Burgess Hill concert set to celebrate John Williams’ birthday

Katie Derham
Katie Derham
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The members of Burgess Hill Symphony Orchestra, under conductor Michael Stefan Wood BEM, are entering the final few weeks of rehearsals for what could be their most ambitious concert to date.

The show will be a tribute to film composer John Williams in honour of his 85th birthday.

The orchestra will play music from some of his best known scores including, ET, Jurassic Park, Indiana Jones and Schindler’s List, as well as from some of his lesser known works.

The inspiration for the concert came from BHSO violinist Chris Siddall.

Chris said: “I have been passionate about film music for about 20 years, thanks to the infectious enthusiasm of a work colleague. It led to me listening to and studying everything I could lay my hands on. It has also heavily influenced my own composing.”

The orchestra has announced that the evening will be hosted by president Katie Derham.

Katie said: “I am looking forward to working with the BHSO. Listening to live music of any sort is always an inspirational experience and film music is a great way to encourage a new audience to the delights of orchestral music. Some of my favourite music has been composed for film, such as Morricone’s ‘Gabriel’s Oboe’ theme from the film The Mission, or has been used in films, such as Rachmaninov’s Piano Concerto No. 2, which was used in Brief Encounter.”

Orchestra publicity officer, Alison Biggs said: “The orchestra could not be more excited about putting on this concert. It has challenged the playing skills of every section of the orchestra and we are really looking forward to the actual performance in which our president is also taking part. As well as being a tribute to John Williams, we are also hoping that a concert of this music will encourage a new and younger audience to discover the pleasure of listening to live music.”

The concert is on Saturday, May 13 (7.30pm), at St Andrew’s Church, Burgess Hill. Tickets are £12 (under 16s free with paying adult) from Burgess Hill Help Point, 01444 232067, or at bhso.org.uk/box-office. They can be purchased on the door for £14.

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