On 4 March 2020 I went to Symphony Hall, Birmingham to hear the City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra and the CBSO Chorus give a fine performance of Brahms’ Ein Deutsches Requiem conducted by the orchestra’s charismatic Osborn Music Director, Mirga Gražinytė-Tyla (review). Though the Coronavirus alarm bells were ringing ever more loudly by that point, little did I imagine that this would be the last time that I would be able to hear the CBSO during their 2019/20 season. I had plans to review several more of their concerts, most notably their planned performance of Britten’s War Requiem on 20 June. Not long after that Brahms concert, though, the UK was put into lockdown and the orchestra was obliged to cancel future concerts on an incremental basis, including a 12-concert tour of Germany and Austria. Eventually, on 30 April, they bowed to the inevitable and cancelled the remainder of the season.
United Kingdom Mozart, Brahms: Camilla Tilling (soprano), Florian Boesch (baritone); CBSO Chorus; City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra / Mirga Gražinytė-Tyla (conductor). Symphony Hall, Birmingham, 4.3.2020. (JQ)
Birmingham Royal Ballet Announces 2020-2021 Season
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LESS THAN ONE MONTH INTO HIS NEW ROLE AS DIRECTOR OF BIRMINGHAM ROYAL BALLET, CARLOS ACOSTA HAS ANNOUNCED PLANS FOR WORLD PREMIERES, CLASSIC REVIVALS AND BRAND-NEW PARTNERSHIPS IN HIS FIRST YEAR AS DIRECTOR OF BIRMINGHAM ROYAL BALLET. OPPORTUNITY, TALENT AND INSPIRATION ARE THE KEY INGREDIENTS THAT UNDERPIN HIS VISION AND AMBITION FOR THE COMPANY.
United Kingdom Mahler: Soloists, CBSO Chorus, CBSO Youth Chorus, CBSO Children’s Chorus, University of Birmingham Voices, Baltimore Choral Arts Society, City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra / Mirga Gražinytė-Tyla (conductor). Symphony Hall, Birmingham, 18.1.2020. (JQ)
United Kingdom Mendelssohn, Elijah Op.70: Keri Fuge (soprano), Karen Cargill (mezzo-soprano), Robert Murray (tenor); Matthew Brook (baritone), CBSO Chorus, City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra / Kazuki Yamada (conductor), Symphony Hall, Birmingham, 7.11.2019. (JQ)
United Kingdom Britten, Tippett. Talise Trevigne (soprano), Dame Felicity Palmer (mezzo-soprano), Joshua Stewart (tenor), Brindley Sherratt (bass), CBSO Chorus; City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra / Mirga Gražinytė-Tyla (conductor), Symphony Hall, Birmingham, 26.9.2019. (JQ)
United Kingdom Mahler: Lucy Crowe (soprano), Karen Cargill (mezzo Soprano), CBSO Chorus, City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra / Mirga Gražinytė-Tyla (conductor), Symphony Hall, Birmingham, 13.6.2019. (JQ)
‘From the heart’ – Ex Cathedra announces its 50th anniversary season
Ex Cathedra, the world-class choir and Early Music ensemble founded in Birmingham by Jeffrey Skidmore, has announced a typically distinctive season of concerts for its 50th anniversary season, a programme that comes ‘from the heart’ – as Beethoven wrote in the score of his Missa Solemnis, one of the highlights of the season.