At the end of October, the Barbican and its family of orchestras join forces to stage Sound Unbound: The Barbican Classical Weekender. This ambitious weekend-long project offers audiences a chance to discover some of the greatest music ever written, in an informal festival environment. Sound Unbound will take over the Barbican Centre and surrounding venues featuring over 50 short concerts across 48 hours in different locations that will showcase an unparalleled variety of music and artists. Alongside the live music programme a range of conversations and debates will take place throughout the weekend, while a team of expert hosts will guide audiences through the plethora of music on offer.
The full line-up has now been announced and includes:
• A weekend festival with over 60 short concerts of music from medieval to modern, featuring over 600 performers
• London premiere from Pulitzer Prize-Winning John Luther Adams to take over Barbican highwalks and Lakeside
• John Cage’s Child of Tree, a composed improvisation for amplified cactus and pea pod shakers in Barbican Conservatory
• Cellist Matthew Barley leading an overnighter featuring Manu Delago, Eliza McCarthy and VOCES8
• Performances from soloists Jeremy Denk, Maya Beiser, James McVinnie, Nicola Benedetti, Wilhem Latchoumia and many more
• Accompanying events including debates led by Institute of Ideas, and talks featuring Paul Morley, James Rhodes, Seb Hunter and Marcus du Sautoy
• Cinematic events including electronic artist and pianist Megumi Masaki’s experimental live performance of Nicole Lizée’s Hitchcock Études and a screening of Disney’s Fantasia
Sound Unbound is a weekend festival that releases classical music from its traditional confines: you can tap into any of the short sessions in our Conservatory, foyers or concert halls, engage in debates around the genre, take a pint in and live tweet the concert, or go all night with a Nonclassical DJ set and our Classical Overnighter.
From the full force of a 100-piece symphony orchestra to intimate solo sets, the varied programme is curated to demonstrate music’s visceral and emotional power. But we’re also showcasing the work of some of the contemporary voices in the genre with the likes of Max Richter, Philip Glass and Steve Reich – and our expert Hosts will be on hand to guide you through the programme. So if you’re curious about classical, grab a drink, soak up the sounds and see where the music takes you.
Performers announced so far include John Adams with the London Symphony Orchestra, James Rhodes, Max Richter, Academy of Ancient Music, Nicola Benedetti, Gabriel Prokofiev, Maya Beiser, Calder Quartet, Jeremy Denk, Nicole Car, James McVinnnie, Speak Percussion, BBC Singers, VOCES8, BBC Symphony Orchestra, Britten Sinfonia plus many more to be announced.
Music by John Adams, Vivaldi, Mozart, Thomas Adès, Rachmaninov, John Luther Adams, Steve Reich, Handel, Ravel, Philip Glass, Anna Clyne, Osvaldo Golijov, Schubert, Gabriel Prokofiev, Bach, Stravinsky, Daníel Bjarnason, Monteverdi, Holst, Beethoven, and many more.