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With so many Cantabrigans directly involved in the quest for knowledge, it is not surprising to find that they are also passionately interested in many forms of culture, ranging from the famous Footlights comedy revue that has produced famous names like John Cleese and Bill Oddie through to a wide variety of musical celebrations. This is a city that knows how to enjoy itself at every opportunity, which means there are many Cambridge gigs to go to and it isnít hard to find a good Cambridge gig guide.
Cambridge Music Festivals
The only pity about the wonderful celebration of classical music at the Cambridge Music Festival is that it is only celebrated every three years! The last was in 2009 and ran for three weeks in November so normally 2011 would be the next occasion but unfortunately this yearís Cambridge gig has been temporarily cancelled because of the resignation of Paul Gudgin. Previous festivals have been held in various colleges, often featuring choirs as well as instrumental pieces, so it is well worth looking out for any news about the next festival.
Fortunately, the Cambridge Summer Music Festival is running this year, with an interesting mix of jazz, Latin American music, string quartets, choral works and much much more. And donít forget the Cambridge Folk Festival that runs for three days at the end of July. Thereís a huge line up to enjoy, including the shanty singing Fishermenís Friends from Port Isaac in Cornwall and ceilidh music from the Shamrock isle, accessible music for all the family.
Cambridge Brass Band
You donít need to be an impoverished mining community to have your very own brass band, though it no doubt helped in the past! Any Cambridge gig guide to local music would have to list the City of Cambridge Brass Band, one of the most-established musical groups in the city, having been formed as early as 1900, when it was originally called the Albion Band. It first broadcast on the BBC radio in 1938 and performs concerts in and around the city, ranging out to Ely and Huntingdon. The band has also won numerous brass band competitions and even made it onto television, and if you canít make it to one of their Cambridge gigs you can always buy their music on a CD.
Kingís College Choir
One of the hottest tickets in the Cambridge musical calendar is to get into Kingís College on Christmas Eve and listen to the choir sing carols. They should have had plenty of practice, as they were established by King Henry VI when he set up the college back in 1441. Their carols performance is broadcast to millions every Christmas Eve but there really is nothing like attending this Cambridge gig in person. If, like most, you canít get a ticket, you can always hear them sing Evensong on most weekday evenings or you can attend one of their many travelling concerts. Alternatively, they have made numerous fine recordings on CD.
Pink Floyd (Syd Barrett)
Cambridge has produced a host of famous sons (and daughters), including some musical names. This list includes Syd Barrett, the remarkable star of the iconic rock band Pink Floyd. The band went through a series of names before emerging as Pink Floyd, a name Barrett claimed was given to him by a flying saucer at Glastonbury Tor. Well, there were a lot of hallucinatory substances around at the time, and the bandís work was described as psychedelic. They worked alongside many other big names of the late sixties/early seventies such as the Beatles but eventually Barrett broke away to go solo, enjoying more success before his withdrawal from public life and a return to Cambridge.
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For music fans, there are plenty of Cambridge gigs to choose from. For a Cambridge gig guide, visit the Cambridge News online.
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