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ROOKIE REVIEW: Symphonic Rock 2016

Rookie Review, Abi Stafford rocked out with the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra at Symphonic Rock 2016 this weekend.

So after a bit of a Google search about this sub-genre of music, I was excited to attend the Symphonic Rock show at Birmingham’s Symphony Hall, performed by the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra and Metro Voices.

The Symphonic Rock show was appropriately titled; the performance was a collection of rock classics (mixed in with some pop hits) performed in a more classical orchestral way. This adaptation was a welcome twist as the entire audience often sat stunned and silenced by the beauty and grandeur of what they were listening to.

The display of talent on offer was unsurprising after I had quick flick through the programme to see the tremendous worldwide success that both the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra and Metro Voices have had around the world, performing with the likes of Elvis, Sir Elton John and Adele.

At first I thought I might stand out from the crowd a bit, because usually classical/orchestral music isn’t really my sort of vibe, but I was pleasantly surprised to see such a range of ages attending the concert. This is no doubt largely due to variety of songs performed, ranging from Meatloaf’s Bat out of Hell to Robbie Williams’ Angels.

In between sets of songs, BBC Radio 2’s very own Ken Bruce took to the stage to perform a couple of minutes of ‘stand up’, before introducing the next set, relating to anecdotes about the tune or when he met the original artists.

Metro Voices, a London based choir provided some stunning vocals, but instead of simply singing each song, their talent was used almost as an extra instrument to provide some ‘ooos’ and ‘laaas’ often coming in at the end of a piece, to add to the crescendo.

All in all, the show was spectacular and aided by the fantastic acoustics of the Symphony Hall, it was quite easy to sit back, close your eyes and just enjoy the music.

Abi Stafford, age 22, is in her final year at Aston University studying English language. Abi has previous experience as a music journalist and social media consultant and always likes to experience new things! Abi has skydiving and diving with sharks already ticked off her to do list!


Abi Stafford