The orchestra consists mainly of members of the healthcare profession, including many from the John Radcliffe Hospital and other Oxford hospitals, and we have been rehearsing and performing there for nearly 40 years. There are usually three concerts a year and we often fill the Tingewick Hall with an enthusiastic audience. Each concert is in aid of one or more medical charities.
The orchestra consists mainly of healthcare workers, including many from the John Radcliffe Hospital and other Oxford hospitals, and we have been rehearsing and performing on these sites for over 40 years. We usually give three concerts a year in Tingewick Hall at the John Radcliffe Hospital, but the hall is currently unavailable. Each concert is in aid of one or more medical charities, and the orchestra itself is supported by the Oxford Hospitals Charity.
In 1978 a group of hospital musicians, led by respiratory consultant Dr Donald Lane, came together to give a concert in memory of a young nurse named Jill Broadis who had died of melanoma, and helped to launch a memorial fund for cancer research in her name. This concert then became a regular event for 20 years. Gradually, extra concerts were added, each supporting other medically-related charities. Over time, the number of musicians involved grew to a full-size symphony orchestra, and moved from the old Radcliffe Infirmary to the larger venue of the Tingewick Hall at the John Radcliffe Hospital, becoming the Radcliffe Orchestra.
The winning formula of the orchestra, liaising with a charity to host a concert on a Saturday evening, with refreshments being provided after, was established early on, and has persisted since. The players are drawn from all walks of the healthcare services in Oxfordshire, including porters, pharmacists, technicians, scientists, medical students, nurses, physiotherapists, clerical staff, GPs, as well as junior and senior doctors. Family members and friends also help swell the numbers up to a full symphony orchestra.
Dr Donald Lane, also a viola player, pianist and composer, founded and conducted the orchestra from 1978 and saw the concerts through their 25th anniversary year. In 2004, he handed the running of the orchestra over to a committee chaired by Professor John Stradling, also a respiratory consultant, who was in turn succeeded by Dr Rosie Adams, a radiology consultant, in 2017.Over the years we have had the privilege of working with a wide range of talented musicians, both professional and amateur, who have performed as soloists with the orchestra. In recent years we have also been fortunate to have amazing conductors prepared to rehearse the orchestra for 6 to 7 weeks prior to the Saturday concert. Our most loyal conductor in the modern era has been Catherine Underwood, who has conducted us at every June concert since 2006. These regular conductors now include George Caird for our March concert and Andrew Gray each November. Our 100th concert was in 2016 and we look forward to giving many more in the future, combining music, fun and fundraising.
Our next performance is to be held on Saturday 13th March, 2021 at 7.45pm, in the Tingewick Hall of the John Radcliffe Hospital. We are delighted to welcome George Caird again as our conductor for this concert.
Our Next Concert
Our next performance is to be held on Saturday 11th June 2022 at 7:30pm, St Michael and All Angels Church, Lonsdale Road, Oxford OX2 7ES. We are delighted to welcome Catherine Underwood again as our conductor for this concert.
The programme of music for this concert will be: Tchaikovsky Piano Concerto with soloist Jocelyn Freeman; DvořŠk: Symphony No. 8
Tickets are £12.
(£10 concessions, under 16 free) and are available from the Cairns Library at the John Radcliffe Hospital, and on the door.
All proceeds from the concert will go towards Medical Detection Dogs, a charity that trains dogs to detect the odour of human disease. It is involved in research into the detection of Covid-19 and cancer, and trains Medical Alert Assistance Dogs to support people with life-threatening diseases.
All proceeds from the concert will go towards The Porch, a charity that targets its services at those who are experiencing, or have experienced, rough sleeping, hostel accommodation, supported housing, or who are vulnerably housed.
Dates of Future concerts
- Saturday 12th November 2022
- Saturday 11th March 2023
- Saturday 10th June 2023