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The St. Petersburg Festival of British Music

St. Petersburg in Russia is getting ready for a music festival like no other. The St Petersburg Festival of British Music has become a reality, due to the determination and effort put in by Rudi Eastwood. He has always dreamed of introducing Russia to music written by British composers who have enjoyed worldwide recognition. The St. Petersburg Festival of British Music will open the door to a new music genre for Russian musicians to explore and audiences to enjoy.

Rudi Eastwood received his training as a pianist at London’s prestigious Royal Academy of Music, and played at concerts and events throughout Europe. An unfortunate injury forced Eastwood to an early retirement as a concert pianist, but encouraged him to try his hand at conducting. It was this change of career that brought him to St Petersburg in Russia. Rudi Eastwood soon discovered the lack of British classical compositions in Russian repertoires, and this sparked the idea of having British musicians travel to Russia to perform.

The idea of hosting the St Petersburg Festival of British Music was received so well by the Russian music fraternity and the public, that even though the invitation was extended to British musicians to travel to Russia, many local orchestras and performers have offered to play in the festival. The first concert of the festival kicks off in the Beloselsky-Belozersky Palace’s concert hall on 31 October, with the State Academic Orchestra performing Symphony No. 1 by William Boyce, Elgar’s Cello Concerto and Symphony No. 5 by Malcolm Arnold. Students from the St. Petersburg State Music Conservatoire will be performing on 9 November, at the second concert of the festival, and guest British conductor Matthew Taylor can be seen on 15 November. The last concert of the St. Petersburg Festival of British Music takes place on 1 December 2007. In total, guests to the festival can look forward to nine breathtaking musical performances, including orchestral concerts and chamber recitals. The concerts are performed at different venues across the city, giving each performance its own unique atmosphere and appeal.

If you are traveling through St. Petersburg between 31 October and 1 December 2007, make sure not to miss this musical festival. With world-class performers and musicians collaborating to ensure the success of the festival, it is set to be a memorable experience.


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