Glastonbury 2016 was set to honour David Bowie since the beginning. Nevertheless, June 25 was a special night as it featured a performance of composer Philip Glass’s Heroes Symphony (1996), otherwise known as Symphony No. 4, on The Park Stage immediately after Adele’s headline slot.

Symphony No. 4‘, a 45-minute symphony in six movements, is based on Bowie’s 1977 album ‘Heroes‘. Bowie himself was a fan of Glass’s take on the album.

The tribute was performed by Army Of Generals and members of the British Paraorchestra, the world’s first, large-scale professional ensemble for musicians with disabilities, under Charles Hazlewood, while a sonic laser performance was taking place by light artist Chris Levine in collaboration with Peter Hampel.

Glass said: ‘When Charles told me of his plan to take my ‘Heroes Symphony’ to Glastonbury, I was delighted. It’s very exciting to think of it playing – at the midnight hour – out across the parkland, a true celebration of Bowie. I am so very pleased members of the British Paraorchestra and Chris Levine’s epic light performance will be part of it. What a spectacular collaboration. This is sound and vision Bowie-style.’ Hazlewood, after all, had expressed his desire to conduct Glass’ work after hearing of Bowie’s tragic death.

Debbie Maliotaki

Watch a video of the magnificent performance here: