.

On Sunday, February 16, the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra are joined by Northampton Bach Choir and the men and boys from Northampton’s All Saints Church Choir, under the baton of Renato Balsadonna, chorus master of the Royal Opera House, for the Mozart Requiem.

The evening opens with BBC Music Magazine’s ‘rising star’ Alexandra Dariescu performing Mozart’s popular Piano Concerto No 21.

On Sunday, March 16, Royal & Derngate hosts a concert in celebration of the 70th birthday of acclaimed British pianist John Lill, who will be performing Rachmaninov’s Piano Concerto No 3.

An evening of Classical Masterpieces on Sunday, May 4, features virtuosic violinist Chloe Hanslip.

On Sunday, June 8, the world’s most celebrated classical guitarist John Williams plays the world’s most popular guitar concerto, Rodrigo’s Concierto de Aranjuez.

And on Sunday, July 13 2014, audiences can enjoy musical fun and frolics when the Northampton Bach Choir join the RPO for the Last Night of the Derngate Proms.

Prior to many of the concerts, BBC Radio Northampton’s John Griff will be leading pre-show discussions with soloists or conductors.

Box office 01604 624811 or www.royalandderngate.co.uk