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March – July 2013

Concerts, Workshops and Events BCMG Online:  G  U @bcmg

New Music for New Ears And New Ears for New Music ‘In an ideal world,

all performances of contemporary music would be like this … BCMG have thrown down the gauntlet to others.’ The Birmingham Post


Box Office: 0121 345 0491

About Birmingham Contemporary Music Group

Download NMC’s BCMG 25th Anniversary Sampler

A collection of music from the NMC catalogue selected by Stephen Newbould, BCMG Artistic Director. Download in mp3 & FLAC format from the NMC Shop:

£2.99 download only

Introducing the second half of our 2012/13 season 2000: Thomas Adès’ Powder Her Face on UK tour and on Channel 4 TV Gerald Barry’s Wiener Blut becomes the 25th Sound Investment commission to be premiered Oliver Knussen has been rightly celebrated in his 60th year as much for his championing of other composers as for his own extraordinary oeuvre. Having opened our 25th season with an important new Alexander Goehr work, he returns in March to launch a piece by BCMG’s latest Apprentice Composer-in-Residence Joanna Lee, set amongst American originals from the first half of the last century. March, incidentally, sees the UK premiere at Covent Garden of George Benjamin’s universally acclaimed new opera Written on Skin (go if you can!); and in April Benjamin conducts BCMG in his masterful chamber opera Into the Little Hill, in Birmingham and London’s Wigmore Hall. In programming a Britten centenary chamber concert, John Woolrich has cast the composer’s early works amongst influences in both directions. Our Family & Schools’ Concerts introduce new music and established pieces to a young audience, conducted by Richard Baker, who returns after being featured here as composer in February. The summer sees BCMG on the road, taking our Britten tribute to the Spitalfields Festival;

honouring the late greats Hans Werner Henze and Elliott Carter at the Aldeburgh Festival, the latter with a UK premiere with Carter’s long-term collaborators Oliver Knussen and Pierre-Laurent Aimard, alongside a Magnus Lindberg premiere commissioned for the Royal Philharmonic Society’s bicentenary; unveiling a new vocal work by our previous Apprentice Composer Charlotte Bray at a separate Aldeburgh Festival appearance; and launching David Sawer’s The Lighthouse Keepers at the Cheltenham Festival with Martyn Brabbins. Whether presenting brand new or ‘old’ new music, our focus is on excellent performances and a warm welcome at the door. Please join us to help these concerts take flight!

Stephen Newbould BCMG Artistic Director

Birmingham Contemporary Music Group celebrates its 25th anniversary season in 2012/13. Emerging from within the City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra in 1987, the Group quickly established a reputation for brilliant performances, ambitious commissions, innovative collaborations, and a vibrant learning programme. With a central commitment to composers and the presentation of new work, BCMG’s open and inclusive approach takes people of all ages through the rich and fascinating world of contemporary music. BCMG has premiered over 150 new works, many commissioned through its pioneering Sound Investment scheme. In addition to a busy schedule of concerts in the UK and abroad, BCMG runs an extensive learning and participation programme, working with young people in and out of school and with adults in a range of community settings, as well as presenting ground-breaking Family and Schools’ Concerts. The Group has two Artists-in-Association, Oliver Knussen and John Woolrich, and Sir Simon Rattle is Founding Patron. BCMG has received a host of national and international awards, has an extensive catalogue of CD recordings and broadcasts regularly on BBC radio.

Support us in our 25th anniversary year Turn to page 11 to find out more about how you can become involved. Call us on 0121 616 2621 or go to supportus

This brochure is available free of charge in large-print, Braille, on audiocassette, CD or by email. Please contact Tim Rushby, Marketing Manager: / 0121 616 2619 / BCMG, CBSO Centre, Berkley Street, Birmingham, B1 2LF


March – July at a glance

BCMG concerts, workshops and events, in Birmingham and beyond, during our 25th anniversary season. For additional information please visit

In this brochure…

Free music workshops!

Crossing the Atlantic Lee (world premiere) / Carter (UK premiere) / Cowell / Ruggles / Ives / Crawford Seeger / Cage Sunday 10 March 2013, CBSO Centre, Birmingham

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CAGE100: Water Music Thursday 14 March 2013, Ikon Gallery, Birmingham 

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Into the Little Hill Sawer (world premiere) / Benjamin / Antonioni

Music Maze for 8 – 11 year olds

Saturday 6 April 2013, Wigmore Hall, London Sunday 7 April 2013, CBSO Centre, Birmingham

Noise into Notes Chapman (world premiere) / Weir / Anderson / Messiaen Sunday 28 April 2013, CBSO Centre, Birmingham

Page 6 BCMG Family Concert

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Illuminating Britten Britten / Berg / Copland / Knussen / Henze Sunday 14 April 2013, Wiltshire Music Centre, Bradford-on-Avon Sunday 21 April 2013, Turner Sims Concert Hall, Southampton Saturday 18 May 2013, CBSO Centre, Birmingham Friday 24 May 2013, Maidment Hall, Shrewsbury Thursday 13 June 2013, Shoreditch Church, London

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…and online at BCMG at Aldeburgh Music Festival Bray (world premiere) / Debussy / Stravinsky / Knussen / Britten / Matthews / Henze / Woolrich / Berg Tuesday 18 June 2013, Britten Studio, Snape

BCMG at Aldeburgh Music Festival Lindberg (world premiere) / Carter (UK premiere) / Henze / Britten / Lutoslawski Saturday 22 June 2013, Snape Maltings Concert Hall, Snape

BCMG at Cheltenham Music Festival Sawer (world premiere) / Beckett/Feldman Thursday 4 July 2013, Parabola Arts Centre, Cheltenham

‘By rights one ought also to mention by name every member of the orchestra, since this was an extraordinary virtuoso evening for the extraordinary BCMG.’ The Times Literary Supplement 2001: BCMG’s recording of David Lang’s Sound Investment commission The Passing Measures released on Cantaloupe Music label

A series of eight creative, participatory workshops that take place at CBSO Centre and link to music from BCMG’s concerts. All young people are welcome, whether you can play a musical instrument or not. Each workshop culminates in a performance for parents and family. Children who attend receive a free ticket and a concessionary one for a parent/ guardian to come to the linked BCMG concert.

Zigzag Ensemble for 12 – 16 year olds

BEAST: Vanishing Point Sonic adventures with BEAST’s immersive multi-channel sound system Friday 24 – Sunday 26 May 2013, CBSO Centre, Birmingham 

As well as concerts BCMG runs fun music-making workshops for young people throughout the year.

A series of eight workshops that take place at the same time as Music Maze. These fun workshops explore composing and improvising within an ensemble. Young people need to be able to play a musical instrument and read a little bit of music notation. Participants receive free tickets for BCMG concerts. Music Maze and Zigzag Ensemble workshops will be held on the following dates: Sunday 3 March 2013 Sunday 14 April 2013 Sunday 12 May 2013 Sunday 9 June 2013

Feel the Buzz for 14 – 18 year olds Create music with other young people, top composers and BCMG musicians. These twoday workshops are an amazing opportunity to learn new ways to compose and develop musical ideas. Workshops to be held on: Tuesday 9 and Wednesday 10 April 2013

2002: British Council tour of India with Judith Weir, storyteller Vayu Naidu and tabla player Sarvar Sabri


Box Office: 0121 345 0491

‘Many American composers, I believe, have been interested in working things out for themselves to a great extent…’ Charles Ives

Crossing the Atlantic Sunday 10 March 2013, 7.30pm CBSO Centre, Birmingham Conductor: Oliver Knussen Baritone: Leigh Melrose * Mezzo-soprano: Lucy Schaufer ~ Henry Cowell: 26 Simultaneous Mosaics Carl Ruggles: Vox Clamans in Deserto ~ Charles Ives: Set for Theatre Orchestra Ruth Crawford Seeger: Three Songs ~ Ruth Crawford Seeger: Piano Study in Mixed Accents John Cage: The Wonderful Widow of Eighteen Springs ~ Elliott Carter: Double Trio (UK premiere) Joanna Lee: new work * (BCMG/SAM Apprentice Composer-in-Residence / world premiere) Charles Ives: General William Booth Enters into Heaven * BCMG/SAM Apprentice Composer-inResidence Joanna Lee is widely regarded as a strikingly original voice in the musical world, whose ‘sharply witty’ (Daily Telegraph) and ‘assured and confident’ (Birmingham Post) music has already received critical acclaim. Lee’s new work, a political satire, places former

2003: Premiere and UK tour of Simon Holt opera Who put Bella in the Wych Elm with Almeida Opera BCMG launches Music Maze workshops for young people aged 8–11

leaders from either side of the Atlantic on trial in a ‘waxwork museum of suspect ideologies’; the structure shaped around courtroom proceedings. The beginning of the 20th century saw composers in the United States begin to turn away from the European conventions on which their music had been modelled. It was in this period of change that experimentalism was born and America subsequently became, as it remains, a major source of new musical ideas for European musicians. Nobody cared for America’s new experimental music more than Henry Cowell, whose 26 Simultaneous Mosaics, a series of tonal and atonal kaleidoscopic segments for mixed quintet, open the concert. As a composer, programmer, publisher and teacher, Cowell played a significant role in the careers of Ives, Ruggles and Crawford Seeger, and acted as mentor to a young John Cage. Astonishingly, for a composer who departed this world so recently, you have to go all the way back to 1928 for Elliott Carter’s ‘Opus 1’, placing him at the heart of America’s music revolution. Carter’s monumental career spanned ten decades. In tribute we give a UK premiere to one of his final works – for trumpet, trombone and solo strings.

Joanna Lee

There will be a free pre-concert talk from 6.30-7pm with Joanna Lee, open to all ticket holders. See back page for ticket price and booking information. Concert followed by a late-night Thumb ensemble performance (see page 5). The BCMG/SAM Apprentice Composer-inResidence scheme is generously supported by The Leverhulme Trust.

Music Maze

Creative music workshop for 8 – 11 year olds Sunday 3 March 2013, 10am – 2.30pm, CBSO Centre. Free event In March’s Music Maze the young people, inspired by the programme of the Crossing the Atlantic concert, will compose music for voice and other instruments, setting poems and other texts to music.

Zigzag Ensemble Creative music-making for 12 – 16 year olds

Feel the Buzz

Exciting composing and improvising project for 14 –18 year olds Tuesday 9 April 2013, 10am – 4pm, and Wednesday 10 April 2013, 10am – 6pm, CBSO Centre. Free event Feel the Buzz is a creative composing project for 14 – 18 year olds. Led by composer Fraser Trainer and taking inspiration from contemporary repertoire the young people will create music for BCMG musicians to perform. There will be two days of workshops culminating in a performance for friends and family on the evening of Wednesday 10 April at 5pm. Participants must be able to attend both workshops. BCMG welcomes musicians from all cultural traditions.

5 Feel the Buzz will give participants: • a fun and supportive environment to make music • new ways to get started composing • new ways to develop your musical ideas • amazing professional musicians to create music with and for • ideas for GCSE/A level composing Places must be booked in advance either through the BCMG website or by calling 0121 616 6525. Booking opens 4 weeks before the workshop.

2006: First ever BCMG Family Concerts receive five-star national reviews

Sunday 3 March 2013, 10am – 2.30pm, CBSO Centre. Free event Led by composer Ben Markland alongside BCMG musicians, these fun workshops provide a safe environment for young musicians to explore composing and improvising within an ensemble. Places must be booked in advance either through the BCMG website or by calling 0121 616 6525. Booking opens 3 weeks before each workshop. 2004: Nordic Music Days Festival in Copenhagen and Malmö with Diego Masson


Sunday 10 March 2013, approx .10pm Following Crossing the Atlantic concert CBSO Centre. Free event Artistic Director/Conductor: Dan Watson Violin: Alexandra Wood * Saxophone: Kyle Horch * Howard Skempton: In Tandem Joe Cutler: Sikorski B Seán Clancy: Strange to See You Again * (Thumb commission / world premiere) Birmingham-based Thumb perform the ensemble’s premiere commission, written by BCMG’s 2011 Apprentice Composer-In-Residence, Seán Clancy - a double concerto for BCMG musicians Alexandra Wood and Kyle Horch. Thumb is grateful to the following for their generous support:

John Cage: Water Music

Part of the CAGE100 festival Thursday 14 March 2013, 6 – 7pm Ikon Gallery, Birmingham. Free event Piano: Christopher Hobbs BCMG and IKON Gallery present Cage’s Water Music for piano (plus radio, whistles, water containers and a deck of cards) as part of a live internet concert curated by the Forum of Contemporary Music Leipzig - the biggest

2005: BCMG wins Royal Philharmonic Society Audience Development Award

highlight of the international art and music festival CAGE100. The concert will be one of several Water Music performances across Leipzig’s sister cities from 8 – 15 March, including Bologna, Houston and Lyon – all streamed live on The setting for this six-minute piece is Ikon’s exhibition of work by the Russian artist Timur Novikov – who along with Cage and others, created and performed Water Symphony in St. Petersburg in 1988, a piece symbolising the unification of American capitalist and Soviet state culture. For more information visit


Into the Little Hill

Box Office: 0121 345 0491

Saturday 6 April 2013, 7.30pm Wigmore Hall, London Part of Wigmore Hall’s George Benjamin Day

the roles in Into the Little Hill are performed by two female singers, while the richly-expressive and alluring score combines conventional instruments with basset-horns, cornets, a cimbalom, and even banjo and mandolin. Also drawing on a classic fable, David Sawer’s stage work, Rumpelstiltskin, was premiered and toured by BCMG in 2009/10 to universal acclaim. In these concerts we premiere a 30-minute instrumental suite compiled by Sawer from his scintillating Rumpelstiltskin score. Completing the programme is Italian composer Franceso Antonioni’s 2009 Sound Investment commission Ballata (dell’abbandono e della fortuna), which takes its sources from two songs: a lullaby from southern Italy and a ballade, Ecco la primavera, composed in the 15th century by the Florentine Franceso Landini.

Sunday 7 April 2013, 7.30pm CBSO Centre, Birmingham Conductor: George Benjamin Soprano: Susanna Andersson * Contralto: Hilary Summers * Franceso Antonioni: Ballata (BCMG Sound Investment commission 2009 / London premiere) David Sawer: Rumpelstiltskin Suite (BCMG Sound Investment and Wigmore Hall co-commission / world premiere) George Benjamin: Into the Little Hill * (concert performance) George Benjamin’s jewel-like, award-winning chamber opera - a contemporary re-imagining of the Pied Piper fable – has gone on to enjoy worldwide success since its premiere in 2006. The opera tells the tale of a morally bankrupt politician who, desperate to shore up a flagging public vote, promises to exterminate a plague of rats. A faceless stranger arrives and offers his services; but when the Mayor refuses to pay up, his actions have terrible repercussions. All

‘I have never heard or seen anything so startlingly or brilliantly original as Into the Little Hill. ‘Masterpiece’ is not a word to fling about but I’m tempted.’ The Telegraph

Wigmore Hall tickets: £15 / £20 / £25 / £30 * To book visit (reduced administration fee of £1), call 020 7935 2141 (£2 administration charge per transaction), or visit the Wigmore Hall Box Office. CBSO Centre tickets: See back page for ticket price and booking information. * Standard Wigmore Hall discounts apply. This concert is part of Wigmore Hall’s George Benjamin Day and Series. For more information, including details of a George Benjamin Day Ticket costing £30, visit the Wigmore Hall website.

On Saturday 6 April there will be a preconcert talk from 6-6.45pm with George Benjamin. Tickets cost £3 and must be booked via the Wigmore Hall Box Office. On Sunday 7 April there will be a free pre-concert talk from 6.30-7pm with George Benjamin, David Sawer and Francesco Antonioni, open to all ticket holders.

David Sawer

2007: Residency at Cologne Philharmonie with Thomas Adès

Noise into Notes Sunday 28 April 2013, 1.30pm & 4pm CBSO Centre, Birmingham Conductor: Richard Baker * Piano: Nicolas Hodges ~ Theatre Director: James Yarker Duncan Chapman: new work for electronics (BCMG commission / world premiere) Judith Weir: Musicians Wrestle Everywhere * (BCMG Sound Investment commission 1995) BCMG/SAM Apprentice Composer-inResidence: new work * (BCMG commission / world premiere) Julian Anderson: Scherzo (with Trains) Olivier Messiaen: Oiseaux exotiques *~ Composers have always been inspired by the sounds around them. Noise into Notes invites us to listen to the world in new ways and hear the everyday music that surrounds us. Composer Judith Weir listens to the sounds outside her home in Elephant and Castle, London – Nigerian pop music, wind chimes and traffic noise are woven subtly into her music. Olivier Messiaen, an enthusiastic ornithologist, borrows music from exotic American and


BCMG Family Concerts

Indian birds for a brilliantly colourful ensemble of musicians. Four clarinettists create a Scherzo from the rhythms of trains and Duncan Chapman works with children from local primary schools to create a new electroacoustic soundscape. BCMG Family Concerts introduce young people and their families to the exciting world of contemporary music. These hour-long performances weave theatre and film with the music to create fun, colourful and engaging concerts to ignite young imaginations. There will be a fun activity café an hour before each performance where young people can create their own music using BCMG’s wonderful array of instruments. Please turn up early and enjoy the whole Family Concerts experience! Best suited to children aged 7+ Tickets: £6 adults / £4 under 16s / £16 group ticket* *admits four people – the group must contain at least one adult and two children

See back page for booking information.

Sound Investment

Share in music’s future The commission of David Sawer’s Rumpelstiltskin Suite was made possible by the generous support of our Sound Investors. Since 1992, BCMG has premiered more than 65 new works with the help of a wide range of individuals through Sound Investment. Join Sound Investment now and share the excitement of bringing alive new pieces of music from the leading composers of our time. By becoming a Sound Investor you can: • attend rehearsals and premieres • meet composers and performers • have your name listed in a new work’s score

Invest now in The Lighthouse Keepers by David Sawer and a new song by Gerald Barry, both to be premiered in 2013. Sound Unit shares in each commission are priced at £150. Your donation can start from £15 per month. Thanks to match funding from Arts Council England through our Catalyst award, we currently have three Special Offers available, including the chance to get your very first Sound Unit half price, for £75.

Go to: call 0121 616 6523 or email

2008: Gerald Barry’s opera The Triumph of Beauty and Deceit conducted by Thomas Adès in Carnegie Hall, New York

Family Music Maze Creative music workshop for 8 – 11 year olds

Sunday 14 April 2013, 10am – 2.30pm, CBSO Centre. Free event In April’s Music Maze we are inviting children to bring along an adult family member to explore bird song inspired by Olivier Messiaen’s Oiseaux exotiques in BCMG’s Family Concerts. Like Messiaen, participants will turn colourful bird song into musical ideas and then into bigger musical pieces.

Zigzag Ensemble Creative music-making for 12 – 16 year olds

Sunday 14 April 2013, 10am – 2.30pm, CBSO Centre. Free event Led by composer Ben Markland alongside BCMG musicians, these fun workshops provide a safe environment for young musicians to explore composing and improvising within an ensemble. Places must be booked in advance either through the BCMG website or by calling 0121 616 6525. Booking opens 3 weeks before each workshop.


Box Office: 0121 345 0491

BBC Inspire Lab Composing workshop for 12 – 18 year olds

Sunday 21 April 2013, 10.30am – 5pm, CBSO Centre. Free event Join leading composers, BCMG musicians and the BBC Proms learning team in a session full of music-making, exploration and discovery. Learn from leading composers and have professional musicians play your music. Bring your instrument, your latest ideas, a finished work or even just a rhythm or a melody!

Illuminating Britten

Five concerts marking Benjamin Britten’s centenary

For more information or to sign up email or call 020 776 0557.

2009: David Sawer’s Rumpelstiltskin directed by Richard Jones in Birmingham, London, Glasgow and at Huddersfield Contemporary Music Festival

Music Maze

Creative music workshop for 8 – 11 year olds Sunday 12 May 2013, 10am – 2.30pm, CBSO Centre. Free event Benjamin Britten wrote many pieces of music for young people. One way we are celebrating his centenary is by commissioning composer Ruta Vitkauskaite to create a new piece inspired by the Illuminating Britten concerts for young people to perform in May’s Music Maze. The piece will include ‘windows’ to be filled by the young people’s own music.

Zigzag Ensemble Creative music-making for 12 – 16 year olds

Sunday 12 May 2013, 10am – 2.30pm, CBSO Centre. Free event Led by composer Ben Markland alongside BCMG musicians, these fun workshops provide a safe environment for young musicians to explore composing and improvising within an ensemble. Places must be booked in advance either through the BCMG website or by calling 0121 616 6525. Booking opens 3 weeks before each workshop.

Sunday 14 April 2013, 7.30pm Wiltshire Music Centre, Bradford-on-Avon Sunday 21 April 2013, 3pm Turner Sims Concert Hall, Southampton Saturday 18 May 2013, 7.30pm CBSO Centre, Birmingham Part of Birmingham’s Britten centenary celebrations: Friday 24 May 2013, 7.30pm Maidment Hall, Shrewsbury School, Shrewsbury Thursday 13 June 2013, 7.30pm Shoreditch Church, Spitalfields Music Summer Festival, London

2010: Wigmore Hall debut with Oliver Knussen

Concerts at Wiltshire, Southampton and Shrewsbury in association with:

Oboe: Melinda Maxwell Clarinet: Joanna Patton Piano: Malcolm Wilson Violin: Alexandra Wood Viola: Christopher Yates Cello: Ulrich Heinen Introduced by BCMG Artist-in-Association John Woolrich Alban Berg: Four Pieces for Clarinet and Piano Benjamin Britten: Elegy Aaron Copland: Nocturne Aaron Copland: Ukelele Serenade Benjamin Britten: Going down Hill on a Bicycle Oliver Knussen: Cantata Hans Werner Henze: Olly on the Shore Alban Berg: Adagio Benjamin Britten: Suite Benjamin Britten: Phantasy Quartet BCMG celebrates Britten’s centenary with a programme of early works, framing them with similarly small-scale pieces from composers with close connections to him. Elegy for solo viola is an affecting, technically assured work, composed in a single day by the 17 year-old Britten. Crafted a year later, Going down Hill on a Bicycle is an experimental, almost Schoenbergian piece for violin and piano. Throughout his life Britten enjoyed writing for specific performers and composed his Phantasy Quartet, when just 19, for the leading English

Music Maze

Creative music workshop for 8 – 11 year olds

‘The performers … Alexandra Wood, Ulrich Heinen and the indefatigable Malcolm Wilson – were quite stunningly brilliant.’ The Birmingham Post

oboist of the day, Leon Goossens. One of the fascinating things about these early Britten works is that although beautifully crafted, they show Britten at a crossroads, before he knew what direction his music would take. His Suite for violin and piano from 1935 is more characteristically Britten, showing that at 21 the young composer had started to find his voice. No composer mattered more to young Britten than Alban Berg, whose Four Pieces for Clarinet and Piano are the composer’s only true miniatures. Oliver Knussen met and was encouraged by Britten when young, and Henze’s Olly on the Shore pictures BCMG’s Artist-inAssociation standing on the same stretch of Suffolk shoreline that Britten called home. Copland’s smoky, blues-inspired Nocturne and ukulele pastiche Serenade date back to before he first met Britten at his home in Snape.

Sunday 9 June 2013, 10am – 2.30pm, CBSO Centre. Free event In June’s Music Maze the young people will be invited to decide on their own ideas for composing. They will be able to create music on their own, in pairs or in larger groups. Ideas might come from stories, from feelings or just grow from the sounds themselves.

Zigzag Ensemble Creative music-making for 12 – 16 year olds

Sunday 9 June 2013, 10am – 2.30pm, CBSO Centre. Free event Led by composer Ben Markland alongside BCMG musicians, these fun workshops provide a safe environment for young musicians to explore composing and improvising within an ensemble. Places must be booked in advance either through the BCMG website or by calling 0121 616 6525. Booking opens 3 weeks before each workshop.

Visit for ticket price and booking information for all other Illuminating Britten concerts.

BEAST presents:

Vanishing Point Friday 24 – Sunday 26 May 2013 CBSO Centre, Birmingham Friday: 7.30pm & 9pm Saturday: 6pm, 7.30pm & 9pm Sunday: 2pm A weekend of concerts by BEAST during its 30th anniversary season, Vanishing Point includes an appearance by Canadian born clarinettist Heather Roche of musikFabrik, Cologne, performing works for clarinet and electronics by current and former BEASTies Scott Wilson, Norah Lorway, Pierre Alexandre Tremblay and Alex Harker. The weekend concludes with La historia de nosotros (the history of us), a cycle of four 20-minute 8-channel works (two with percussionist) by Colombian composer Jorge Gregorio García Moncada, inspired by a corpus of mythological and historical chronicles from the Huitoto nation, an ethnolinguistic group based on the ColomboPeruvian Amazon region. Tickets: Friday: £10 full price / £6 conc / £3 under 16s and students Saturday: £14 full price / £8 conc / £4 under 16s & students Sunday: £7 full price / £5 conc / £3 under 16s & students To reserve your tickets in advance for collection on the door, please contact BCMG on 0121 616 2619 or

See back page for ticket price and booking information for Birmingham concert. The Birmingham concert will be followed by the first public screening of The Ensemble of Possibilities: 25 Years of BCMG, a 40-minute documentary celebrating the Group’s 25th anniversary.


2011: BCMG Artistic Director & Executive Producer receive Royal Philharmonic Society Leslie Boosey Award for BCMG’s contribution to British contemporary music


Ticket line: 0121 345 0491

Our Learning and Participation programme At BCMG we see young people as discerning listeners, experimental performers and creative musical adventurers. We are passionate about creating the very best learning opportunities which allow young people to flourish, to feel part of a bigger musical community and open their ears to new sound worlds. We create musical pathways that signpost young people from school projects to out-of-school projects

Supporting young composers in school

Resolution – secondary school pupils compose new music inspired by biomedical science (in partnership with the University of Birmingham’s Rheumatology Research Group, part of the Centre for Translational Inflammation Research, based in the Queen Elizabeth Hospital). Big Ears – primary school workshops connected to our Schools’ Concerts.

Wider community participation Pre-concert talks Open rehearsals

and from workshops to concerts. Though the main focus of our Learning and Participation programme is young people, there is much for adults too beyond our performances. Insight Events, Meet the Composer days, pre-concert talks and creative workshops all aim to deepen our audience’s engagement and understanding of the music we perform.

2012: European premiere performances of Gerald Barry opera The Importance of Being Earnest in London and Birmingham

Supporting young composers out of school Music Maze (ages 8–11) Zigzag Ensemble (ages 12–16) Feel the Buzz (ages 14–18) Imagine Compose (beginner instrumentalists in partnership with Birmingham Music Service)

Supporting composers in Higher Education

Concerts for young people

University of Birmingham (Ensemble-in-Association) & Birmingham Conservatoire - undergraduate and postgraduate composer workshops.

Family and Schools’ Concerts (Ages 7+ and Key Stage 2) Families@4 (ages 7+)

Research, development & resources Through the Music Maze – research into the pedagogy of our Music Maze programme and new online resource (in partnership with Birmingham City University). Listen Imagine Compose – new online resources (in partnership with Sound and Music). Big Ears – creative music-making resource packs.

Commissioning new music Continuing Professional Two new commissions for Development young listeners at our Family and Schools’ Concerts. Seven new works for young musicians by emerging young composers.

Imagine Compose – training for emerging professional composers wanting to work with primary age children. Resolution – training for emerging professional composers wanting to work in secondary schools.

Arts Awards

BCMG Family Friendly

Work Experience Placements

Coming to BCMG events can count towards your Arts Award. BCMG also supports Children’s Arts Awards (ages 7-11).

At BCMG concerts we offer our young audience specially designed programmes, front row seats and a juice and biscuits interval reception.

BCMG offers a limited number of placements to students aged 14+. For an application form, please see

For more information and to get involved please visit, contact Nancy Evans, Director of Learning and Participation, or Jeremy Clay, Learning Co-ordinator, on 0121 616 2616 or email or



Support us in our 25th anniversary year Birmingham Contemporary Music Group relies on many income sources to create its varied programme of concerts, workshops, and other opportunities for audiences and composers of all ages. As we look forward beyond our 25th anniversary year, individual donors are more important than ever for the vitality of BCMG. Our supporters enable us to develop our artistic vision and become an integral part of BCMG’s extended family.

Gerald Barry’s opera The Importance of Being Earnest was supported by the BCMG Foundation

Become involved and help support the future of new music!

Remember BCMG in your Will Composers and the development of new work need every encouragement we can give. Leaving a legacy to BCMG enables us to support the future of new music even beyond our lifetime. Alan Woodfield, BCMG supporter By remembering BCMG’s work in your Will you can give future generations a very special gift. We should be grateful if you would let us know if you have made provision for BCMG in your Will. BCMG is a registered charity no. 1001474

BCMG Foundation The BCMG Foundation allows you to engage with aspects of our work that concert-goers don’t usually see. You can support the future development of BCMG’s performance and learning activity by becoming a Core Supporter from £1,000 per year. You can also help with specific BCMG projects, with a donation starting from £250 per year. Projects for which we are currently seeking your support include: • Big Ears, a series of creative music-making workshops in primary schools, linked to our Schools Concerts in spring 2013 • The Birmingham premiere performance of George Benjamin’s opera Into the Little Hill in April 2013

I always seem to come away from BCMG events with my horizons broadened, my vision refreshed, and my sense of being part of this wonderful creative city reinvigorated. Through the BCMG Foundation, I feel close to the beating heart of this brilliant inclusive world-class team.

Other ways you can help We always welcome one-off donations to support our programme, such as our popular Music Maze workshops for 8-11 year-olds. Any level of donation will make a difference to BCMG’s work. You can send us a cheque made out to ‘BCMG’, or donate online: Would you like to get involved? Call Gwendolyn Tietze on: 0121 616 2621 email: or go to:

John Christophers, BCMG supporter

Sound Investment Share in music’s future

Sound Investment involves individuals in the thrill of bringing alive new work by the most exciting composers of our time. Invest now in new pieces by David Sawer, Gerald Barry, David Lang, Colin Matthews, Harrison Birtwistle, Benedict Mason, and many more. You can support BCMG’s commissioning programme from £15 per month.

How to Find Us Brindleyplace

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BCMG, CBSO Centre, Berkley Street, Birmingham, B1 2LF Parking There is metered parking on all streets around CBSO Centre. There are also car parks at Brindleyplace and Mailbox, both within a 5 minute walk of the Centre.

BCMG videos

Access CBSO Centre is equipped with adapted toilet facilities, key signposting in Braille and the hall is fitted with an infra-red amplification system. Limited free parking can be arranged on request. More info: 0121 616 2619 /

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Acknowledgements Our work would not be possible without the generous support of individual donors, charitable trusts and foundations, partner organisations and statutory funders. We are particularly grateful to the following for supporting BCMG in our 25th anniversary season:

In advance: £14 full price £8 concession £5 under 16s On the door: £16 full price £10 concession £6 under 16s Tickets can be booked in advance via: The Symphony Hall Box Office, Broad Street, Birmingham, B1 2EA

Ticket Line: 0121 345 0491 Online: Please note that a £2.50 transaction fee is charged by Symphony Hall Box Office on all bookings, except purchases made in person.

On the door tickets can be purchased at CBSO Centre on concert nights subject to availability. All seating is unreserved unless otherwise stated. Concession tickets are available to over 65s, passport to leisure holders, wheelchair users and disabled patrons, and recipients of the following benefits: Income Support. Pensions Tax Credit and Disability Tax Credit. Disabled patrons can bring one companion to BCMG concerts free of charge.

Student tickets just £4 £4 tickets can be purchased (subject to availability) at CBSO Centre on concert nights by Birmingham Conservatoire and University of Birmingham music students. Valid student ID will be asked for prior to purchase. Photographs: Robert Day, Adrian Burrows, Clive Barda, Azzurra Primavera, Mark Allan Illustration: Sarah Ray Design:

BCMG Sound Investors BCMG Foundation members

City of Birmingham Orchestral Endowment Fund, The Barber Trust, William A Cadbury Charitable Trust, The Hinrichsen Foundation, S & D Lloyd Charity A special thanks to filmmaker Barrie Gavin for Directing and Producing, The Ensemble of Possibilities: 25 Years of BCMG.

BCMG, CBSO Centre, Berkley Street, Birmingham B1 2LF Tel: +44 (0)121 616 2616 Fax: +44 (0)121 616 2622 Email: Web: Registered in England no. 2446126 Registered charity no. 1001474 VAT reg. no. GB 614 418 655

BCMG 25th Anniversary Brochure - Concerts, Workshops and Events March - July 2013  

A brochure covering Birmingham Contemporary Music Group's public activities from March - July 2013. For a hard copy of the brochure email ti...