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Les Illuminations, a performance by Cambridge Philharmonic and Chorus

An uplifting blend of orchestral and choral works including: Britten Les Illuminations, Ravel Pavane pour une Infante Défunte & Ma Mère l’Oye Suite, Lucy Armstrong The Alchemical Kitchen, Boulanger Vielle Prière Bouddhique, Poulenc Gloria

  • 18th March 2023 - 18th March 2023
  • 7:30 pm - 9:45 pm

‘I alone have the key to this savage parade’ – surrealist French poet Arthur Rimbaud’s poetry comes to luminous life in Britten’s iconic song cycle, Les Illuminations. Acclaimed tenor – and associate director of the Dunedin Consort – Nicholas Mulroy joins the orchestra for this intriguing and mystical work.

Mysticism pervades the rest of this programme, which brings together old and new. Boulanger’s Vieille Prière Bouddhique sets a 5th Century Buddhist prayer in an intoxicating musical language, whilst Ravel’s Pavane and Ma Mère l’Oye demonstrate the French composer’s mastery of orchestration. The concert culminates in Poulenc’s staggering Gloria, which is a technicolour showpiece for chorus and orchestra alike.

We are also delighted to commission a new choral-orchestral work for this concert ‘The Alchemical Kitchen’ by talented young composer Lucy Armstrong, with text by Rebecca Hurst.

Soprano Jenny Stafford
Tenor Nicholas Mulroy
Conductor Tom Primrose
Cambridge Philharmonic Chorus & Orchestra

Britten Les Illuminations, Ravel Pavane pour une Infante Défunte & Ma Mère l’Oye Suite, Lucy Armstrong The Alchemical Kitchen, Boulanger Vielle Prière Bouddhique, Poulenc Gloria

Tickets: From £15. Discounts available for Students & Under 18s Please note that tickets are purchased on a non-refundable basis.

Access: The building is fully accessible to wheelchair users, with ramps and accessible toilet facilities. Click HERE to find out more. If you require a free carer’s ticket or have additional access requirements, please get in touch tickets@cam-phil.org.uk

TICKETS WILL REMAIN ON SALE UNTIL MIDNIGHT ON THE 17TH MARCH 2023.At this point any remaining tickets will only be available ‘on the door’ – Cash or card accepted. Please email tickets@cam-phil.org.uk to check availability.


  • Accessibility Guide
  • Bar
  • Car Parking
  • Cloakroom facilities
  • Disabled Accessibility
  • Facilities for Disabled Guests

Accessibility Facilities

  • Accessibility Guide
  • Assistance dogs welcome
  • Blue Badge Parking
  • Designated wheelchair public toilet
  • Induction loops
  • Wheel chair accessible

Did you know?

One of the most famous figures in English history, Oliver Cromwell, was laid to rest at Westminster Abbey, but his decapitated head is buried in the grounds of Sidney Sussex College in Cambridge. Grisly but true!