Orchestra Update

Personnel

Some of you may have heard that Alberto has decided to step down from his position in The English Concert. Alberto’s contribution to TEC has been incredible over the last 20 years and him leaving is a great loss. His last concert as member of The English Concert, will be during the John Passion tour. I plan to celebrate his enormous contribution as it deserves and will keep you updated with any news regarding the recruitment of his replacement.

Travel Policy

I have not heard any concerns or further suggestions to the draft travel policy I circulated. The few comments I have had have been positive so I plan to move forward implementing this from March onwards. If you do have any thoughts, please, do feel free to get in touch with either me or Sarah.

Diary

Many of you have told Sarah how much you would like a PDF version of the calendar. I’ve listened. You will find it on the calendar page. The live calendar and the subscribe buttons will continue to work.
This is strictly confidential, please, don’t share with anyone that is not a member of The English Concert.

Dates

September 2020. Note carefully that the Trevor Pinnock patch has shifted from what the Festival in Italy originally requested. If there are any problems, let us know. This is tied to the performance in London that Trevor has arranged in support of Jessie’s fund. He has very kindly found the financial resources to support this performance.
Please, continue to hold the 13-15 October for the potential performance in Belgrade.

6-9 Jan 2021. New event at Kings Place. Programme pending for a concert with Iestyn Davies as part of the Kings Place London Unwrapped series. Fee on offer is tiny but I will confirm forces as soon as Harry and Iestyn have agreed a programme. In the meantime, could all strings, wind and continuo hold the period please?

General Ticket sales

Ticket sales are going well for all of our Wigmore concerts coming up. The February concert is almost sold out and the other two will, in all likelihood, also sell out. If you have friends or family that you think would like to attend, encourage them to buy tickets now.

Rodelinda

Medici TV have enquired if we would be happy to repeat the formula we used back in 2017 with Ariodante and broadcast live (and for 3 months subsequently) our performance of Rodelinda. This is a great opportunity for us. The enterprise is non-commercial from all sides and as a result they cannot offer a fee. I propose we do what we did back in 2017 and offer a fee increase of £66 in addition to your standard fee. If any of you have any concerns, do please, let me know as soon as possible.

With our work in the USA West coast increasing, we are planning on hosting a private reception for potential supporters. TECA is coordinating the event. It will be in a private home. For the time being, could I ask principal players to hold the 7th of May in the diary? Once Harry has decided on repertoire, we will be able to confirm.

Garsington 2022

Some time in the future but letting you know that the piece we will be doing will be Cosi fan tutte instead of Figaro. At one point we thought we were also doing Gluck’s Orfeo that year but it is Monteverdi’s Orfeo! There will be a little bit of pitch adjusting from 430 to 440 but Laurence Cummings, who is conducting the Orfeo, has requested only single strings for Orfeo.

Fundraising

Unlike many European ensembles, we do not receive any public subsidy so we need to raise significant funds every year. The work we do would be entirely impossible without the very generous support of many individuals. As you know we had a big drive to fundraise towards the Rodelinda recording. Many people supported the appeal. Simon Weil, who is one of our trustees and is also a trustee of the Katthleen Hannay Fund, provided 10,000 matching funds; we raised 15,000 during the December appeal and the Reed Foundation donated 5,000.

The English Concert in America is providing fantastic financial support towards the USA tour and the recording (over 89,000 that support flight costs, accommodation, subsistence, your performance and recording fees and part of the office infrastructure). These are just a few examples of the work that our supporters undertake to enable us to present the work we do on stage. If you get a chance, please, thank them. They really all do amazing work for us.

Even with these great examples of support, we still need to fundraise significant additional funds to make all the work we do happen. I know many of you are aware of the cost involved in a performance but our self-promotions would never break even through box office, even if a performance sells out. If you hear of someone that may interested in becoming a supporter, or someone that can provide support in kind by providing accommodation, or is young hip tech savvy person that can support in kind through their company, someone with access to wine for our receptions… The list goes on! Anyone that could be engaged with our music and that may be interested in supporting what we do, do think of TEC!

Other

Silvia Schweinberger is planning to spend 5 months this spring until the end of August in the Brighton/Lewes area with her youngest daughter Nora. They have a school place there and are currently looking for somewhere to stay from end of March until the end of August. Do keep your ears open if you know of potential options for her.