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A short video from our trip up to Sheffield back in February – a concert which was part of our Green Tour initiative which saw the OAE ditch individual cars in favour of coaches and trains. Though we now know that trains are noisy places in which to film interviews… turn the volume up to hear Ceri at the start! Sadly we didn’t get footage of the venue evacuation, we were too busy wondering what on earth was happening…

Here’s the lastest podcast of our OAE Extras pre-concert events. In this one, from our From a Dream to revolution concert back in February, broadcaster Rob Cowan talks to conductor David Zinman about his career, life and recordings.

Before the ‘From a Dream to a Revolution’ concert on 08 Feb 2011 at the Queen Elizabeth Hall, David Zinman talked to Radio 3 presenter Rob Cowan about his career, life and recordings and how musical interpretations have changed over the years.

listen to the whole talk below:

http://player.soundcloud.com/player.swf?url=http%3A%2F%2Fapi.soundcloud.com%2Ftracks%2F12530521 Pre-concert talk: David Zinman – 08 February 2011 by OAE

As mentioned below, our concert in Sheffield last week had a rather odd start.

The Orchestra came on stage on time for a 7pm start, all fine. We settled in our seats. The Management team of 3 (myself, CEO Stephen Carpenter and Projects Director Ceri) were all split up in the hall, rather than sitting together as we supposed to. As usual there was that moment when the Orchestra stops tuning and the crowd goes suddenly quiet, waiting for the conductor to appear. Except that he didn’t.

5 minutes later he still hadn’t. Rather odd. The crowd was getting restless.

After a little longer Orchestra Leader Matthew Truscott got up (to applause) and left the stage, presumably to find out what was happening.

He didn’t return.

At this point I texted Ceri, asking if she knew what was up. She didn’t. I suggested that conductor David Zinman was either unwell or had got the start time wrong. Both seemed a little unlikely. Unfortunately I made a typo and said “Either I’ll or has got the…”. So I re-sent the world ‘ill’ on its own. Ceri took this as confirmation that he was indeed ill and I apparently set her mind immediately racing as to what we would do! Read the rest of this entry »

In honour of the Orchestra’s Green Tour around the UK this week, the office-based administrative team also committed to Green Week.  For a OAE goes greenbit of fun most of us wore something green all week, as a constant reminder about all the things we would 100% commit to do.  I spent the week carrying my thermos flask and a ‘Cats of Cyprus’ fabric shopping bag with me in an attempt to avoid package wastage and also spent the entire week nagging my colleagues about turning their computers off properly at the end of the day… Here’s how I got on the rest of the week…

Monday
A normal day in the office, today, whilst the orchestra were busy rehearsing down at The Warehouse (one of our regular rehearsal venues).  Had a player meeting later on in the day, which required 4 A4 pages of handouts.  I copied them all onto 1 A4 sheet (double-sided and at 50% size), praying that no body minds how small the text would be – reading glasses at the ready! (incidentally I didn’t get any comments).  Later on that day I had the fun task of carrying home a DVD player with large speaker I’d been given (in huuuge box!).  Determined not to cave in and get a taxi I had an interesting journey home, much to the hilarity of my fellow train passengers.

Tuesday
Concert day at the Queen Elizabeth Hall, which started with meeting the Web streaming team down at the hall, helping them with their set-up.  Am really excited about the web stream as thousands of people will be able to watch our concert without having to travel anywhere!  I decided to grab a coffee on the way back to the office, and asked if I could get my coffee in my flask (to avoid wasting more cardboard cups).  The barrister had to ask her supervisor if this was OK, which yes it was – result.  Sadly the coffee was made in the cardboard cup and then poured into my flask – FAIL!  Cardboard cup still wasted…

Later on at the hall, was excited to see the signs in the foyer asking our patrons to reuse their programmes, and our article in the programme

Getting the audience to play their part in our green tour

Getting the audience to play their part in our green tour

about the green tour.  Southbank centre is totally on top of environmental issues and recycling etc, so big tick!  It was a shame that on the way home I didn’t screw the lid back on my water bottle properly and by the time I got home my bag and re-useable programme were soaked.  I hope it dries out in time for our next concert on 3rd March. Read the rest of this entry »

The positive reviews for our current tour with David Zinman continue to come in. You can catch the last performance tonight at the Anvil in Basingstoke or watch it live online for free.

Guardian

Financial Times

There’s also a good review in The Times but we can’t post a link because of their paywall.

First reviews and bloggers are in after our concert at the Queen Elizabeth Hall last night:

Independent (five stars!)

Classical Source

Orpheus Complex

Also some coverage ahead of our debut concert in Sheffield:

Sheffield Telegraph

Remaining concerts in this tour in Sheffield (10 Feb) and Basingstoke (12 Feb)

Last night saw the first of our From a dream to revolution concerts, at the Queen Elizabeth Hall. It kicked off our green tour, and also saw our very first live stream take place (let us know what you thought if you saw it). The concert got a great reception from a sold out hall, and today sees a slightly tired team back in the office, and the Orchestra speeding up to the Lake District on the train for tonight’s concert in Keswick. Up in Keswick David Zinman is replaced by Eduardo Portal, who some of you may remember was our Melgaard Young Conductor last season.

Below are some pictures from last night, plus Orchestra Manager Philippa with our hired in transit van. Usually, for players with large instruments, it’s up to them to get their instruments to the venue (oviosuly we do transport them for them when we tour overseas!), resulting in many cars being driven to Bristol, Birmingham or wherever it may be. As a small Orchestra we don’t have the luxury of a big truck like the symphony orchestras do! But this time, to save carbon emissions, we’re putting all the large instruments in one van, which Philippa is (at this very moment) driving up to the Lake District. We did joke about buying her some pink fluffy dice to go with her transit van…

Next stop: Sheffield

William Norris, Communications Director

Tonight sees our very first live stream of a concert, direct from the Queen Elizabeth Hall at the Southbank Centre.
We’ll be ‘on air’ from 5.45pm, with the OAE Extras event when conductor David Zinamn will be interviewed by broadcaster Rob Cowan. This will be followed at 7pm by the concert itself: Mendelssohn’s Overture, Intermezzo, Nocturne and Scherzo from A Midsummer Night’s Dream, Weber’s Clarinet Concerto No.1 (with soloist Antony Pay) and then Beethoven’s Symphony No.7.

We’ll be doing a repeat of the stream this Saturday live from Basingstoke’s Anvil, starting at 7.45pm, and straight into the concert.

There’ll be live chat during the show so feel free to ask us some (easy) questions! Ceri, Megan, Zen and myself (William) will all be answering your burning OAE queries.

View the live stream here

Enjoy!

OAE goes green

As you might have gathered, we’re about to start our first fully fledged ‘Green Tour’ of the UK this month, kicking off with a sold-out concert at the Queen Elizabeth Hall tomorrow night (8 Feb) conducted by David Zinman, followed by a trip up to Keswick in the Lake District, Sheffield, and then back down to Basingstoke.  We’re very lucky to be able to provide a live streaming of both the London and Basingstoke concerts which will be featured on various different websites including Ustream, Youtube and Facebook (more details in our previous blog entry).

But that’s not all the eco-warriors at the OAE have been doing… Read the rest of this entry »

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