Surround sound cinema screening in Ely Cathedral of a legendary concert

Leonard Bernstein's Concert Film of Mahler's Second Symphony gets a cinematic screening at Ely Cathe

Leonard Bernstein's Concert Film of Mahler's Second Symphony gets a cinematic screening at Ely Cathedral on 24th August on, the eve of Bernstein's 100th Birthday. - Credit: Archant

A special cinematic screening to mark the upcoming centenary of the legendary composer and conductor Leonard Bernstein, is coning to Ely Cathedral.

The event is being held on the eve of Bernstein’s 100th anniversary, in the cathedral where he conducted it 45 years ago.

Sir Clive Gillinson, formerly of the London Symphony Orchestra, and whose early music career saw him play regularly at the cathedral, said: “Leonard Bernstein’s 1973 performance of Mahler’s Second Symphony at Ely Cathedral remains one of the most vivid memories of my entire life.

“It was in my early days as a cellist in the LSO, not long after I had graduated from the Royal Academy of Music, and to work with him on this revelatory music remains one of the great privileges of my life.

There was something magical about playing this music in the breathtaking context of Ely Cathedral,

“The most compelling thing about Bernstein as a conductor, which was so clear to me as a player, but also in later years as the orchestra’s manager, was the sense of discovering a piece of music as if it was being composed at the very moment that you were playing or hearing it.

“His insights and endless creativity were something that only a great composer could have brought to the music he conducted, and he had an uncanny gift of engaging everybody in the music as if you were hearing it for the very first time.”

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The centenary performance is described as ‘a truly unique and immersive experience which showcases Bernstein and Mahler at their best.

Featuring the London Symphony Orchestra, Edinburgh Festival Chorus, Dame Janet Baker and Sheila Armstrong.

• The concert film is a cinematic screening in re mastered surround sound, in the place where it was recorded nearly half a century ago in Ely Cathedral, on August 24 at 7.30pm. It will also feature an appearance by the same director of the concert for composer Gustav Mahler’s “Resurrection Symphony”.