Keys to the Universe

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Conceived in the hills of Majorca and composed during the dark days of world war 1, Gustav Holst’s The Planets Suite holds a special place in the hearts of audiences the world over.
Since it’s premiere in September 1918, its influence has stretched far and wide; it has been the soundtrack to countless films and television shows, is regularly referenced by rock musicians, was reconstructed as a patriotic hymn, and most famously, provided the inspiration for John Williams’ iconic score to the movie Star Wars.

What is less well known is the story of the version you are going to hear at these performances. Laying forgotten for over half a century, and recently unearthed after a series of serendipitous events, this magical arrangement for one piano four hands brings us closer to the original composition that Holst wrote before embarking on its orchestration.
Brought to life by acclaimed pianists, Robert Hunter and Zoë Mather, both of whom have their own links with the enigmatic story, you will discover a new way of listening to this famous work.

In the wonderful dome of Planetaria, our curator has put together a stunning collection of images of the seven planets to accompany each movement, surrounding you with the cosmos, and providing a unique audio visual experience to delight the senses and transport you to other worlds.