The Arnold Festival 2006

The Arnold Festival 2006
© Fritz Curzon
The town of Northampton celebrates one of one of its most famous sons, Malcolm Arnold this October. The inaugural Arnold Festival takes place at the Royal & Derngate Theatres on October 21 and 22, the weekend of the composer’s birthday. In keeping with the spirit of Arnold’s broad appeal, the festival will feature the UK’s top musicians alongside performances by some of the country’s most promising soloists as well as local amateur and youth ensembles.

On October 21, six musicians from UK music colleges will each perform an Arnold concerto in the Arnold Concerto Day. The event will be judged by Emma Johnson, Julian Lloyd Webber and David Mellor. The winner will be given the chance to perform with the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra in 2007.

Over the course of the weekend, concerts of Arnold’s music will celebrate the range of the composer’s achievements. Arnold’s chamber music, piano pieces and works for brass and wind band are all well represented. And, in what is probably the first event of its kind, soprano Jessica Gillingwater will give a recital of Arnold’s songs.

Talks by a number of Arnold aficionados will provide an insight into the man and his music. These include Annetta Hoffnung, wife of cartoonist Gerard Hoffnung, Arnold’s biographer, Paul Harris, and Piers Burton Page who will introduce his film ‘Contrasts’.

The festival reaches its climax with a gala concert by the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra conducted by Barry Wordsworth. The performance will feature the world premiere of the recently discovered Burlesque for horn and orchestra.

Information about visiting the Arnold Festival is available from Explore Northamptonshire

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