London Underground strangers orchestra performs

An orchestra made up entirely of strangers recruited while travelling on the London Underground took place on Saturday evening.

underground orchestra

A full 70-piece orchestra made up of musicians travelling on the London Underground performed at the O2 Shepherd's Bush Empire on 26 January as part of a charity challenge. Shaun Buswell set himself the task of forming an orchestra from passengers on the tube network by 12 December 2012, in order to perform at a top London venue.

Over the course of a year, Shaun approached musicians carrying their instruments within the boundaries of an Underground station. The project, known as the 12.12.12 Underground Orchestra Challenge, involved following a number of rules: Shaun was not allowed to know any of the musicians he approached, and he had to approach any musician he saw on the tube.

The concert, in aid of the charity Daytrippers, included a showcase of footage recorded during the orchestral journey, folk music, and classical music by Holst, Dvořák & Grieg. Even more obscure instruments like the euphonium, accordion and flugalhorn were represented in the performance - the only instrument Shaun didn't find was a cor anglais.

Daytrippers, a charity helping children with disabilities said they realised Shaun had set himself a huge musical challenge, made especially difficult by the fact that he can't read or write music. Charity representative Leila Talmage said: "Daytrippers were inspired by this huge undertaking as the disabled children and their families that we work with also face many of their own challenges daily. We loved the similarity and wanted to celebrate it."

Video: 12.12.12 Orchestra Challenge

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