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Music of Argentina comes to Saffron Hall with return of Britten Sinfonia

Britten Sinfonia is returning to Saffron Hall for its first performance with a live audience since December 2020.

The venue's resident orchestra will be directed by Thomas Gould for a celebration of Argentinian composer Astor Piazzolla's centenary year.

The accordion-like bandoneon – the quintessential sound of the Argentine tango – takes centre stage with a performance of Piazzolla's virtuoso concerto by Argentinian master Marcelo Nisinman.

Britten Sinfonia (48274740)
Britten Sinfonia (48274740)

It is a piece that blends all the sultry elegance and frenzied intensity of the Latin dance hall. There is a nod to Bach's influence on Piazzolla, a dash of folk and dance music from around the world, and finally Piazzolla's most iconic pairing: the smoky Oblivion and the raw, racy Libertango.

Saffron Hall has been reconfigured especially for social distancing, and the cabaret-style chairs and tables create an informal, relaxed atmosphere which is perfect for this rhythmic concert on Friday, July 2.

For the past 25 years, Britten Sinfonia has defied the conventional image of a chamber orchestra. It is a flexible ensemble of some of the UK's leading soloists and chamber musicians who come together to collapse the boundaries between old and new music and collaborate with composers, performers and guest artists.

CUL Britten Sinfonia. (48274765)
CUL Britten Sinfonia. (48274765)

As well as being Saffron Hall's resident orchestra, the Sinfonia is an associate ensemble at the Barbican in London with residencies in Norwich and Cambridge. It also performs a chamber music series at London's Wigmore Hall.

It had a busy international touring schedule, appearing throughout Europe, the USA and Asia, and its 2018 performance with The Sixteen at the Sistine Chapel reached more than a million people worldwide.

Tickets for performances on Friday July 2 at 6pm and 8.30pm are available via the Saffron Hall box office online and by phone on 0845 548 7650. Prices start from £25.

Centenary Piazzolla – The Rhythm of the Dance features Thomas Gould as leader, Marcelo Nisinman playing the bandoneon and Britten Sinfonia performing Bach Violin Concerto BWV 1056R, Piazzolla Bandonéon Concerto, Aconcagua – a medley of folk/dance arrangements for strings from Scandinavia, Transylvania, Scotland and the USA – and Piazzolla's Libertango/Oblivion.

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