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TSO PicThe Torbay Symphony Orchestra is a full-sized symphony orchestra which regularly performs concerts to a wide range of audiences across South Devon. Musicians come from far and wide to play in the orchestra which is based in Totnes, a market town well known for its alternative culture.

Under the baton of conductor Richard Gonski and led by violinist Chris Eastman, the TSO enjoys a reputation for embracing all kinds of music in our concerts, from the familiar and popular to acclaimed performances of contemporary repertoire and music specifically commissioned by the orchestra from living composers.

June 2016 Concert Series

Saturday, 11th June, 2016, 7:30 pm at St. Marychurch, Torquay
Sunday, 12th June, 2016, 7:30 pm at St. John's Church, Bridgetown, Totnes

Verdi: Overture 'La Forza del Destino' - Dvorak: Violin concerto - Berlioz: Symphonie Fantastique

clairesledd.jpgIn our June series, we dive straight into the passion and drama of unrequited love and emerge an hour and a half later at a Witches Sabbath as the young lover witnesses his own ghoulish funeral. Sound like fun? It is! Fantastic music from start to finish.

First up - Verdi and 'La Forza del Destino' - we love this music. It has everything in it and you cannot help but be swept away by the beauty of the melodies and the power of the emotions he manages to express in 7 or 8 minutes.

Then the Dvorak Violin concerto with the wonderful Claire Sledd.

Claire moved to England from her hometown of Bremerton, USA on a music scholarship at age 16. After completing studies at Wellington College and the Royal College of Musicís Junior Division in 2008, she attended the Royal Academy of Music, where she earned a bachelorís degree in 2012 and a Master's of Music with distinction in 2014. At the Academy she was taught by Remus Azoitei and Mateja Marinkovic. In 2015 she received a PGAD degree with distinction at Trinity Laban Conservatoire, where she is currently studying as the Len Smith and Felicity Young Scholar and Margaret Helen Harris Award Scholar under professor Ofer Falk.

After the interval - Berlioz' Symphonie Fantastique. We can do no better than lift some quotes from Leonard Bernstein's Young Concert Guide in which he writes: 'Pretty spooky stuff. And it's spooky because those sounds you're hearing come from the first psychedelic symphony in history, the first musical description ever made of a trip, written one hundred thirty odd years before the Beatles, way back in 1830 by the brilliant French composer Hector Berlioz..........but that's the way with trips, and Berlioz tells it like it is. Now there was an honest man. You take a trip, you wind up screaming at your own funeral.

You can read the whole thing here: Bernstein on Berlioz

We hope you will join us!

PROMS @ The Summer Moon Festival - Thursday 16th June

This year's programme includes the TSO's own Rachel Strange as soloist in Strauss' 1st Horn Concerto as well as the Verdi and Dvorak from our June series and all the PROMS music - Elgar, Henry Wood and Parry.

Always a happy and fun evening at the Summer Moon Festival - visit their website for more details

Beethoven Piano Concerto Weekend - Masterclasses, Talks and Concerts

On the weekend of the 8th and 9th October, 2016 we will be immersing ourselves totally in the 5 Beethoven Piano Concerti together with the McLachlan family - Murray and Kathryn, will be joined by their three children, all accomplished pianists in their own right with each appearing as soloist with the TSO in one of the concerti - no's 1,2 and 3 on Saturday 8th and no's 4 and 5 on Sunday 9th.

During the day there will be talks and masterclasses as well as open rehearsals with the soloists and orchestra. More details to follow soon - in the meantime - put these dates in your diary. This will be a fabulous weekend!

Xmas Concert: Beethoven 9 and Schoenberg's 'A Survivor from Warsaw'

December 10th finds us in the Civic Hall in Totnes performing Beethoven's 9th preceded by Schoenberg's 'A survivor from Warsaw'.

Schoenberg' short work for narrator, male chorus and orchestra portrays the brutality of the Warsaw ghetto during the 2nd world war - Beethoven's 9th speaks of the brotherhood of man. Not a concert to be missed.

TSO receives grants from 'Awards for All' and local Charitable Foundations

Over recent years, the orchestraís reputation has grown immensely resulting in ever-increasing audience numbers. Consequently the TSO has been able to secure sponsorship from both the local business and charity sectors. In the last 3 years alone this has totalled over £11,000. These awards have been crucial to the orchestraís desire to reach out to the local community, in particular to provide free music workshops in local schools and free admission to our concerts for children under16 and disadvantaged groups. The TSO has also won funds to commission new music from local composers. Other funds have enabled us to purchase vital new equipment such as percussion and music stands. Some of our sponsors include:

Lottery Awards for All.
Torbay Council
Gemini Trust
Margery and Geoffrey Jones
Mitchell Trust
The Lewis Trust
South Hams Radio
The Elmgrant Trust
The Torquay Charities
Beacon Park Removals Totnes

The TSO is extremely grateful to these organisations for their support.