Wednesday, October 24, 2012

London Sinfonietta in a Shopping Mall

Good productive meeting with Wuhan Cultural Bureau in the morning, in which Graham and I proffered lots of arts exchange over the next couple of years - some of which may be with twin city Manchester. "You made my day", Deputy Director Mr Zhu said!
Then off to the airport where we wrote everything up over over-priced lattes before the flight home. A car accident had left Beijing Airport gridlocked so the usual 30 minute drive back took a frustrating hour & a half. 
Still, the evening was relaxing. We've supported a concert by the London Sinfonietta, conducted by George Benjamin, performing as part of Beijing Music Festival and UK Now. With a 'challenging' programme of Harrison Birtwistle, Oliver Knussen, Chinese composer Qigang Chen and Benjamin's own Into the Little Hill (a operetta version of the Pied Piper of Hamlet), you'd think it would have been performed in the Conservatoire or at least a bespoke classical concert hall, but it was in a multi-purpose hall in the middle of Sanlitun Village, an upmarket shopping centre. It was even beamed via a gigantic video screen to bemused pedestrians. Anyway, it was v good. 

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