Ukulele Orchestra premieres in Beijing
The Ukulele Orchestra of Great Britain made its debut in China at The Orange, Taikoo Li Sanlitun, Beijing yesterday, night kicking off the “Urban Series” concert for the 17th Beijing Music Festival (BMF). With their incredible musical skills, the orchestra staged a spectacular opening performance for audiences.
A Golden Sponsor this year, Swire Properties has been collaborating with BMF since 2011 to host the “Urban Series” concert, which aims to bring unique musical experiences from the concert hall to neighbourhood communities, allowing the public to enjoy a diverse selection of musical art forms from respected musicians across the globe.
This year’s Ukulele concert integrated elements both traditional and modern to perfectly embody the spirit of the “Urban Series”. Themed “Being Music Fantasy-Richard Strauss in Beijing”, the Ukulele Orchestra played its world premiere of the “Ukulele version” of Richard Strauss’s masterpiece, “Strauss, Also Sprach Zarathustra”. The orchestra’s unique performance style involved a bold crossover of different musical genres, including rap, offering an innovative and accessible take on the classical piece.
In addition, Swire Properties and BMF organised a special interactive community event prior to the concert, where members of the orchestra were invited to The Orange to meet with local Ukulele enthusiasts and discuss such topics as Ukulele performance skills and how to present different styles of music using the instrument.
Through its collaboration with BMF, Swire Properties has brought a colourful and diverse selection of musical and arts experiences to the capital and its local communities, delighting audiences and supporting arts education for China’s youth. “It is a delight to witness BMF flourish and grow into one of the most important music festivals in China and even in Asia, and we are very glad to have a role in it,” said Guy Bradley, Swire Properties’ Chief Executive Officer – Mainland China. “Swire Properties has over 40 years of experience in developing and managing complex property projects, and we understand that a vibrant community is so much more than the physical structures that house it, which explains why we are committed to investing in the community through our support of art and culture. We are proud to have brought the music festival as well as other cultural and art activities to Taikoo Li Sanlitun, which has now become a preferred destination for leisure lifestyle and shopping in the capital city.”
“Our shared commitment to bringing arts close to life facilitates our pleasant collaboration in the past four years,” added Long Yu, Artistic Director of Beijing Music Festival. “With higher hope on the renewed three years’ cooperation with Swire Properties, BMF expects to further improve people’s cultural life and cultivate sustainable cultural vitality jointly with Swire Properties. Both of us will dedicate to boosting the city’s prosperous culture development and creating a music landmark in Beijing together.”