Britten Sinfonia Resident Orchestra – Saffron Hall season announced

Britten Sinfonia is pleased to announce its 2016-17 season of concerts and events as Saffron Hall’s brand new Resident Orchestra.

Britten Sinfonia begins its Saffron Hall residency on Sunday 16 October with the world premiere tour of James MacMillan’s Stabat Mater with The Sixteen conducted by Harry Christophers. The orchestra appears four more times during the season: with a concert celebrating Steve Reich’s 80th birthday with Synergy Vocals, led by Clark Rundell on Sunday 6 November 2016; in a Mediterranean-inspired evening directed by harpsichordist Mahan Esfahani on Saturday 4 February 2017; a family picture book concert based on Ed Vere’s award-winnning children’s book Max the Brave on Saturday 18 February; and ending the season with a concert on the work and influence of Beethoven – with the composer’s first and second symphonies paired with Gerald Barry’s Beethoven – conducted by Thomas Adès on Saturday 27 May 2017.

  • Priority booking for Saffron Hall members and current Britten Sinfonia Cambridge subscribers opens from Tuesday 10 May 2016 and general booking opens on Wednesday 25 May 2016. The evening concert series will provide a springboard for numerous opportunities for audiences to gain a deeper understanding of the music and to get to know the musicians and guest artists. These will include:
  • – Open rehearsals giving audiences a “behind the scenes” perspective on how an orchestra prepares for a concert
    – Pre-concert talks with guest artists and Britten Sinfonia musicians who will introduce the music, enabling audiences to gain an insight into each programme
    – Immersive study days to gain an in-depth understanding on a particular aspect of the programme or a featured composer
    – The chance to meet and talk to musicians and guest artists in post-concert events
  • We will also be working with Saffron Walden County High School (in which the hall is sited) and other local schools on a variety of projects to ensure young people have the opportunity to get excited by innovative and world class music-making. Current plans include:- Open rehearsals for school groups
    – Masterclasses with guest artists and Britten Sinfonia musicians
    – A pre-concert performance by the talented young musicians of Britten Sinfonia Academy at the opening concert of the season
    – Bespoke projects based on repertoire performed during the series
    – Subsidised tickets for under 18s and students to the evening concert series

    Angela Dixon, Saffron Hall Chief Executive, comments:
    “We’re delighted to welcome our new Resident Orchestra Britten Sinfonia as, together, we embark on a rich journey over the coming years with an exceptional programme of concerts and an inspiring, collaborative approach to learning and outreach within the school.”

    David Butcher, Britten Sinfonia Chief Executive, comments:
    “We were lucky to be the first professional orchestra to perform at Saffron Hall, and are very much looking forward to our new partnership with Angela Dixon and her team. It’s not often that you have the chance to start with a clean sheet, and we have a fantastic opportunity to develop a new residency model together, and to engage young people from Saffron Walden County High School and the wider community with first class music making, both in concert, and starting this autumn, by throwing the doors open for pupils to experience the creative process in rehearsal.  It’s just the start; there are exciting times ahead…”