In a move that has shocked the UK arts world, the government has let it be known that it will not be providing any cash towards the new Centre for Music in the City of London. Instead, the project's board members will be expected to raise the necessary money by crowdfunding. "It's a scheme that has worked perfectly well for everything from orchestral tours to new product design," a spokesperson for the DCMS pointed out. "Why not a concert hall?"
A group of experts has been assembled to devise the pledge rewards for the scheme, aiming to reach £270m by the end of this year. While details are yet to be confirmed, it is understood that ideas mooted include:
£5: MUSIC. A ticket to a concert in the first season;
£10: CAFFEINE. A ticket plus a coffee or tea in the first season;
£100: GRUB. Two tickets and a light meal in the canteen for you and your companion;
£500: SELFIE. You may go backstage and take a selfie with Sir Simon.
£1000: CHAMPERS. You may bring a bottle of champagne backstage and present it to a musician of your choice.
£10,000: KNICKERS. You may throw knickers to a musical star of your choice in concert at the hall. (NB Jonas Kaufmann incurs a premium of £2,500.)
£50,000: PHILANTHROPIST. All of the above, plus a suitably sycophantic interview in one of those magazines that supports the privatisation of absolutely everything.
£100,000: NAME. All of the above, plus an orchestral player renamed after you.
£250,000: NAME IN LIGHTS. All of the above, plus your name to be flashed in lights every night across the entire City from a big screen atop the hall.
£500,000: TICKETS. All of the above, plus tickets for every performance you wish to attend at the new hall for the rest of your life;
£1m: LUNCH: Lunch with a cabinet minister of your choice and whoever becomes London Mayor in May, at the closest Starbucks to Westminster (net donation to project: £500,000, once expenses are deducted).
£2m: CHOCOLATE! All of the above, plus a lifetime's supply of high-quality chocolate, not lower than 85 per cent cocoa solids.
JD particularly likes the sound of the final option, and once the film of GHOST VARIATIONS has scooped all the Oscars, starring Kristin Scott Thomas, Helena Bonham Carter, Colin Firth and Sebastian Koch, directed by George Clooney, she hopes to participate with enthusiasm.
Friday, April 01, 2016
Thursday, August 15, 2013
UPDATE, TUESDAY 20 AUG, 9.45am: THEY DID IT! THEY'VE MADE TARGET! A huge thank-you to all the doughty JDCMB readers who contributed both financially and by helping to spread the word.
The Orchestra of the Swan and conductor Kenneth Woods have over recent years set about recording four volumes of Hans Gál's symphonies, paired with Schumann's. The performances are terrific, with huge spirit and passion, and have been heartily well reviewed around the place. But while we were on holiday, conductor and orchestra launched a crowdfunding campaign to raise £8,500 that they need to complete the cycle. So far, they have amassed slightly over a quarter of it. They have just five days to find the rest. Please visit their Indigogo page and help them! http://www.indiegogo.com/projects/gal-schumann-symphonies/
Hans Gál is one of music's most scandalously undersung, underplayed, under-recognised good guys. I first saw his name as a child, as my dad had his admirable books on Schubert and Brahms - yet scarcely heard a note of his music until Leon McCawley recorded the piano works about ten years ago. Gál was a 20th-century individualist, working in a tonal idiom with a delightful quirkiness of soul that is often compared - with good reason - to that of Haydn.
He was enormously respected in Europe before the Second World War, but, being Jewish, was forced to flee with his young family, going first in 1933 from Mainz back to his native Vienna and later managing to move to the UK with the help of his friend Donald Francis Tovey, then professor of music at Edinburgh University; Tovey enlisted him to help catalogue the institution's new music library. Eventually Gál became professor at Edinburgh himself and lived in the city for the rest of his life.
More details about Gál, the project and what you get in return for becoming a donor, here.