Buxton International Festival and The English Concert announce a new formal relationship
Buxton International Festival and The English Concert are very pleased to announce that going forward The English Concert will officially be an Associate Orchestra at the summer Festival. The new development comes after two years of involvement at Buxton focusing on the Festival’s choice of baroque operas.
“We are delighted to cement our very good working relationship with The English Concert, one of the world’s finest chamber orchestras, and to work with them long term in a repertoire in which they are pre-eminent.” Randall Shannon, Executive Director of Buxton International Festival.
“We are honoured to be awarded the title of Associate Orchestra at the Buxton International Festival. We have enjoyed performing at the 2015 and 2016 festivals, and look forward to returning and bringing our music, not just to the opera stage, but also to the concert platform. We also hope to continue our unique music education work, benefitting school children from Buxton and across the Midlands”. Gijs Elsen, Chief Executive of The English Concert
The English Concert has a reputation for inspiring performances of baroque and classical music and ranks among the best chamber orchestras in the world. Their series of Handel operas-in-concert, commissioned by New York’s Carnegie Hall, continues to flourish with the present season featuring Joyce DiDonato in the title role of Ariodante alongside an all-star cast. The orchestra’s involvement with Buxton began when they performed Purcell’s Dido and Aeneas at the Festival in 2015 and last year the two organisations co-produced a production of Handel’s Tamerlano to critical acclaim.
Buxton International Festival is a cultural celebration of the best opera, music and literature and featuring the most promising rising stars in the arts world. This year The English Concert will perform, (on period instruments), Mozart’s rarely seen opera Lucio Silla, under the baton of the orchestra’s Guest Director Laurence Cummings. Mozart is central to the Buxton International Festival repertoire and is perfect for the Matcham-designed opera house both in terms of scale and intimacy. Directed by Francis Matthews, Lucio Silla is a masterpiece from Mozart’s teenage years. The cast, all of whom are making their role debuts, is led by Joshua Ellicott in the title role with Rebecca Bottone (Giunia) and Fflur Wyn (Celia).
Soloists from The English Concert will also perform a programme Mozart’s chamber works in the Festival.
Crazy Composers – Education Project
The English Concert, The Children’s Company and Buxton International Festival are working together on an ongoing education project entitled Crazy Composers, which began in 2016. This year, 600 Year 6 children from Buxton, Stockport and Walsall schools will take part in the project on 20th July. Beginning in the classroom and taking the eccentric genius of composers such as Handel and Mozart as a starting point, the children will create their own compositions with the help of musicians from the orchestra. The project culminates on the stage of Buxton Opera House with the children performing with a full orchestra and choir in a final extravaganza for friends and family. By training teachers and workshop facilitators to become Kapellmeisters the project has had a lasting impact.
Crazy Composers is supported by Arts Council England, The Foyle Foundation and The Bingham Trust.
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