The Music of Bond, presented by the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra, returns for one night to the Royal Albert Hall in October...

The Music of Bond

19th August 2010

The Music of Bond, presented by the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra, returns following its debut performance last year to the Royal Albert Hall on Sunday 31st October 2010. With Bond girl nor Blackman returning as special guest present, this night is one not to be missed for Bond fans and music lovers alike.

The programme will include all the title songs list on the flyer below, plus purely orchestral works including the main James Bond theme and scenes from Goldfinger and On Her Majesty's Secret Service. Last year's event was a sell-out, so be sure to book your tickets soon via the official Royal Albert Hall event website.

2009 Show Review (Hampstead & Highgate Express)
There are few things that define James Bond more than its music. The succession of powerful themes which have accompanied five decades of films – starring Ian Fleming’s fictional spy – are as famous as the gadgets, the girls and the guns. And while some of the big screen offerings may have failed to impress, the music has been consistently good. This is largely thanks to composers, notably John Barry and more recently David Arnold. The artists too have made their mark with the inimitable powerhouse voices of Dame Shirley Bassey, Tom Jones, Lulu and Louis Armstrong among them.

So this performance at the Royal Albert Hall had much to live up to. But then this was the world-renowned Royal Philharmonic Orchestra so there wasn’t too much to worry about. The orchestra really shines in the Albert Hall where the acoustics accentuated the magnitude of the music. And the Bond theme is a perfect vehicle with its passionate, dramatic and soaring score.

The compere for the night was the delightful Honor Blackman, best known for her role as one of the most memorable Bond girls – Pussy Galore in Goldfinger. She took the audience on a journey through the history of
Bond films starting with Dr No in 1962 starring Sean Connery right through to 2008’s Quantum of Solace with Daniel Craig in the title role. Ms Blackman’s inside knowledge provided much amusement as did her quips about the other Bonds and villains.

But this was ultimately about the music. Full marks to the vocalists – Simon Bowman and Mary Carewe – for taking on iconic songs such as Goldfinger, Diamonds are Forever and Thunderball but the shadow of Bassey and Jones loomed heavily. That’s not to say the singing was bad – View to a Kill, Licence to Kill and The World is
not Enough were simply sublime and were more than a match for the originals. The orchestra – led by conductor
Carl Davis – was the true star here and never failed to disappoint. From the opening of The James Bond Theme to the Goldfinger instrumental and – possibly the highlight – On Her Majesty’s Secret Service.

It is such a pleasure to see an ensemble on a grand scale in a venue where you are never far from the stage, so that you can appreciate the collective talents laid before you. And judging by the rapturous applause from he audience as the finale played out, there were few people who could disagree.

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