About us


The Blackburn Sinfonia was founded in 1965. In 1997 the orchestra was renamed the Blackburn Symphony Orchestra to better reflect its status as one of the finest amateur orchestras in the North West, attracting players from the immediate area and across the north-west to work together with professional conductors and soloists to achieve a high standard of performance. We celebrated our 50th anniversary with a number of special concerts, including soloists Jennifer Pike and Martin Roscoe, who became our Honorary President in 2015.

A message from our Music Director/ Conductor, Richard Howarth:

We are looking forward to welcoming you to Blackburn Symphony Orchestra’s 2016-17 series of concerts. Following on from last year’s successful series we expect this year to be musically adventurous, breathtakingly exquisite and full of fun. We also love playing to large audiences so make sure you don’t miss out on all of the above. The orchestra is sounding better than ever and the musicians can’t wait to bring these exciting programmes to you.

Ever since I met and worked with the outstanding soprano, April Frederick, I’ve wanted to bring her to Blackburn for everyone to experience the sheer beauty of her voice,  The violinist Lily Whitehurst and pianist Slava Sidorenko, complete our fine soloist line-up. Expect to be transported to a dream world with Berlioz, a fantasy world with Vaughan Williams, and an epic space gallery with John Williams.

It is said that we all like different things , which is a good thing, as otherwise life would be quite dull. Luckily, the breadth and range of music on offer means that both players and audience will have something which hits the spot, We’re all very excited to play these amazing pieces for your enjoyment .

With your support we hope to continue contributing to the social and cultural life of Blackburn. We hope you will enjoy the programme and look forward to seeing you soon.