The RNCM welcomes Manchester Camerata and Henning Kraggerud to the stage for a musical journey full of innovation, as familiar music is re-imagined through the lens of the 21st century and the climate emergency.
The Original Voices Festival has long been a highlight of the RNCM concert calendar, spotlighting musicians from around the world who are, in one way or another, bringing something a little different to the table. This year, the festival questions how we perform and present music from the past, offering fresh perspectives on music that has filled the concert hall, in some cases, for centuries. Maximising the potential of live performance in the 21st century, traditions will be challenged, expectations will be defied, boundaries will be broken.
This year’s Original Voices Festival is part of the RNCM’s The Future is Green initiative, which is all about bringing the natural world and, pressingly, climate change into focus. So while bringing fresh perspectives on everything from staging to presentation and arrangement, the festival will also be re-examining familiar music in a way that connects with the issue of climate change.
Split across two days, the festival kicks off with the Manchester Camerata, who will perform side-by-side with RNCM students in a uniquely curated concert whose programme starts at the high middle ages and leads us to the present day. From Hildegard von Bingen to Bach right through to Radiohead, Caroline Shaw, and a world premiere by James Weatherly-Buss, the concert questions pre-conceived notions of repertoire, while using movement, improvisation and spoken word within a voyage towards positive change and endless possibilities.
The following day, the RNCM Chamber Orchestra will take to the stage with the College’s International Chair in Violin, Henning Kraggerud. Leaving convention at the door, they’ll challenge narratives and performance practices to create something extraordinary, asking: How can our own modern voices be heard through Mozart? Where is there room for improvisation in Mendelssohn? Why not ask the audience what they want to hear? All while Henning explores flexible scoring, showcasing the possibilities for live music to be enjoyed in a more environmentally-friendly way.
Expect a thrilling festival full of new experiences, as innovation itself becomes the star.