This year’s Hannells Darley Park Concert 2017, organised by Derby City Council’s entertainment arm, Derby LIVE, with orchestra Sinfonia Viva and media sponsor Classic FM, was a resounding success. The event was supported by Hannells Estates Agents, Flint Bishop Solicitors, HUUB, Mortgage Advice Bureau, PKF Cooper Parry, Specsavers and Stratstone BMW Derby.

With more than 14,500 people buying tickets for the event, members of the audience gathered on the hill in Darley Park to secure the best spots to view the entertaining concert. Families and friends gathered to enjoy the experience and came well-equipped to cope with the changing weather conditions. Classic FM’s Tim Lihoreau, presenter of Classic FM’s More Music Breakfast, was a terrific host for the event which included popular pieces to celebrate Derby’s 40th year as a City, and a selection of classics chosen by the public. 

Leader of Derby City Council, Councillor Ranjit Banwait, said: "It was heart-warming to see Derby people welcoming the concert back to Darley Park again this year and I’d like to extend my thanks to all the sponsors and organisers of this spectacular event.  We are delighted to have announced that the Hannells Darley Park Concert will be back next year, delivering on our pledge. Tickets are now on sale for 2018, with an early bird ticket price of £2.50 until the 31 December 2017.”

The audience were delighted with an eclectic mix of returning favourites played by the exceptional Sinfonia Viva, and conducted by James Holmes, such as Thunderbirds, music from Star Wars and the fantastic Bohemian Rhapsody. The audience joined in singing along with Steve Bloomer’s Watching and during the first half when everyone sang Happy Birthday to Derby on reaching 40 years as a City, Sinfonia Viva reaching its 35th birthday and Classic FM celebrating 25 years. The concert included a fantastic selection of music from a variety of performers, including baritone soloist Grant Doyle, who sang Funiculi Funicula and Runaway Train.

Sinfonia Viva’s Carers’ Choir, Sing Viva, and the popular Dalesmen Male Voice Choir also performed during the concert and were well received by the audience. The evening ended in traditional spectacular fashion with fireworks and a rendition of Land of Hope and Glory during which the audience waved their flags and umbrellas in time with the music.

Special guest, Dame Betty Brioche, made an appearance on stage during the concert interval, in advance of her performance in this year’s pantomime at Derby Arena, Beauty and the Beast. Morgan Brind, who plays the humorous character, is one of the Co-Directors at Little Wolf Entertainment who are co-producing the panto with Derby LIVE this Christmas. Dame Betty read out a list of dedications to those who were celebrating their birthday on 3 September and the audience enjoyed chatting to and having their photographs taken with the colourful Dame.

Audience comments on social media were extremely positive about the event:

Beverley Hutchinson commented on Facebook “Weather didn’t stop us enjoying the night, great to have it back in Derby!”

Attackmonkies@DerbyInPictures tweeted, “Loving the amazing Darley concert. So glad to have it back where it belongs #darley17”

Olive@oohlivvyarr tweeted, “Loving Darley Park concert :D who cares about the rain!”

The Hannells Darley Park Concert, will take place at Darley Park on Sunday 2 September 2018 from 6pm, with gates open from 2pm. Tickets are now available for £2.50 when bought by 31 December 2017, with under 16s free with a ticket. Tickets can be purchased from 01332 255800, online at derbylive.co.uk, or booked in person at the Sales and Information Centre, Assembly Rooms, Market Place, Derby.

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