On 1 February, the European Foundation for Support of Culture, together with the «Qazaqconcert» State Concert Organization and with the support of the British Embassy in Kazakhstan, held Days of Great Britain in the modern capital of Kazakhstan – Nur-Sultan-the capital, with a reputation that has transcended national borders and made it a deserving participant of the Capitals’ Club of the modern world.
Nur-Sultan is a city on the rise – literally and figuratively. Its stunning modern architecture is rising from the vast Asian steppe as its international reputation as a center of regional trade and politics grows alongside. The same is true of the city’s arts culture. The venues and the art you will find here reflect the history of Kazakhstan while pushing the boundaries of what came before.
The programme of the Days of Great Britain included concerts by highly acclaimed classical music performers and master classes by leading professors.
Concerts took place at Astana’s best concert halls: Zhabaev Concert Hall, Organ Hall, Kazakhstan Central Concert Hall, with the accompaniment of the Kazakh State Academy of Soloists Orchestra conducted by a graduate of the Conservatoire Regional de Musique in Lyon (France) and Felix Mendelssohn Bartholdy Music Academy in Leipzig (Germany), artistic director of many international competitions and festivals, maestro Alan Chircop (Malta).
World-class musicians took part in these events, as did the choir of the Kazakh National University of Arts, whose choirmaster Batyrgian Smakov, who has the highest male operatic voice in Kazakhstan. Together, they performed music by the most influential British composers: William Byrd, Henry Purcell, Edward Elgar, Gustav Holst, Arthur Sullivan and others.
A photo exhibition dedicated to the world’s most popular British band, The Beatles, was the highlight of the programme. The band’s songs were covered by guest artists during the concerts.