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Ministry of Sound Classical Brings Fresh Take on Nostalgic Dance Anthems

Updated: May 28

In a scene fraught with gig cancellations and financial hardships, the Ministry of Sound brand continues to inspire crowds and capture the spirit of dance music.

An orchestra and crowd with smiley face background
Right Here, Right Now Image: Debra Sherwood

The Ministry of Sound Classical series has emerged as a testament to Ministry of Sound's innovative spirit, blending orchestral arrangements with classic dance tracks. This unique fusion preserves the essence of beloved anthems, while breathing new energy into them with perfectly curated live instrumentation and vocalists led by award-winning conductor Vanessa Perica.


Stepping onto the grounds of the open-air stage at Home of the Arts on the Gold Coast on Saturday night for the first of two shows in the Ministry of Sound Classical series there was a strong sense of 1990s nostalgia and 'PLUR' energy. It was great to see music enthusiasts of all ages piled into the sold-out event, some dressed to impress with others chosing lower-key attire. Love them or hate them, there were plenty of glow sticks and other light-up accessories about, adding an extra layer of sparkle to the atmosphere. HOTA has previously hosted the Ministry of Sound classical series and it's no surprise this venue was chosen again for this years events as it works flawlessly both spatially and sonically.

 

The event kicked off with a dynamic performance by Sydney DJ Kid Kenobi and longtime musical partner, MC Shureshock. The duo electrified the audience with a familiar and high-energy repertoire. A veteran in the scene since 1996, Kid Kenobi wowed the crowd by debuting his newly reworked track of Wildchild's "Renegade Master." The response was phenomenal, with everyone dancing and singing along, setting the perfect tone for the night. Oasis classic 'Wonderwall' was expertly revamped into a dance anthem, the crowd joining the iconic chorus, voices echoing throughout the precinct. Kid Kenobi crossed seamlessly between various musical genres, including Trip Hop. The cross over of genres was electrifying, evoking the vibes of another iconic Australian hip hop group, Hilltop Hoods in upbeat dance music. MC Shureshock delivered his trademark sharp, heavy-hitting vocals on a remix of House of Pain's 'Jump Around'. The energy was high and they definitely had the crowd jumping around!

 

Gold Coast locals the Stafford Brothers brought a blend of progressive, house, and electro to the night, peaking with their uplifing, feelgood track from 2013, ‘Hello’ featuring Lil Wayne and Christina Milian. This track hit number 1 on the Australian dance charts at the time, and it's easy to see why with it's effortless energy and undeniably catchy vocals.

 

Veteran British DJ Tall Paul, famous for classic rave hits like ‘Rock Da House,’ and impeccable mixing skills showed the new wave of partygoers a taste of old school rave flavour. A true pro, he didn't leave the crowd dangling, making sure he dropped his fire and arguably most famous track, a remix of 'Precious Heart' from legendary Australian band INXS. While conductor Vanessa Perica directed the orchestra, Tall Paul was the pied piper of the audience, a call for "everyone's hands in the air!" obediently obeyed, with a a sea of hands moving rhythmically through a cloud of smoke and lasers.

 

Lasers and smoke filled sky
Immersed in the lights Image: Debra Sherwood

Arguably none of this would ever have happened without Ministry of Sound publishing co-founder, leader of the Ministry of Sound Classical brand and legend of the Australian dance music scene Groove Terminator who delivered flawless sets that included club classics from the 90’s, live vocalists and of course, that incredible orchestra. We went on a journey through intense and high energy club anthems like ‘Insomnia’ by Faithless and 'Right Here, Right Now’ by Fat Boy Slim through to timeless trance anthems '9 PM (Till I Come)' by ATB and 'Take Me Away' from 4 Strings. And of course, no classics night would complete without giving 1997 dance hit 'Silence' from Canadian dance act Delirium a spin. A perfect end to an amazing evening, the orchestra had a chance to display their talent with the symphonic track from the movie "Platoon," also known as ‘Barber’s Adagio for Strings’ by William Orbit.


A well-mannered and joyful audience maintained a fantastic vibe throughout the event. Bathed in blue and green lights, almost in sync with the crescendo, the sky finally opened, and rain started to fall as if choreographed by the music itself. Overall, Ministry of Sound Classical was an incredible event that demonstrated how music can bridge generations and bring people together to enjoy the moment, let loose and dance the night away.


Ministry of Sound Classical was held at HOTA on the Gold Coast on Saturday 4 and Sunday 5th May 2024. For upcoming events go to https://mosclassical.com.au/


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About the Author


Debra Sherwood is a Freelance Journalist, having obtained a Bachelors Degree in Communications/Journalism in 2018. She has been working at honing her skills being a contributing writer for various publications and worked with the Games News Service at the 2018 Gold Coast Commonwealth Games. This has also helped broaden her knowledge base of other industries, but her true passion has always been music. She wants to share her passion for music through her words and hopes that this helps artists prosper in their occupation of making music. When she is not writing about music, she is immersing herself in it, attending live shows and is not afraid to tackle any musical genre. She believes that everyone has a voice to be heard.



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