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Past Events > 2021

31a. The Brilliant Abyss (part 1)

13 October 2021, 11:00 - 12:00

This event is in two parts. One ticket gives you acccess to both parts.
31a: 11am - 12pm, The Brilliant Abyss part 1
31b: 3.15pm - 4.15pm, The Brilliant Abyss part 2
Click here for details about part 2 (event 25b).

In this fascinating two-part Song Connections event, Katy Hamilton explores perceptions of the ocean depths in poetry and song alongside the reality of developing scientific understanding. Schiller’s 1797 ballad ‘Der Taucher’ (‘The Diver’) – see Events 27 & 35 – is our starting point on the first part of a journey that also takes in Jules Verne, Fauré, Chaminade and others. Marine biologist, writer and broadcaster Helen Scales reveals how life was uncovered at ever-greater depths during this time.


This event is an in-person and livestreamed event. Livestreamed performances will be available to watch live in our Digital Concert Hall at the advertised performance time and will be available to watch again and on demand until the end of November.

Want to watch this concert in person and at home? 'Hybrid' tickets, valid both in person and for the Digital Concert Hall, are also available for an additional £3 to the in-person price.

All our seating is unreserved. This means you are guaranteed a seat in your chosen area, but not a specific seat. In order to allow for social distancing, you will be seated as an individual or as a group, based on the number of tickets you booked for this concert.

For groups of more than 10, please phone or email the box office to book your tickets.

The complete event duration is approximately 2 hours, with a break in the middle.


(Online bookings only)

Book five or more concerts at the same time: 5% discount

Book ten or more concerts at the same time: 10% discount

Book fifteen or more concerts at the same time: 15% discount

For even further discounts click here for more information on our Festival Passes.

Tickets for both in-person and the Digital Concert Hall will be issued as eTickets by default. Printed tickets are available on request, for an additional fee.


Due to COVID-19 we have to do things a little differently this year. In order to keep everyone safe, our seating and concert conditions are subject to change in line with changing government guidance.

For more information about our COVID-19 safety measures, please click here.

If you are displaying symptoms of COVID-19 on the day of the concert, please do not attend, but get in touch with our box office to arrange a refund.

Artist Portrait

Katy Hamilton

Katy Hamilton


Dr. Katy Hamilton is a freelance researcher, writer and presenter on music. She is one of the UK’s most sought-after speakers on music, providing talks for a host of organisations including the Wigmore Hall, Southbank Centre, BBC Proms, Ryedale Festival and Oxford Lieder Festival. In addition, she regularly writes programme notes for the Salzburg Festival, North Norfolk Festival and the Philharmonia Orchestra, and is a frequent contributor to BBC Radio 3. Katy’s area of specialism is the music of Johannes Brahms and his contem... Read Full Biography
Artist Portrait

Helen Scales

Helen Scales


Helen Scales is a British marine biologist, broadcaster, and writer.
Artist Portrait

Harriet Burns

Harriet Burns


Described as “confident, polished, witty, expressive and sweet toned” (The Times), British soprano Harriet Burns is fast developing a reputation as an acclaimed interpreter of song. She has performed at the Wigmore Hall, Philharmonie Luxembourg, Oxford Lieder and Leeds Lieder Festivals, International Lied Festival Zeist, Ryedale Festival and de Singel with pianists including James Baillieu, Imogen Cooper, Christopher Glynn, Graham Johnson, Sholto Kynoch, Malcolm Martineau, Joseph Middleton and Ian Tindale. In 2019 Harriet’s... Read Full Biography
Artist Portrait

Cole Knutson

Cole Knutson


Cole Knutson is a versatile musician who has appeared on the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation, the BBC, National Arts Centre, and in recital throughout Canada, the United States, and Europe. He has received masterclasses from artists such as Helmut Deutsch, Julius Drake, Elly Ameling, Robert Holl, Roger Vignoles, Andreas Schmidt, Michael McMahon, Tobias Truniger, and Wolfram Rieger and is an Oxford Lieder and Leeds Lieder Young Artist. Recent and upcoming engagements include participating in Graham Johnson’s prestigious Song-G... Read Full Biography

Festival Passes

This event is part of a series:

Nature's Songbook

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