Three Belfast Players Join National Youth Orchestra of GB In First For Northern Ireland
The National Youth Orchestra of Great Britain combines with three youth choirs -the National Youth Choir of Great Britain, the Irish Youth Chamber Choir and Codetta – to perform their first ever concerts in Northern Ireland.
These performances celebrating Derry’s year as the UK City of Culture include a showpiece concert at Belfast Waterfront on Wednesday 7 August.
Three of the Orchestra’s players – Ryan Gray, Angus McCall and Katherine Sung – are from Belfast. They all attend the same school (Methodist College Belfast) and are all heavily involved in music-making in Northern Ireland.
Trombone player, Ryan Gray (17) said: “It has been a great privilege to be a member of NYO this year, especially as this will be the first year NYO has performed in my home city. Getting into the orchestra would not have been possible without the excellent tuition received from my teacher at the School of Music in Belfast and particularly through groups such as the City of Belfast Youth Orchestra and Ulster Youth Orchestra. Music is an integral part of my life, and NYO has provided me with the opportunity to meet great new people, play in some of the best concert venues in the UK and develop my musical ability.”
Cellist, Angus McCall (16) added: “My first year in NYO really has been inspirational. I`ve experienced such a high standard of music making and made so many life long friends and I think the fact that NYO are coming to Northern Ireland has made my first year even better.
“It`ll be a real learning experience for us and the Derry musicians. Playing in the Ulster Youth Orchestra and City of Belfast Youth Orchestra has really helped my playing and encouraged me to strive to be a part of this national institution.”
Violinist, Katherine Sung (18) also said: “Being a member of NYO is a truly amazing experience. We get the opportunity to play in top venues under world-class conductors. What I’m most excited about is performing in my home city! Having previously lead the City of Belfast Youth Orchestra and as current leader of the Ulster Youth Orchestra, I hope NYO’s first visit to Northern Ireland will inspire young local musicians in the same way it inspired, and continues to inspire, me. The repertoire we’re playing is yet another thing to get excited about, especially the epic symphony by Beethoven, where we`ll be joined by a full chorus.”
NYO Chief Executive & Artistic Director, Sarah Alexander, said: “We are enormously excited to be coming to Northern Ireland for the first time. We hope to create lasting memories of engaging – and unexpected – musical moments from these events, many of which will use the famous Ode to Joy melody from Beethoven’s Symphony No.9 as a launching-point. Beethoven’s revolutionary symphony will then feature in our concerts in Belfast and Derry – Londonderry at the culmination of our residency.”
Tickets for National Youth Orchestra of Great Britain’s concert at Belfast Waterfront on Wednesday 7 August are available online, from the Waterfront and Ulster Hall Box Offices and by calling 028 9033 4455.