About Us

There are few more thrilling things in British music than Britten Sinfonia on top form.
Ivan Hewett, The Daily Telegraph

Britten Sinfonia is one of the world’s most celebrated and pioneering ensembles. The orchestra is acclaimed for its virtuoso musicianship, an inspired approach to concert programming which makes bold, intelligent connections across 400 years of repertoire, and a versatility that is second to none. Britten Sinfonia breaks the mould by not having a principal conductor or director, instead choosing to collaborate with a range of the finest international guest artists from across the musical spectrum, resulting in performances of rare insight and energy.

Britten Sinfonia is an Associate Ensemble at the Barbican in London, and has residencies across the east of England in Norwich and Cambridge (where it is an Ensemble-in-Residence at the University of Cambridge). The orchestra also performs a chamber music series at Wigmore Hall and appears regularly at major UK festivals including Aldeburgh and the BBC Proms. The orchestra’s growing international profile includes regular touring to Mexico, South America and Europe. In February 2012, Britten Sinfonia made its North American debut at Lincoln Centre, New York. 

Founded in 1992, the orchestra is inspired by the ethos of Benjamin Britten through world class performances, illuminating and distinctive programmes where old meets new, and a deep commitment to bringing outstanding music to both the world’s finest concert halls and the local community. Britten Sinfonia is a BBC Radio 3 broadcast partner and regularly records for Harmonia Mundi and Hyperion.

In 2013-14, Britten Sinfonia collaborates with artists including Paul Lewis, Ian Bostridge, Netia Jones, Mark Padmore, Pekka Kuusisto, Iestyn Davies, Patricia Kopatchinskaja and the Richard Alston Dance Company with premières from composers including Sally Beamish, Roderick Williams, Mark Simpson, Brett Dean and Philip Cashian. Following UK performances, many of these collaborations will tour internationally with performances in some of the world’s finest concert halls.

Central to Britten Sinfonia’s artistic programmes are a wide range of creative learning projects both within schools and the community. In the 2013-14 season Britten Sinfonia Academy, our talented youth ensemble will perform its own At Lunch concert and we hold our second composition competition, OPUS2014, offering unpublished composers the chance to receive a professional commission,

In 2013 Britten Sinfonia was awarded the Royal Philharmonic Society Music Award for Ensemble having previously won the Chamber Music Award in 2009 and the Ensemble Award in 2007. Britten Sinfonia recordings have been Grammy nominated, received a Gramophone Award and an ECHO/Klassik Recording Award.

Calendar

February 2016

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TAKE TWO : Louis Andriessen in Focus One

Barbican Hall, London
09 February 2016 7:30pm

Britten Sinfonia’s TAKE TWO double-bill presents a compelling portrait, placing Andriessen’s distinctive output in the context of his musical influences, including Stravinsky, Bach, jazz, and minimalist contemporaries.

TAKE TWO : Louis Andriessen in Focus Two

Milton Court Concert Hall (Barbican), London
13 February 2016 3:00pm

This dance infused programme explores Andriessen’s admiration for Stravinsky, with whom he shares an acute ear for colour and clarity of expression, the influence of Bach and his life-long love of jazz.

Britten Sinfonia At Lunch Three 2015-16

St Andrew's Hall, Norwich
19 February 2016 1:00pm

A lunchtime concert with works by Debussy and Bjarnason offering a rich exploration of colour and harmonies.

Britten Sinfonia At Lunch Three 2015-16

West Road Concert Hall, Cambridge
23 February 2016 1:00pm

A lunchtime concert with works by Debussy and Bjarnason offering a rich exploration of colour and harmonies.

Britten Sinfonia At Lunch Three 2015-16

Wigmore Hall, London
24 February 2016 1:00pm

A lunchtime concert with works by Debussy and Bjarnason offering a rich exploration of colour and harmonies.

Debussy, Donatoni & Bjarnason

Turner Sims Concert Hall, Southampton
25 February 2016 8:00pm

An evening of chamber music at Turner Sims Concert Hall, featuring music by Debussy, Donatoni and a new work by Daníel Bjarnason.

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