Seventy years of excellence

Celebrating its 70th anniversary, the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra returns to Northampton on Sunday (November 27) with Saint-Saens' Organ Symphony as part of the Royal & Derngate's new orchestral season.

Royal Philharmonic Orchestra
Royal Philharmonic Orchestra

Joining forces with the Northampton Bach Choir,this will be a concert of orchestral and choral masterpieces, writes Heather Jan Brunt.

Opening the concert in regal style will be Handel’s Zadok the Priest.

Performed at every British coronation since 1727, this piece starts ceremoniously with layered strings, before bursting out into choral joy.

The concert will then take on a distinctly French flavour with Saint-Saens’ devilish Danse Macabre - widely recognised as the theme tune from BBC television series Jonathan Creek - and Poulenc’s Gloria, for which outstanding soprano Elin Pritchard will join the orchestra.

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    The concert will close with Saint-Saens’ grand Organ Symphony, which from its brief and haunting introduction then soars to the heavens with its layered brass finale.

    The concert starts at 7.30pm, but concert goers are welcome to attend a preconcert talk from 6.30pm where soprano Elin Pritchard will be in conversation with BBC Radio Northampton’s John Griff.

    Tickets are priced from £16 - £35, with tickets for under 26s priced at £11 as part of the Real Discounts ticket scheme. Tickets for under 14s and schools are priced at just £5 each.

    To book go online at or call the box office on 01604 624811.

    As the orchestra’s 70th anniversary season unfolds, the RPO’s versatility and high standards mark it out as one of today’s most open-minded, forward-thinking symphony orchestras with a huge repertoire.