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Sounds of Life

From the curlew’s call to the groaning of ice, the music of the natural world has always inspired musicians and writers. As the future of a liveable planet becomes the most urgent issue of our time, we launch Nature Unwrapped. The twelfth edition of Kings Place’s award-winning year-long series will explore the sounds of the biosphere, man’s interaction with nature, and reflect on the paths open to us to make change.

Renowned choral director Paul Hillier is an Associate Artist, opening with Songs of the Soil to the music of Arvo Pärt. From Brumel’s Earthquake Mass to Beethoven’s Pastoral Symphony, Messiaen’s Catalogue d’Oiseaux to Max Richter’s Seasons Recomposed, Bach’s Peasant Cantata to Mendelssohn’s Hebrides Overture, the series celebrates the inspiration of nature. Martin Simpson, Eliza Carthy and Nancy Kerr present Folk on Foot events, reflecting on the landscape. There will be ground-breaking music projects from Laura Cannell, John Luther Adams, Matthew Herbert and Ben Corrigan’s interactive Lydian Tree. Riot Ensemble bring GF Haas’s Solstices and Liza Lim’s Extinction Events, while Manchester Collective perform Crumb’s extraordinary Voice of the Whale.

Look out for more music events coming on sale, and for the spoken word programme, taking in poetry, nature writing, political debates and curated walks outside the building.

View shows & offers

Good Things Await - Film

Contemporary / Nature Unwrapped

As a pre-concert event to Songs of the Soil with Theatre of Voices, Paul Hillier wanted to show Phie Ambo’s beautifully- filmed, award-winning documentary Good Things Await, about a biodynamic farm in northern Denmark, and its farmer.

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Songs from the Soil

Classical / Nature Unwrapped

We welcome Theatre of Voices to open Nature Unwrapped’s music programme with a spell-binding evening of choral music by Jóhann Jóhannsson, Arvo Pärt and Michael Gordon.

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Storytelling - Step Carefully in the Forest

Words / Nature Unwrapped

Storyteller Matthew Crampton and pianist Olga Jegunova bring two mighty tales for a dark winter afternoon.

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Lau present - Unplugged

Folk / Nature Unwrapped

LAU present their celebrated songs in a naked form, in what they consider to be the band’s natural environment: entirely acoustic. Back to nature.

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Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment – Cell Your Soul

Classical / Bach, the Universe & Everything

The science: Professor Buzz Baum works at the intersection of biology and physics. He is trying to understand how cells evolve. This cantata repurposes a famous tune from Bach’s St Matthew Passion.

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Kate in the Kettle

Folk / Nature Unwrapped

Kate Young’s compositions are a thing to behold - rhythmically entrancing folk originals which explore the depths of nature's potential for healing.

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Aurora Orchestra with Nicholas Angelich

Classical / Aurora Orchestra

Aurora enters the fifth and final year of its Mozart’s Piano series with the American pianist Nicholas Angelich making his Kings Place debut.

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Albion Quartet

Classical / Nature Unwrapped

The Albion Quartet bring a trio of work inspired by the natural world.

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Riot Ensemble

Contemporary / Nature Unwrapped

This is the first in Riot Ensemble’s ReNEW series at Kings Place, bringing the cream of international contemporary music on to the Hall One stage.

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Aurora Orchestra: Far, Far Away

Family / Nature Unwrapped

Join Aurora Orchestra for a magical, musical adventure of Chopin waltzes, dancing dragonflies and a very sleepy tortoise.

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Aurora Orchestra: Far, Far Away

Family / Nature Unwrapped

Join Aurora Orchestra for a magical, musical adventure of Chopin waltzes, dancing dragonflies and a very sleepy tortoise.

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Västerås Sinfonietta & Simon Crawford-Phillips

Classical / Nature Unwrapped

A programme of wind, waves and forest murmurs from Sweden’s dynamic Västerås Sinfonietta, featuring Lawrence Power and Paul Watkins under the baton of chief conductor Simon Crawford-Phillips.

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Aurora Orchestra: Far, Far Away

Family / Nature Unwrapped

Join Aurora Orchestra for a magical, musical adventure of Chopin waltzes, dancing dragonflies and a very sleepy tortoise.

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Aurora Orchestra: Far, Far Away

Family / Nature Unwrapped

Join Aurora Orchestra for a magical, musical adventure of Chopin waltzes, dancing dragonflies and a very sleepy tortoise.

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Vox Luminis

Classical / Nature Unwrapped

An evening of Lamentation in the face of wanton destruction. Allow Vox Luminis to immerse you in a meditative tapestry of voices. 

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Wild Singing: Eliza Carthy

Folk / Nature Unwrapped

Eliza Carthy is one of the most influential figures in the UK folk scene. Ahead of a live performance, Eliza will be in conversation with Folk on Foot podcast host Matthew Bannister

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Wild Singing: Nancy Kerr and James Fagan

Folk / Nature Unwrapped

Nancy and her husband James join us for a high-energy show. Ahead of a live performance, Nancy will be in conversation with Folk on Foot podcast host Matthew Bannister.

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Wild Singing: Martin Simpson

Folk / Nature Unwrapped

Regularly voted one of the world’s greatest guitarists, Martin Simpson has been nominated for an astonishing 23 Radio 2 Folk Awards – and won artist of the year twice.

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Four Seasons: Recomposed with 12 ensemble

Classical / Nature Unwrapped

The critically-acclaimed 12 ensemble return to Kings Place with a specially curated programme of works by Max Richter. Long-term collaborators of the composer, the 12 ensemble will be performing the ground-breaking Four Seasons: Recomposed with

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Firebird Orchestra

Classical / Nature Unwrapped

Inspired by their name, the Firebird Orchestra explores some of Nature’s ornithological themes in music.

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Aurora Orchestra with Ingrid Fliter

Classical / Aurora Orchestra

This scintillating programme includes a symphony performed entirely from memory; a work of orchestral theatre from Harrison Birtwistle; and a first collaboration with Argentinian pianist Ingrid Fliter.

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Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment – Can Bacterium Compute?

Classical / Bach, the Universe & Everything

The science: Professor Susan Stepney introduces us to different types of non-conventional computing. The music: This cantata marks Pentecost, and the descent of the Holy Spirit upon the Apostles.

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Bach in the Country: The Secular Cantatas

Classical / Nature Unwrapped

Bach’s Cantate Burlesque (known as the Peasant Cantata) and his Coffee Cantata – two short comic operas, written in collaboration with Bach’s favourite librettist Picander.

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