Sunday, September 14, 2008

Proms in the Park – Belfast

Belfast City Hall and the Big Rickety Wheel made a superb visual backdrop to the feast of sounds that played out last night for Proms in the Park. As Noel Thompson remarked at the start, it’s been dry for the outdoor concert for the last seven years.

The Ulster Orchestra bowed, tooted and drummed along with artists like Altan, the impossibly young and impossibly talented Peter Moore (trombone-playing winner of the recent Young Musician of the Year 2008) and operatic diva Cara O’Sullivan.

On the other side of the interval, Nancy One and Nancy Two showed off their talents as Niamh Perry got stuck into On My Own from Les Mis, and Rachel Tucker wondered Maybe This Time from Cabaret.

The bizarre moment of the night was the orchestral piece “Froms” commissioned from Anna Meredith to be played by musicians across the different venues. While it may have technically been in time and synchronised (funny to see the Belfast brass players put down their instruments several seconds ahead of the music and big-screen pictures), it was difficult to listen to!

The crowd joined in enthusiastically with Rule Britannia, though I discovered that after all these years, I’ve been singing the wrong words!

“... never, never can be saved”

should perhaps be

“... never, ever can be slaves”

Oh, well. About twenty union jack flags appeared and fluttered for the patriotic songs pageantry near the end, including John Williams’ March from Indiana Jones which sent us all home whistling up the street.

A mild night with great music.

No comments: