BeethoIOEFestival2017ven Extravaganza to wind up Isle of Ely Festival

The Isle of Ely Arts Festival has earned a distinct place on the local map in recent years.  This year’s is in full swing right now: it started on June 10th and goes through to Saturday July 15th.

For the final event, Ely Choral Society, Ely Consort and Ely Sinfonia will join forces in a real extravaganza.  This is a concert that has been many years in the making and should be unmissable.

The programme includes three wonderful pieces of music.  Who doesn’t know Beethoven’s Symphony no 9 in D minor?  It is one of the best-known and most evocative choral works in the classical music repertoire, and not just because it was the first ever major choral symphony.

Vaughan Williams was a frequent visitor to the FensIOEAF_logo. The result was In the Fen Country, an intimate portrayal of the bleak land-scape and wide open spaces of the East Anglian Fens.

Finally, we shall be giving the world premiere of Andrew Parnell’s Fenland Images, written specially for choir and orchesta for this year’s Isle of Ely Arts Festival. Based on the work of local poets, it illustrates a modern-day agricultural scene, the timeless daily round of worship in St Etheldreda’s monastery and the shadowy characters who once inhabited the Fens.

With Peyee Chen (Soprano) Freya Jacklin (Mezzo Soprano), Michael Solomon Williams (Tenor) and Laurence Williams (Bass-Baritone). Conductors Steve Bingham and Andrew Parnell.

craigogden2International guitarist Craig Ogden to play Rodrigo’s Concierto d’Aranjuez with Ely Sinfonia on September 30th 2017

Australian guitarist Craig Ogden is one of the finest classical guitar players of his generation: his albums frequently top the UK Classical Charts and composers are lining up to write music for him.  We are thrilled to announce that he will be joining Ely Sinfonia to play that most evocative of guitar concertos, Rodrigo’s Concierto d’Aranjuez, in Ely Cathedral on 30th September 2017.  The programme is one of our most exciting for some time: as well as the concerto, it also includes Beethoven’s marvellous Symphony no.2.

Tickets will be going on sale soon, but meantime, here’s a taster of Craig Ogden playing the anonymous Romance, best known from the film of The Deerhunter.  Click to hear the recording.

Another triumph for Ely Sinfonia: Symphonic poster1Metamorphosis,     6th May 2017

Congratulations to everyone who took part.  We had a wonderful evening in Ely Cathedral, with a really appreciative audience for Hindemith’s Symphonic Metamorphosis, César Franck’s Symphony in D Minor and Maurice Ravel’s exquisite Le Tombeau de Couperin. 


Download the programme here.




Ely Sinfonia reaches no 3 in the Classical Music charts

Echo, the latest CD by identical twins Hannah and Naomi Moxon, has reached number 3 in the Official Classical Music Charts.  And the backing group for the CD, recorded in Peterborough Cathedral earlier this year, was provided by none other than Ely Sinfonia players and friends.  Hannah and Naomi competed in The Voice two years ago, since when they have performed all over the country, and soon they will be appearing alongside classical star, Aled Jones.

The CD is now available from http://www.musicglue.com/classical-reflection/shop. You can find out more about the twins and hear their music from http://www.classicalreflection.co.uk.

Kate ClowEly Sinfonia welcomes its new leader

As we congratulate Christina Everson, Ely Sinfonia’s wonderful leader of a number of years, as she takes on an exciting new role in the Oxford area, we are delighted to announce that Kate Clow is taking on the role of leader from September. Kate (pictured left) is a talented local musician, well known to many, and who knows the orchestra well. We all warmly welcome Kate and wish Christina all the best in her new job!


Ely Sinfonia’s next workshop, which will be open to anyone who has reached grade V or above, will be on on around Saturday 7th January 2017. Final date and programme to be confirmed..

If you are interested in attending, please visit the Workshops page to download an application form. Or Click here!

“Wow – what a concert!”  Reviews of some recent concerts

Rosemary Westwell, our local music and arts critic, is a huge supporter of Ely Sinfonia.  She has seen the orchestra through from its modest beginnings to the experienced musical ensemble that it is today.  In her latest review, of Symphonie Fantastique, in March 2016, she commented that:  “The phenomenal technique of the conductor and instrumentalists was evident from the start.”  To read the full review, click here.

To find out what she said about our large-scale choral and orchestral concert, Carmina Burana, in October 2015, click here.

She particularly liked our concert in June 2015, Something old, something new, something borrowed, something blue. Afterwards she said:  “Strongly led by conductor Steve Bingham, the orchestra (revels) in its now powerful sound.  The instrumentalists were confident, expressive and very much a part of the exhilarating atmosphere that pervaded the concert.”

To read the full review click here.

Her review of Island and Hereward in May 2015, involving over 100 adults and children from local choirs and schools, was also highly enthusiastic.  To read what she said, click here.

Grade One-Athon – Cambridge vs Oxford!

Members of the orchestra are taking place in the Oxford/Cambridge Note Race 2017…a challenge for musicians to have a single lesson on an instrument from a different instrument family and 9 weeks later, take Grade One! The competition between the two cities is to get the highest average sponsorship and to get the highest average grade marking. All sponsored – and the money is going to support children and families who are in crisis across the world. To find out more, including how to sponsor a musician, visit https://gradeoneathon.org/

Friends of Ely Sinfonia

January 2017 Newsletter: the latest version of the Friends of Ely Sinfonia newsletter has been published, and can be found here.

Interested in supporting your local orchestra?

To become a Friend of Ely Sinfonia please click here and see what benefits it can bring you and the orchestra.
Click here to download past and present Friends’ newsletters.

We look forward to seeing you at our concerts and workshops.


For those who have not yet paid their membership for 2016-2017, or completed a gift aid declaration, please click here to download a PDF form or here for a Word copy of the form. For any queries, please contact the membership secretary at Elysinf@gmail.com.

Registered Charity Number 1161642