ABLE ORCHESTRA TO MAKE MANCHESTER DEBUT DURING INTERNATIONAL CONFERENCE
6.30pm – 7.00pm on Wednesday 29 January at the BBC Philharmonic Studio, Media City, Salford
On 29 January the Able Orchestra makes its debut appearance in the north west with a performance during the Association of British Orchestras 2020 Conference which takes place from 29-31 January in venues across Manchester and Salford.
Able Orchestra is an inclusive ensemble of professional orchestral musicians, digital artists and young musicians including disabled people who use assistive technology to perform. Formed in 2015 with the ethos that all members can create and perform on equal terms, it is co-produced by Orchestras Live and Inspire Youth Arts.
The forthcoming performance will include musicians from the Hallé and the BBC Philharmonic Orchestra alongside the core artists and young people from Nottinghamshire and Manchester, and it will feature a new piece specially commissioned from rising star composer Oliver Vibrans.
Able Orchestra has a long-standing partnership with the Manchester-based Hallé Orchestra, having also collaborated previously with the BBC Philharmonic and BBC Concert Orchestra, and it is gaining recognition across the orchestral sector and beyond for high quality artistic ingenuity. From its origins in Nottinghamshire the ensemble has expanded to bring together diverse young musicians and emerging music leaders with world-class professional artists from a range of music and digital genres. It is now established as a beacon of inclusive musical collaboration and a new kind of orchestra, having performed on a number of stages including the Royal Albert Hall in the BBC Proms’ Ten Pieces Prom.
The Manchester concert will see the Able Orchestra comprise of over 40 performers including young musicians and digital artists from Fountaindale School, Outwood Academy Portland and the Minster School in Nottinghamshire together with young people from the Seashell Trust in Cheadle Hulme alongside the professional artists and orchestral musicians.
“Produced through our partnership with Inspire Youth Arts, the Able Orchestra has evolved as a shining example of inclusive music-making by a collection of diverse musicians and artists using cutting edge digital technology alongside conventional instruments. This performance during the ABO Conference is a golden opportunity to inspire an international audience of delegates as well as members of the public; an illustration of the exciting and creative ways orchestras can perform when they become more inclusive and relevant to society as a whole.”Sarah Derbyshire, Chief Executive of Orchestras Live
“I am really proud of the achievements of the Able Orchestra, and how the partnership of Inspire Youth Arts and Orchestras Live has continued to trailblaze the development of inclusive opportunities for young people. The conference is a fantastic opportunity to put the Able Orchestra and inclusive music making on an international stage.”Peter Gaw, Chief Executive of Inspire: Culture, Learning & Libraries
“With the focus of this year’s ABO Conference on looking ahead to what the landscape for orchestras will be in the next ten years it is fitting that we should showcase the Able Orchestra as a dynamic example of the new kinds of orchestras and ensembles that are emerging across the country.”Mark Pemberton, Director of the Association of British Orchestras
Building directly from the performance, on the following day (30 January) there will be an ABO Conference discussion chaired by Sarah Derbyshire MBE of Orchestras Live at Hallé St Peter’s, with panellists including composer Oliver Vibrans, in an interactive session sharing their own personal perspectives and ambition for inclusive practice in the music profession. For more information visit www.abo.org.uk
This Able Orchestra project is produced by Orchestras Live and Inspire Youth Arts in partnership with the Hallé and BBC Philharmonic, with support from Nottinghamshire Music Education Hub, The Granada Foundation and Arts Council England.
Further information from Stuart Bruce, Senior Creative Producer, Orchestras Live
Tel: 020 7520 1494
Mobile: 07831 272123
Photo opportunities (by appointment only) on 29 January at BBC Philharmonic Studio: 2.30pm, during the final rehearsal, and 6.30pm, during the performance.
NOTES FOR EDITORS
National producer and music charity Orchestras Live believes that orchestras are for everyone and that live orchestral music has the power to inspire people for a lifetime.
We work with a broad range of artistic partners, including the country’s finest professional orchestras, to ensure everyone has access to world-class orchestral experiences. A key element of our work is to develop the creative leadership skills and artistic ambition of orchestras, musicians and promoters, in order to increase the quality of engagement and sustainability of live orchestral music for future generations.
Orchestras Live is co-producer of the Able Orchestra and has been involved in driving its evolution and promotion since 2015.
Inspire Youth Arts
Part of Nottinghamshire based Inspire: Culture, Learning & Libraries, Inspire Youth Arts is an award-winning team of arts professionals who have a 25-year history of developing ambitious arts projects with young people from all backgrounds. Whilst its main focuses are music, dance and digital, IYA has become a leading arts and disability provider. IYA works across Nottinghamshire with local communities, schools and charities putting young people at the heart of its work. We developed the concept of Able Orchestra back in 2013 using mostly iPads with students from Portland College in Mansfield, and we have supported the development of adapted instruments and approaches that are unique.
Association of British Orchestras
The ABO is the national body representing the collective interest of professional orchestras, youth ensembles and the wider classical music industry throughout the UK. Our mission is to enable and support an innovative, collaborative and sustainable orchestral sector by providing advice, support, intelligence and information to the people who make British orchestras a global success.
Now in its 162nd season and numbered amongst the world’s top symphonic ensembles, the Hallé continues to seek ways to enhance and refresh what it undertakes, with aspirations to provide leadership through performance standards, education, understanding and training.
Founded by Sir Charles Hallé in Manchester, the Hallé gave its first concert in the city’s Free Trade Hall on 30 January 1858. Following Sir Charles’s death, the orchestra continued to develop under the guidance of such distinguished figures as Dr Hans Richter, Sir Hamilton Harty, Sir John Barbirolli and Sir Mark Elder.
The Hallé has received many awards for its work in the concert hall and celebrated collaborations with other orchestras and Manchester organisations, as well as for recordings on its own label. The Hallé gives around 70 concerts a year at The Bridgewater Hall and over 40 concerts annually throughout the rest of Britain. Its distinguished history also includes televised concerts, frequent radio broadcasts and international tours.
Over a quarter of a million people heard the Hallé live last season, of whom more than 70,000 were inspired by the Hallé’s pioneering education programme. It exists to create a wider enjoyment and understanding of music throughout the whole community and generates over 70 projects each year. The Hallé is a registered charity.
The BBC Philharmonic is reimagining the orchestral experience for a new generation – challenging perceptions, championing innovation and taking a rich variety of music to the widest range of audiences. One of Europe’s most adventurous, innovative and dynamic orchestras, it performs around 100 concerts every year in Salford, Manchester, the North and beyond, regularly premiering new music by today’s most exciting composers.
Along with concerts, recordings and broadcasts on all seven BBC national radio networks, it is pioneering digital innovation through its Philharmonic Lab initiative and reaching thousands via its learning and education programme – bringing life-changing music experiences to diverse local, national and international audiences.