Free family offering for final Universe of Sound weekend

The family friendly space of Symphony Hall Café Bar will be the base for a Universe of Sound Family Day on Saturday 15 June (10.30am-4.30pm). Featuring free activities, workshops and demonstrations, the day offers families a chance to explore an orchestra, and coincides with the final weekend of the Universe of Sound digital installation at Birmingham Municipal Bank.

Visitors to the family day can begin their orchestral exploration by listening to performances from the Birmingham Conservatoire Ensemble, before moving on to the Sound Station where they will be able to come up with their own compositions. Interactive technologies including Soundbeam and Footpads will allow even the littlest of family members to come up with their own music, using the movement of their bodies. For those that fancy making some noise, there is the opportunity to join an intergalactic vocal orchestra and the Imagination Station provides a chance to make your own model musical instrument, or space-themed artwork. Full details of Family Day activities can be found here.

Whilst at Symphony Hall, families can also enjoy The Orchestra Dream, a treasure hunt for vinyl graphics of orchestral instruments that will be mounted throughout the buildings foyers. Finding each instrument will reveal a phrase, and correct answers will be entered into a competition to win four tickets to Horrible Science, at Town Hall this December. Devised by Stan’s Café and THSH Education & Community department, the Orchestra Dream runs from Saturday 25 May – Sunday 16 June (opening times vary). Admission is free.

Running alongside these activites is Universe of Sound: The Planets, a free interactive experience which transports audiences right to the heart of the Philharmonia Orchestra, at Birmingham Municipal Bank. It offers the chance to conduct using creative digital technologies, play live and virtual instruments and learn about the roles of musicians, before a planetarium-style full-dome 360 degree projection delivers the incomparable thrill of seeing and hearing 132 players performing Gustav Holst’s incredible work The Planets, conducted by Esa-Pekka Salonen. Musicians from the Philharmonia will be on hand in the installation to give demonstrations alongside their virtual counterparts, between 11.30am and 2.30pm on June 15th, and the installations opening hours will be extended to 7.30pm

The installation is open daily from now until Sunday 16th June – take a look at visitor reactions to the experience here.

Information on more upcoming family activities at Town Hall & Symphony Hall can be found here