Mon, Dec 17, 07

The gala evening concert planned for the main auditorium at the Royal & Derngate on Sunday 7th October, by any measure, will be a remarkable occasion. Paul Mann will conduct Jon Lord and the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra in a special recreation of the original Deep Purple/RPO concert at the Albert Hall.

On September 24, 1969, Malcolm Arnold conducted the RPO and the hugely successful rock group Deep Purple, in the premiere of Jon Lord’s Concerto for Rock Group and Orchestra. Arnold also went on to conduct the RPO in the world premiere of his own, profoundly moving, Symphony 6 – a major work in the Arnold oeuvre – in the second half of the programme. The juxtaposition of these two seemingly disparate pieces in the same concert – performed by musicians that hitherto would never have ventured into each other’s “world” – was in itself ground-breaking at the time.  The success of Lord’s Concerto for Rock Group and Orchestra divided opinions across the more entrenched British music establishment in the 1960s. It was though, and remains, a seminal work.

A very real friendship between the two composers was forged during those heady days, a friendship that was to last until Sir Malcolm’s death in September 2006. The often used labels of “serious” as opposed to “popular” music did not mean a great deal to either composer. What mattered was that the music was good. MA’s famous assertion that music is “ a social act of communication among people, a gesture of friendship, the strongest there is” held as true for that famous concert with Jon Lord, Deep Purple and the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra, as it did throughout his life.

“Tickets are priced at   :
Full Weekend: £44.00/ £39.00 /   £34.00
Sunday RPO Concert only:   £34.00/£29.00/£24.00
Weekend of Arnold concerts,   excluding Sunday RPO concert:   £10.00”

For further information on the 2007 Malcolm Arnold Festival  please contact:
Guildhall Road, Northampton, NN1 1DP
Box Office: 01604 624 811

More on the complete details of the festival.