Philharmonic WaterAid Orchestra

Meet the Philharmonic H2Orchestra

Commuters in London have been treated to a one-off performance from the WaterAid H2Orchestra – aiming to make the first week of 2014 a little more bearable bringing water to life through music.
Philharmonic WaterAid Orchestra

Members of the Royal Philharmonic Concert Orchestra swapped their usual instruments to play hundreds of glasses of water – the January drink of choice for the UK after the excess of Christmas and New Year. The exclusive performance on the bank of the Thames was celebrating the amazing power of water as a life giver, life saver and life changer.

Forgoing Mozart and Beethoven, the internationally renowned orchestra, spent 174 hours composing, preparing and rehearsing over the festive season perfecting the two-hour performance that moved the musicians into new musical territory as they performed the nation’s favourite songs from 2013 including Katy Perry’s Roar, Story Of My Life by One Direction, Adele’s Someone Like You, Let Me Go by Gary Barlow and Knew You Were Trouble by Taylor Swift.

Chris Wainwright from WaterAid said, “The talented musicians of the Royal Philharmonic Concert Orchestra have really helped bring water to life through music today.  Today there are over 760m people without access to safe, clean water – a human tragedy that results in the needless deaths of over of 2000 children each day.   This most basic of necessities is the one thing that changes everything for the world’s poorest communities. We hope that the WaterAid H2Orchestra not only shows the importance of water, but encourages people to support our mission – to bring safe, clean water to everyone everywhere by 2030.”


The six musicians of the WaterAid H2Orchestra played with glasses all filled to different levels – a precision art, just a millimeter out would create the wrong note. With no other way but trial and error, it took 60 hours to get each glass level right to ensure the correct pitch.

Ben Pope, Musical Director from The Royal Philharmonic Concert Orchestra said, “We were thrilled to work with WaterAid to provide this one-of-a-kind concert for London. It was a new challenge for us making sure that these well known songs translated beautifully when played with water. Water is the world’s most valuable and versatile resource and we hope we have helped highlight this through our music.”

To support WaterAid and their mission of a world where everyone everywhere has access to safe water and sanitation text WATER to 70300 to donate £5. #wateraidH2Orchestra.

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