Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment

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Current Distractions

Fri 29 Aug 2014

In Current Distractions this week – new music, illustration and buried treasure. And not a bucket of iced water in sight.

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Speed Interview – Mahan Esfahani

Tue 28 Jan 2014

We spoke with acclaimed harpsichordist Mahan Esfahani, as he gets ready to perform CPE Bach with us in Gamechangers: A Forgotten Revolutionary on Thursday 30 January.

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Speed Interview – Marin Alsop

Fri 16 Aug 2013

Conductor Marin Alsop joins us for BBC PROMS: Brahms- A German Requiem.  Here she tells us a bit about her heroes and the most important lesson life has taught her.

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What quiet summer? Announcing…the summer Night Shift

Wed 30 Jun 2010

When us OAE office workers think about the summer we often associate it with the word ‘quiet’. That’s not because we’re putting our feet up

and drinking champagne (often) but because usually, our London concerts stop for a bit.

As you may know, our main season of concerts in London runs from October through to May, and the summer period is usually a bit different – the Orchestra is down in Glyndebourne for much of the time and while we do some touring it’s generally less intensive than during the rest of the year.

So for the office team this often gives us a chance to recover, regroup and do some long-range planning. Not so this year. Because unsually, we’re doing several events in London. We have the Proms, which is normal, but we’ve also just announced a special summer Night Shift. We’ve wanted to do a summer event in the Night Shift series for a while, as it’s such a long gap between events otherwise. And we’re thrilled (understatement) that it’s going to be at Wilton’s Music Hall. When Ceri, our Projects Director, and I looked at it a month or so back we knew instantly it would be perfect, and we were over the moon (there were whoops in the office) when it was all confirmed.

The event goes on sale tomorrow, at noon, and all the info is on the website. Tomorrow we’ll also post up some pics of Wilton’s and announce a second special summer event…

William Norris, Marketing Director

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An afternoon with the BBC

Fri 3 Jul 2009

Being a member of the projects team, I have a lot to do with the intricacies of planning all of our concerts and tours, but on Monday afternoon Ceri (our Projects Manager), Philippa (the Orchestra Manager) and I headed off to a meeting with the BBC about our televised Prom on 25th August with Sir Roger Norrington and it all became clear (as mud!) at just how much more complicated things can be when you add a TV broadcast into the mix.

It was my first time to White City (and to within spitting distance of the infamous Westfield shopping centre) and the famous television centre (hence the cheesy photo!). The Proms meeting was actually just down the road, so no celeb spotting for us, but instead we were greeted by a panel of about 15 members of the Proms team including everyone from lighting and sound to make up. The Sixteen were just finishing up their meeting when we arrived as this was part of two days of back to back meetings to discuss all of the logistics for the televised Proms.

Our programme is particularly complicated as we have four different orchestral set ups, a soloist to fit in, a harpsichord to tune and a change of pitch. We discussed the logistics of how to fit the TV cameras in around the orchestra, the lighting for the Orchestra, the amount of time it would take to reset the orchestra between pieces and also for the conductor to take his bow and the for the applause at the end as all of this has to be factored into the BBC’s scheduling times. There are also other Proms and Prom rehearsals for that day with some of their related equipment needing to be left on stage, and not to forget the TV crew’s lunch times!

It looks set to be a fantastic concert and it was fascinating to get a glimpse into the planning that goes into the TV side of things. We might have ended up having a quick peek in the shopping centre afterwards too…!

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