Tickets and merchandise now available on the Positive Note website.
Donations still being accepted here, but crowd funding rewards have ended
- The global COVID-19 pandemic has created a deeply uncertain landscape for performers and audiences alike
- We are producing a season of online chamber music programmes - The Positive Note Autumn Sessions
- By pledging your support today, you can help make this ambitious project a reality. All profits go to the performers
What no work?
My name is Dan Norman. Before the pandemic hit, like many of my colleagues I was looking forward to a busy year of opera and concert performances. But as the early weeks of the lockdown passed, diaries emptied, and contracts up to spring 2021 were cancelled. Whilst there are a handful of live performances beginning to happen, this story is the same for almost all musicians and theatre professionals. (Online portrait by Fran Monks).
Even before we went into lockdown, it was clear to me that it would be a long time before we'd be performing together again, let alone performing for audiences, and the prospect of not making music terrified me. So I set out to produce some online performances, putting together a technical team and devising a system to combine the music-making of individuals in their own homes. And so, Positive Note was born.
Our first film, "Old Abram Brown at a distance" was premiered the day that the lockdown was announced, and before long we were planning our epic co-production with Oxford Bach Soloists, "St John Passion from Isolation", which was screened on YouTube in nine weekly episodes, starting on Good Friday, raising over £16,000 for Help Musicians UK, with 44,000 views to date.
We continue to make these kind of films, and our recent "apart/together" project with New College Choir has been featured on Radio 3 and Classic FM.
Making music together again
BUT....there is no substitute for making music in person, and as much for the mental health of the performers as the enjoyment of our audience, we decided to put together some filmed performances to make up an online festival and the concept of the Positive Note Autumn Sessions was born. I approached Radley College to see if they would host us and give us access to their film unit. They are always keen to share their resources with worthy causes, and were very encouraging, making the Silk Hall available to us at an affordable rate. None of this would have been possible without their generosity.
Finzi Friends also pledged their support, helping us to get the concept off the ground.Then I invited a wonderful, diverse range of performers to be involved - all of them jumped at the chance to be performing together again, resulting in stunning work from world-renowned performers and stars of the future. The overarching theme is Nature - the one thing that kept me, and I'm sure many others, sane during lockdown.
All the performers have agreed to be involved on a profit sharing basis, so once our production costs are covered, all the profits from this crowdfunder, and from subsequent ticket sales will go to them.
All the films will benefit from extra visual content - for instance the Dance Continues has shadow puppet animations incorporated with the live material
The Dance Continues - songs of birds and trees, performed by Anna Dennis, Marta Fontanals-Simmons, Wilfred Norman, Daniel Norman, Roderick Williams and Sholto Kynoch, with shadow puppet animations by Jeremy Hamway-Bidgood
Bushes and Briars - The Gesualdo Six present a programme on the theme of Nature and Youth
Beethoven and Mozart - Music for violin and piano with Jonathan Stone and Sholto Kynoch
Eternity's Sunrise - Vaughan Williams's Blake settings for tenor and oboe, performed by Daniel Norman and Emily Pailthorpe with Blake's original images
A Voice of One's Own - A collection of outstanding songs - haunting, witty, poignant - by composers who happen to be female. Performed by Diana Moore and John Reid
The Truth About Love - Featuring Grainger's folk song arrangements, Schubert's Shepherd on the Rock, Finzi's Bagatelles and Britten's Cabaret songs, with Helen Sherman, Claire Egan, Catriona Scott and Charlotte Brennand
Haydn and Smetana Piano Trios The Mitsu Trio
If you'd like to support us, please pledge using one of the options on the right hand side of the page. There are lots of rewards available, including individual or season tickets to all the concerts, early access bonuses, posters, limited edition prints and a chance to get your name in the credits!
If you would like a combination of rewards that is not offered (e.g. a poster and a season ticket), drop me a line - [email protected] - and we will create a bespoke reward for you.
The poster is a beautifully detailed reproduction of Paolo's Painting, 50cm x 40cm (20" x 16") - a size compatible with ready-made mountings and frames - printed on 250gsm Silk paper.
The print is from a limited edition of 50, numbered and signed by the artist. 50cm x 40cm (20" x 16") - a size compatible with ready-made mountings and frames. It is giclée printed on Hahnemühle Fine Art paper and is a stunning representation of the original image. Only 20 available