Belfast Telegraph

City of Culture events near end

Scottish pipers teamed up with an Irish bodhran drummer for the last major event of Derry's year as City of Culture.

Traditional music legend Liam O'Maonlai joined Glasgow bagpipers for a fitting encore to a special year in Northern Ireland's second city.

Shaun Davey's Relief of Derry Symphony brought together 220 musicians for a memorable night of massed percussion and carols.

The event was held at a former British Army barracks in Ebrington which has become a symbol of change from conflict to peace.

Modern art's Turner Prize was awarded there earlier this month and thousands of fans descended on the venue for live pop and dance music during Radio 1's Big Weekend last spring.

The Dalai Lama addressed hundreds in the semi-permanent tent-like structure erected to host many of the City of Culture events.

Tonight the Ulster Orchestra and Uilleann piper Liam O'Flynn performed in perfect harmony, an enormous drum and harp dominating the stage.

One piece, May We Never Have to Say Goodbye, was composed for the Special Olympics in Dublin in 2003 to celebrate people coming together and provided a symbol-laden piece of musical theatre.

The Relief of Derry Symphony was originally played 20 years ago in the city, when the Troubles still wracked Derry and Ebrington was an austere home to troops.

The symphony's composer Mr Davey said: "The occasion to repeat a concert not only brings a box of music back to life, it sometimes brings fresh opportunity.

"To mark the City of Culture year the Relief of Derry has been typeset - which means it can now be digitally preserved."

The next UK City of Culture will be Hull.

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