Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment

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Current Distractions

Thu 22 Aug 2013

A mixture of silly and serious in this weeks Current Distractions. So let’s start with the slightly silly.  Anyone fancy cutlery made from rope?  Here’s a collection or surreal takes on everyday objects.

Talking of surreal, many of you may remember when artist Rachel Whiteread came to prominence with her cast of the inside of a terraced house. In this article, the artist talks about what it feels like to create a masterpiece – though of course you may not necessarily agree with that assessment of her work… (contains strong language).

What’s more important – painting or people? This is the dilemma that the city of Detroit is currently facing. Having recently declared bankruptcy the city is considering selling off its art collection. Should a city’s cultural assets be sold off to help fund services? That’s what’s being vigorously debated in this New York Times piece.

And lastly…music, with the news that the music of Benjamin Britten isn’t perhaps wholly loved in his home town.  A celebratory concert in his birth place, Lowestoft, has apparently rather failed to capture the locals enthusiasm, with less than 20% of tickets sold…

William Norris
Communications Director

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Suffolk bound

Tue 18 Aug 2009

Last week Ceri (our Projects Manager) and I headed off to the Suffolk coast to visit Snape Maltings and the picturesque town of Aldeburgh. The purpose of our trip was an exchange of ideas with the management team at Aldeburgh Music about our respective programmes for young artists. At the OAE we run the Ann and Peter Law OAE Experience for young players scheme and the Melgaard young conductor scheme. Both schemes offer their participants the opportunity to ‘live’ with the Orchestra for the year, attending rehearsals, taking part in concerts and being treated as professional musicians. At Snape, they run the Britten Pears Orchestra, the Britten Pears Baroque Orchestra, various masterclasses and have an assistant conductor programme.

We spent our day there sitting in on sectional and tutti rehearsals and talking to the team there about the way they run their course. This was all set against the beautiful backdrop of the old maltings buildings and the reed beds and canals that surround the centre. We were lucky enough to stay overnight in Aldeburgh and managed some early morning runs along the beach that inspired Benjamin Britten to write Peter Grimes (a bit different to our canal side runs at lunch time in Kings Cross!)

We were also lucky enough to be treated to an OAE concert the evening that we were there as the Orchestra was performing in the concert hall there as part of the Snape Proms.

Megan Russell, Projects Manager

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