West Road Concert Hall
  • Mendelssohn Hebrides Overture
  • Elgar Sea Pictures
  • Britten Four Sea Interludes
  • Debussy La Mer
  • Mezzo-soprano Julia Portela Piñón
  • Conductor Robert Hodge

The oceans have a hundred moods, many of which can be relished in this imaginative programme, devoted entirely to the sea. Mendelssohn’s ‘Hebrides’ Overture, also known as ‘Fingal’s Cave’, was inspired by the composer’s tour of the Hebrides. Indeed, he jotted down the memorable musical phrase that opens the work inside the cave itself.

Photo of Julia Portela Piñón
Julia Portela Piñón

Elgar set five poems by five different poets, one of them his wife Alice, each of whom responded to the sea in a different way. This wonderful work is pure Elgar, pure sea, enhanced by our distinguished mezzo-soprano soloist: Julia Portela Piñón. Listening to Britten’s ‘Sea Interludes’ from his opera ‘Peter Grimes’, we feel the spray, smell the ozone and hear the roar of the ocean. Britten was an experienced composer for film, and this fine work may be thought of as ‘visual’, given its remarkable power of evocation. But such brilliant capture of mood predates the advent of film music.

Debussy’s La mer is gloriously colourful, one might say descriptive, complementing the picture that adorned the cover of the programme at its première in 1905: ‘The Hollow Wave’ by the Japanese artist, Hokusai.

Ticket Information

Admission: £18, £16 (concessions), £8 (students), £5 (under 14)

Advanced ticket sales:
  • Online
  • Phone: 01223 300085 (12:30 - 16:00 on Monday, 12:30 - 19:00 Tuesday - Friday, and 15:00 - 19:00 on Saturday).
  • In person: ADC Box Office, Park St, Cambridge, CB5 8AS – just off Jesus Lane
There is no booking fee but a 70p charge applies for postage. Tickets will also be available on the door (subject to availability).

West Road Concert Hall

11 West RoadCambridge CB3 9DP (map)
By Car
From Junction 12 of the M11 Drive for approx 1.5 miles into Cambridge (Barton Road) Turn left into Grange Road Turn 3rd right opposite Rugby Club (West Road) We are half way along the right hand side of West Road.
By Train
Trains run regularly to Cambridge from both London King’s Cross and London Liverpool Street. If you are coming from the North, it is advisable to change at Peterborough. West Road is a 10 to 15 minute taxi ride from the railway station.