Friday 2nd October saw a unique live synchronised performance by Manchester Camerata and Venetian ensemble Ex Novo.
The performance took place both at the Cosmo Rodewald Concert Hall (at the University of Manchester) and Benedetto Marcello Music Conservatory in Venice. The audience was not only in these venues, but also at the 2009 World Forum on the Environment in Venice’s Palazzo Ducalo, and watching via the internet.
A unique collaboration by these two innovative music groups, the performance was facilitated by MDDA, who worked closely with the Camerata and Ex Novo to ensure that the 45 minute programme came together via the internet.
Beginning with a specially written “Green Piece” by Michele dall’Ongaro, the performance showed how musicians, composers and organisations can collaborate successfully without being face-to-face.
We were pleased to be featured on the BBC’s Digital Planet podcast, where you can hear details of the rehearsal for the performnce. Inevitably, there were some technical obstacles to be overcome, particularly with the slight delay in receiving sound and visuals at either end. But the musicians and in particular the conductor, Dane Lam, dealt with these as they would any musical issues, in readiness for the following day’s live performance.
An audience of ninety in Manchester were joined by an equal number watching and listening over the internet. The Camerata and Ex Novo collaborated on two pieces; the Dall’Ongaro premiere, and Charles Ive’s beautifully poignant “The Unanswered Question”, where the Venetian-based trumpet of Fabrizio Nasetti, asks questions of the string section, playing in Manchester. The programme also saw Oliver Knussen’s “Processionals” played live in Manchester, and broadcast to Venice, and a world premiere of Luca Mosca’s “Cinque Piccoli Scherzi” played in Venice and broadcast to the audience watching in Manchester.
MDDA were glad to be involved in such an innovative collaboration providing an opportunity for cross-Europe collaboration using existing internet connections and readily available conferencing software. The event showcased how culture can benefit from this kind of digital hook-up, and how Manchester’s digital strategy, with its plans for developing fast broadband, can only lead to us facilitating bigger and better digital innovations in the city in the future.
The hectic rehearsals were covered by the BBC Digital Planet programme, listen to the podcast at bbc.co.uk/podcasts/series/digitalp
To view photos from the event, visit the MDDA Flickr page at flickr.com/photos/mdda/sets/72157622500870948/
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