Howdenshire Music Project broadcasted a successful series of classical music performances during 2020. We want to improve our ability to record, edit and publish future concerts
During this exceptionally challenging year, we have remained committed to our aim of providing free access to high-quality musical performances for our local Howdenshire community. Due to Covid-19, our planned live concert series had to go online. Concerts were filmed in Howden Minster using professional camera, microphone and lighting equipment and released online on our Facebook and YouTube channels. Additionally, each concert was publicised via our mailing list and website.
All our concert performers are professional musicians. We remained committed to providing a performance platform for working musicians and paying them fair fees.
Each online concert has lasted around 60 minutes. We have featured a wide range of instruments and soloists - piano, violin, cello, flute and singer. Two further online performances featuring an oboist (Hana Drabkova) and a violinist (Harry Kneeshaw) are scheduled to be broadcast between Dec 20-Feb 2021 including some short online Christmas-themed pieces of music.
2020 online concerts have featured a diverse range of music/composers. We have worked with our performers to ensure that there is a balance between:
• very well known/popular - examples from this year's concerts include Beethoven's Moonlight Sonata, Puccini's Nessun Dorma, Debussy's Clair de lune
• less well-known pieces and/or composers (but deserving to be more widely known!) - examples from this year's concerts include Janáček's In the Mists for solo piano, Eldin Burton's sonatina for flute
This balance ensures that our audience will be be able to enjoy pieces/composers they are already familiar with, and also discover new pieces/composers they perhaps weren't previously aware of.
Our aim is to hold live concerts in 2021. But recognising this may not be possible, we plan to record performances by the same musicians and release them online as in 2020. We have many supporters around the country and even abroad. We would also like to record any live concerts and release them a week later for people who are unable to attend e.g. people with mobility impairments, work commitments, older people and people living too far away.
Our existing equipment has limitations. We cannot move the camera once the concert has started without obstructing the audience. Our presentations would greatly improve if we could record video from two different positions and edit them afterwards. We also need a more stable microphone stand to replace the existing (Heath Robinson) one.
As we improve our recording capabilities, we need a dedicated computer and software to be able to efficiently edit the recordings. This is currently being carried out on a domestic laptop used for a number of other domestic issues. The new computer would be dedicated only for the music concerts. The hard drive would be used for storing past concert files, which are also stored on the domestic laptop at the moment.
Another microphone would be able to record sound from the audience. The current microphone is directional and used for recording the instruments. Another microphone would collect evidence of the audience's enthusiasm and comments during Q & A sessions with performers, which we encourage.
The results intended are a series of recorded and live classical music concerts aimed at improving people's awareness and interest of music and improved feelings of wellbeing amongst viewers. The recordings can also be used in our educational activities with local schoolchildren.
We also make the equipment available, together with our recording expertise, for music students of all ages to record their music exams and, so far, this has even been successfully been used by a MA student. The recordings are used for interviews and auditions and this can save students unnecessary travel e.g. to a range of music colleges or universities around the country or even abroad.
We have an existing evaluation policy and practice for gaining information from audiences and performers, as well as online viewers. We can measue views and likes on Facebook etc and details of concerts during 2020 are below.
Reg Number: 06455490 | Charity Number: 1125856