A Musical Anniversary in Birmingham

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Bruce Springsteen is just one of dozens of top stars who've played Birmingham's Symphony Hall over the past 21 years.
Bruce Springsteen is just one of dozens of top stars who've played Birmingham's Symphony Hall over the past 21 years.

In Birmingham, a big birthday was recently celebrated when the city’s Symphony Hall celebrated its 21st anniversary, after being opened by Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth in 1991.  It was a milestone worthy of a teenager sipping his first legal pint in America.

To keep the celebration alive, a series of anniversary concerts are planned. Sir Simon Rattle will conduct the Vienna Philharmonic in a massed, promenade-style performance featuring 600 city schoolchildren. Another show will feature music icon Tony Bennett and guitarist George Benson.

More than 10 million music lovers have enjoyed shows at Symphony Hall over the past 21 years, and artists who have played there include musical royalty like Bruce Springsteen, Ravi Shankar, Liza Minelli, Morrissey, and Yehudi Menuhin.

Over the next seven months some of the highlighted acts will be The Royal Opera, Billy Connally, Elvis Costello, Philip Glass and the Kronos Quartet.

The Birmingham NEC is served by a Holiday Inn (www.cpbirminghamnechotel.co.uk), conveniently placed for both conferences and transport connections to the center of Birmingham.