University's resident orchestra returns for first Hatfield concert in over 18 months

The de Havilland Philharmonic Orchestra.

The de Havilland Philharmonic Orchestra. - Credit: UH Arts + Culture

The de Havilland Philharmonic Orchestra makes a welcome return next weekend.

The Hatfield-based orchestra will perform its Autumn Chamber Concert at the Weston Auditorium, on the University of Hertfordshire's de Havilland Campus, on Sunday, October 17 at 4pm.

Conducted by Robin Browning, it will be the orchestra's first concert in over 18 months.

This long-awaited afternoon concert brings a stunning programme of chamber music, showcasing the woodwind and string sections of the orchestra.

Audiences will be treated to a repertoire of four works, composed over a 50-year period from the 1890s to 1940s.

Annabel Lucas, head of UH Arts + Culture, said: “We have really missed our resident orchestra over the past 18 months and are thrilled to have them back on stage this October.

"Our creative response to Covid restrictions, brings audiences a special chamber concert, with small ensemble groups sharing a popular repertoire.”

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The programme will include Serenade for String Orchestra in E Minor, Op.20 (1892) by Edward Elgar.

This is an early piece in three short movements and has become one of Elgar’s most popular compositions.

Peter Warlock’s Capriol Suite (1926) will also be performed.

This is a set of dances and is one of the composer’s most well-loved works.

Originally written for piano duet, he later scored the piece for string and full orchestras.

Simple Symphony, Op. 4 (1933-4) by Benjamin Britten uses elements he scored as a teenager and is dedicated to his childhood viola teacher.

The concert will also feature Richard Strauss’ Sonatina No.1 for 16 wind instruments in F major (1943).

This is a late work and bears the subtitle 'From an Invalid’s Workshop', reflecting his convalescence from an illness at the time of its composition.

Tickets are on sale now at or via the box office on 01707 281127.

Tickets cost £8 child, £18 adults, £15 concessions, and £12.75 Friend and UH staff. The concert is free for UH students and carers.

Formed in 1969, the de Havilland Philharmonic Orchestra has enjoyed many years of success, giving acclaimed performances of a wide musical repertoire and engaging renowned soloists.