THE VIRTUAL ORCHESTRA

This autumn, the Philharmonia Orchestra and Southbank Centre invite you into the heart of a symphony orchestra. Launching Southbank Centre’s Classical Season 2016/17, the Philharmonia Orchestra is moving in to Royal Festival Hall on 23 September. There, for the following two weeks, you can find two digital installations that will help you to experience what it feels like to be inside one of the world’s great orchestras.

Led by the Philharmonia’s Principal Conductor and Artistic Advisor Esa-Pekka Salonen, these two experiences – Universe of Sound and 360 Experience – open up the inner workings of a symphony orchestra to people all ages, whether or not you have ever stepped inside a concert hall.

These experiences are free of charge and open to the public - see each event for details. The Virtual Orchestra is produced by the Philharmonia Orchestra and presented in partnership with Southbank Centre.


EVENTS - 23RD SEPTEMBER - 2ND OCTOBER 2016

360 EXPERIENCE

Friday 23 September - Sunday 2nd October 2016
1.30pm – 7pm Saturdays and Sundays, 2.30pm to 7pm Monday-Friday. (3pm – 7pm on Friday 23 September only.)

The Clore Ballroom at Southbank Centre’s Royal Festival Hall
Children must be accompanied by and adult. Recommended ages 7+

“An extraordinary glimpse inside the sights and sounds of a symphony orchestra” - The Guardian

Take the best seat in the house: on stage in front of Esa-Pekka Salonen. Put on virtual reality headsets and headphones and experience an orchestra like never before. As you turn your head, the 3D audio and video allows you to hear the nuances of each section, including details such as the sound of the score pages turning. It is a truly 360-degree experience.

UNIVERSE OF SOUND

1.30pm – 7pm daily. (3pm – 7pm on Friday 23 September only.)

The Clore Ballroom at Southbank Centre’s Royal Festival Hall
Children must be accompanied by an adult. Suitable for all ages.

Travel from Mars to Neptune, all inside the Philharmonia Orchestra. Come and see The Clore Ballroom transformed into the 10-room virtual orchestra of Universe of Sound. Step inside to experience the Philharmonia performing Holst’s masterpiece The Planets, conducted by Esa-Pekka Salonen. The installation includes 37 screens and speakers, all playing in sync. You can also get involved: play along to the music on real instruments in the percussion room or conduct the whole orchestra in one of the interactive conductor pods.

SCHOOL AND COMMUNITY GROUP WORKSHOPS

Saturday 24 – Sunday 25 September and Saturday 1 October - Sunday 2 October: 9.30am, 10:00am, 10.45am, 12noon
Monday 26 – Friday 30 September: 9:30am, 10:00am, 10:45am, 11:15am, 12noon, 12:30pm

The Clore Ballroom at Southbank Centre’s Royal Festival Hall £114 including VAT for a group of up to 30
(not including accompanying adults - teachers/group leaders go free)

Bring your group to one of our Universe of Sound and 360 Experience workshops. Led by experienced workshop leaders and featuring Philharmonia players, these workshops have a duration of 1 hour and 45 minutes. Participants play the roles of musicians, conductors, arrangers and composers, deepening their understanding of the world of symphony orchestras and their repertoires through interactive technology and activities.Workshops are suitable for all Primary, Secondary and Special Needs Schools, and for community groups of all ages, with content adapted accordingly.

Download The Virtual Orchestra Resource Pack

To book your workshop please follow the link below - advance booking is essential and slots are allocated on a first-come-first-served basis.

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TEACHERS EVENING

Thursday 22 September 2016, 5pm - 7pm

The Clore Ballroom at Southbank Centre’s Royal Festival Hall

Get prepared for your group/class's visit to Universe of Sound and 360 Experience. Led by John Webb, this session for teachers and group leaders explains the technology, delves into the repertoire of both installations and shares practical tips for group/classroom music-making.

Download The Virtual Orchestra Resource Pack

Please note this event is free but a ticket is required.

FAMILY WORKSHOPS

Saturday 24 - Sunday 25 September, Saturday 1 - Sunday 2nd October
11.15am - 12.30pm, 12.30pm - 1.45pm

The Clore Ballroom at Southbank Centre’s Royal Festival Hall
£3 (Each participant needs a ticket. Children must be accompanied by an adult.)

On weekends families can come along to guided interactive tours through Universe of Sound. These Family Workshops (duration one hour and 15 minutes) are led by experienced workshop leaders and feature Philharmonia players. You can take part in hands-on activities throughout the installation, exploring the roles of the musician, conductor and composer in a fun, interactive and family-friendly environment.

To book your workshop please follow the link below - advance booking is essential and slots are allocated on a first-come-first-served basis.

THE VIRTUAL ORCHESTRA: LIVE IN CONCERT

Saturday 1 October 2016, 6pm

Festival Hall

See the orchestra behind The Virtual Orchestra live on stage at the iconic Royal Festival Hall.

Take a journey through four moments in musical history with the Philharmonia Orchestra and Principal Conductor, Esa-Pekka Salonen.

Travel from the stirring music of Sibelius, written in the aftermath of the First World War, to the mystical rings of Jupiter in Holst’s The Planets. Hear the fearful heartbeats of Berlioz’s March to the Scaffold and finally, experience the Russian legend of Stravinsky’s magical Firebird – a piece with one of the loudest endings of all time.