The Lord of the Rings & The Hobbit – the concert

J. R. R. Tolkien’s masterpiece in concert: Oscar-winning music of Howard Shore, Annie Lennox, Enya, Ed Sheeran and the new Amazon series “The Rings of Power” – with a star guest, symphonic orchestra and choir.

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THE SHIRE

The fantastic world of hobbits and elves from J.R.R. Tolkien’s „Lord of the Rings“ comes as concert with symphonic orchestra and choir. In a two-hour evening performance, the legendary world of the Hobbits is brought to life in a unique musical event. From the threatening sounds of Mordor and the shrill attack of the black riders to the beautiful lyrical melodies of the elves – it will transform any concert hall into a musical setting of Middle-earth. Howard Shore, who composed the music for the film trilogy „The Lord of the Rings“ and „The Hobbit“, was awarded an Oscar for it. As with Richard Wagner’s „Ring des Nibelungen“, his leitmotifs let the audience feel in the flesh when the ring unfolds its power and corrupts the bearer of all power: A parable that fits perfectly into today’s age. The press celebrates „The Lord of the Rings & the Hobbit – the Concert“ as a „highly emotional and mythical experience“ and praises: „Nearly 100 actors – from the well-playing orchestra to the vocal Shire Choir to the outstanding soloists – showed their commitment to transport the audience into Tolkien’s world-famous fantasy world… Whether bombastic with timpani and gongs or elven-like delicate flute tones: The well-known, Oscarwinning melodies by Howard Shore from the film trilogy were heard again and again, immediately providing the right „cinema in the head“…. In the end, neither the audience nor the musicians held their ground on the chairs. The audience managed to get the actors on stage for three encores with standing ovations“. J. R. R. Tolkien John Ronald Reuel Tolkien (1892-1973) became world famous with his novel cycle „The Lord of the Rings“. Throughout his life he devoted himself to the ‚history‘ of his fictional Middle-Earth Empire. Not only George Lucas has visibly gained inspiration for his „Star Wars“ series. His stories also served as a model for many other works, whereby the remake of Peter Jackson in particular triggered a renaissance of the ring cult. In the movie trilogy „The Hobbit“ this was continued. Already early J.R.R. discovered his love for languages. Welsh, Old English, Greek, French and German belonged to his preferred subjects during his school education. After his mother’s death, Tolkien was raised first by an aunt and later by a foster family. From 1911 he studied at Exeter College in Oxford, graduated in 1915 and went to war in 1918. In 1925 Tolkien was appointed professor at Oxford University, where his idea for the „Hobbit“ was born. Originally intended as entertainment for his children and initially written without the idea of a commercial publication, the „Hobbit“ was presented by a former student of Tolkien to the publisher Allen&Unwin, who published the story attentively in 1937. Although „The Little Hobbit“ was not a bestseller, there were requests for a continuation of the story. From 1936 to 1949 Tolkien wrote „The Lord of the Rings“. The first two volumes appeared in 1954 – a cult was born. In 1973 Tolkien died at the age of 81. His son Christopher took care of the publication of further stories from Middle-earth after his death. About 25 years after his death, the production of the film trilogy „The Lord of the Rings“ began with a budget of 190 million dollars. It became one of the most successful film productions of all times.

CHOIR AND ORCHESTRA OF THE SHIRE &
A STATE SYMPHONY ORCHESTRA OF UKRAINE

The Orchestra and Choir of The Shire has performed in the leading music halls in the world, from the Concertgebouw in Amsterdam to the Konzerthaus in Vienna, and cooperates on this tour – despite the war – with a national Ukrainian State Orchestra: The Academic Khmelnitsky Philharmonic Symphony Orchestra.

Created in 2001 and led by chief conductor and Honored Art Worker of Ukraine Sergiy Leonov, the orchestra has won the hearts of many listeners of classical music. It is often praised for its coherence and balanced sound and known for its successful cooperation with the leading conductors and soloists from Ukraine and abroad. The orchestra comes from western Ukraine and performs a wide repertoire from different musical eras, with a special focus on Ukrainian composers. The repertoire includes symphony concerts and opera performances such as Puccini’s “Tosca”, Mozart’s “Magic Flute” and Strauss‘ operetta “Die Fledermaus”.

Besides performing classical music on the highest level, the orchestra participates in multiple rock music projects – from “The Best of Rock”‘ to “Legends of Rock”. Under the supervision of Honored Artist of Ukraine Sergey Rabiychuk it collaborated with world known singers and music by Bon Jovi, Deep Purple, Pink Floyd, Led Zeppelin, Queen and The Scorpions. Rabiychuk has written more than 200 transcriptions for the Academic Khmelnitsky Philharmonic Symphony Orchestra. He also participated as an arranger in the popular TV shows “Star+Star” and “People’s Star”, and he was the lead conductor of Berlin Tattoo and Musikparade in Germany.

Composers

Howard Shore

Howard Shore is one of the most important composers of film music ever. Among his incredibly versatile works are the settings of “The Silence of the Lambs”, “Philadelphia”, “Seven”, “Panic Room” and “The Aviator”. The long-standing collaboration with the Canadian director David Cronenberg, for whom he wrote, among others, the music “The Fly”, “Naked Lunch”, “Spider” and “A History of Violence”, plays an important role in his work. His most famous work, however, is the music for Peter Jackson’s “Lord of the Rings”
trilogy. Only through Shore’s sophisticated leitmotif technique, for which he intensively studied the “Rheingold” by Richard Wagner, the films reach their dramaturgical depth. For the music Shore received his first Oscar and a Grammy. In 2004, he received a Grammy, two Golden Globes and two Oscars, and in 2005 he received two Grammys again for the third part of the trilogy. In 2005, Shore received the Golden Globe for the soundtrack for
“Aviator”.

Ed Sheeran

Having sold more than 150 million records worldwide, Ed Sheeran needs little introduction. An English singer-songwriter and one of the world’s best-selling music artists, Sheeran can lay claim to having the highest-grossing concert tour of all time. He has received four Grammys, five Brit Awards, and was appointed an MBE in 2017. His forays into the world of film go beyond having a song featuring in the end credits of “The Hobbit: The Desolation
of Smaug”. As well as cameos in “Game of Thrones” and “Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker”, he played himself in Danny Boyle’s “Yesterday”. Born in Yorkshire, he has recently been recognized as the fourth greatest Yorkshireman, behind Michael Palin, Sean Bean and Patrick Stewart.

Annie Lennox

Best known for fronting Eurythmics in the 1980s, Anne Lennox is a Scottish singer-songwriter, activist and philanthropist. With four Grammys and eight Brit Awards to her name, Lennox has been dubbed the ‘Brits Champion of Champions.’ Her original song, “Into the West”, which featured in “The Lord of The Rings: The Return of the King”, earned her both a Golden Globe and an Academy Award. Dubbed by Rolling Stone ‘the greatest white soul singer alive,’ she is arguably the most successful female British artist in UK music
history. She also campaigns tirelessly to raise money and awareness for women and children in Africa affected by HIV/AIDS.

Enya

A hugely successful Irish singer-songwriter, Enya began her musical career with the Celtic folk band Clannad. She soon left the band to pursue a solo career and is now Ireland’s best-selling solo artist, and second-best artist overall behind U2. With sales of 75 million records worldwide, Enya has won seven World Music Awards, four Grammys, and an Ivor Novello Award. Her song, “May it Be” written for “The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of
the Ring”, was nominated for both a Golden Globe and an Academy Award.

STAR GUESTS FROM PAST & PRESENT

(The guest on your date will be published before the concert)

William Kircher

William Kircher has played the dwarf Bifur in the three “The Hobbit” film adaptations: “An Unexpected Journey”, “Desolation of Smaug” and “The Battle of the Five Armies”. He is famous for surviving the three films with an orc ax in his forehead. In the Tolkien language Khuzdul, he is truly Khuzd Belkul, which means “Mighty Dwarf”. “The Hobbit” tells the story of Bilbo Baggins, who takes a group of dwarves on an unexpected journey to reclaim their gold from a dragon. William Kircher plays the warrior and toymaker Bifur as a dwarf.

Sir Christopher Lee

Christopher Lee, the physically towering British movie actor who lent his distinguished good looks, Shakespearean voice and aristocratic presence to a gallery of villains, from Dracula to Saruman in “The Lord of the Rings”, was instrumental in the earliest of these concerts and was our first ever guest. Lee was 35 when his breakthrough film, Terence Fisher’s British horror “The Curse of Frankenstein”, was released in 1957. He played the creature. But it was a year later, exuding a certain lascivious sex appeal, when he played the title role in Fisher’s “Dracula”, that his cinematic identity became forever associated with Bram Stoker’s noble, ravenous vampire. Despite his prominent status as a horror icon, only fifteen or so of his roughly 250 film and television appearances were within that genre, and that includes at least ten outings as Dracula. Lee continued acting into his 90s, appearing in Tim Burton’s “Dark Shadows”, turning to the dark side as a Sith Lord in the “Star Wars” franchise, and reprising his role as the wicked wizard, Saruman, in Peter Jackson’s “The Hobbit” trilogy. “What Professor Tolkien achieved is unique in the literature of my lifetime. Indeed, in my opinion, he had reached the peak of literary invention of all time. Nothing like it has ever existed, and probably never will.” – Christopher Lee.

Billy Boyd

A Scottish actor and musician, Billy is perhaps best known for his portrayal of Pippin in “The Lord of the Rings”. He wrote the music for and sang the song “The Edge of Night” from “The Return of the King”, and also wrote and performed the song “The Last Goodbye”, which features in the end credits of “The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies”. As well as fronting a band called Beecake and being voted the most eligible man in Scotland in 2002, Billy also compared an earlier incarnation of this very show!

Jed Brophy

Jed Brophy is best known for portraying Nori, the Dwarf in “The Hobbit” Trilogy. He spent nearly 300 days in makeup and heavy dwarven costume. He was born in Taihape, New Zealand, and grew up on a Sheep and Cattle farm in The Ruanui Valley out of Mataroa. He studied physical education at the University of Otago. It was during this degree course that he was introduced to drama and completed his studies at the New Zealand Drama School Toi Wha kaari, graduating in 1988. For the first four years, he concentrated on theatre, touring New Zealand in “Ladies Night” in 1989, before landing his first film role. He won Best Actor at the Drifting Cloud Film Awards‘ for the short film “Group Therapy” in 1998. A fringe First at the Edinburgh Festival for Skin Tight. In 2009, Jed won The Chapman Tripp Award for Wellington Actor of the Year for the play “The Blackening”.

Sean Astin

Sean Astin has demonstrated his innate ability to share his heart with the world through such iconic roles as Mikey Walsh in “The Goonies”, the title character of “Rudy”, and Bob Newby in “Stranger Things 2”, roles that epitomise hope, determination and loyalty. Sean experienced another career breakthrough with his role as the epitome of loyal sidekicks, Samwise Gamgee, in Peter Jackson’s “The Lord of the Rings” trilogy, released in 2001, 2002 and 2003. Along with the many awards bestowed upon the trilogy (particularly its final instalment “The Return of the King”), Sean received nominations for his own performance.

Royd Tolkien

Royd was born in Kent, and at the age of three moved to Wales where he still lives. His great-grandfather, J. R. R. Tolkien, died when Royd was young, but Royd inherited the love of storytelling and entertainment. His parents read “The Hobbit” to him when he was young, and the characters and their world became firmly entrenched in his imagination. He was fortunate enough to be invited to play a Ranger of Gondor in Peter Jackson’s “The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King”, and later a Ranger Captain in “The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug”. In 2014, upon invitation of George R.R. Martin, Royd went to Belfast during filming of “Game of Thrones” and once again found his way onto the screen, portraying a wildling.

J.R.R. Tolkien

John Ronald Reuel Tolkien (1892-1973) became world famous with his novel cycle “The Lord of the Rings”. Throughout his life he devoted himself to the history of his fictional Middle-Earth Empire. Not only George Lucas has visibly gained inspiration for his “Star Wars” series. His stories also served as a model for many other works, where the remake of Peter Jackson in particular triggered a renaissance of the Ring cult. In the movie trilogy “The Hobbit” this was continued.

Already early J.R.R. discovered his love for languages. Welsh, Old English, Greek, French and German belonged to his preferred subjects during his school education. After his mother’s death, Tolkien was raised first by an aunt and later by a foster family. From 1911 he studied at Exeter College in Oxford, graduated in 1915 and went to war in 1918. In 1925 Tolkien was appointed professor at Oxford University, where his idea for the Hobbit was born. Originally intended as entertainment for his children and initially written without the idea of a commercial publication, the Hobbit was presented by a former student of Tolkien to the publisher Allen & Unwin, who published the story attentively in 1937. Although “The Little Hobbit’’ was not a bestseller, there were requests for a continuation of the story.

From 1936 to 1949 Tolkien wrote “The Lord of the Rings”. The first two volumes appeared in 1954 – a cult was born. In 1973 Tolkien died at the age of 81. His son Christopher took care of the publication of further stories from Middle-earth after his death. About 25 years after his death, the production of the film trilogy “The Lord of the Rings” began with a budget of 190 million dollars. It became one of the most successful film productions of all time.

Press reviews

„…Fascinating how the spark ignites at this concert. … And not only real Frodo disciples should get their money’s worth with so much well-done entertainment. …And lo and behold, the Gewandhaus becomes Middle-earth.“ Leipziger Volkszeitung „Nearly 100 performers – from the well-playing orchestra to the vocally strong Auenland Choir to the outstanding soloists – showed their commitment to bring the audience into Tolkien’s world-famous fantasy world… Whether bombastic with kettledrums and gongs or elven-like tender flute tones: Again and again the well-known, Oscar-winning melodies by Howard Shore from the film trilogy sounded, which immediately provided the right „cinema in the head“…. In the end, neither the audience nor the musicians held their seats. The audience managed to get the actors on stage with three encores with standing ovations“. Westfalen-Blatt

„The mood, anyway, was great, a lot of incidental applause. At the end there was a standing ovation and a full, danceable encore package – the Aegi audience celebrated, clapped and cheered as if they were finally back in the Shire after some bad adventures. The evening was fun.“ Neue Presse

„Successful event, ecstatic audience!“ Neue Presse

„You will witness an elaborate production. … The choir and the orchestra play the soundtrack with great force and passion, while the vocal soloists provide lyrical moments. … The ensemble is rewarded with standing ovations.“ Osnabrücker Zeitung

„A highly emotional and mythical experience not only for die-hard „Lord of the Rings“ fans was the live concert of the probably most famous saga in the world…. The tension and romanticism of the powerful sound creation with echoes of Wagner’s operas or Orff’s Carmina Burana was perceptible at all times and always provided goose bumps – and plenty of applause for the artists.“ Allgemeine Zeitung

„The audience was thrilled. The Gollum song was especially well received – and of course the original compositions of Hobbit actor Billy Boyd …“ Mainpost