Philharmonia Orchestra returns to Bedford for its Corn Exchange residency

For the first time since 2020, the Philharmonia Orchestra will be welcoming back audiences to Bedford Corn Exchange next month for a full season of world-class orchestral concerts.

Two years have passed since the Orchestra’s 2019/2020 season at its Bedford residency was cut short by the pandemic.

Now, to celebrate its return to live music, the Philharmonia is bringing some of the world’s biggest stars in classical music to the Bedford stage.

The season opens on Wednesday 10 November with Classical BRIT and Royal Philharmonic Society Award-winning violinist Alina Ibragimova MBE performing Beethoven’s Violin Concerto.

On the podium will be trailblazing Chinese-American conductor Xian Zhang, who has been featured in the best-selling children’s book Good Night Stories for Rebel Girls, celebrating 100 extraordinary women from across history.

Appearing in Bedford for the first time since taking up his position as just the sixth Principal Conductor in the Philharmonia’s history, Santtu-Matias Rouvali appears with enigmatic violinist Pekka Kuusisto on Wednesday 1 December.

Their programme, featuring Sibelius’s Violin Concerto and Beethoven’s Pastoral Symphony, is inspired by humanity’s relationship with our fragile natural world.

In 2022, Gramophone Award-winning British pianist Benjamin Grosvenor performs Liszt in a programme featuring Dvořák’s New World Symphony with conductor Eun Sun Kim, on (Friday 18 February).

And closing the season, rising international star Randall Goosby, protege of violin legend Itzhak Perlman, performs Mendelssohn’s Violin Concerto (Thursday 12 May).

Across the 2021/22 season, the Philharmonia continues its nationally recognised work for communities across Bedford.

Award-winning intergenerational creative project Hear and Now, bringing together adults with dementia and their carers with young people across Queen’s Park, returns with local partners Tibbs Dementia Foundation and Fusion Youth Singing, with co-producers Orchestras Live.

And popular KS2 schools’ concert Orchestra Unwrapped takes place in November, supported by The Harpur Trust.

The Orchestra’s Bedford residency is made possible by the support of the Philharmonia Orchestra in Bedford Trust and The Harpur Trust.

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