Universe of Sound

NEWS: Universe of Sound will be travelling to the Philharmonia’s home, the Royal Festival Hall, for the first time. From 23rd September to 2nd October 2016, the Philharmonia is planning a Digital Takeover of the Royal Festival Hall, in partnership with the South Bank Centre. As well as transforming the foyer of the Hall with Universe of Sound, the Takeover will be a celebration of the orchestra’s wider digital work with its Principal Conductor, Esa-Pekka Salonen, including the launch of a new project using Virtual Reality – more details here: www.philharmonia.co.uk/vr.

The Philharmonia Orchestra has won the 2015 Royal Philharmonia Society Award for Audiences and Engagement for their latest project iOrchestra. Touring the UK over 2 years (Apr 2014 – July 2015), the project was comprised of 3 main components - live concerts, a touring musical truck and its largest digital installations, RE-RITE and Universe of Sound. The latter ran for 6 weeks over 3 locations (Plymouth, Torbay and Truro), reaching 57,293 people. The iOrchestra reached over 120,000 people in total.

This is the third time that the Philharmonia’s digital productions have been accorded an RPS award. Universe of Sound first opened at the Science Museum in London in 2012, and won the 2013 Royal Philharmonic Society Award for Audiences and Engagement. The award recognises an outstanding initiative by an organisation or individual to engage new and existing audiences with classical music in the UK in 2012. The RPS commented "The Philharmonia cements its position as a World leader in the use of digital media" and that the project "provided a thrilling interactive experience for all ages".

Conduct, play and step inside a virtual Philharmonia Orchestra, joining 132 musicians and Esa-Pekka Salonen, the Orchestra’s Principal Conductor and Artistic Advisor, performing one of the most spectacular pieces of music ever written.Universe of Sound is an extraordinary free interactive digital installation, allowing you to explore an orchestra from the inside out as they perform Holst’s The Planets.

Using giant visual displays, touch screens, unconventional projecting surfaces, movement-based interaction and planetarium-style projections, you can take part as musicians, conductors, arrangers and composers. Universe of Sound has been created by Esa-Pekka Salonen and the Philharmonia Orchestra.

The installation also features a new companion piece to The Planets, by composer Joby Talbot, called Worlds, Stars, Systems, Infinity.