Rousing finale for City of Culture year

Published Friday, 20 December 2013
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Londonderry’s year as the first ever UK City of Culture will be given a rousing send off at the finale of the year long series of events and celebrations on Friday.

Rousing finale for City of Culture year
Preparations are underway for the send off. (© UTV)

Featuring a cast of hundreds The Relief of Derry Symphony is being billed as the most ambitious concert of the entire year.

With over 200 musicians, The Venue, in Derry's Ebrington area, has been a hive of activity as it prepares to host the concert and its final event.

The symphony was specially written for the city by Shaun Davy and first performed in the Guildhall in 1990.

Back then he could never image it would be the closing soundtrack of the City of Culture year.

He told UTV: "It's thrilling to be working in such a big venue.

"To tell you the truth it's a real responsibility to be entrusted with the task of being part of the last concert of such a big year for Derry."

The concert will also feature a number of local choirs alongside professional singers, percussionists, and pipers who will all be joined by the Ulster Orchestra.

It promises to be an event that will fuse together a variety of musical traditions.

Uilleann piper Liam O'Flynn added: "People might imagine because it's the Ulster Orchestra it's going to be a heavyweight concert but it's not at all and I think there is going to be something for everyone."

Derry man and internationally renowned saxophonist Gerard McCrystle, who will perform at the concert, said the night will provide a fantastic opportunity to reflect on the success of the past year.

He said: "Beautiful musical bookends the year for me.

"It's been a great privilege to see all this coming to my town and just to be part of it is an honour."

© UTV News
Comments Comments
peter in derry wrote (400 days ago):
Be sad to see the end of 2013 in derry and optimistic for the future of this great city! However, cannot understand how 80 million was granted for casement park which will hold max 7 football matches a year when at the same time the venue in derry which has enriched the arts in derry is getting pulled down.. There is a massive demand for a venue in derry to hold cultural events such as concerts etc Every event held in the venue this year was at capacity proving demand is there and it is sad to see it is going. The executive need to get there act together and priorities right and prove to the people of this region that they cater for here and not just east of the bann. The city and people of derry is now clearly on the map for all the right ressons and could easily stay the capital of culture for northern ireland!
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