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We are thrilled to have united with The Philharmonia Orchestra on their latest new enterprise to reach out to a wider audience than ever before in Bedford, where the orchestra has been inhabitant of The Corn Exchange since way back in 1995. The Youth Participation Producer of the company Kayte Judge has become one of the Community Ambassadors for the Philharmonia Orchestra and is currently running ‘The Guest List’ initiative for the 2017/18 musical season. With the challenging but very worthwhile goal of reaching a more diverse audience with the music of the orchestra, an audience that more widely represents the local community, The Guest List is a ballot scheme that is set to offer a series of free and simplified experiences of The Philharmonia concerts for first timers to the world of classical music.

The first performance of the season took place on the 20th of October 2017 to great success, and was the initial test of The Guest List enterprise. Kayte and all of the guests were treated to a heartfelt welcome from the Philharmonia crew, they were also provided with priority access to the musician’s Virtual Orchestra experience and got to experience a live selection of classical tunes from famous composers such as Aaron Copland and Eric Wolfgang Korngold. For all in the group that attended, with organiser Kayte included, this was their very first experience of attending a classical concert.

Roxanna Forth, one of the pupils from The Hills Academy located in Bedford, was the youngest person in attendance to come along with the Guest List initiative as she is aged just 8 years old. Despite her young age, the student seemed very much to enjoy herself at the event and wrote the following review for us: “I went to The Philharmonia Orchestra concert with my mum and dad… It was like a wonderland and it made me feel so excited, happy and full of joy. My favourite part was the Virtual Reality because you could see how it happens and how they do it!!! …I do think people my age would like to go. I think I could persuade other people by telling them all the exciting things that have happened, I would love to go again!”
– Roxanna Forth – student at The Hills Academy

Mast Aladewolu, an additional Bedford occupant also came along to gain some insight and enjoy the exciting world of classical music:
“Wow I didn’t know what to expect, when I was invited along by Kayte and James, the Virtual Reality and Philharmonia Orchestra totally blow me away. I have never experienced anything like it, after the Virtual Reality tour it was great to see The Philharmonia Orchestra up close in reality, I will definitely come back and bring my family and friends.”
– Mast Aladewolu from Mastroe charity

If you would like any more information about The Guest List, or to put your name forward to be included in the ballot, please email


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