This year’s repertoire and performance locations have been carefully selected to reflect the theme of the tour: Music & Migration.
We will be beginning our tour in Brighton where the orchestra will be stopping by the British Airways i360, a 162-metre observation tower on the Brighton seafront, and the Brighthelm Centre, where we will have a pre-concert talk on migrant musicians in Brighton.
Friday will see us heading to Croydon, where anyone in the UK wishing to claim asylum must visit the Home Office's Asylum Screening Unit, before performing at The Salvation Army on Saturday which has an international campaign to fight modern-day slavery.
We're very excited to be performing at the Tall Ships Festival on Saturday where the regatta will set sail for Quebec to commemorate the 150th anniversary of the Canadian Confederation; and Sunday will see us brightening up London Bridge Station before hitting our final stop on the tour, the Akwaaba Refugee Centre - a social centre for refugees, asylum seekers and other migrants to come together on Sunday afternoons.
All of the works we'll perform have been written by refugee and migrant composers – from Handel to Kurt Weill and Bartók to The Fugees – including a UK premiere by Aftab Darvishi, an Iranian composer. More information on the pieces coming in our next blog post!
We are also very excited to welcome Jean Paul Samputu, a Rwandan refugee and one of the world's most prominent African artists, as our vocal soloist. He himself is a survivor of the Rwandan genocide of 1994, emigrating to Canada in 1998, subsequently moving to the American state of Vermont in 2004, and currently resides in Brighton.