Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment

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Sir Simon in Baden Baden

Wed 11 Aug 2010

Here’s a few pictures from the repeat performance of our Prom concert in Baden Baden – many thanks to the Festspielhaus for sending these to us.

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Travelling by charter plane (or how to avoid Ryanair)

Tue 10 Aug 2010

The OAE had a fantastic experience earlier this week travelling on our very own charter plane to Germany for a performance in Baden-Baden.  Baden-Baden’s closest airport is Karlsruhe (about 20 mins away), which is served by Ryanair from Stansted twice a day – which would mean either leaving Stansted at 7am (eeek – a 5am check-in) or 7pm (whoops, we’ll miss the concert), also we all know what orchestras feel about travelling on Ryanair with their notorious baggage rules and restrictions… So, erm not a practical option.  Other options would have been to fly to Frankfurt then endure a 2 hour drive, or perhaps Stuttgart or Strasbourg (both at least 1 hourr away) and not necessarily with the right place sizes or flight times to suit out schedule. How different and exhausting the journey would have been had we not had the privilege of our own plane!

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Pierre Boulez drops by…

Mon 5 Jan 2009

It’s not often that the names Pierre Boulez and the Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment are written in one sentence, but we had two close encounters with the great man in December. The first was at Southbank Centre, when he and the Ensemble Intercontemporain perormed the night after us at the Royal Festival Hall. The Ensemble actually arrived at the hall shortly before our concert on 9 Dec, and a few of their staff came and listened to our concert of Schumann with Sir Simon Rattle. Then, later in the tour, in Baden-Baden, Pierre Boulez himself came to the concert and was snapped by our Principal Double Bass Chi-chi Nwanoku chatting to Sir Simon backstage. He is reported to have enjoyed the concert!

Chi-chi sent me the pics and commented: “It was an honour to have Boulez in our audience in Baden-Baden, and  I grabbed the opportunity to snap the maestri. I later shook hands with Boulez and spoke briefly to him to tell him I’d admired his work all my life. He was very kind and friendly.”

Will, Marketing Director

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On tour with Sir Simon: Germany

Wed 24 Dec 2008

So, after reading all about the OAE’s last week in Europe it was now my turn to join the tour for the last few days.  Once again the orchestra found themselves on a charter plane, this time to Karlsruhe from Stanstead airport.  Having the charter plane was a sheer delight with a very smooth check-in and no other passengers within a mile of our boarding gate! (The rest of Stanstead was chaos!).  The Christmas turkey meal we were served on the plane was not so much of sheer delight, but filled a growling tummy all the same!

After a short transfer to our hotels, in Baden-Baden an hour to check-in and rest (?!), we were picked up and taken to the Festspielhaus for the rehearsal & concert.
It was dark by now, so didn’t get to see much of Baden-Baden ( so good they named it twice? Sorry had to get that in somewhere….) en route to the concert hall, apart from lots of white Christmas trees!

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