First Time Live

First Time Live was a project initiative launched by Orchestras back in 2013 in response to research by the Association of British Orchestras, which suggested that 60% of people living in England had never experienced a live orchestral concert. 

First Time Live, Luton 2014 (c) Luton Sixth Form College

First Time Live sought to address this by delivering a project that confronted the barriers that prevent people attending orchestral concerts.  Placing people at the very centre of a live orchestral experience is a philosophy that lies at the heart of Orchestras Live’s approach and our First Time Live projects illustrate how giving control of curation and production to a non-expert group can give a new perspective to orchestral music within a community, creating new styles of presentation and performance.

Nurtured by experience music leaders, players and creative teams in orchestras and music hubs, First Time Live Young Producers absorb skills and confidence and flourish into role models for a new young audience, surprised and excited by live orchestral music.

We embed First Time Live principles into all of our projects, and the approach has been adopted across the country, creating infrastructure change and generating long-term opportunities for people – young and old – in the orchestral section.

All of our First Time Live projects follow our principles of Sharing Creativity – you can read more about these here.

By involving young people in the promotion, curation and organisation of the events, we seek to impart an insight into the presentation of orchestral music, to create a legacy of commitment, dispel misconceptions about orchestral music, and bring about attitudinal change and enthusiasm to engage with concerts in the future. 

First Time Live has developed into a significant strand of work within Orchestras Live’s annual output, with the most recent iteration being our national Sound Around project with the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra.

Find out more about some of our recent First Time Live projects:

Chelmsford Remembers Them: The Violin – November 2018
Chelmsford First Time Live – Freedom – November 2017

Chelmsford First Time Live – The Nature of Beauty – March 2017
Luton First Time Live – Side by Side/Carnival – July 2016