Summer and the ninth Symphonic Sessions

CBSO celebrate summer of sport at Hockley Social Club.

The world’s greatest sporting themes and anthems are to be performed by an ensemble of world-class musicians from the City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra, at Birmingham’s leading food and culture venue Hockley Social Club on Thursday 11th July.

The low-price evening Symphonic Sessions concert at the popular nighttime destination will celebrate a summer of major sporting events, including the Paris Olympics and Paralympics, the Tour de France, Wimbledon, the British Grand Prix, and the 2024 UEFA Euros currently underway in Germany.

16 musicians from the CBSO, along with operatic tenor Luke Swatman (as featured in BBC’s The Voice), will perform instantly recognisable repertoire in the relaxed surroundings of the 10,000-sq ft former industrial printworks site in the historic manufacturing district of Hockley.

The programme is set to feature the UEFA Champions League anthem (adapted from Handel’s Zadok the Priest), the Olympic Fanfare by John Williams, Puccini’s Nessun Dorma which dominated the 1990 World Cup following Pavarotti’s captivating performance of the aria, and the William Tell Overture by Rossini.

Fans of contemporary music will also recognise the main title song from 1963 Steve McQueen’s classic film The Great Escape, excerpts of Vangelis’ 1981 Chariots of Fire score, as well as renditions of the unofficial England football anthem Sweet Caroline by Neil Diamond, and Gerry and the Pacemakers’ tearjerker You’ll Never Walk Alone – adopted by Liverpool FC fans worldwide.

Among the players who make up the CBSO ensemble are fans of motorcycle racing; Bath, England and Wales rugby team followers; cricket and golfing enthusiasts; and a lifelong supporter of Brentford FC.

Amy Thomas, viola player with the CBSO, cricket fan and from an Everton-supporting family, said: “Symphonic Sessions at Hockley are events that CBSO players look forward to throughout the year.

“The mixture of an informal and intimate setting whilst performing a wide variety of music creates a unique experience and a special connection between the players and audience. The atmosphere is electric, the space is beautiful, and the food is great too.”

Hockley Social Club is marking its fourth year with a substantial line-up of academics, artistic organisations, comedians, DJs, musicians, and speakers. The 2024 programme at the venue has been developed to enable fans of diverse cultural experiences to access world-class arts and music at affordable prices to help address the current cost of living crisis.

This year also marks the ninth Symphonic Sessions annual concert, the fourth at this venue, underlining an ongoing and groundbreaking partnership between the CBSO and Hockley Social Club which sees players from one of Europe’s best-loved orchestral institutions step into a leading NTE hub to perform to new audiences.
Jack Brabant, Director of Hockley Social Club, said:
“The popularity of Symphonic Sessions with audience members, along with our partnership with the CBSO continues to go from strength to strength – proving there is absolutely an appetite for world-class arts and culture presented in different formats and an accessible location.

“By maintaining affordable ticket prices for these events, we hope to attract music fans from all walks of life and backgrounds – and we know this particular concert appeals to many sports fans across the region. It is a delight to be working with colleagues from one of the city’s most valued cultural institutions; we look forward to celebrating the summer of sport through this brilliant programme of some of the best-known pieces of sporting music ever.”

Symphonic Sessions takes place at Hockley Social Club on Thursday 11th July. Doors open from 6 pm and the performance starts at 8 pm.

Tickets, priced at £10, are available via the CBSO website.