Sunday’s Victoria Symphony Splash all about rhythm

Victoria Symphony takes the stage at Inner Harbour at 7:30 p.m. on Sunday. Activities begin with Family Zone at 1 p.m.; Naden Band performs at 4 p.m.

The Victoria Symphony Splash celebrates its 30th anniversary with a concert program all about rhythm, Sunday in the Inner Harbour.

Thirty years ago, a few thousand people came to see the Victoria Symphony play on a barge for the first time.

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Splash has endured, becoming a marquee summer event in Victoria that now attracts more than 40,000 visitors and residents every year. 

“We’ve seen plenty of changes over the past 30 years, but the essence of Victoria Symphony Splash remains the same — sharing extraordinary live music with our own community,” said Kathryn Laurin, CEO of the Victoria Symphony.

One of the changes this year is the availability of the concert on social media, via livestreaming on Facebook.

“Last year, we had more than 55,000 hits, meaning anybody from around the world could enjoy the concert,” Laurin said.

The concert will be led by music director Christian Kluxen, with featured guests 15-year-old pianist Carey Wang and the Royal Canadian Navy’s Naden Band as the opening act.

“It’s all about rhythm this year,” said Kluxen, in his third season leading the symphony.

“The first half features a Mediterranean/Spanish feeling infused with the dance rhythms of Roman Carnival Overture, Capriccio Espagnol along with selections from Bizet’s Carmen. The second half moves south to the infectious rhythms of Central and South America with upbeat Cuban and Argentinian music.”

No Victoria Symphony Splash would be complete without Tchaikovsky’s 1812 Overture, with field guns and fireworks, as the finale.

The epilogue features six bagpipers playing Amazing Grace.

Family Zone opens at 1 p.m. and runs until 4. Activities include the chance to play musical instruments, an inflatable amusement, an Maya-themed activity prepared by the Royal B.C. Museum, Tickles the Clown, and games and prizes.

The Culinary Corner, with food vendors, will be set up along Government Street starting at 3 p.m. The Beverage Garden also opens at 3 p.m.

The Naden Band will start to warm up the crowd at 4 p.m. before Kluxen and the Victoria Symphony take the stage at 7:30 p.m.

Admission is by donation. You can contribute by putting money in the donation barrels on site, or when buying food from vendors or merchandise from sales tents. Special buttons are given for donations of $5 or more. You can also text Splash to 30222 and $5, $10 or $20 will be added to your phone bill.

The barge will face the legislature buildings, with the best on-shore vantage points on the legislature lawns.

While many people bring their own chairs or arrive by boat, a limited number of seats are available in the grandstand.

These guaranteed seats mean you can come and go without worrying you'll lose your spot, and help raise funds for the event.

For details, call the Victoria Symphony Box Office at 250-385-6515.

For more information, go to

Note to readers: This story has been corrected. The Albert Head cadets will not be performing on the legislature steps, and the activity prepared by the Royal B.C. Museum will have a Maya theme.

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