brighton | the heritage orchestra
THE HERiTAgE ORCHEsTRA is pulling insTRuMEnTAl MusiC inTO A RAuCOus FuTuRE, AnD CHRis wHEElER is HElping TO lEAD THE wAY.
Brighton’s waterfront is awash with visitors savouring some rare early summer sun. In the distance, the pier stirs from hibernation, ill-prepared for the sudden onslaught of attention. Fairground sounds loop and mingle with seaside scents; the intoxicating smell of a salty breeze and fish ‘n’ chips fills the air. “There’s going to be an impressive sunset tonight,” remarks Chris Wheeler, artistic director and producer for The Heritage Orchestra, a collaborative ensemble that’s reinventing instrumental music for today’s zeitgeist. Wheeler has recently moved here and, on an evening like
this, it’s easy to see why. But it’s not just a penchant for carousels and chip butties that drove him to set up coastal camp. The city is an artistic haven, with new acts and movements oozing out of every crevasse. The south coast is also home to De La Warr Pavilion, the venue where Wheeler’s orchestra are resident artists for an on-going programme of commissions and performances. Nestled between Eastbourne and Hastings, the Pavilion’s home in Bexhill-on-Sea is an area perhaps better known for its retirement homes than a pumping arts scene. But the centre has long been a supporter of quirky innovation, exemplified by Heritage Orchestra’s recent full-house launch with vocalpercussive guru Beardyman.
Published on Jun 25, 2010