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Listen Up - Festival of Orchestras 2004Making Music and ABO
Listen Up! Presentation Challenge
Award winning ideas for presenting orchestral concerts
Horse Racing
"In a society that increasingly listens with its eyes, British orchestras are not exempt from experimenting in ways concerts are presented and audiences experience our music," says Russell Jones, director of the Association of British Orchestras. "Our challenge, and our opportunity, is to retain the integrity of what we do while appealing to new and younger audiences who have yet to share our enthusiasm for classical music."

Listen Up! 2006 is encouraging orchestras to experiment with ways of presenting concerts that will draw in new audiences. The Listen Up! Concert Presentation Challenge , held at the start of 2006, inspired more than 20 professional and amateur orchestras to submit their ideas. Three award winners emerged.
  • ViVA: the orchestra of the east midlands will cue in live video images of individual musicians together with explanatory text live on large screens during a concert at Derby Assembly Rooms on 26 October that will include Copland and Stravinsky.

    "It's all about creating a new and engaging experience in the concert hall," says CEO Peter Helps.

  • London Symphony Orchestra will use live-mixed video images by London-based VJs [video jockeys] D-Fuse, who have worked with a wide variety of musicians, including Beck and electronic artists Scanner and Leftfield, during a concert at the Barbican on 1 October that celebrates the 70 th birthday of Steve Reich.

     "D-Fuse will create a film of images to complement the music which they'll mix live with shots of the musicians during the performance," explains Karen Cardy, LSO marketing manager.

  • Epsom Symphony Orchestra - a winner from the amateur sector - will perform Racing Colours, a new commission that forges local links with the Royal Epsom Derby, in which the audience can determine the outcome of the piece that mimics a horse race. The concert will take place at Epsom Playhouse on 14 October.

Winning Presentation Performances :
Will take place during Listen Up! as follows:
London Symphony Orchestra, Barbican, for Steve Reich's 70th Birthday, 1 October 2006
  Epsom Symphony Orchestra, Epsom Playhouse, 15 October 2006
Sinfonia ViVA, Derby Assembly Rooms, 26 October 2006
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