Monday 31 December 2007

Highlights of 2007

2007 was a year with more commissions, more broadcasts and more international concerts than ever before. Britten Sinfonia’s audiences, players and staff will all have different musical highlights of 2007, but I suspect most lists would include some of the following concerts, Creative Learning projects and recordings.



Britten Sinfonia at Lunch in Aldeburgh, Krakow, Cambridge and Norwich, with a new work by Tansy Davies.


Our tour with Pekka Kuusisto, performing Rautavaara’s The Fiddlers and a Bach violin concerto.

The world premiere performances of Sir John Tavener’s Songs of the Sky on our Britten Sinfonia at Lunch circuit.


Tarik O’Regan’s Rai, another of our BBC Radio 3 lunchtime commissions.

A tour to Lisbon for a concert of Britten, Victoria and Tippett, and James MacMillan’s Seven Last Words from the Cross, conducted by the composer.


A further project with Polyphony and Stephen Layton, featuring Poulenc’s Gloria.


Our tour to Brazil, Argentina and Uruguay for five concerts with Joanna MacGregor.

Working with soprano Carolyn Sampson in a programme of Ravel, Debussy, Stravinsky, Copland and Barber.


Our Aldeburgh Festival concert with Anna Dennis.


A BBC Prom with a Shakespearean theme.


Our residency at the Barbican with the Michael Clark Company for ten Stravinsky performances.

Concerts of the Hartmann Concerto Funebre with Alina Ibragimova, coinciding with the recording release on Hyperion.


Britten Sinfonia’s sixth consecutive year at the London Jazz Festival, with a Gil Goldstein devised programme ‘In the Spirit of Gil and Miles'.

The launch of our new Britten Sinfonia at Lunch series in Birmingham, reviving commissions from Huw Watkins and Michael Zev Gordon.


Beethoven’s Piano Concerto no.4 with Imogen Cooper on a three-concert tour.

The roll-out of Britten Sinfonia at Lunch in London, at the Wigmore Hall, with a new work by Richard Causton, and the start of our second year of residency in Krakow.


The Britten Sinfonia Creative Learning programme touches many people in many ways, but some of the highlights have included James MacMillan’s workshop for young composers at Cambridge University, a range of projects with Hills Road Sixth Form College, Garageband training in Cambridgeshire Pupil Referral Units, and the launch of our series of SinfoniaCasts.


Four major releases during 2007:
Bairstow, with St John’s College Choir and David Hill, on Hyperion (CDA 67497)
Moondog, with Joanna MacGregor, on SoundCircus (SC010)
Bruckner, with Polyphony and Stephen Layton, on Hyperion (CDA67629)
Hartmann, with Alina Ibragimova, on Hyperion (CDA 67547)

What have I forgotten? Do let me know!

With best wishes for the New Year from all at Britten Sinfonia.

John Bickley

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