Our management team grows to 3

We are delighted to announce the addition of Emma Wilkinson to the La Serenissima family. Emma has begun this month in a new role of Operations Manager for the orchestra; her responsibilities include developing UK and foreign touring plans, with special focus on our 25th Anniversary Season during 2018/19. She brings with her enormous experience and widely-acknowledged expertise in the field, having worked for 27 years as Orchestral Manager for the European Union Baroque Orchestra, prior to its departure from the UK (post-Brexit vote). Her arrival is hugely significant as it is the first time in our history that there will have been sustained support from an experienced professional from outside the musicians of the group. She joins Artistic Director Adrian Chandler and General Manager Camilla Scarlett in the charity’s new office in Oxfordshire. Partial funding for the role has been generously provided by The Foyle Foundation and an anonymous donor; we are working to raise sufficient funds to secure the role in full. To help support this vital innovation, please contact General Manager Camilla Scarlett.

La Serenissima gave three outstanding concerts with choir, orchestra and soloists in Venice for Martin Randall Travel’s Vivaldi in Venice festival. Works performed included the other Gloria (RV639 & 588) and Beatus Vir (RV795), opera Teuzzone and The Four Seasons. Soloists included sopranos Lucy Crowe & Elizabeth Karani, mezzo sopranos Rowan Hellier & Renata Pokupic, contralto Hilary Summers, tenor Charles Daniels and bass-baritone Ashley Riches. The performances were the culmination of some very exciting rehearsal sessions in London and months of editing and research (into the choral and operatic works in particular) by Artistic Director Adrian Chandler. The group performed at Sala Apollinea (Teatro La Fenice),  Chiesa di Santa Maria dei Derelitti known as Ospedaletto (a venue with no electricity, severely damaged by fire and water ingress) and Scuola Grande di San Rocco. The group gave some staggering performances in spite of tropical heat inside La Fenice and freezing temperatures combined with damp at the other two historic venues. Other performers in the festival included Italian colleagues Il Giardino Armonico (Giovanni Antonini) and Modo Antiquo (Federico Maria Sardelli).

Photograph taken by principal trumpet player Simon Munday at Santa Maria dei Derelitti

La Serenissima took part in the Culture Hive Small Scale Development Programme organised by the Arts Marketing Association, supported by Arts Council England. The course focused on building a realistic marketing plan to develop audience engagement. The 3 day programme brought together a large number of touring organisations (such as La Serenissima) as well as regional promoters and arts centres who all face similar challenges from the sector. It was a fantastic event and we will be developing plans to spread our vision more widely over the coming months with the support of online coaching from the AMA. Watch this space!

Last night 12 musicians of La Serenissima, including contralto Hilary Summers, performed works by Albinoni, Brescianello, Caldara and Vivaldi to guests of His Excellency The Italian Ambassador. It was the first event of its kind in La Serenissima’s history and has heralded the beginning of an exciting period of change for the organisation. Guests were invited to attend the private concert at the Residence’s Ballroom and were treated to a sumptuous dinner. His Excellency entreated those attending to support the group’s activities which promote Italian culture in the UK and beyond, particularly at this time of great difficulty between the UK and Europe. La Serenissima was represented by the General Manager, Camilla Scarlett, in a short speech outlining the 25th Anniversary plans; Martin Randall also spoke passionately on our behalf about the importance of supporting the work of the charity. A very special evening was enjoyed by all!

You can visit the Italian Embassy’s news page (here) to read their press release about the occasion and view a short clip of the scene.

La Serenissima rehearsing at the Ballroom of The Italian Ambassador’s Residence

La Serenissima celebrated its prestigious win at the 40th Anniversary Gramophone Awards ceremony in London on 13th September with representatives from Avie Records and associated distributors. In a ceremony which showcased two wins from our Italian colleagues Il Giardino Armonico and a notable award to the iconic Dame Kiri Te Kanawa, Adrian Chandler was proud to accept the award for Baroque Instrumental on behalf of La Serenissima and all the musicians performing on The Italian Job. Gramophone Editor James Jolly and violinist Jennifer Pike presided over a ceremony in which atleast one British Maestro had to force his way through the chaos of tightly-packed diners; Adrian was presented with his award back-to-front which caused some problems for the awaiting photographer! The edited version of the presentation can be viewed here

Picture by Benjamin Ealovaga: (left to right) Melanne Mueller (Avie), Adrian Chandler (Artistic Director), Camilla Scarlett (General Manager), Barry McCann (Avie) celebrating La Serenissima’s 2017 Gramophone Award.

We are thrilled to share the news that The Italian Job was announced as winner in the Baroque Instrumental category of the 2017 Gramophone Awards. The project was on a hugely ambitious scale and La Serenissima are immensely grateful to everyone who has supported the group during the 2016/17 season, and especially those who specifically donated to The Italian Job appeal. Artistic Director Adrian Chandler will be accepting the award on 13 September at the 40th anniversary ceremony in London.

2017 Gramophone Awards

We are thrilled to announce that latest release The Italian Job has been nominated for the 2017 Baroque Instrumental Gramophone Award. The Awards will be announced on 1 September. For a full list of nominees pick up the latest edition of Gramophone Magazine, or see the details here.

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