Sting has announced a one-off orchestral gig for this summer featuring the Utah Symphony. The former-Police frontman announced on his website (Sting.com) that on August 31st he'll be teaming up with the orchestra at a performance at Salt Lake City's Usana Amphitheatre. All proceeds from the concert will go to the Zion Forever Project to benefit Zion National Park as part of the Park’s centennial celebration.
According to the announcement, "This concert, conducted by Rob Mathes, finds Sting performing his greatest hits re-imagined for symphonic arrangement. Selections will include fan-favorites such as 'Roxanne,' 'Next To You,' 'Every Little Thing She Does Is Magic' and 'Every Breath You Take,' to notable songs from Sting’s enduring solo career — 'Englishman In New York,' 'Fragile,' 'If I Ever Lose My Faith in You,' 'Fields Of Gold,' and 'Desert Rose.'" Tickets go on sale today (February 15th) at 10 a.m. local time.
Back in July 2010 Sting released Symphonicities, the studio collaboration with the Royal Philharmonic Concert Orchestra, featuring 12 then-new orchestral studio versions of his solo and Police classics recorded live at London's legendary Abbey Road studios. Later that year he released the live album Sting: Live In Berlin Featuring The Royal Philharmonic Concert Orchestra, Conducted by Steven Mercurio. The set was recorded and filmed on September 21st, 2010 at Berlin's O2 Arena.
Sting told us that having the music bend with the times to take on new shape is part of his role as the song's writer and principle performer: ["It breathes, y'know, it infuses new life into them, new blood into them, new interpretation. My job is to keep these songs alive. Y'know, this is my life's work and I want to keep interested as long as I can — I want to keep the audience interested as well. So throwing them novelty and surprise is the key element."] SOUNDCUE (:22 OC: . . . the key element)
We asked Sting if he's found that his harder-edged material is still able to rock out with an orchestra in concert: ["Yeah, it does, it does. One of my things is that I didn't want the orchestra there just sitting behind me sawing whole notes behind a pop ballad. That is deadly boring to me — and probably deadly boring to them and the audience. So I always wanted the orchestra to be a very important rhythmic element to the music, so the music would be challenging them rhythmically if not technically — then certainly rhythmically. So all the arrangements have that in mind. I want the orchestra really to work very hard. And they enjoy that, of course they do."] SOUNDCUE (:30 OC: . . . course they do)
Sting will be on the road throughout the summer with his full-band, career spanning "My Songs" tour, with only a handful of North American dates on the books for 2019.