Welcome to the University of Leicester Sinfonia website!


The University of Leicester Sinfonia was founded in 1970 by David Cursons as Leicester University Baroque Ensemble, changing name first to Leicester University Baroque Orchestra and later Leicester University Sinfonia to reflect its expanding repertoire and growing size, finally becoming University of Leicester Sinfonia when Leicester University became University of Leicester.

Since 1971 it has been conducted or directed by Michael Sackin and normally gives 3 concerts a year, including regular collaborations with Hinckley Choral Union, an association that celebrated its thirtieth anniversary in 2013. To read a Nuneaton News article about it, click here.

Repertoire ranges from the eighteenth century to the present day and has featured several first performances (those featuring the music of Sonja Grossner can be heard regularly on Radio Arts Indonesia). Rehearsals are usually on a combination of Wednesday and Friday evenings in the run up to a concert with an additional rehearsal on the afternoon of the concert. We work with some wonderful soloists, many with local connections & strive to combine decent standard of performance with a happy atmosphere. Click here for information on how to join us.

Last October, Sara Humber returned to sing three of Mozart's concert arias. The concert also included a lively Divertimento for strings, the Third Horn Concerto, played by ULS' own Roger Swann, and the warm and ebulient Symphony No. 39. In April, we travelled to Hinckley for our latest collaboration with the Hinckley Choral Union and their conductor Richard Archer. The programme included Haydn's Te Deum and Brahms' German Requiem seperated by Brahms' Variations on the Saint Antoni Chorale. Go to the photo page for pictures of the final rehearsal. In July, we were joined by local pianist Abigail Johnson to play Beethoven's Piano Concerto No. 1, followed by Mozart's brilliant and ceremonial Symphony No. 34 with its rip-roaring finale. One of Schubert's Overtures "In the Italian Style" opened the concert. For more details, go to our concerts page.

"...sensitively shaped and phrased...a performance that had a dynamic sense of purpose" - Leicester Mercury

"There is always an infectious sense of enthusiasm and discovery at a ULS concert. Conductor Michael Sackin's wide knowledge of the orchestral repertoire and his knack of searching out unusual and interesting music, give his orchestra a distinctive character and purpose...performances are invariably persuasive and vital...there was a full house and a well-deserved, enthusiastic response" - Leicester Mercury

Go to the audio samples page to download extracts from some of our concerts.




Michael Sackin is a keen amateur musician and has played much chamber music on the violin and viola. He has performed with several local orchestras, including the Knighton Chamber and Leicester Symphony Orchestras and has played an active part in the musical life of the University of Leicester since 1964. In 2007 he retired from working with computers at the university's Department of Genetics. Michael also campaigns on environmental and social issues, including the near impossible task of reconciling all parties in the Middle East.



Ticket info

Tickets for our Leicester concerts are available from:

Attenborough Arts Centre, Lancaster Road, Leicester LE1 7HA,

tel. 0116 252 2455, email arts-centre@le.ac.uk , website www.attenborougharts.com

Leicester Information, 51 Gallowtree Gate, Leicester LE1 5AD tel. 0116 299 4444,

or at the door.

Prices: £10 (full price), £8 (OAPs and unemployed) and £3 (students and under 18s).

v3.0 updated 17th August 2017


Next Concert

16th or 23rd June 2018

Bruch Violin Concerto No. 1

with Eleanor Wilkinson