Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment

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5 Things you (probably) didn’t know about Haydn

Fri 11 May 2018

The great painter, Jean Ingres, was in no doubt about how important Haydn was: “Whoever studies music, let his daily bread be Haydn. Beethoven, indeed, is admirable, he is incomparable, but he has not the same usefulness as Haydn. He is not a necessity.” 

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Introducing Haydn’s oboe

Fri 4 May 2018

“I always feel that playing these instruments is like doing a tight-rope walk without any kind of safety net…”

Our co-principal oboe Dan Bates introduces the instrument that composer Joseph Haydn (1732-1809) would have been familiar with.

Hear Dan perform at our next Turning Points event at Kings Place, Kings Cross, London:

Sat 12 May 2018
First and Last of a Great Genius
Haydn Symphony no. 1 Haydn Symphony no. 104 London

Find out more

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Der Rosenkavalier

Fri 20 Apr 2018

We’re going to the cinema for a recreation of a remarkable cinema event that first took place in London in 1926.

See the silent film version of the great opera Der Rosenkavalier, while we play live the soundtrack Richard Strauss wrote to accompany the film.

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Introducing Mozart’s Horn

Mon 16 Apr 2018

The first of a new series of videos exploring the instruments of the ‘classical’ era (1750-1820).

Principal Horn Roger Montgomery looks at the instrument that would have been used to perform Mozart’s horn concertos.

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Mozart’s naughty notes

Thu 12 Apr 2018

Mozart illustrated the score for the Rondo from his Horn Concerto No.1 with a series of naughty notes and jokes aimed at his horn player friend, Joseph Leutgeb.

Read the notes as we perform it at Conway Hall with our Principal Horn Roger Montgomery.

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Our Paston Footprints Project

Thu 29 Mar 2018

The Paston Papers are a collection of hundreds of letters dating back to 15th century Norfolk, which are a fascinating record of the life and times of the Paston family who lived there.

The earliest known Paston letter was written in 1408, and to mark the 600th anniversary our Education team is involved in a series of musical events. This is followed by a concert with the Orchestra at St Nicholas Church in North Walsham on Sunday 1 July, featuring a specially-commissioned piece by composer Sarah Rodgers.

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Bach’s St Matthew Passion Programme

Mon 26 Mar 2018

Here’s the programme for our performance of Bach’s St Matthew Passion on Monday 26 March at Royal Festival Hall, Southbank Centre. You can pick up a physical copy free of charge on the night itself.

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Mark Padmore explores Bach’s St Matthew Passion

Mon 26 Mar 2018

“It’s designed to disturb. It should get under the skin and worry us.”

Mark Padmore explores Bach’s St Matthew Passion, and the advantages of performing it without a conductor.

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Performing the St Matthew Passion

Fri 23 Mar 2018

Leader Matthew Truscott tells us what it’s like to perform Bach’s St Matthew Passion without a conductor, but instead following the breathing of singer and director, Mark Padmore.

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Bach’s B minor Mass (1748)

Price: £21.99 Buy Now

Following much-praised accounts of the St John Passion and Christmas Oratorio, conductor Stephen Layton now turns to Bach’s mighty B minor Mass.

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Mark Padmore on Bach’s St Matthew Passion

Mon 5 Mar 2018

Mark Padmore explains his view of the St Matthew Passion, and the role of the Evangelist…

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The Corridors of Power programme

Mon 26 Feb 2018

Here’s the programme for our The Corridors of Power concert on Tuesday 27 February at Royal Festival Hall, Southbank Centre. You can pick up a physical copy free of charge on the night itself.

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After Beethoven?

Tue 20 Feb 2018

  After ten concerts in three different countries, our Beethoven tour with Nicola Benedetti came to an end in Abu Dhabi yesterday. If you’re at risk of Beethoven withdrawal, we asked our Co-Principal Viola Max Mandel for more Beethoven that you might want to read, watch or listen to next.

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The Corridors of Power: playlist preview

Wed 7 Feb 2018

One of the more unusual concerts in our 2017/18 Visions, Illusions and Delusions season is The Corridors of Power, a mixture of Haydn and Mozart conducted by our old friend Ádám Fischer.

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Behind the scenes with Nicola Benedetti

Mon 5 Feb 2018

“Challenging in different ways but so enjoyable.”

Nicola Benedetti chats about performing Beethoven on period instruments as she joins us on tour around the UK and US.

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Marin and Nicola join our pre-concert talk

Fri 2 Feb 2018

If you’re coming to our concert with Marin Alsop and Nicola Benedetti at Royal Festival Hall, Southbank Centre, on Sunday, get there early for the pre-concert talk at 6pm.

We’re delighted both Marin and Nicola have agreed to join us for the discussion alongside our Principal Flute, Lisa Beznosiuk.

The talk is free in the Clore Ballroom from 6pm to 6.30pm.

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Marin Alsop and Nicola Benedetti programme

Fri 2 Feb 2018

Here’s the programme for our Marin Alsop and Nicola Benedetti concert on Sunday 4 February at Royal Festival Hall, Southbank Centre (but it’s also good if you’re going to one of the other performances). You can pick up a physical copy free of charge on the night itself.

If you can’t see it, just click here. 

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In depth: A new cadenza by Nicola Benedetti

Thu 1 Feb 2018

Nicola Benedetti c Simon Fowler website

In the classical era, composers such as Mozart and Beethoven often included passages called cadenzas towards the end of their concertos. These were either improvised or pre-composed, and gave the soloist the chance to show off the full range of her or his skills.

For Nicola Benedetti’s performances of Beethoven’s Violin Concerto with us, she’s worked with composer Petr Limonov to write a new cadenza premiered on this tour, for which she’ll be accompanied by our Principal Timpani, Adrian Bending.

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What does it mean to be free?

Tue 30 Jan 2018

Today we’re announcing the concerts in our 2018/19 season as Resident Orchestra at Southbank Centre.

It’s called Life, Liberty and the Pursuit of Happiness, and it’s the second in our Six Chapters of Enlightenment, six years of concerts celebrating the thought that made the modern world.

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Fresh Night Shifts for 2018

Wed 10 Jan 2018

Classical music hasn’t always been about sitting silently in a concert hall, glugging down a pre-poured glass of wine in the interval and polite applause.

With The Night Shift, we take classical music back to its lively, informal roots with gigs in pubs, night clubs and other venues where you like to spend your time. Enjoy two half hour sets of classical music, played by some of the finest players in the business, without the usual rules.

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