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Looking back on 2017

19 Dec 2017

2017 has been a big year for us here at the London Sinfonietta, from launching our 50th Anniversary Season: Unfinished Business and exploring iconic music from our early years, to touring the UK with Mica Levi’s score to Under the Skin, and performing at Aldeburgh Festival and the New Music Biennial with works by Olga Neuwirth and Philip Venables.

We also ran our ninth London Sinfonietta Academy in July, and in November said goodbye to our longest-standing member, John Constable, who officially retired from his role as Principal Piano after 50 years of dedicated music-making.

See below for some highlights from the year in images, film and more.

Watch our metronome-ticking trailer for Turning Points: Ligeti, March 2017

As familiar pitches veered into their micro-tonal penumbra, the sound remained ultra-blended, instruments morphing imperceptibly into each other, the orchestral fabric constantly in flux. An enthralling performance. " The Guardian (Under the Skin, 4 April 2017)

Philip Venables on Illusions, part of the New Music Biennial 2017

Philip Venables’ collaboration with performance artist David Hoyle is astonishingly powerful, with Hoyle’s garishly made-up face delivering a rant about everything from elections and gender to sodomy and revolution, precisely edited to Venables’ score with its echoes of expressionist music theatre and Weimar cabaret. Scabrous, fierce, and sometimes very funny, it’s a perfect fusion of music and image. " The Guardian (Illusions, New Music Biennial July 2017)

We launched our 50th Anniversary Season in summer – watch the trailer

The performance under Atherton was outstanding, with the Sinfonietta players meeting all the unusual demands of the score – including forming a male-voice chorus for one number – with total aplomb. " The Guardian (Henze's Voices, 11 October 2017)
The players of the Sinfonietta – one or two of whom took part in the work’s world premiere in 1973 – embraced the challenges of Henze’s score with relish. " The Telegraph (Henze's Voices, 11 October 2017)

Watch our guide to Silbury Air – performed at Landmarks, November 2017

As the curtain opened on a dimly lit stage, a startling sight greeted us: 40 string players, seated in two rows facing the audience, started playing a cluster-chord that seemed to contain every microtone within a span of about six octaves. " The Times (Stockhausen's Trans, 6 December 2017)

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