Top 80s pop acts, choirs, bands and orchestras in Suffolk's summer of music

Suffolk Philharmonic Orchestra will be playing in the county's summer of music

Suffolk Philharmonic Orchestra will be playing in the county's summer of music - Credit: Patricia Mathieson

Toyah, Howard Jones, Adam Ant, Heaven 17, and Ipswich’s own Nik Kershaw – some of the biggest names in 1980s pop music - will be taking to the stage in Trinity Park, Ipswich, to mark the climax of the Festival of Suffolk, the county’s celebration of the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee.

The Festival of Suffolk, inspired by the Suffolk Lieutenancy, is a series of fantastic events and activities happening between May and October which includes big landmark events as well as smaller community ones which give a platform to homegrown talent and bring people together.

Music plays a central role in the celebrations to mark 70th anniversary of Her Majesty’s ascension to the throne.

The RHS Marching Band will be playing at the Festival of the Sea

The RHS Marching Band will be playing at the Festival of the Sea - Credit: CliQQ Photography

Tim Holder, for The Festival Of Suffolk, said: “‘It’s so great that the Festival Of Suffolk is packed to rafters with the most incredible programme of music and cultural events of all kinds.

“In a talent-packed county like Suffolk, this was probably always going to be the case and the quality of what’s on offer is as varied as it is brilliant.

"For performers, the places they perform and the audiences for whom they perform, this is a really important and wonderful opportunity to get out and feel the healing power of the arts and help everyone in Suffolk to get life back on track. There really is something out there for everyone to enjoy.”

Retro music festival Let’s Rock will ensure the festival ends with a giant party when it takes over Trinity Park on September 10, 2022. Also on the bill will be such legendary acts as Go West, ABC, Sonia, Tenpole Tudor, Living In A Box and electropop pioneers Orchestral Manoeuvres in the Dark, all providing a family-friendly finale to Suffolk’s summer of fun.

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In West Suffolk, St Edmundsbury Cathedral will be playing host to the Suffolk Philharmonic Orchestra on May 28, 2022, for a concert which marks two important milestones. ‘Into the Light’ will be a combined celebration of 1,000 years of the Abbey of St Edmund and the 10th Anniversary of the Suffolk Philharmonic Orchestra.

Thorington Theatre Suffolk

Thorington Theatre - Credit: Joey O'Hare

The evening starts with Britten’s Fanfare for St Edmundsbury, first performed in the Abbey ruins in 1959. Then the English Arts Chorale sing Parry’s ‘I Was Glad’, followed by the world première of Paul Carr’s Into the Light, with the acclaimed tenor James Gilchrist as soloist. The evening concludes with Elgar’s Enigma Variations featuring audience favourite Nimrod.

Then, for six weeks through June and early July, the Suffolk Philharmonic Orchestra will be undertaking their ‘The Larks Flight over Suffolk’ Concert Tour, performing Ralph Vaughan Williams’ The Lark Ascending at intimate venues in Bury St Edmunds, Eye, Carlton Marshes, Aldeburgh, Felixstowe and Hadleigh.

Also in West Suffolk is the Red Rooster Festival, held at Euston Hall, near Thetford, which celebrates the best in cajun, soul, rock n roll, blues, roots and country music.

On the bill are Bluesman Seasick Steve, US-born but also former University of East Anglia student Nick Waterhouse, along with the North Mississippi All-Stars, Cedric Burnside, Sugarray Rayford, Joshua Hedley, Smoke Fairies, Marcus Bonfanti, Beth Rowley, The Courettes and The Sheepdogs.

The Festival runs from June 2 until June 4, 2022, and to mark the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee the Red Rooster Festival will be lighting the beacon in Euston Park on its opening day.

Felixstowe Community Choir will be helping to celebrate the jubilee

Felixstowe Community Choir will be helping to celebrate the jubilee - Credit: Rachel Sloane

Across the county, open-air Thorington Theatre, just outside Southwold, will be hosting a Best of British Show on June 4, 2022.

Suffolk-based, internationally-renowned coloratura soprano Christina Johnston, and an ensemble of classical musicians, will bring the very ‘best of British’ to Thorington to honour the Queen’s Jubilee.

The venue will host a spectacular evening celebrating Her Majesty’s 70th year of service with such patriotic anthems as Land of Hope and Glory, Rule Britannia, God Save the Queen, You’ll Never Walk Alone, and many more stirring songs frequently performed at the Proms, along with West End hits and classical favourites.

As part of the Festival of the Sea, The Royal Hospital School, Holbrook, is hosting a series of family events including on Sunday, June 12 when a Picnic-in-the-Park which will feature a joint concert between The Royal Marines School of Band and the Royal Hospital School of Music Band, while at 5pm there will be a Jubilee Thanksgiving Service in partnership with the Royal Marines School of Music Band and the Holbrook Choral Society, along with churches and parishes of the local area.

Meanwhile, in Southwold, Matthew Townshend Productions will be staging a Jubilee Celebration Week from: June 1-3, 2022, featuring a wide range of events designed to appeal to the whole family.

On August 29, 2022, the Spa Gardens on Felixstowe seafront will be the setting for a free open-air concert with the Festival Orchestra and the Felixstowe Community Choir. The 2pm performance marks the 10th anniversary of the community choir while the 7pm show revisits some of the most loved and distinctive movie and TV music from the past 70 years.