Virgin Money Fireworks Concert Brings Edinburgh's Summer Festival Season To A Spectacular Close!
Virgin Money Fireworks Concert brings Edinburgh's summer festival season to a spectacular close!
Tonight, the 2019 Virgin Money Fireworks Concert drew to a stunning close as the sky filled with white strobing Chrysanthemum fireworks, bursting 225 metres above Edinburgh Castle to the closing bars of Berlioz's Symphonie fantastique.
More than 400,000 fireworks were launched during the concert in a display designed by Keith Webb of Pyrovision, synchronised to music performed live by the Scottish Chamber Orchestra, conducted by Marta Gardolińska.
Around 250,000 spectators watched the event across Edinburgh, the Lothians and Fife, enjoying the annual finale to the Edinburgh International Festival and the closing event of Edinburgh's summer festival season. Visitors to the Scottish capital joined residents, with 12,000 audience members in the Princes Street Gardens event arena, and thousands more watching from surrounding streets and vantage points across the city. Media partner Forth 1 extended the reach of the event across the city, broadcasting the concert live to an estimated 327,000 listeners.
In part one, the Scottish Chamber Orchestra was joined by Edinburgh-born opera star, mezzo-soprano Catriona Morison, who performed a special selection of music from operatic blockbusters Bizet's Carmen and Mozart's The Marriage of Figaro. The second part of the event saw the Scottish Chamber Orchestra take audiences on a magical journey into the supernatural, with a selection of music featuring Dukas' The Sorcerer's Apprentice - made world famous in Disney's Fantasia - and Berlioz's fiery Symphonie fantastique, accompanied by the fireworks display above Edinburgh Castle.
The spectacular 'Waterfall' captivated the audience as it descended over 130 feet down the Castle Rock, lasting for around 1 minute 30 seconds, featured during Dukas' The Sorcerer's Apprentice, with the waterfall representing the waterfalls featured during the same piece in Disney's classic film, Fantasia.
Organisers welcomed 280 guests from 14 community groups and organisations across Edinburgh, many of whom were attending the event for the very first time. Audience members included the Broomhouse Centre, LINKNet Mentoring, Multi-Cultural Family Base, North Edinburgh Arts, The Rock Trust, and Venchie Children & Young People's Project.
Earlier in the day, the fifth consecutive Virgin Money Schools Concert took place at the Ross Theatre in Princes St Gardens, which was enjoyed by over 2000 Primary 7 pupils from 37 schools across Edinburgh, who enjoyed live music from the Scottish Chamber Orchestra, performing a selection of highlights from the evening's programme.
The three event partners - Edinburgh International Festival, Scottish Chamber Orchestra and Virgin Money - are thrilled to offer a celebration which the whole city and its residents can share in, giving everyone more to enjoy on the final day of the summer festivals. Virgin Money's support of the Fireworks Concert continues until 2020.
In Princes Street Gardens where he enjoyed the Virgin Money Fireworks Concert Fergus Linehan, Director of the Edinburgh International Festival said, 'This year's Virgin Money Fireworks Concert was absolutely one of the best displays of its kind anywhere in the world. I would like to thank Virgin Money for their continued support of this incredible community event, and for their additional support which this year made possible the second of our Edinburgh Schools Concerts. The Virgin Money Fireworks Concert is always an amazing way to end the Edinburgh International Festival and to bring the city's bumper summer festivals season to a close.'
Louise Hodges, Head of Sponsorship and Consumer Communications at Clydesdale Bank said:
'Virgin Money is delighted to support the world-famous end of Festival Fireworks Concert and it is a fitting finale to what has been another wonderful International Festival. The display was stunning and the performance by the Scottish Chamber Orchestra was breath-taking. Community is at the heart of Virgin Money and it's amazing to think that the fireworks are enjoyed by so many people across Edinburgh as a fitting farewell to another fabulous festival season.'
Chief Executive of the Scottish Chamber Orchestra, Gavin Reid said: 'It's a real pleasure and privilege for the Scottish Chamber Orchestra to present the Virgin Money Fireworks Concert in such an iconic setting as we bid Edinburgh's summer festivals farewell for another year. Earlier today we were delighted to be joined by 2000 young people from schools across Edinburgh at the Virgin Money School Concert in Princes Street Gardens. We hope they all had a wonderful time enjoying some great music outside in the glorious sunshine. We'd like to thank the wonderful Catriona Morison for joining the Scottish Chamber Orchestra on stage tonight and huge thanks to everyone who has helped make this years' Virgin Money Fireworks Concert such a great success. We are rightly proud to work alongside the Edinburgh International Festival and our Major Partner and event sponsor Virgin Money to present this unique and world-renowned event for the people of Edinburgh.'
On the ramparts of Edinburgh Castle Keith Webb said, 'We're over the moon at another hugely successful Fireworks Concert. All the hard work and dedication the team has put in was well worth it. After all our efforts, it's still as thrilling an experience as ever to see it come together.'