Aurora Orchestra today announces its Autumn 2020 season, which sees a return to live performance at its Kings Place home for the first time since the start of the UK lockdown in March.
The season begins with three performances of Beethoven’s Symphony No. 7 under the baton of Principal Conductor Nicholas Collon, delivered from memory by the Aurora players. On 7 September, the orchestra stages a special outdoor concert under the West Handyside Canopy in King’s Cross in partnership with Kings Place. This will be Aurora’s first public performance since lockdown and one of the first opportunities to book for an orchestral concert anywhere in the UK since March.
On 10 September the orchestra appears as part of the BBC Proms’ special series of live performances, again performing Beethoven’s Symphony No. 7 from memory, and prefaced by a special musically-illustrated introduction co-hosted by Nicholas Collon and BBC Radio 3’s Tom Service. Alongside, the concert will feature a new commission from Richard Ayres exploring Beethoven’s journey into deafness, as well as his own personal hearing loss. The live performances at the Royal Albert Hall will be broadcast on BBC Radio 3, BBC TV and iPlayer.
Earlier that week Aurora will also make a welcome return to Saffron Hall for a performance of the Beethoven work for the venue’s members on 9 September.
Although these events will be Aurora’s first live orchestral performances since the closure of concert halls earlier in the year, they follow a busy summer of digital activity which has seen the orchestra reach over a million viewers through its online series Aurora Play.
Reflecting its commitment to continue delivering a vibrant programme of live activity despite the challenges of social distancing, Aurora also today announces three autumn concerts at Kings Place, with tickets available for attendance in person or for digital viewing. These concerts form part of Mozart’s Piano, Aurora’s ambitious five-year journey through all of Mozart’s piano concerts as the first British orchestra ever to perform all 27 concertos within the span of a single series. Modifying the original programmes for socially-distanced performance, Aurora principal players present chamber versions of three of the later concertos, alongside other much-loved chamber repertoire and a series of three new commissions from former BBC Young Composers.
On 17 October, Imogen Cooper appears as soloist for Piano Concerto No. 25 K503, alongside Schubert’s ‘Trout’ Quintet and a new work by the Scottish composer Electra Perivolaris. On 7 November, Swiss pianist Louis Schwizgebel makes his Kings Place debut for a performance of the ‘Coronation’ Piano Concerto (No. 26, K537), and Aurora players perform a new work by Sasha Scott, winner of the 2019 BBC Proms Young Composer Competition. Finally, on 12 December Aurora welcomes Spanish virtuoso Javier Perianes for a performance of Piano Concerto No. 23 K488 and the Schumann Piano Quintet, and delivers the world premiere of a new work by Sylvia Lim.
Next week also sees the physical release of Aurora’s album Music of the Spheres on Deutsche Grammophon, the orchestra’s debut for the iconic Yellow Label. Aurora applies its trailblazing memorised performance style to a recording project for the first time, resulting in the first-ever studio recording of a classical symphony performed entirely by heart, and described by Gramophone’s Andrew Mellor as ‘a pointed, deep-driven performance that becomes joyous’. Also featuring music by Thomas Adès, Max Richter and Nico Muhly, the album is available to stream now and will be released physically on 28 August. All Aurora Play broadcasts and interactive content can be viewed on demand on the Aurora website.
Chief Executive John Harte said: “After the enormous challenges of the past six months we are so excited to be returning to live concerts. Performance is the lifeblood of any orchestra, and we can’t wait to welcome back both players and audiences – whether watching with us in person or digitally at home – for what promises to be a very special series of events.”
Kings Place Tickets
All tickets for Kings Place concerts are now on sale except 7 Nov and 12 Dec which will be on sale soon