NEWS: Bristol Beacon Announces Ground-breaking Paraorchestra Commision For Historic Re-opening

The venue has commissioned a new work featuring an all-Bristol line-up of Paraorchestra, electronic artist Surgeons Girl, Charles Hazelwood and light artists Limbic Cinema for the reopening night in November

Images: We Are Plaster, @weareplaster

Globally-renowned orchestral innovators Paraorchestra will perform an extraordinary newly-commissioned piece for Bristol Beacon’s highly anticipated reopening this year. The ensemble of disabled and non-disabled musicians will kick off a jam-packed reopening season on Thursday 30 November with Trip The Light Fantastic – a spectacular collision of sound and light composed in a unique collaborative process.

Paraorchestra – Kraftwerk Rewerk – Womad 2019

Under the Artistic Direction of award-winning conductor Charles Hazlewood, Paraorchestra continues to revolutionise and disrupt the orchestral norm. Creating large-scale music experiences in collaboration with their ensemble of professional disabled and non-disabled musicians, their work challenges perceptions and creates unifying moments.

Known for musical creations that span genres and crosses artforms, the ensemble perform fiercely original pieces in unlikely spaces, and are radically changing who connects with orchestral music, removing barriers to showcase excellence in disabled musicianship.

Paraorchestra, Surgeons Girl, Charles Hazlewood and Limbic Cinema will perform the dazzling commission for the first time on the opening night, marking the reinvention of this landmark venue. As sound and light collide in the transformed space, the spectacle will highlight Bristol Beacon’s spatial capacity – employing the architecture and world-class acoustics as part of the work itself.

Surgeons Girl In The Mix

“I’m so excited to be playing at the opening of Bristol Beacon. Working on Trip the Light Fantastic with Paraorchestra and Oliver has been a fascinating process” states Surgeons Girl. “I’d always been a little sceptical about electronic musicians working with orchestras, but Paraorchestra’s unique collaborative approach has facilitated a space whereby Oli and I can create something fresh and intricate that feels authentic to us all and is truly exciting. We will soon start the final stages of the visual art with Limbic Cinema. Seeing our work brought to life for the first time in Beacon Hall will be a special moment.”

Limbic Cinema

As one of the undoubted cultural highlights of the year, the performance marks the reopening of all of Bristol Beacon’s venue spaces, including the 2,000+ capacity Beacon Hall, 500 capacity Lantern Hall and the brand new 200 capacity Weston Cellar following a once-in-a-generation transformation.

Artist’s impression of the new Beacon Hall

The pioneering five-year programme of works to the Victorian building has created one of the most accessible venues in the UK for performers and artists.

An outstanding attention to detail in the transformation project means that alongside world-class acoustics, the venue’s front of house and backstage areas have been made completely level-access, meaning previously inaccessible dressing rooms, entrances and facilities are now open to all artists, with vastly improved access for audiences to all performance spaces also a key feature.

Ticket details for Trip The Light Fantastic and The Housewarming will be announced soon. To be the first to hear sign up now at: