BBC Radio 3
Mark Bowden, Resident Composer BBC NOW
In the third of a series of blogs, Mark Bowden, resident composer at the BBC National Orchestra and Chorus of Wales, describes his collaboration with writer Owen Sheers on his new work, A Violence of Gifts, and explains the mileposts in the process of composition.
Resident Composer BBC NOW
As Owen and I emerged from the plane at Geneva airport, grateful to have our feet safely on the ground once more, it occurred to me we would soon be below ground, inside the sonorous caverns of the Large Hadron Collider. We had arrived at CERN – the European Organisation for Nuclear Research – straddling the Franco-Swiss border for our research trip supported by a grant from the Jerwood Charitable Foundation.
Hopping onto a shuttle, we wound our way through a warren of blocks to the enigmatically named ‘Building 33’. Greeted by Ariane Koek, director of the Arts@CERN programme, we were led to a lecture theatre where Christine Sutton, a physicist from CERN’s European Particle Physics Outreach Group, gave us an introduction to CERN’s history and values. We learned that CERN, founded in 1954, was the first joint European venture set up after the Second World War to promote peace through scientific co-operation. Scientists come from every continent on the planet to work at...
Radio 3 Presenter
On Saturday 14 March at 10.30pm I shall be presenting Hear and Now, live from Café Oto in Hackney, London. The programme comprises two 4 channel, surround-sound pieces by the Spanish sound artist Francisco Lopez. Radio 3 shall be broadcasting these new works in 4.0 surround-sound, as well as in stereo, and the programme shall be available, in 4 channels, on our website for one month after the transmission.
To hear the broadcast in 4 channels you will need a surround-sound system at home. Plug your laptop into the system and you will be able to hear the performance exactly as the audience are hearing it at Café Oto. For details about how to do this, go to this link. To help you set up your system before the broadcast you can go to this link.
We first broadcast the work of Francisco Lopez in 2003 as part of the initial series of Hear and Now’s Cut & Splice events. His pieces are completely immersive, multi-channel events. The audience are invited to wear blindfolds and listen in...
BBC Symphony Orchestra
Paul Hughes is the General Manager responsible for the BBC Symphony Orchestra, the BBC Symphony Chorus and the BBC Singers. The job involves keeping a giddying calendar of dates stretching years hence, in his head. In this blog, Paul reflects on the 2015-16 season which has just been announced.
The BBC Symphony Orchestra, conducted by Sakari Oramo. Photo: Sim Canetty-Clarke
I find this a strange time of the planning year, when the present season is well over half way through. the new season has just gone public and my mind is focused on the season yet-to-be planned and the last few details of the Proms season ahead. I know this to be true when a friend asked me what we are doing next season and my mind went blank ‒ full of this week’s concert and the ideas for 2016-2017 that are swirling around in my head. And then I got home and went straight to the laptop to be reminded, as a smile crept over my face, of a season as full of musical adventures and journeys, pleasures and indulgences as you would expect of the BBCSO.
Any concert conducted by Sakari Oramo is a...
Radio 3 Presenter
Jason Moran (l) and Robert Glasper
Jez Nelson introduces a special duo concert from two of America’s biggest piano stars
The Blue Note all-stars that headlined the label’s 75th birthday celebrations at last year’s EFG London Jazz Festival were good, but it was the opening duo who stole the show. Jason Moran and Robert Glasper both hail from Houston, Texas and are Blue Note fixtures, but they have very different approaches to the...
Editor, BBC Radio 3
Elisabeth Jacquet de La Guerre
To mark International Women’s Day on Sunday 8 March we’re celebrating female composers both past and present. There are 6000 women composers in history, so why can most of us only name a handful? We as a station can’t solve the imbalances of the classical music industry - which inevitably reflect historic societal attitudes to women generally - but it's very important to take the time to...
Resident Composer BBC NOW
Large-scale structure of light distribution in the Universe
FORM AND TEXT
I’ve been writing A Violence of Gifts for what feels like an eternity but, finally, the composition work is coming to an end. I’m now in the midst of making the conductor’s score, orchestral parts and the piano reduction for the choir and soloists. It seems a good moment to take stock and reflect on the origin of the project, particularly as the piece itself is concerned with...
Senior Content Producer, Radio 3 Interactive
The number of Composer Collections on the Radio 3 website has reached a milestone of 40. Roger Philbrick is the senior content producer behind this long-running piece of in-depth curation, which has led to some 2000 archive composer programmes being made permanently available to listeners. As he prepares to leave the BBC after nearly 30 years’ service, Roger opens the composer jewel-box to...
Controller, BBC Radio 3
End of week one. Pinch myself. I now have the magic pass that gets me into the studios. And I can find them, even the lovely one on the 8th floor where In Tune weaves its magic. I’ve even got cards that say I’m Controller, so it must be true.
I’ve found inside Radio 3 a new reason to believe – to believe in the power of music, the power of culture and ideas, and the powerful role the BBC and Radio 3 does and will play in the cultural life of the country. The reason – the intellectual curiosity and generosity of the people working here and their skill in making remarkable things...
BBC Symphony Orchestra
Sakari Oramo conducts the BBC Symphony Orchestra. Photo: Sim Canetty-Clarke
BBC Symphony Orchestra chief conductor Sakari Oramo continues his Nielsen series on Friday the 16th, with the Third Symphony. It starts with 26 bangs, as Sub-Principal Viola Phil Hall explains in this insider’s guide to the symphonies
Anniversary years often provide a useful opportunity for reviewing a composer's output. In 2015 we have the sesquicentenary of the birth of two of Scandinavia's...
Assistant Producer, R3 Multiplatform
Screenshot of the Best of British playlist
I’ve recently moved jobs. Instead of the usual packing all your notepads, assorted pens, stapler and hundreds of paperclips (which, by the way, were never to be found when you actually needed them) into a bag and bumping into people on your tube journey home, I carried my modest stationary collection up two floors in Broadcasting House to Radio 3 Multiplatform. After over four years working in...