Universe of Sound – Birmingham Municipal Bank

Visitors to Universe of Sound - The Planets can experience a planetarium-style full-dome 360 degree projection of the Philharmonia Orchestra performing Holst's work credit Jas Sansi

Screen Shot 2013-06-10 at 10.54.20


Town Hall & Symphony Hall Birmingham and Philharmonia Orchestra have recently launched digital music installation Universe of Sound: The Planets in Birmingham’s disused Municipal Bank.

Visitors experiencing Universe of Sound can walk through each individual section of the orchestra’s part in the piece, screened in various rooms and partitioned areas within the great Municipal Bank building. The 105-piece orchestra was filmed using 37 cameras, and the projections show not only the parts where the musician participates, but the tense and atmospheric pauses when the musicians are waiting for their turns to play.

There are interactive parts too: you can play along with the orchestra by playing the tamtam, snare and glockenspiel (and a few more I can’t remember the names of) in the percussion room. There are also digital simulators where you can conduct.

Even from a non-classical music person perspective, I can confidently say that it is an experience worth visiting and appreciating whilst it’s here in our city.

You have six days left to go, it finishes on the 16th June. I’ve been twice and hope to go again before it finishes at the weekend. 


Image credit: Jas Sansi/THSH