BREMF Live! Success

As you’ve possibly inferred from our Facebook or Twitter feeds, Oxford Baroque are delighted to have won a place to participate in the Brighton Early Music Festival’s Live! Scheme in September 2012.

It turned out to be quite a frantic day for us. Having rehearsed in Oxford on the Sunday afternoon (followed by a group curry, cooked by David), we met for the 7am bus to London the next morning. Unfortunately, we were re-routed via Finchley Road, owing to a road accident. This meant that our rehearsal time at the other end, in Paddington, was cut very short, as we met up with Stephen to work on the J. Christoph Bach ciaconna, from the cantata Mein Freundin, du bist schön.

Rehearsing before the Audition

The group rehearsing at Mark Ransom’s house, in Paddington, before the audition

After jumping in taxis, hailed down from the street, we raced to the 1901 Club in Waterloo, where we arrived to find a bustling venue, filled with all sorts of musicians, dancers and their various accoutrements. As soon as we stepped into the audition room however, it seemed like the hard work paid off. Everyone sang and played well, and conveyed our genuine passion to the panel for what we do. The good news came later that afternoon, when David received an email from the panel, informing us that we’d won the place.

2012 is a particularly exciting year to be a part of things, marking the 10th anniversary of the Brighton Early Music Festival – now the second largest festival of early music in the UK, and one which has helped launched the careers of many of the most exciting young ensembles on the scene today. In fact, it is the second largest early music festival in the UK, with a large and enthusiastic following of over 6000.

Described by Classical Music as ‘One of the great success stories of today’s early music scene, far surpassing its competitors in terms of the sheer number and variety of events on offer’, it will give us the chance to perform in the festival – and be part of its unique White Night event – and also to develop our educational skills, an ever-important part of any successful group’s activities in the arena of contemporary music-making.

The Festival takes place in late October and early November and has become known for its innovative and refreshing presentation of early music, from the medieval to the early classical, with numerous events all exploring different art forms and performance formats. Concerts take place in a variety of venues in Brighton and Hove, and are often broadcast on BBC Radio 3. Throughout the year, BREMF contributes to the vibrant arts scene in Brighton and Hove through its programme of workshops, choirs and schools projects. Each year the Festival takes performances into schools, reaching in excess of 1200 children. Oxford Baroque are delighted to be able to be a part of all of this, being allowed to share the music that we all love with a new and open-minded audience, some of whom might be hearing it for the first time.

This tenth anniversary festival is centered on the theme of ‘Celebration’ in ‘all its spectacular and imaginative glory’. We’ll keep you posted as we formulate what we’re going to bring to the party!

Click here for more info on BREMF 2012: http://www.bremf.org.uk/index.htm
Click here to see a short video about White Night 2011