Music Durham presents Durham Festival of the Arts

Two large-scale concerts in two of Durham’s arguably most iconic venues will open Music Durham’s ‘Durham Festival of the Arts’. This year is set to be bigger than ever, the University’s most eclectic range of musical talent will be showcased. A wealth of Music Durham ensembles and performers will be on display between the 2nd and 4th  of June.

The festival starts in the Durham Cathedral on Friday 2nd of June with Land of Hope and Glory, a concert celebrating British music and composers. From Handel and Elgar to Coldplay, Spamalot to The Beatles, this concert promises a night of entertainment for all audiences and even includes a Last Night of the Proms finale, complete with a massed choir, audience sing-a-long and flag waving! Audiences will be treated to music from some of Durham’s oldest student ensembles whilst also discovering some newly founded societies. The evening will showcase the Chamber Choir, Brass Band, Choral Society, Orchestral Society, Durham Dynamics A Cappella, Horn Society, as well as a splash of musical theatre and so much more! The concert begins at 7.30 and tickets range from £10-20.

Durham University Brass Band rehearsing

The second concert promises a taste of different cultures, both literally and figuratively. Held in Durham Castle on Sunday 4th June, Around the World in 80 Minutes celebrates music from around the world, and includes a pre-concert food and drink reception with exotic nibbles and wine in the Castle courtyard (price included in tickets), accompanied with music from the Gamelan orchestra. A fitting sequel to Land of Hope and Glory, the concert itself will feature the best pieces from around the globe, from Bizet to Bernstein, Duke Ellington to Enrique Iglesias. Featuring the second half of Music Durham’s ensembles, the audience will see Concert Band, Big Band, Flute Choir, Palatinate Orchestra, Opera Ensemble and the award winning Northern Lights A Capella coming together for a delightful selection of repertoire. The reception begins at 7pm and the concert begins at 8pm. Tickets range from £10-15.

Both Music Durham and the Festival want to engage both students and the wider community in the arts and hope that these two events provide something for everyone!

If these two fantastic concerts are not enough, Music Durham and Durham Festival of the Arts will be hosting Arts on the Green between both concerts on Saturday 3rd June. It is a free relaxed event on Palace Green from 1pm to 4pm. Come along and be serenaded by Durham University Brass Band (winners of the UniBrass Shield 2017), Durham University Concert Band, and multiple smaller jazz bands and choirs. Enjoy free lemonade, an ice cream van, and hopefully some sunshine!

A note from Music Durham

Durham University Music Department has just been placed No. 1 in the UK by the Times University Guide, a testament to the high quality of musicians we have here at the University and these concerts are an opportunity to celebrate this year’s developments in a fantastic opening to a great festival! The Cathedral concert is a tradition but music in Durham has expanded so much we have had to create a second evening to accommodate and celebrate our diversity, as we now have one of the biggest music societies of any university in the UK. There truly is no other event like this weekend in the North East, or even the country – so we do hope to see as many people as possible there!

Music Durham’s 2014 Cathedral concert

Tickets for these events can be purchased from and further information about Durham Festival of the Arts – a three week long celebration of music, theatre and art – can be found at


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