What a pleasure to enjoy first-class music making in the north of Dorset, courtesy of Artsreach and BSO Resound – seven specialists with a mission to reimagine orchestral classical music for a smaller ensemble.

BSO Resound’s programme covered every century from the 18th to the 21st, including Mozart classics like Eine Kleine Nachtmusic, Beethoven’s Moonlight Sonata and Vivaldi’s L’Estro Armonico Concerto Op 3 No 9. From the 20th century Gershwin, Rachmaninov and Copland cropped up. Then, reflecting the ambition of this group and its parent orchestra, the BSO itself, there were two specially commissioned works –  the gently moving Hoping by Alexander Campkin, premiered by BSO Resound at the 2018 BBC Proms in the Royal Albert Hall and Årsgång, an atmospheric Swedish-inspired work by the group’s Young Composer-in-Association, Lucy Hale.

To bring the feel of a full symphony orchestra to the Gillingham School Theatre, some very clever and effective orchestrations were needed. BSO Resound makes use of strings and woodwinds, with tuned percussion and the electronic Linstrument, all kept under control by inspirational conductor James Rose.

Mr Rose leads from the front in all senses, with his specially-adapted baton, but most especially his mesmerising persona – everything is distinctly enabled in this ensemble!

It was a great privilege to hear these ground-breaking performers in Gillingham and to be able to share in their inspiring message of wellbeing and wisdom brought about through the power of music. As the world’s first disabled-led ensemble embedded in a symphony orchestra, BSO Resound is making waves internationally. There were more than a few ripples in this more local setting.

Tom Wickson

Click here to learn more about BSO Resound