Update from James Slater, Interim Chief Executive and Artistic Director
Welcome back to our monthly newsletter
Despite the challenges of another national lockdown, there have been some real triumphs at WMC this month and much to celebrate. Our new Broadcast Suite has been ensuring that the show can go on, with fabulous livestream performances by Tom Poster and the Kaleidoscope Chamber Collective, and a wonderful week of chamber music as part of the virtual Bath Mozart Minifest.
Our Creative Learning Programme has also continued to connect our communities with virtual Zone Club, Wiltshire Jazz Academy and Wiltshire Youth Jazz Orchestra sessions, as well as another brilliant online concert for Celebrating Age Wiltshire participants.
On a more personal note, this week has been especially momentous as we said goodbye to Maud, who leaves us to return to her home in France to pursue her exciting new role as Cheffe des Productions Pédagogiques at the prestigious Conservatoire National Supérieur Musique et Danse de Lyon. After an emotional farewell with the team yesterday it feels there are no more words to say, except as Maud put it ‘the Music says it all’.
With that, we hope that you (and Maud!) will enjoy a final tribute from our dear friends at the OAE, below.
Interim Chief Executive and Artistic Director
Thank You from the OAE
"It has been an absolute joy and honour to lead the Wiltshire Music Centre during the past 3 years. I can't even begin to describe all the meaningful projects, amazing events and life-affirming moments that fill my memory and my heart, but I know each of you will have your own selection!
I am sincerely delighted to hand over the baton to James, with whom I have worked very closely during my tenure and who I am sure will continue to lead the great WMC team to new heights. As I go back to my home country and spread the WMC word, I feel lucky, proud and thankful to have been one of the custodians of the Centre and part of the WMC community. I wish it all the success it wholly deserves. Au revoir!"
Award-winning pianist, Cordelia Williams will return to WMC on 9th December to perform a beautifully crafted programme that will bring 'hope and solace in troubled times'.
MOZART Fantasia in D minor K397 LISZT Two Consolations in E major SCHUBERT Sonata in C minor D958 TOMKINS A Sad Pavan for these Distracted Times EVANS Peace Piece
We are delighted to welcome live audiences (from Tier 1 and Tier 2 areas) back to WMC for these events to enjoy the performances from the Auditorium. Seating is limited for your safety, so please book early to avoid disappointment.
NEW SERIES: 'How to practice in 20 mins' with Cordelia Williams
"Sometimes we all need ideas for how to practise, and encouragement to keep working on repertoire when it seems to have hit a brick wall. Especially right now when motivation and company are a bit thin on the ground!"
Subscribe now to enjoy this new YouTube series by WMC Artist Cordelia Williams focuses on tips and strategies for effective practice in a short period of time. As a mum of 2 young boys, Cordelia brings her first-hand experience of how to make every minute count!
How to practise in 20 minutes: Tips for effective piano practice for busy people (series intro)
Radiohead vs Handel: the OAE challenge expectations with daring new video
In their latest digital adventure, Baroque masters the Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment play with expectations of genre in this remake of Radiohead’s iconic music video for 'No Surprises' with Handel’s ‘Cara pianta’ from Apollo e Dafne. The breath-taking underwater feat is taken on by baritone James Newby, who is an alumnus of the OAE’s Rising Stars of the Enlightenment singers’ scheme.
Breath-taking Radiohead and Handel Music Video with baritone James Newby
Innovation and determination keep Creative Learning projects on course
During these times the Creative Learning department are getting used to flexible planning! WYJO (pictured below) finished their Autumn course not with their usual performance at WMC but with a fantastic masterclass with Nikki Iles and a recording in the mix. Our new Wiltshire Youth Choir will be delivered online on 21 December rather than in the venue, and we’re excited to share our plans for West of England Youth Orchestra soon too.
This week the Celebrating Age team have begun their series of Creative Conversations (a telephone project connecting vulnerable and isolated older people with volunteers and artists), as well as preparing some fantastic new online content and outdoor performances for the winter season. And we’re excited for virtual sessions with Zone Club on 5th December and Wiltshire Jazz Academy on 12 December – two monthly groups who haven’t let Covid stop them making music together.
Keeping the Centre open throughout the Covid-19 pandemic, continuing with live and livestream events and committing to vital community projects would not be possible without donations to the Centre’s Community Fundraising Appeal and the generous support of our Friends, sponsors and supporters. Thank you!
With just less than £17,000 left to raise, please help us to reach our £60,000 target to ensure that we can continue to share the joy of live music and put the community centre stage.