Music critic Andrew Mellor popped into the office last week and told us about his favourite moments in Messiah and why it’ll ‘grab you by the scruff of the neck’, before our performance of Handel’s festive oratorio tomorrow at the Royal Festival Hall, Southbank Centre.
Here’s what he had to say…Read More
Co-Principal Keyboardist Robert Howarth talks about what the OAE brings to Handel’s epic masterpiece.Read More
Our guide to female opera characters returns, with a look at Phaedra…
The fabulous Sarah Connolly will be taking on the role next Thursday at our next Queens, Heroines and Ladykillers concert at the Queen Elizabeth Hall, in Rameau’s Hippolyte et Aricie.
In this episode of Southbank Centre’s Insiders podcast, Ben Eshmade chats to our musicians about how the OAE started (in a surprising place!), to conductor Marin Alsop on why she enjoys working with the Orchestra and to our lovely office staff about their highlights for the season.
It’s your chance to get under the skin of the OAE – so have a listen!
You can subscribe to the Southbank Centre podcasts on iTunes here
We don’t usually post much about concert tickets (because it’s not really that exciting to read about) but we feel that we have to tell you about the new (and free) Student Pulse app that we’re now part of, which lets you buy cheap tickets directly from your phone. Nice.Read More
The OAE is going underground…have you seen our new posters on the tube?Read More
We caught up with audience members after Sunday’s Southbank Centre concert with Sir Roger Norrington and Anna Caterina Antonacci to ask them what they thought – here’s what they said.Read More
Our Southbank Centre concerts kick off tonight where we’re going all out to prove that Not All Audiences Are The Same, and we want you to help us.Read More
In Part 3 of our guide to female opera characters, we’re looking into the life of famous queen Dido…and tonight at the Royal Festival Hall, Anna Caterina Antonacci will be portraying the lady herself in an aria from Berlioz’s grand opera Les Troyens.
Who was she?
Dido was founder and queen of Carthage. She fled her home of Tyre when her brother murdered her husband and she settled with her followers in North Africa.
The new city of Carthage was flourishing when the Trojan hero Aeneas arrived on his way to Italy to found what would eventually be Rome. However, when he stopped in Carthage the goddess Venus made Dido fall in love with him and for a while Aeneas postponed his quest. When he eventually left, Dido was heartbroken and committed suicide, cursing Aeneas and his descendants. Aeneas later met Dido in the underworld but she refused to forgive him even in death.
What was she famous for?
Dido is most famous for the Roman poet Virgil’s account of her romance Aeneas in The Aeneid. The story of their doomed romance was used by Christopher Marlowe, Henry Purcell and Sasha Waltz.
Dido has a popstar, a computer game character, a mathematical problem and an asteroid named after her.
Was she a queen, heroine or ladykiller?
Dido was a queen first and foremost. Before Aeneas arrived on the scene, she was an accomplished leader known for her wisdom. When she originally asked for land to build Carthage she was told she could have only the amount of land an ox hide could cover – to get round this she had the hide cut into one long strip which meant she had enough land to build a whole city!
Who will be singing Dido and when?
Anna Caterina Antonacci will sing Je vais mourir…Adieu, fière cité from Berlioz’s Les Troyens at Three eras of divas on 30 September 2012. You can listen to it here
Sarah Connolly will be singing When I am laid in earth from Purcell’s Dido and Aeneas in French Exchange on Thursday 8 November 2012.Read More
You may remember that we launched a competition a few weeks back, where you could win a night fit for a Queen. Entrants had the chance to win a private box plus interval drinks for the opening night of our Queens, Heroines and Ladykillers season on 30 September at the Southbank Centre, London.
Well, we’ve been reading through the great entries you’ve submitted and we’re very pleased to announce that our winner is: Camelia Borg. She was nominated by her colleague, Maurizio Borgatti at the charity Voice who submitted the following heart-warming entry:
“Hi my heroine is a young care experienced woman called Camelia Borg who is currently volunteering for Voice as a fundraising intern for 3 months. She has overcome an amazing number of difficulties in her young life and yet still has an amazing passion and drive to help other young people in care through her work with Voice. This is her story:
My life’s journey began in Hertfordshire, I was taken into care and moved from area to area, home to home; there’s been so many across the years that I have lost count.
Throughout my childhood I encountered many difficult obstacles and issues, quickly aging me beyond my years. I found myself lost in a system full of promises that weren’t kept. My last Foster Carer introduced me to Voice, as I had many issues and she knew that they were independent and willing to help me. Through the help, advice and guidance from my advocate, I was able to understand and realise that I didn’t have to be another care statistic.
I could never forget that pivotal moment that changed everything for me, and so continued to help Voice through volunteering, to help give something back and be able to help them and others…”
Well done Camelia – a true heroine0 and many thanks to all who entered the competition.Read More
Here’s our brand-new podcast dedicated to our new concert series for 2012-2013: Queens, Heroines and Ladykillers, which starts this Sunday at the Royal Festival Hall.Read More
It’s that time of year again: our new Southbank Centre series of concerts starts at the end of the month. Here’s what some of the OAE office staff have picked as their highlights…Read More
And here it is at last, our full brochure for the 2012-2013 concert season at Southbank Centre.Read More
We’re very excited to be able to now reveal to you the cover of our new 2012-2013 Southbank Centre concerts brochure. It features several of the audience members who star in the campaign, and you’ll notice we’ve turned our strapline around, so it now reads ‘Not all audiences are the same.’Read More
Earlier this year we put a call-out to members of the OAE audience, looking for volunteers with a ‘strong look’ to star in our marketing campaign for the 2012-2013 season of concerts.Read More
The very last teaser of pictures from our new brochure. Later today we’ll be posting a behind-the-scenes video trailer for the brochure, with the digital brochure going live this Friday…Read More
Lots of legs in the latest teaser…
New brochure, with full versions of these pictures and starring members of our audience will be revealed next week.
The last of this week’s teaser pictures is rather athletic…
Just a few of these left now. Next week we’ll be releasing a little video about the new pictures and how we got on finding audience members with a ‘strong look’.Read More
Entering the final stages both of our teaser pictures and of our brochure production, with last changes being sent off to the designers today or tomorrow. So here’s today’s teaser. After we posted it on Facebook we realised that maybe it wasn’t the best crop of the larger picture, but anyway…Read More
Here is today’s teaser picture…it’s actually related to a previous teaser we put up. Can you guess which one?Read More