Inspired by the latest digital technology, iOrchestra brings the amazing opportunity to step inside the beating heart of an orchestra to communities in Torbay.

Working closely with Torbay Council and Torbay Music Education Hub, the Philharmonia’s pioneering digital music project, iOrchestra, will return to Torbay for a second year during May and June 2015.

Sue Cheriton, Executive Lead for Residents and Visitors, said: “It is great to welcome iOrchestra back to the Bay after last year’s success when there were
more than 8000 visits to the project’s classical orchestral events across the Bay.

“Over 5,000 came to visit RE-RITE, the Philharmonia’s giant digital installation on Torre Abbey Meadows in Torquay. 1,395 people also visited MusicLab, a musical truck full of films, instruments and games which toured to our local communities.

“The project culminated in over 2,000 people attending a live open-air concert given by the Philharmonia Orchestra on Torre Abbey Meadows. This really is a wonderful project bringing classical musical experiences for both children and adults to our doorstep. This year’s programme promises to be even better.”

For Year 2, iOrchestra presents Universe of Sound, a huge, free, digital installation housed in a giant tent on Torre Abbey Meadows from Monday 25 May to Sunday 7 June. Once inside the tent, visitors can explore a virtual orchestra, see each instrument up close, join in with the percussion section and even have a conducting lesson. The installation allows the visitor to experience what it is like to be part of an orchestra, as they perform Holst’s The Planets.

Also new for 2015, iOrchestra is delighted to introduce the iOrchestra Fringe. Young people from Sound Communities will create a radio broadcast live from MusicLab and members of Play Torbay’s FUNk group will create a Quest to enable younger visitors to explore Universe of Sound while solving the mystery of how the planets lost their music! Sound Worlds, a series of workshops in collaboration with Torbay Library Service, will introduce the many magical worlds of orchestral music to Torbay’s pre-school children. Also taking place in the iOrchestra tent, members of Torbay Symphony Orchestra will play-along to the installation and lead masterclasses enabling young local musicians to join in. Local composers Hugh Nankivell, Steve Sowden and Richard Povall will lead a 10-week composition project creating a unique work incorporating film and music.

On the last day of Universe of Sound, Sunday 7 June, local residents can hear the Philharmonia Orchestra go from screen to stage with a live concert at the Princess Theatre, Torquay, priced at just £5.

Year 2 also sees the return of MusicLab, iOrchestra’s musical truck – a free pop-up ‘play-and-create’ experience where you can step into the shoes of a horn, timpani, cello or clarinet player, as well as compose your own music and watch films about the orchestra. MusicLab will visit Brixham (11-15 May), Barton (18-22 May), Paignton (25-29 May) and Foxhole (1-5 June), hosting workshops for schools and community groups as well as public opening hours.

Please visit for information on all of the above, including related online resources, films and how to volunteer.

For more information including pictures, biographies, and interviews, please contact:
Isla MacLeod on 020 7921 3933 or by email
Angela Cappello on 01803 208851 or by email

Notes to Editors
Universe of Sound – The iOrchestra Tent
At the heart of iOrchestra is the Philharmonia Orchestra's award-winning digital “virtual orchestra” installation, Universe of Sound. Universe of Sound is an extraordinary free interactive digital installation, allowing you to explore an orchestra from the inside out as they perform Holst’s The Planets. Using giant visual displays, touch screens, unconventional projecting surfaces, movement-based interaction and planetarium-style projections, you can take part as musicians, conductors, arrangers and composers. The installation also features a new companion piece to The Planets, by composer Joby Talbot, called Worlds, Stars, Systems, Infinity. To find out more about Universe of Sound and watch our Universe of Sound film, visit

MusicLab – The iOrchestra Truck
The iOrchestra truck contains a unique 'play-and-create' experience with something for everyone. MusicLab hosts an orchestral opportunity for both experienced musicians and those who have never picked up an instrument before. Visiting communities across Torbay, visitors will be able to:

  • Receive a tutorial in the French horn, the cello, the timpani and the clarinet from Philharmonia Orchestra players;
  • Explore every instrument in the orchestra, using our central controls which give you a chance to play, compose and produce;
  • Sing-along with the Philharmonia Orchestra in Chorus Booth creating a huge virtual choir from each location that we visit and across the whole south-west peninsular;
  • Explore the life of the Philharmonia Orchestra - playing concerts, film scores, making video-game music and more - through our video bench which provides a guided tour of our work;
  • Experiment with the orchestra's four instrumental families and explore how each of them makes sounds both familiar and strange, using Hi-5!

To find out more about MusicLab and for a look at what it’s like inside, you can watch our MusicLab trailer online at

Philharmonia Orchestra
Acknowledged as the UK’s foremost musical pioneer, with an extraordinary recording legacy, the Philharmonia Orchestra leads the field for its quality of playing, and for its innovative approach to audience development, residencies, music education and the use of new technologies – including digital installations such as the multi-award-winning Universe of Sound, webcasts, podcasts, downloads and computer games – in reaching a global audience. Together with its relationships with the world’s most sought after artists, most importantly its Principal Conductor Esa-Pekka Salonen, the Philharmonia is at the heart of British musical life.

Torbay Music Education Hub
Torbay Music Service, Torbay council, is the lead organisation for Torbay Music Hub – schools and organisations working together to inspire and enable a musical journey for every young person in Torbay. Currently, all schools work with the Hub to provide a period of free instrumental tuition for every child and to provide choirs and ensembles for all. Additionally organisations such as Wren Music, Torbay Music Service and Torbay and South Devon Music Centre provide out of school choirs and music groups for all standards and ages. Bursaries are available to support instrumental tuition for those entitled and Torbay Music Service provides an Instrument Hire Service. A variety of workshops and performance opportunities through the year give young people the opportunity to share their talents and to work with established professional musicians.


iOrchestra – schedule of events

Universe of Sound – free admission
Torre Abbey Meadows, Torquay, TQ2 5JE
Monday 25 May – Sunday 7 June 2015, 10am-6pm

Philharmonia Orchestra Live – tickets £5
Princess Theatre, Torbay Road, Torquay TQ2 5EZ
Sunday 7 June 2015, 5pm - Freephone box office 0800 652 6717
See one of the world’s great orchestras LIVE in concert, right here in the heart of Torquay. Conductor Domingo Hindoyan and presenter Tim Steiner will guide you through a programme that pulls out all the orchestral stops! Suitable for all ages and experience.

With music from: Williams Harry Potter; Verdi Force of Destiny Overture; Nott Wallace and Gromit; Copland Fanfare for the Common Man; Saint-Saëns Dance Macabre; Rossini William Tell Overture; and Gray Thunderbirds …and much more!

Musiclab – free admission
Locations Across Torbay (11 May – 6 June 2015):
Brixham Central Car Park, Fore Street, Brixham, TQ5 8DX
Mon 11 - Fri 15 May, 3.30pm-5.30pm & Sat 16 May, 9.30am-5.30pm

Acorn Youth Centre, Lummaton Cross, Barton, TQ2 8ET
Mon 18 - Fri 22 May, 3.30pm-5.30pm & Sat 23 May, 9.30am-5.30pm

Paignton Green, Off East Esplanade, Paignton Seafront, TQ4 6BW
Mon 25 May - Fri 29 May, 11am-3pm & Sat 30 May, 9.30am-5.30pm

The Co-operative, Foxhole Road, Foxhole, Paignton, TQ3 3SS
Mon 1 Jun – Fri 5 Jun 3.30pm-5.30pm & Sat 6 Jun, 9.30am-5.30pm

iOrchestra Fringe
Music Under The Stars
Terrace Café Bar, Living Coasts, Torquay Harbourside on Beacon Quay, Torquay, TQ1 2BG, Friday 17 April 2015, 7pm-9.30pm
Join us for a magical, musical night under the stars. Featuring Torbay Symphony Orchestra playing a family-friendly programme of popular classics, with a chance to try your hand at conducing and ask you questions of some great musicians right here in Torquay. As the music plays around you, look out as the sun sets over the sea and the stars come out across the bay

Turning Worlds
Paignton Library, Great Western Road, Paignton, TQ4 5AG
17 April – 19 June 2015, 10.30am-12.30pm
Led by composers Hugh Nankivell, Steve Sowden and Richard Povall, fresh from the success of ‘The Heaviside Condition’, you are invited to join a group as they explore the music of the spheres and build a composition using sound and video, week by week. For more details and to sign up, please contact Laura Forster on or 07943 376 893.

Sound Worlds: A Very Young Person’s Guide to the Orchestra
Monday 1 June 2015, Paignton Library, 11am-12pm
Monday 1 June 2015, Torquay Library, 2pm-3pm
Tuesday 2 June 2015, Churston Library, 9.45am-10.45am
Tuesday 2 June 2015, Brixham Library, 2pm-3pm

Led by South-West based composer Hugh Nankivell, and in collaboration with Torbay Library Service, Sound Worlds offers a space-themed opportunity for pre-school children and their parents and guardians to explore the strange worlds of the orchestra alongside live musicians. A wonderful way to introduce tiny tots to a lifetime of musical discovery and an amazing opportunity to open up Universe of Sound for the very young.

Universe of Sound Guided Tours
Saturday 30 May 2015, 10.30am, 1.30pm and 4.30pm
Join us for a fun, free, informal hour-long tour of Universe of Sound. Come find out more about all the instruments in the installation, weird and wonderful facts about the orchestra and a little bit about the man behind the music, Gustav Holst. Led by composer and conductor Patrick Bailey.

Planets Play-a-long
Sunday 31 May 2015, 2pm-5.30pm,iIn collaboration with Torbay Symphony Orchestra
See Universe of Sound come to life! Players from Torbay Symphony Orchestra will be performing live in the tent on Torre Abbey Meadows alongside the interactive installation of the Philharmonia Orchestra. Come and hear this extraordinary piece in a whole new way. There will also be coaching opportunities for young musicians from Grade 5+ to join a performance in the tent – for more information, please contact Laura Forster on


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