York Guildhall Orchestra marks 40th anniversary with special Barbican concert

Cello soloist Jamie Walton. Picture: Wolf Marloh

YORK Guildhall Orchestra will celebrate its 40th anniversary with a special York Barbican concert on February 15.

Almost 40 years to the day from when the orchestra was founded by John Hastie and played in a “one-off” in the York Guildhall in February 1980, the anniversary will be marked with a 7.30pm programme of works and composers from that first concert.

Who could have foretold the amazing journey, reputation, critical acclaim and popularity of the Guildhall group that has developed in the intervening years?

The anniversary concert will begin with the first piece the orchestra played in 1980: Ravel’s Mother Goose Suite (Mere L’Oye), a showpiece for glorious orchestral tunes featuring the talents of the wind section.

This will be followed by the return of soloist Jamie Walton, founder of the North York Moors Chamber Music Festival, for Elgar’s evergreen Cello Concerto.  A celebratory orchestral work by John Hastie will open the second half that will conclude with Brahms’s Symphony No 2 (Symphony In Norahms).

This finale will call on the whole orchestra to do what it loves doing best: play a luxurious, full orchestral work of the Romantic period of classical music.

Tickets cost £6.30 to £17.55 on 0203 356 5441, at yorkbarbican.co.uk or in person from the Barbican box office.