Watch The Night Shift’s latest video

Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment have released a new video for their Night Shift on 4 May featuring conductor Richard Goodman talking on Schubert’s Tragic Symphony.

Buy tickets / More info

Ether 2011: Digital artist Klaus Obermaier on revamping The Rite of Spring


Klaus Obermaier, digital artist behind The Rite of spring in 3D, in conversation with Southbank Centre’s Head of Contemporary Culture, Gillian Moore.

GM: How have you managed to integrate a live dancer, live orchestra and screen?

KO: Stereo cameras and a complex computer system transfer the dancer Julia Mach to a virtual three-dimensional space. Time layers and unusual perspectives overlay one another and multiply themselves, enabling a completely new perception of the body and its sequences of movements. Real-time generated virtual spaces communicate and interact with the dancer. The human body is once more the interface between reality and virtuality. By means of 32 microphones the entire orchestra is integrated in the interactive process. Musical motifs, individual voices and instruments influence the form, movement and complexity of both the 3D projections of the virtual space and those of the dancer. Music is no longer the only starting point, it is the consummation of the choreography.

GM: What do you hope the audience will take away from the performance?

KO: First of all I hope the audience will have a great experience. Stereoscopic projections create an immersive environment, which permits the audience to participate much more closely in the performance than in traditional theatre settings. And of course it will raise some questions about our modern lives and the authenticity of experience in the light of the ongoing virtualisation of our habitats.

Catch Rites: Stravinky’s The Rite of Spring with 3D visuals live at Southbank Centre’s Royal Festival Hall as part of Ether 2011 on 23 April. Get tickets here

Ether 2011: Rites – The Rite of Spring live in 3D

Ether has a history of bringing together seemingly the most unlikely of collaborators. This year is no different with Stravinsky’s seminal The Rite of Spring played live by the City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestraplus Klaus Obermaier’s stunning 3D visuals on a screen behind the orchestra. Julia Mach dances live to the music – a nod to Stravinsky’s original vision of his work as a ballet –  and her movements are interpreted in real-time into the visuals.

Have a look at this video to see what we mean. If you haven’t seen or heardThe Rite of Spring live before, this is one not to miss.



Catch Rites: Stravinky’s The Rite of Spring with 3D visuals live at Southbank Centre’s Royal Festival Hall as part of Ether 2011 on 23 April. Get tickets here


Progress of the restoration and reinstallation of the Royal Festival Hall Organ

Work has now begun on the central section of the organ with the cleaning, restoring and making of components having started in the Harrison & Harrison workshops in Durham in January and February of this year.

The central section of the organ comprises much of the Pedal Organ as well as the Great Reed Chorus 16, 8, and 4 and the Mounted Cornet that are both at the front of the top level. The mechanism associated with this pipe work consists of soundboards, underactions, reservoirs, wind trunks and the framework for the instrument. At the front of this section sits the Monogram, the central design of dummy pipes which will be restored but not fitted until the final section of the instrument is in place.

Materials including leather, timber and glues have been purchased enabling work to be carried out to the tremulants for the manual divisions which are comprised of leather membranes, paddles, valves and encasement boxes. Other items under construction include the new wind reservoirs. The underactions have also been removed from storage and are now being acclimatised before restoration work begins on the leather motors.

We still have £1million left to raise to complete the project and hope that you will help to restore this magnificent organ by sponsoring one or more pipes – there are pipes available from £30 to £10,000. In return for your donation, you will receive a certificate and details of the pipe/s you have sponsored, and your support will be acknowledged on our website. We will also keep you up-to-date with the project’s progress and invite you to the celebratory performances in 2014. Please click on the link below to sponsor a pipe:

Ether 2011: Louis Andriessen on his Ether premiere

Andriessen, photo: Francesca Patella

Louis Andriessen, photo: Francesca Patella

London Sinfonietta’s Sara Mohr-Pietsch visits composer Louis Andriessen in his Amsterdam studio to discuss his work to be performed tonight at Ether 2011, including the UK premiere of Anaïs Nin a new work for singer, ensemble and film and De Staat (The Republic) his 1976 work of jazz-infused politically charged minimalism.


Hear London Sinfonietta play Louis Andriessen at Southbank Centre’s Queen Elizabeth Hall on 14 April as part of Ether 2011. Get tickets here


Ether 2011: Get to know Colin Currie

Colin Currie, photo: Chris Dawes
Colin Currie, photo: Chris Dawes

The Colin Currie Group are returning to Southbank Centre this week for Ether 2011 with one of Steve Reich’s most acclaimed works, Drumming. We caught up with Colin to ask him our quick questions.

What do you fear the most and why?

Struggling to answer this one, so I guess I’m fairly fearless! I dislike pigeons however.

Which mobile number do you call the most?

I speak with my sister very often.

What – or where – is perfection?

Spending time with my nephew and niece who are 6 and 4 and full of wit and imagination.

Who is your favourite hero from fiction (book/comic/film/opera) – and why?

I enjoyed the Richard Katz character from Jonathan Franzen’s latest book ‘Freedom’ although he is not at all likeable.

What’s your favourite ritual?

I enjoy tea and toast at home following red-eye flights back from the USA, which I take most months.

Which living person do you most admire (and why)?

I met some very brave people in Mozambique whilst visiting there with World Vision.

What other talent or skill would you like to possess?

I love basketball and in my other (imaginary) career I am an NBA star, in the mould of D Wade (Miami Heat).

Tell us about a special memory you have of Southbank Centre?

Pierre-Laurent Aimard playing Messiaen’s ‘Vingt Regards’ and Barbara Hannigan tearing up Ligeti’s ‘Mysteries of the Macabre’. Good examples of what people can achieve when they put their minds to it.

If you could programme your ideal Southbank Centre show, which artists (living or dead) would you bring together?

I would bring back Ian Curtis and have a Joy Division re-union.

What’s your favourite website?

What is the most important lesson life has taught you?

Be yourself and not what others or convention want you to be.

What is the most played piece of music on your MP3 player or in your CD collection?

Anything by Stravinsky.

The Colin Currie Group plays Steve Reich’s Drumming as part of Ether 2011 at Southbank Centre’s Queen Elizabeth Hall on 8 & 9 April 2011. Get tickets here

Ether 2011: Trailer for 2001: A Space Odyssey Live with Philharmonia Orchestra

Following a sell-out success in June 2010, Southbank Centre presents Stanley Kubrick’s seminal film 2001: A Space Odyssey with live music.

Conducted by André de Ridder, the enormous forces of Philharmonia Orchestra and Philharmonia Voices join together to perform the film’s extraordinary soundtrack, as live accompaniment to a screening in Royal Festival Hall.

Long recognised as one of the greatest science fiction films of all time, 2001 – A Space Odyssey is celebrated for its technological realism, its innovative Oscar®-winning special effects and a bold use of music. The film brought worldwide fame to both Richard Strauss’ Also Sprach Zarathustra and the music of Gyorgy Ligeti; it also created one of cinema’s most memorable images as a spaceship floats serenely through space to the strains of Johann Strauss’ Blue Danube waltz.

Here’s the official trailer from 1968.



Presented in association with the BFI (British Film Institute), with support from Warner Bros.

Catch 2001: A Space Odyssey Live at Southbank Centre’s Royal Festival Hall on 7 & 8 April 2011 as part of Ether 2011. Get tickets here