Bringing you their own personal festival favourite this week is Sylvain Malburet, our very own Development Manager.
After a few days of friendly jostling with an EU-related application for funding, nothing will soothe me more than seeing cultural Europe in action. I have heard so much about the European Union Baroque Orchestra (EUBO), and look forward to seeing talented young musicians from all over Europe perform a range of German and Italian music that moves away from the baroque style, and starts to reorder musical priorities. Though I must confess, J.S. Bach is one of my favourite composers… I am no expert in baroque music but feel extremely attracted to the balance and symmetry in his compositions (if you want to read more on this, see the late pianist S Richter’s comments in ‘The Enigma’). In their concert, EUBO will be interpreting J.S. Bach’s Suite No.2, BWV 1067, and I can hardly wait!
Join Sylvain at A Breath of Enlightenment on Saturday 17 December at 7.00pm at Shoreditch Church (St Leonard’s). Tickets start from £5.00 and you can book online via our website.
Read more about EUBO’s programme.
Listen to EUBO and items from their programme in our Winter Festival Spotify playlist.
We asked members of the Spitalfields Music team to pick out a Winter Festival event that they are feeling particularly excited about. This week, Ellie Folkes, Programme Manager: Festivals , tells us all about Duncan Chapman’s laptop orchestra.
The other day I enjoyed a mid-afternoon escape from the office and popped into Canon Barnet primary school, which is tucked away just behind Toynbee Hall on Commercial Street. I found my way into Class 6 just in time to catch the last bit of a workshop session led by the wonderful electronic composer Duncan Chapman. The excitable 10 year olds were masterfully using laptops and special music software that transformed the regular keyboard keys into sounds ranging from whales to trombones. I watched as selected few took it in turns to ‘conduct’ the laptop orchestra by holding up different letters, as the rest of the class hit the relevant keys, followed the directions and a cacophony of polyphony ensued! This was indeed a true test of how successfully one can control a room of kids – and I must say I was massively impressed by the children’s level of attention and self restraint!
Class 6 will be having several more of these workshops over the coming weeks, in lead up to the laptop orchestra’s debut performance at Open Ears on Wednesday 14 December at Shoreditch Church. The concert is all about exploring and challenging notions of what it is to be a composer, and will include not only the laptop orchestra, but also performances on more traditional instruments such as piano, horn and (very excitingly) the shakuhachi – a 13th century Japanese bamboo flute traditionally used by Buddhist monks as a spiritual tool. Come along – it’s fun AND free! The intention is that the concert will not only encourage you to explore the church and its beautiful acoustics, but also to become inspired by the possibilities of composition and to open your ears to all the sounds that surround you.
Open Ears is free to attend, however booking is required – call our box office on 020 7377 1362 reserve your place for this exciting family event!
Posted in Festival, Learning & Participation, Spitalfields Music, Staff Picks
Tagged Canon Barnet, community, duncan chapman, Ellie Folkes, laptop orchestra, Learning & Participation, open ears, shakuhachi, shoreditch church, spitalfields, staff pick, toynbee hall, winter festival, winter festival 2011
“… we have learnt about each other, ourselves and the communities in which we live”
The launch of our Christmas Challenge with the Big Give is only two weeks away! Through this initiative you can support some of our life-changing work with young people and adults with special educational needs across Tower Hamlets.
Workshop leader Zoë Palmer has been working with us as part of our Learning & Participation programme. She shares some of her memorable experiences working with students on the Tower Hamlets College Aspirations programme.
“Working with the Aspirations group over the past three years has been a rewarding experience. We have written songs about our hopes and dreams, and others inspired by Chinese teachings on the five elements. In the process we have learnt about each other, ourselves and the communities in which we live. What’s great about this group is the spirit of playfulness they embody during the workshops. One person who particularly comes to mind is Margaret, an older woman who has been working with us from the very beginning. She sings everything with inspiring energy and commitment – and always takes a moment to walk around the room at the end of the session to thank us all individually, and to express her enthusiasm for the music we’ve created. Another enriching aspect of this project has been our work with Ellie Rees who has worked with the group to create some wonderful visuals to run alongside the music, this has allowed us to explore blending colour, light and sound, whilst getting our hands messy and having a whole lot of fun in the process!”
Our challenge is to raise £72,000 to make sure that we can continue to work with these extraordinary people in 2012. You can make a difference by donating with the Big Give on Monday 5 December from 10am onwards. If you do so, the Big Give will match your donation – pushing us closer to our target.
Read more information about the programme.
Find out how to donate.
Kathryn Allnutt has joined us as our new Learning and Participation Intern! She plays the French horn, and enjoys chilling in the garden during her free time (even in November!) She shares with us how she has found her first month as a Spitalfields Music intern.
It has now been four weeks since I started my internship working within the L&P team at Spitalfields Music and I’m loving it! I have been made to feel very welcome in the office (with the frequent offerings of chocolate and brownies!) and I’m now feeling very much part of the team.
My main focus over the past four weeks has been to recruit members for Spitalfields Singers, an exciting new community singing group that meets on Thursday lunchtimes at Hanbury Hall (it’s still not too late to join us!) The first two rehearsals have been a huge success, with membership now double that of the previous year!
The past four weeks have zoooomed past SO quickly – they do say that time flies when having fun! My initial impression of the office and of Spitalfields Music is one of amazement – amazement both at the exciting and interesting programme of concerts and education projects that they run within Tower Hamlets, but also at how cool, calm and collected everyone is (or at least, appears to be!) in the office despite having so much going on!
I had my first monthly review with Natalie this morning, reflecting on the past month. Scary to think that I’m already one –sixth of the way through! If the first month is anything to go by, I think I’m in for a very enjoyable (and busy!) six months!
Spitalfields Music has a new exciting series of feature posts coming up. We are finding out where our staff like to wander in Spitalfields when they are not busy working. In this staff pick post, Cathy Birch, our Learning & Participation Programme Manager explains to us what a bread bowl is, and points us in the right direction to find hot and hearty food in Spitalfields Market!
With so much to grab your attention in the bustle of Spitalfields Market it could be easy to miss one of this area’s real food treats! Nestled in a corner of the Old Spitalfields Market, there’s a row of food stalls and right in the middle, often masked by the queues for its wares, is Micha. Here you’ll find an assortment of delicious goodies, from beautiful fresh salads and soups to falafel and sandwiches. But for me the reward of the queue is their hot & hearty baked potatoes and, discovered to my joy a few weeks ago, bread bowls (for the uninitiated these are pasta and sauces but served in a freshly baked bowl of bread – Obviously). The fillings are always brilliantly put together and there’s a good range to choose from; plus the portions are so huge there’s often enough to save for later! It’s definitely also worth mentioning that despite the generous servings and beautiful ingredients you’ll never spend more than a few pounds in Micha – though you might have to allow a few more for a mid afternoon coffee after such a hearty lunch…
Micha is located in Old Spitalfields Market.