‘Grimes on the Beach’ as it happened on Twitter

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Filming Grimes on the Beach

We’ve gathered some of the commentary from the showing of Grimes on the Beach on BBC4 at the weekend.

Making the film of ‘Peter Grimes on Aldeburgh beach’

On Sunday 24 May, Aldeburgh Music’s unforgettable staging of Peter Grimes on Aldeburgh Beach will be shown on BBC4. Tune in at 7pm or watch on iPlayer. The broadcast has had the Aldeburgh Music staff reminiscing about the all-encompassing production that sat at the heart of the Britten Centenary celebrations. Here’s a few photos and an account by the film director, Margaret Williams, of bringing the outdoor production to the screen.

Ever since I was [read more…]

George Benjamin and Harrison Birtwistle at home

It’s sometimes hard to imagine the graft that goes into composing. With this video and radio interview, we can find out what these two cornerstones of the 2015 Aldeburgh Festival programme do in order to be creative, through listening habits and cooking, to the type of pen and pencils they use to put new music onto paper.

Kit Downes’ and Tom Challenger’s Suffolk Church Crawl – Part 2

Written by Kit Downes
As our journey across Suffolk continues – Tom and I are enjoying listening back to some of the recordings we have already made in Snape church and Bromeswell church. It is interesting listening back to two full days of recording, especially of music that is completely improvised, as you hear the music developing the more we play. As we arrived in Snape on the first day, we [read more…]

Kit Downes’ and Tom Challenger’s Suffolk Church Crawl

Written by Tom Challenger
Kit and I began to collaborate on what we now refer to as ‘Wedding Music’ in the summer of 2012. We embarked upon a recording residency in Huddersfield University; Performed 2 concerts in the Royal Festival Hall and also placed the music in a non-site-specific version that utilised Hammond organs, along with myself as per usual on saxophone.
The common thread throughout this year of collaborating and developing [read more…]

A Celebration of Schools’ Music 2015

We had a very busy week between 9th -14th March running our Celebration of Schools’ Music event here at Snape. In a nutshell, we hosted 44 Suffolk schools – approximately 1600 children from local authority primary, high and special schools – to come and perform here at Snape Maltings Concert Hall between Monday and Saturday. Each school was involved in technical rehearsals on stage, working with a professional lighting, sound [read more…]

Sound House – experiments from the Society of Stange and Ancient Instruments

‘We have also sound-houses, where we practice and demonstrate all sounds and their generation. We have harmonies which you have not, of quarter sounds and lesser slides of sounds; divers instruments of music likewise to you unknown, some sweeter than any you have; with bells and rings that are dainty and sweet.’ The Society of Strange and Ancient Instruments’ new project for 2015, Sound House, is inspired by this extract from Francis Bacon’s utopian novel New Atlantis in which he portrays a brave new world where technology is employed for the good of humanity.

What did Diderot do in Aldeburgh?

Diderot Quartet backstage at Jubilee Hall
The Diderot Quartet from New York have spent the last two weeks here in Snape on a chamber music residency. They specialise in period music, and having played together in various other configurations since being students decided in 2012 to come together as a quartet.
We use gut strings of course, but we’re not trying to make big point about playing period music, we’re just trying to bring it alive [read more…]

Trio Kanon’s run-in with some stormy weather

Trio Kanon from Italy have just finished their 2-week residency. As well as their 2 sold out concerts at Jubilee Hall, and a solid couple of weeks of rehearsing, they snapped away throughout and got some incredible photos of a storm over the reeds.
“We hadn’t been to Aldeburgh before but had heard very good things from friends and colleagues at home. So we had high expectations, which of course have been [read more…]

Nicola Wydenbach’s Aldeburgh Residency – Parkinson’s and Singing

On Thursday and Friday last week, singer Nicola Wydenbach came to Snape for a two day residency to work on the benefits of singing for sufferers of Parkinson’s disease. She was joined by a wonderful group of health professionals, sufferers and their carers, who travelled across East Anglia to take part in two inspiring and humbling days of singing. Below are her thoughts from her time here:
Day 1
Today over twenty [read more…]