Events

​Grand Union's priority is live performance, and since 1982 we have toured regularly - and continue to tour - throughout the whole of the UK and to many parts of Europe and the rest of the world.

(For Grand Union Youth Orchestra events, see also GUYO performances and GUYO workshops pages, and Projects for other activities, including opportunities for participation)

With very best wishes for 2017 to all our friends and supporters! We are delighted to announce that we have a great year of work ahead; confirmed so far:

PERFORMANCES 2017



Sunday February 5th, 4:00pm – Bengal to Bethnal Green
Rich Mix, Shoreditch, London E1 6LA - Admission free 
Box Office: 020 7613 7498 
www.richmix.org.uk 
Featuring popular local Bangladeshi singers with GUO musicians

Sunday March 5th, 4:00pm - Bengal to Bethnal Green
Rich Mix, Shoreditch, London E1 6LA - Admission free 
Box Office: 020 7613 7498 
www.richmix.org.uk 
Featuring popular local Bangladeshi singers with GUO musicians

Sunday March 12th to Saturday April 1st – The Isle is Full of Noises
Cambridgeshire residency of workshops, schools performances and special project in Whittlesey (17th/18th), culminating in a day of events in St Mary’s Church Cambridge.
theme: music, musicians and musical styles from around the world in the UK today.

Sunday April 2nd, 7:00pm - Spring Carnival, GUYO + World Choir
Rich Mix, Shoreditch, London E1 6LA - £6/£3 concessions 
Box Office: 020 7613 7498 www.richmix.org.uk

Celebrating Carnival, with African, Caribbean and Latin-American music and musicians.

Sunday May 7th, 4:00pm – Bengal to Bethnal Green
Rich Mix, Shoreditch, London E1 6LA - Admission free 
Box Office: 020 7613 7498 
www.richmix.org.uk 
Featuring popular local Bangladeshi singers with GUO musicians

Friday May 26th, 9:30pm – Ventos Ibéricos (Iberian Winds)
Forum Municipal Luisa Todi, Setúbal, Portugal

Grand Union musicians return to the international Setúbal Music Festival with a new show involving local young musicians and adult choir.
theme: migration to/from Spain and Portugal both historically and at the present day.

Tuesday June 13th to Saturday 17th – Song of Contagion, Grand Union Orchestra
Wilton's Music Hall, Whitechapel, London E1 8JB - £10-£17.50 (concs available)
Box Office: 020 7702 2789
www.wiltons.org.uk
Brand new work supported by the Wellcome Trust, featuring the full Grand Union Orchestra, solo singers and World Choir.
theme: inequality in the funding and treatment of disease and health around the world.

Sunday July 2nd, 7:00pm – Gala Mela, GUYO + Bengali artists
Rich Mix, Shoreditch, London E1 6LA - £6/£3 concessions 
Box Office: 020 7613 7498 
www.richmix.org.uk 
Celebrating Boishakhi Mela, with South Asian music and musicians.

Thursday August 3rd, 4:30pm – Summer School final performance
Goldsmith's College, New Cross, London SE14 6NW - Admission free

Students and tutors give a performance of music created on the course.


Note: 2017 is the 10th anniversary year of the Grand Union Youth Orchestra, and we plan a series of events and fund-raising campaign based around this. GUYO masterclasses or workshops, sometimes complemented by an evening performance, take place at Rich Mix on the first Sunday in each month from February to July inclusive (dates as above).

We are also developing the  World Choir, and additional opportunities for it to perform (eg. Southbank and local festivals, as last year).

HIGHLIGHTS OF 2015/2016

October 4th marked the 80th anniversary of the notorious 'Battle of Cable Street'. Since Grand Union has always been based in East London, and took a leading role in the 70th and 75th events, we devised an ambitious and comprehensive programme to commemorate this landmark occasion, culminating in two spectacular shows: A full description of our Remembering Cable Street week-long anniversary programme can be found here, the flyer for the shows here, and more historical background on our Projects page.

The climax of a busy spring/summer programme for the Orchestra and smaller groups was Jelly Roll Soul, a three-day festival of performances and workshops at London's Vortex Jazz Club. Taking as its starting point the legacy of jazz pioneer Jelly Roll Morton, who died 75 years ago that weekend, it celebrated the melting pot that is East London today, reminiscent of new Orleans a century ago; it also launched a new street band for Dalston, Band Off The Wall.

The undoubted highlight of the winter was the remarkable success of Undream'd Shores in the Great Hall, Leeds University, the first regional production of the show after its premiere at the Hackney Empire in November 2014. It featured the University Music School's 60-strong orchestra and 40-strong choir together with sitars, santoors, dilrubas, tabla and dhol from SAA-uk's Academy of Indian Music. A video of extracts from the performances are currently being edited; here are excerpts from the original:
See songs from Undream'd Shores and highlights from the show

An account of Grand Union's other achievements during 2015 can be found here. Following a very busy and successful first half of the year - including Mil e Uma Mares in Portugal (video here), our highly original take on the BBC Ten Pieces in Cambridge, and the culmination of our EU-funded project in The Isle is Full of Noises (a ground-breaking two-week festival in East London) - Grand Union finished the summer with its annual residential Summer School.

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