By Ashleigh Goodall
Summatives have been handed in, the exams are over, and finally, the academic year is drawing to a close; but fear not, there are still plenty of events coming up for you to enjoy, whatever your musical preference. Here is a round-up of music events happening across Durham in June and July.
Jam By The Lake
When? 14th June, 1-9pm
Where? Van Mildert
On Thursday 14th June, Durham’s very own open-air music festival will be coming to Van Mildert. It’s open to everyone – not just Van Mildert students – and aims to provide an afternoon of fun for people of all ages to enjoy. Kicking off at 1pm, the event will be showcasing 13 musical acts spread across two different stages, featuring music from a wide variety of genres – from garage rock, to folk, to hip hop – so there really is something for everyone!
The acts which will be performing include Durham based five-piece funk band Odd Socks, who will be performing a groovy mix of originals and covers, Durham’s long-standing rock and pop covers band The Quays, and Mildert’s very own Mustard Yellow, who will be delivering some alternative rock anthems.
Headlining the festival will be Normanton Street, an RnB group from Brighton; their sound consists of jazz-influenced guitars, tight rhythmic drums and saxophone melodies, providing a little something for everyone to jam along to! Furthermore, Durham-based singer-songwriter Jordan Sheath will be headlining the acoustic stage, bringing refreshingly smooth melodic vocals to the table.
Alongside the music, there will also be a variety of food and drink stalls present at the event – including cupcakes, burgers (including vegan options), a Pimms stall and an ice cream van – as well as a glitter stand.
Jam By The Lake is free to attend, however, t-shirts will be sold at the event to raise money for Clic Sargent – a charity which aims to support young people suffering from cancer and their families.
DUOS Cathedral Concert
When? 16th June, 7:30pm
Where? Durham Cathedral
Durham Festival of the Arts continues this month, with many exciting performances from Music Durham’s wide and varying ensembles. An event to note in your diary is Music Durham’s most prestigious orchestral ensemble, DUOS, in their final concert of the year at Durham Cathedral.
DUOS will be presenting Elgar’s classic ‘Enigma Variations’, an audience favourite, whilst ensuring to bring some less-explored composers to the forefront, featuring works from Niels Gade and the British Arnold Bax. However, the highlight of the concert is sure to be the brilliant and ethereal ‘Trittico Botticelliano’ by Respighi.
For an enchanting evening of classical music in Durham’s most iconic and breath-taking UNESCO World Heritage Site, this promises to be a special evening.
Durham Opera Ensemble Present: HMS Pinafore
When? 14th – 16th June
Where? The Assembly Rooms
Following the sell-out productions of ‘Opera of Ages’ and ‘The Magic Flute’, Durham Opera Ensemble have had a fantastic year; they plan to end the academic year on a high, and promise that their third and final production of the season will live up to the high standards of their previous performances. Featuring ‘When I was a Lad’ and ‘I am the Monarch of the Sea’, HMS Pinafore marks one of Gilbert and Sullivan’s most renowned operattas.
“Set on a ship, this show explores the relationship between Josephine, the Captain’s daughter, and Ralph, a lower-class sailor. Social class becomes an obstacle for the pair as Josephine’s father attempts to marry her to the First Lord of the Admiralty. Will his mind be changed when he finds himself in a similar position, when Buttercup, a nanny, falls in love with him?”
HMS Pinafore will be shown at 7:30pm on 14th and 15th June, and at 2:30pm on 16th June. Tickets cost £7 for students (£6 for DST members).
Durham Brass Festival
When? 13th– 22nd July
Where? A variety of venues including Durham Miners Hall and Bowes Museum
For anyone who will be in or around Durham in the summer, the bold sounds of brass from across the world will be taking over the streets and stages of Durham for the Durham Brass Festival. The festival includes an exciting 10-day line-up of different styles of brass, incorporating themes including ‘women and brass’, and showcasing the use of live looping technology!
The festival is a chance to see some world-renowned musicians, including Australian trumpeter James Morrison, and the be-skirted Spanish brass band Artistas del Gremio; if that isn’t enough of an excuse, the Durham Brass Festival also provides a chance to explore alternative venues across County Durham.
The festival has been running for over 10 years now and gets bigger and better every year – definitely not one to miss if you are a fan of brass!
Many thanks to Meg Greenall, Carys Roberts, Heather Pearson and DOE for their assistance in writing this article.
Photograph: Max Halcox