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Group HugIf you’ve been following our Night Shift page on Facebook or our Twitter feed you might have seen some odd pictures posted in recent days…the office giving each other a hug (repeated here for your viewing pleasure), pork scratchings, a pint, a bunch of postcards…

Well we can finally reveal what it’s all about. As you may have read on here, or perhaps you were there, earlier this month we put on a Night Shift event in a pub in King’s Cross. It was a great evening, and it seems that performers and audience enjoyed it equally.

So we’d like to do more. 5 more in fact. The idea is to do a tour of London pubs in February next year, taking in all corners of London. But, there’s a problem. As with almost every other event we do, ticket sales don’t cover costs, even with a sell-out. So we’re embarking on a fundraising campaign with a difference to make up the shortfall.

We’re doing something called crowdfunding. This is a quite new form of fundraising – all done online and based on the principle that a lot of people donating small amounts can make a big difference. We’ve partnered with Crowdfunding site wedidthis and have 30 days to raise the £1,200 required.

But it’s not all about take take take. A key part of crowdfunding is giving you, our funders (we hope!) the chance to get something back too. So, depending on your donation we have a whole raft of interesting thank yous lined up. For example, give us a fiver and we’ll say thanks on Facebook and Twitter. A tenner gets you a postcard sent to you from an OAE tour. £50 buys you a group hug from the office.

Yes, really.

There’s some more background about the campaign on the video below, including footage from our ‘pilot’ pub gig.

So, if you’d like to make our pub tour happen please visit our campaign page. Any donation, large or small, is useful. We have just 30 days to raise the money and if we don’t meet the target we get nothing at all. No pressure.

Thanks for reading, and a final, very unBritish plea: Get your credit card out and get crowdfunding!

The Night Shift: The Pub Tour Appeal from OAE on Vimeo.

The Works logoMany of you will know of, or will have been to, one of our Night Shift events. We introduced these late-night concerts about 5 years ago, for a number of reasons – the prime one being that we wanted to appeal to a different audience to that which comes along at 7pm. But also at the OAE we like experimenting and trying new things – and the idea of a late-night informal concert simply appealed to us. As evidenced by the fact we’re still doing them 5 years later, the series has been a great success, but a year ago we started thinking ‘what next’?

When I say ‘what next’ I mean in terms of types of concert. We really like the idea of varying the concert format, so that we have a range of things that appeal to different people. We already have our ‘standard’ 7pm concerts, the Night Shift and also our amazingly popular Tots events. So we started thinking about other ideas. A shortlist was drawn up, we debated it at a board meeting, and we decided to go for something which at the time was called an ‘explorer’ concert. Read the rest of this entry »

Violinist Maggie Faultless just sent through the full playlist from our pub event last week. We’ve also updated our Spotify playlist for the event with some more tracks from it.

First Set:
Corelli Opus 1 No 4
Handel Opus 2 No 3 Andante & Allegro
Bach Prelude from suite in C major for solo cello
Purcell from Sonatas in 4 parts No 6 in G minor

Second Set:
Corelli Op 2 No 12 Chaconne
Purcell from Sonatas in 4 parts No 1 in B minor
Bach Largo from suite in C major for solo violin
Vivaldi La Folia

 

OAE photographer Joe Plommer appears to be able to capture a moment with his camera and present it in entirely different way from the way my memory recalls it now (above). He’s made me appear relaxed. I was far from it. And there were moments when I looked at Maggie (right) and was certain she probably wondered what the hell I was saying.

That’ll be the internal dialogue. I bet you.

Maybe it was the drink. Between you and me, I’d had a glass of red wine before arriving at the Star of Kings pub to ‘compere’ the OAE’s inaugural Mini Night Shift concert. I had a strong black coffee while I waited for the rehearsal to finish, and then a beer before my first moment on stage delivering the very important message: “Ladies and Gentlemen, the gig will start in ten minutes time.”

The truth is that I’ve always rather fancied doing this line of work. As I’ve said before, Alistair Appleton makes it look really easy. Surely, if I try and cultivate a similar image that should do the trick, shouldn’t it?

That was my thinking selecting the checked shirt I received the day before on my birthday. But by the time approximately 200 people had packed into the pub and the band had marked out their territory on stage, I quickly began to realise this was going to be a good deal more difficult than standing in front of a camera and waxing lyrical about the best way to listen to Beethoven 9.

What represented the massive learning curve for me in what amounted to my first stint behind the microphone was to what extent the presenter is incidental to events on stage. And in an intimate space like the Star of Kings that was a point which became even more important, not least because Matthew Truscott, Maggie Faultless and Robin Michael are all such dab hands at introducing the music anyway. Matthew especially seems more than happy to whip up the crowd into a mild frenzy (the line about ‘wives always end up killing their husbands’ certainly resulted in a discernible collective intake of breath). Read the rest of this entry »

We’ll surely do a proper blog about last night’s Night Shift pub gig soon, but here’s a quick roundup with pictures and your feedback. Huge thanks to everyone who came along – we couldn’t have fitted many more of you in! A full set list will follow shortly.

“this was a great night out “
Bachtrack review

Twitter feedback:

@rubertg: Was at @theoae’s Purcell In The Pub last night. Fabulous evening, sweaty, beery, noisy, tuney. Like being there the first time around.

@katysaustin: Fun, rustic pub ‘n’ Purcell chez @theoae last night; @thoroughlygood as compere.

@kitmonsters: Fab pub gig @theoae setting a new benchmark for vintage kit ;) + gorgeous tuneage from DJ @rocking_bob @bobpetesarah St Etienne

@paulcampy: fantastic music at #TheNightShift courtesy of @theoae – but a bit of a shame either venue too small or too many tickets sold.

Audience comments

 

Pics (all by Joe Plommer)

If you’ve not come across it before the Londonist is a great online magazine, with info and previews of lots of interesting things to do around town. We’re really thrilled they’ve done a little piece on our Night Shift in-a-pub, and that they’re really *got* the OAE and what we’re all about.
If you’re intrigued we still have some advance tickets available for £6 here.

Coming up soon on the blog: Photographer Eric Richmond on the new pictures for the 2011-2012 brochure, What goes on in PRIDE meetings, and why Milk is good for classical music.

Natasha Riordan-EvaI’m Natasha, half of the new Communications Intern duo (my partner in crime being Darren Charlton, the Thursday-Friday man. We’re still looking for a good Jedward style name so have a look at suggestions on the previous blog and start thinking up your own ingenious ideas). I graduated in July from Bristol University so this is my first venture into the working world, away from the comforts of a student loan and 2pm starts. I worked as an OAE student rep during my second and third years and was eager to continue with the orchestra as not only are they the best in the business, but two years of free tickets, badges, beer mats and one personally signed Christmas card from the Communications team won’t repay themselves. Read the rest of this entry »

Just a week to go now till our Night Shift in-a-pub event on 8 September, and here’s a little Spotify playlist giving a flavour of some of the music that’ll be featured. Enjoy!

There are two weeks to go until our first ever Night-Shift-in-a-pub on 8 September. Here’s a little video preview. If you watch it and are subsequently desperate to buy tickets you can do that here. By the way, does anyone know what the background music is? It’s insanely catchy…

16th Century pub

Hopefully there wont be too much of the activity that's going on bottom right...

Next month we’re trying something a little different and taking our late-night series, The Night Shift to everyone’s favourite place – the pub.

It’s an idea we’ve bandied around for a little while here in the OAE office, but recently we decided to JFDI, as we say in our strange office lingo. (Just Flipping Do It)…

The idea is simple, downsize the Night Shift and perform in a pub.  We love the idea of it being a super-intimate event with the audience being really close to performers, and being in a pub, standing, with a pint in hand, should work well with the whole Night Shift informality thing. Plus our Night Shift audience is always telling us they want more regular events – so this is a handy way of having events in between the main shows. Read the rest of this entry »

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