24 September 2013 at 5.16pm | 12 Comments
Last Sunday a packed Covent Garden Piazza saw attention temporarily diverted from frenzied shopping and cross-disciplinary buskers by a large group of people singing (seemingly spontaneously) in Italian. The performance – or ‘flashmob’ - brought the Festival of Voices to a close; part of Stephen Fry’s Deloitte Ignite festival.
Amateurs and professionals alike joined together to perform Verdi’s rousing ‘Va pensiero’ chorus from Nabucco following a series of free performances and workshops. The event featured the BBC Symphony Chorus, topped by the fantastic sound of the Brass Section from the BBC Concert Orchestra.
Throughout the day members of the public attended concerts in the Royal Opera House’s Paul Hamlyn Hall from community choirs Mind and Soul, the Choir with No Name, Chantage, Royal Opera House Thurrock Community Chorus and the Deloitte Choir. The groups sang a wide variety of music, ranging from Lotti’s Crucifixus to Bonnie Tyler’s ‘Total Eclipse of the Heart’.
Upstairs in the Clore Studio choral ambassador Dominic Peckham and vocal animateur Suzi Zumpe ran three inspiring workshops for Royal Opera House newcomers. Singers from the BBC Symphony Chorus and brass players from the BBC Concert Orchestra joined them as they learned Verdi’s famous chorus ready for the early evening performance which stopped passers-by in their tracks.
We will be publishing a film looking behind the scenes of the full day later in the week – but wanted to give a glimpse of an amazing part of the Festival of Voices.
Deloitte Ignite culminates this weekend with a live-stream of The Science of Opera event featuring festival curator Stephen Fry and Alan Davies. The event will examine the physiological responses to great art and what causes them.