A few years ago, a chance discussion with some players in the orchestra about going to perform somewhere out side of Derby, ended up quite unexpectedly with a highly memorable performance on stage at the Symphony Hall, Birmingham.
Music for Youth is a national youth arts charity providing young people aged 21 and under across the UK with free, life-changing performance and progression opportunities, regardless of background or musical style. Established in 1970, it will have formed the backbone of many playing experiences of UK amateur and professional players alike (including staff at DMC!!).
Whilst looking for a playing opportunity not too far from home (and the much-coveted chance for a coach trip for the students!) the MFY Regional Festivals crystallized as the ideal solution. Much to our dismay, the 2017 Regional Festivals (held at various Midlands locations) clashed with concerts, leaving us only the option to submit a recorded entry.
As a result of this, it came as a great surprise and honour to receive an invitation to perform at the Symphony Hall in the National Festival, side by side with other County Youth Orchestras from across the UK.
Saturday 8th July 2017 was a very exciting day as we boarded the coach bright and early. The prestigious Symphony Hall stage was both impressive and imposing (not quite the scale of stage or venue we usually perform in!).
It was an exhilarating 20 minutes on stage where we showcased a cross-section of musical styles and history. The orchestra truly rose to the occasion and took the experience entirely in their stride…or at least it seemed that way!
After listening to the remaining orchestras in our category perform, we settled back to hear the adjudicator’s feedback before heading off to hear the DMC Swing Band and CDYB in an alfresco performance next to the Hall.
It was a truly amazing and memorable day, and an experience we hope to have again.