'The Nation's Ukulele Orchestra'
BBC News, Radio 4, 23rd September 2014
Shopping Basket - £0.00

You have no items in your shopping basket.

 

News

  • March 4, 2019
    Straight off the back of the US tour, the orchestra will be primed and ready for a run of dates across the UK. With a spring in their step and ukulele in hand, the independent rock-stars of the “bonsai guitar” will be bringing fun, strum and artistry to venues from Exeter to Dumfries.
  • March 4, 2019
    The Ukes are leaving for their longest ever tour of the USA in a couple of weeks! The tour will cover 17 cities in 9 States over a month and includes our debut performance at Chicago Symphony Hall.
  • March 2, 2019
    The Ukes will be crossing the Irish Sea in September to play 2 dates. We will be returning to the National Concert Hall in Dublin on September 28th before heading North to Belfast for a date at Ulster Hall on the 29th. They will be our only dates in Ireland this year so be sure to get your tickets now!
  • October 11, 2018
    The “Ukes” tour of “Lousy War” takes place over the next few weeks. Marking the centenary of the end of WW1. A show which astonishes with its humour, insight and suprising historical research. The customary joy and humour of the ukulele entertainment juggernaut is there, but also moving and serious music, a feminist anthem,

The Ukes

 


The Ukulele Orchestra of Great Britain is a group of all-singing, all-strumming Ukulele players, using instruments bought with loose change, which believes that all genres of music are available for reinterpretation, as long as they are played on the Ukulele.

A concert by the Ukulele Orchestra is a funny, virtuosic, twanging, awesome, foot-stomping obituary of rock-n-roll and melodious light entertainment featuring only the “bonsai guitar” and a menagerie of voices in a collision of post-punk performance and toe-tapping oldies. There are no drums, pianos, backing tracks or banjos, no pitch shifters or electronic trickery. Only an astonishing revelation of the rich palette of orchestration afforded by ukuleles and singing (and a bit of whistling). Audiences have a good time with the Ukulele Orchestra. Going from Tchaikovsky to Nirvana via Otis Redding and Spaghetti Western soundtracks, the Orchestra takes us on “a world tour with only hand luggage” and gives the listener “One Plucking Thing After Another”.

Using instruments small and large, in high and low registers, whether playing intricate melodies, simple tunes, or complex chords, and sitting in chamber group format dressed in formal evening wear, the Orchestra uses the limitations of the instrument to create a musical freedom as it reveals unsuspected musical insights. Both the beauty and vacuity of popular and highbrow music are highlighted, the pompous and the trivial, the moving and the amusing. Sometimes a foolish song can touch an audience more than high art; sometimes music which takes itself too seriously is revealed to be hilarious. You may never think about music in the same way once you’ve been exposed to the Ukes’ depraved musicology.


Browse our shop