The RTÉ Concert Orchestra is bringing the Proms, a series of light orchestral concerts, on a tour of Ireland.

For the last nine years, the RTÉ Proms have been staged in Dublin and audiences from around the country have had to come to Dublin to see them. This year the music will be taken to the people across Ireland.

For a decade, the RTÉ Concert Orchestra has been a major part of the Proms season in Dublin with audiences travelling to the capital. Now, the orchestra is going to them.

Head of the RTÉ Concert Orchestra Simon Taylor explains how the orchestra will bring opera, operetta, Viennese music and more to audiences.

A spokesman for Bank of Ireland, sponsors of the Proms, says that the "pop proms format" has helped to popularise the light classics.

We see ourselves as having a role promoting the arts in a general way.

The RTÉ Concert Orchestra will play in Limerick, Waterford, Cork, Sligo, Galway, Clifden, and Dundalk between 10 and 25 September. The Proms tour was launched by Arts Minister Síle de Valera who said that it was appropriate that in the year of the orchestra's 50th jubilee, it should take part in a national tour of the country. 

Each concert will feature the much-feted Irish sopranos, Virginia Kerr and Majella Cullagh, and the internationally renowned tenor Just Lavender. Audiences will enjoy favourites such as the overture from 'The Barber of Seville', the Intermezzo from 'Cavalleria Rusticana', 'Radetzky March', excerpts from 'La Boheme', 'The Merry Widow' and 'Nessun Dorma' from Puccini's Turandot. 

An RTÉ News report broadcast on 6 July 1998. The reporter is Colm Connolly.