Table tennis and bicycle parts are just some of the more unusual elements at this year’s Walled City Music festival, running from 18th-26th July at the University of Ulster’s Magee Campus.
In its sixth and most eclectic programme to date, the festival includes classical favourites from Bach to Britten alongside free sport-themed musical events to coincide with the Commonwealth Games (‘Sound of Sports’), film and visual art collaborations, and premieres of new works. All will be performed by a host of world-class musicians, including the Coull String Quartet, Trio Festivale, oboist Nick Daniel, violinist Dmitri Sitkovetsky and former Kronos Quartet cellist Jeff Ziegler.
Young musicians also take centre stage, with a workshop for composers led by Walled City Music Festival Composer in Residence Joe Cutler and an evening of Mozart favourites with NI Opera Young Artists.
Festival Artistic Directors Cathal Breslin and Sabrina Hu, who will perform in a number of events, said, “This year’s festival is a truly diverse mix of musical experiences. Our aim is to put outstanding classical music-making at the heart of cultural life in Derry, and we’re confident this is our most exciting line-up so far. A particular highlight is the visit of New York City’s ‘Vision into Art’ who will present a cutting-edge evening of new music, technology and film, featuring the K-Bow, an innovative wireless sensor bow.
“Other highlights include the Coull Quartet performing Mozart, Britten and Schumann and Trio Festivale performing an evening of music by women composers, jazz, and contemporary Northern Irish composers. Soloists include renowned oboist Nicholas Daniel performing Bach, Britten and Poulenc, with a grand finale featuring legendary violinist Dmitry Sitkovetsky performing masterpieces and lighter works by Beethoven, Prokofiev, Bartok and Ravel.”
Ciaran Scullion, Head of Music at the Arts Council of Northern Ireland, the festival’s principal funder, said, “The Arts Council is delighted to support the Walled City Music Festival. This fantastic festival continues to bring the highest calibre of international artists to Northern Ireland as well as celebrate our finest musicians and companies such as NI Opera.
“Undoubted highlights this year include the UK premiere of ‘Labyrinth: Vision into Art’, an installation combining music with multimedia, and also the award-winning Commonwealth Games inspired sports-themed music event. The Walled City Music Festival continues to offer audiences the uppermost quality music performances and I wish the team every success for the festival in 2014.”
The festival runs from Friday 18 July until Saturday 26 July at venues within the Magee campus, including the Sports Hall, Great Hall and Foyle Arts Building. Entry to the Sound of Sports events is free while tickets to other events are on sale now from Millennium Forum Box Office on 028 7136 4455 or online at www.millenniumforum.co.uk.