A musical performance is being held inside Britain’s longest and deepest canal tunnel.
It will see cellist and composer Maja Bugge take part in a first-ever musical performance on a boat inside the canal on Saturday for a performance that has already sold out.
She will be creating music inside the tunnel with the audience travelling by boat part way through the tunnel to listen.
Barney Stevenson, artistic director at Marsden Jazz Festival, said: “We have organised a huge variety of events over the years but it’s certainly one of the most unusual and complex to organise in a canal tunnel.
“I cannot wait to see the audience’s reaction to this very special event and welcome visitors to the picturesque Pennine village of Marsden for some wonderful music over the festival weekend.”
Maja Bugge is a Norwegian cellist and composer based in Lancaster.
She is renowned for balancing melodic and meditative improvisations with experimental material.
Maja said: “While I’ve played other unusual sites, Standedge Tunnel will be the first time I’ve played in a canal tunnel and it’s wonderful to be given the opportunity to do this thanks to the support of the Canal and River Trust, Marsden Jazz Festival and Jazz North.”
She added: “All my work is about an attempt for dialogue; a dialogue between the cello and a site, a text, an image, a movement, a space.
“All my work as a composer and performer is concerned with this dialogue.
“The Standedge canal tunnel gives me a unique opportunity to play with a site that has got over 200 years of history.
“It is a site where the cello will sound like nowhere else. And the tunnel itself will totally inform and shape the music.”
Claire Atkinson from the Canal and River Trust, said: “Standedge Tunnel is an amazing engineering achievement, especially considering it was carved out of the ground by hand 200 years ago by navvies, armed only with picks, shovels and dynamite.
“This is the first time the Canal and River Trust has ever hosted anything like this before in the Tunnel, so we are hugely excited.
“We’re delighted to be working with Maja and Marsden Jazz Festival to support this wonderful one-off event in this remarkable, historic setting.”
Although tickets for the unique gig have sold out there are dozens of other performances during the Jazz Festival.
Visit www.marsdenjazzfestival.com for the full line up.