2017: Colston Hall’s 150th anniversary year so far

It’s 119 days until our 150th birthday! The count down to the 20 September is well underway and we’ve been celebrating with you in style since January with a score of special anniversary shows that have shaken our old brick walls and inspired our musical hearts.

Here’s a look back at some of the amazing moments you’ve already shared with us in our anniversary year. And we will be announcing plans for a special celebration in September very soon, so keep your eyes peeled!

There Will Be Blood: Live

Who could forget the stunning live performance of Paul Thomas Anderson’s There Will Be Blood  with the London Contemporary Orchestra? This score had us shivering in our seats, not from the cool February air, but the masterful score byJonny Greenwood combining Arvo Pärt and Brahms.

St Paul & The Broken Bones

Screaming their way from The Trinity Centre into our main hall at Colston Hall due to popular demand St Paul & The Broken Bones brought our roof down (almost prematurely) with their frenzied and theatrical brand of soul, funk and rock back in early February.

The White Buffalo

Americana soul rocker Jack Smith and his outfit The White Buffalo shook off our wintery January blues at The Trinity Centre and was the first of our off site promotions this year.

Shirley Collins

The legendary folk singer Shirley Collins announced her return to recording in 2016 after a 38 year hiatus and we just had to snap her up as she planned a handful of exclusive concerts. Joined by outstanding folk artists Sam Lee and Olivia Chaney this was a fantastic evening of British folk music…and of course there were Morris dancers in golden dresses!

Bristol Jazz & Blues Festival

This weekend of incredible jazz and blues from amazing international artists is always a highlight in Colston Hall’s calendar, and this March didn’t disappoint! With sickeningly good blues from guitarist Kirk Fletcher, a masterclass lesson in soul from Macy Gray, a world premiere of Andy Sheppard’s newly scored Metropolis and of course the ever popular free live music in our foyer, this year’s festival was perhaps one of the finest yet.


After teasing us in 2012 with a brief return to the stage, we were delighted to bring Californian indie rockers Grandaddy to Colston Hall in March. Their performance was iconic and the memories of this concert will be cherished in light of the sad news of bassist and co-founder Kevin Garcia passing shortly after their show in Bristol.

Paul Weller

The Modfather Paul Weller played to a capacity hall in April after the show sold out on the day of release. Audience members certainly got value for money at this hotly anticipated gig,  as Weller played song after song for well over two hours, much to the delight of his fans who raved about it for days afterwards on social media.

Monteverdi 450

Drama, drama, drama. What passion we’ve witnessed with the Monteverdi 450 series! These three performances of Il ritorno d’Ulisse in patria, L’incoronazione di Poppea and L’Orfeo have focused the classical music world’s eye on Bristol since April, and they have impressed critics and audience members alike with the stunning music from Monteverdi Choir & Orchestra and English Baroque Soloists led under the baton of Sir John Eliot Gardiner.

And we have the final opera of the series L’Orfeo being performed this Sunday – so if you haven’t sampled the delights of this beautiful opera then click here to buy tickets.

Ibibio Sound Machine

And finally, hands down the best party atmosphere in The Lantern this year goes to Ibibio Sound Machine. Their sold out performance mashed up West African highlife with disco, post-punk and psychedelic electro soul to give an infectious floor stomping fiesta!

We have so much more coming up this year, we hope you can all come and celebrate with us. Keep a look out for future anniversary concerts on our 150 Anniversary page here. 

Welcome to
Bristol Beacon

On Wednesday 23 September 2020 Colston Hall changed its name to Bristol Beacon.

Our new name is just the first step, it is about more than the sign above our door. Click below to find out more about how we’re changing, watch our name announcement, and discover how we want everyone to share in the joy of live music.

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