'The Nation's Ukulele Orchestra'
BBC News, Radio 4, 23rd September 2014
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News

  • February 1, 2022
    It is with regret that we have to announce the postponement of the 2022 Sweden tour. The ongoing situation with the global pandemic means we have had to take the difficult decision to postpone shows. We have rescheduled the shows for October 2023, all tickets will be valid for the new shows. If you are unable to make the new date then please contact the venue.
  • December 31, 2021
    The orchestra is a relentless machine delivering entertainment, fun and humour. It uses only ukuleles. What can you expect from the UOGB? The answer is simple: One Plucking Thing After Another.
  • December 8, 2021
    We will be heading back across the pond to North America in spring 2022! Join us for a funny, virtuosic, twanging, awesome, foot-stomping show.
  • December 1, 2021
    Over the last few days the UOGB has been asked by various newspapers, radio stations and online news organisation to comment on a news item concerning the ukulele.

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.


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