“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.Read More
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.Read More
Last night my colleague Ceri Jones and I got glammed up and went along to the Royal Philharmonic Society Music Awards, held at The Dorchester on Park Lane. The RPS awards are known as the classical music ‘oscars’ and there was certainly a star-studded audience there for the dinner and ceremony. Spotted in the crowd were Harrison Birtwistle, Edward Gardner, Yannick Néget-Séguin, Mark Padmore and Sir Charles Mackerras. We were there because the OAE had been shortlisted in the Audience Development category for The Night Shift, the second time The Night Shift has been shortlisted in this category. Sadly, we didn’t win, but we did very well to get through to the last three – the RPS had apparently received over 400 nominations across all the categories, so there was stiff competition. Streetwise Opera was a very exciting and worthy winner, and it was good to see Yannick Néget-Séguin win the Young Artist award – he’ll be conducting us in October. We managed to say hello to him afterwards and he mentioned how much he is looking forward to it.
Hopefully we’ll be back next year and maybe even bring home some silverware!
William Norris, Marketing DirectorRead More
It was an early start to the day, with half of the Orchestra arriving at Heathrow at 06:30 and that after not finishing a stunning performance in the Royal Festival Hall the night before until 10:30pm! But the OAE have grown used to this. International touring might sound glamorous but the reality of early morning check-ins and hotel rooms not being ready for you when you arrive are all par for the course!
Well it’s a couple of days since we got back from Spain now but I thought I would write a few lines about the second concert we did there in Valladolid. We had a very quick turn around after our mammoth coach journey and as soon as we had got off the bus, it felt like we were back on it and on our way to the concert venue. The Centro Cultural Miguel Delibes was very impressive, it is part of a new development on the outskirts of the city and the inside of the hall was almost completely made of wood and the audience seating seemed to go on forever.Read More
Monday was the first concert in our long St Matthew Passion tour around Europe in time for Easter, which saw the OAE journey to the west of England to St George’s Bristol. As I’m sure the St Matthew Passion is going to gain plenty of coverage in the blog in the next few weeks or so, I’d like to blog about the pre-concert event. The title of the event was ‘The OAE’s look at the development of the Passion’ and we decided to do something a little bit different by combining a film showing of an Education project that had taken place in Bristol earlier in the Spring, with an insightful introduction from Mark Padmore about how he with the OAE has approached the performance of the Passion this time round, and the challenges of being without a conductor.Read More
Having written a short while ago about a less busy period for the Orchestra, we are now currently in the midst of an incredibly busy few months.
Last week we started rehearsal for the St Matthew Passion with Mark Padmore, which had its first performance last night in Bristol. Prior to this project starting we had already started rehearsals for Dido & Aeneas and Acis & Galatea at the Royal Opera House. We had the dress rehearsal for that last Friday, and the first night is tonight. You can imagine that quite a lot of work goes into scheduling and dovetailing two projects like these!
The Passion is touring to Amsterdam, Spain, Paris and Berlin, and the double bill at the Royal Opera House is playing until 20 April. Then from 19 April we’re straight into our next two projects – Heiner Goebbel’s Songs of Wars I have seen and our Haydn concert with conductor Ed Gardner. Phew!
William, Marketing DirectorRead More