Iain plays straight man to Rowan Atkinson in Olympic Opening Ceremony
3rd August 2012
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Talented pianist Iain Farrington had a starring role in last week's Opening Ceremony to the London 2012 Olympics and I was delighted to discover that he's a local man, brought up and educated in Hitchin.

"I was rung in May by the opening ceremony organisers," Iain told me. "They didn't say much about the music at that point and it was all in the process of being put together. The orchestra got together a month or so later and we recorded the piece - what you heard on the night was that recording, for the best sound quality, although we were playing live."

If you didn't see the orchestral tribute to 'Chariots of Fire', you can click here to see Iain at his finest, most professional: http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-19053100

He said: "About a week or so before the night itself, I had a technical rehearsal with Rowan Atkinson and it became clear that he's a complete professional and knows exactly what he's going to do. He didn't want to tell the rest of us what to do and just expected us to play as we normally would, so we took it very seriously and performed as professionals.

"Although there were elements of his performance that I saw at the time and expected, like the tissue being thrown into my piano, most of it I hadn't actually seen until I got home and was able to watch it all the way through. It really wasn't hard to keep a straight face and concentrate on doing my job."

Iain's brush with fame is far from his first, with an illustrious list of extraordinary musicians who he has worked with. Most of them more musically adept than Rowan Atkinson, like Bryn Terfel, Sir Paul McCartney and Lesley Garrett. "I don't often get to play in Hitchin," he said. "But Hitchin is a lovely town to live in and be surrounded by friends and family. I moved back here in 2005 and it's home, even though I enjoy performing on the piano and organ across the world."

To find out more about Iain and to see where he's performing next (probably without a miming Rowan Atkinson at his side), click here: http://www.iainfarrington.com/index.html

About the Author

Hilary R

Member since: 31st May 2012

Writer and sax player. Brought up in Hitchin and - apart from uni and some ensuing madness of life in London - I've always lived here.

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