Wrexham orchestra’s half-century celebration year to begin with concert this weekend

A Wrexham orchestra which is marking its fiftieth year in 2019 is to begin its year of concerts with a special performance in Wrexham Glyndwr University’s William Aston Hall.

The Wrexham Symphony Orchestra has a long history with both the hall and with the university, and the upcoming performance, on Saturday, February 23, is the President’s Annual Concert – with the current President being Professor Maria Hinfelaar, the Vice Chancellor of the university.

The concert will see the first collaboration between the WSO and Welsh National Opera, when one of their leading sopranos, Rebecca Afonwy-Jones, will perform Edward Elgar’s Sea Pictures. The programme for the evening also features Beethoven’s Egmont Overture and Prokofiev’s 5th symphony.

Derek Jones, spokesman for the Wrexham Symphony Orchestra, said: “Rebecca Afonwy-Jones made her orchestral debut with the Orchestra in 2008 and has performed with us on several occasions since.

“Since her debut Rebecca has performed with the Orchestra in 2010 in  Beethoven’s 9th symphony – his great choral work – and again in 2012 when the programme featured Mahler’s Symphony No 3 as part of the ground-breaking Mahler Charitable concert series.

“In May 2015, Rebecca joined the Orchestra for their debut concert at the Bridgewater Hall when they performed Mahler’s 2nd symphony – Resurrection- to wide critical acclaim.”

Conductor Leon Bosch will also be appearing on the night. Leon was appointed principal double bass with the acclaimed Academy of St Martin in the Fields, a position he left in 2014 to devote himself to conducting, his solo career, to teaching and to establishing his now thriving chamber ensemble, I Musicanti.

Leon, who is originally from South Africa, is looking forward to working with the Orchestra. He said: “The unique structure of Prokofiev’s 5th Symphony – which has a strong connection to the South African psychology in its hidden melancholy -is part of my soul;  it offers something new and enriches our experiences of life.  I am particularly looking forward to working with Rebecca in a performance of Elgar’s Sea Pictures, which is a uniquely British composition from the era of the First World War.”

Wrexham Glyndwr University Vice-Chancellor, Professor Maria Hinfelaar, added: “The Wrexham Symphony Orchestra has been at the heart of our community for five decades, and I’m delighted to be hosting the Presidents’ Annual Concert this weekend in the William Aston Hall. This year is a huge milestone for the Orchestra and we’ll be backing them every step of the way.”

The supported charity during the President’s Annual Concert is Llay-based ‘Your Space’ which supports children and young people with the autistic spectrum disorder and offers families a wide range of practical help and support.  More information can be found at  yourspacemarches.co.uk

Tickets for the concert, ranging from £20 for a family ticket;  £12 Balcony; £10 stalls (£8 concessions) and just £2 for students and young people U16, are available from Wrexham Tourist Information Centre in Queens Square, from Llangollen Tourist Information Office, from the Box Office desk in Wrexham Glyndwr University and can also be purchased on line at www.wrexhamorch.co.uk/tickets and through the William Aston Hall events website.


About Wrexham Glyndwr University

Founded in 2008, Wrexham Glyndwr University is a young, bold and vibrant university based in north-east Wales. The university has two campuses in Wrexham, Plas Coch and Regent Street plus campuses in Northop and St Asaph. In 2017 the university was awarded the silver award in the Teaching Excellence Framework for the quality of teaching.

The university is driving academic excellence through a wide range of innovative and industry-relevant courses, such as Applied Science, Computing, Engineering, Creative Arts, Criminology and Psychology. Wrexham Glyndwr is now a Top 100 University, rising 24 places in the Guardian league tables – one of the top 10 risers in the UK.  The Campus 2025 strategy encompasses plans for new student accommodation, car parking and upgraded facilities in the next seven years.

About Wrexham Symphony Orchestra

Wrexham Symphony Orchestra is a full complement, 65 strong member community orchestra and is recognised as one of the most progressive orchestras in the North Wales and North West England area. Starting from the humble beginnings of a small string ensemble in 1969, out of Cartrefle College in Wrexham, over the last 49 years we have grown to become a high quality large orchestral ensemble who perform ‘full works’ concerts to exacting standards. In May 2015 we made our debut at the iconic Bridgewater Hall in Manchester to wide critical acclaim in performing Mahler’s 2nd Symphony and we make a return visit on June 20, 2020 to bring our Mahler Charitable Concert series to a fitting close in performing his 8th Symphony, Symphony of a Thousand with a chorus of several hundred voices drawn from across North Wales and the North of England.  We attract professional conductors and outstanding soloists to lead and perform in our concert repertoire.

Much of our focus is on supporting local charities and needy causes and our Mahler Charitable Concert Series, established in 2010 with the generous support of our sponsor Cobalz Limited, has been supporting the work of Wrexham Memory Clinic and more recently, Pendine Park Care Home. We also support several local charities though our concerts.

We offer opportunities for young and talented musicians to join with us in developing their skills and to experience large scale orchestral performance in Wrexham’s premier Performance Arts venue in the William Aston Hall at Wrexham Glyndŵr University.  A number of them have progressed their musical abilities at leading UK and international institutions, music schools, colleges and academies.

Further information about the Wrexham Symphony Orchestra is available through their web site www wrexhamorch.co.uk, their public and group Facebook pages (Wrexham Symphony Orchestra).  They can be followed on Twitter at #wrexhamorch.   Emails to the Orchestra can be sent to: wrexhamso@gmail.com.

For further Information about the Wrexham Symphony Orchestra and its concert programmes, please contact:

Derek Jones, 26 Park Avenue, Wrexham LL12 7AH

Email: jones_derek@btonnect.com     Phone: 07889 379591