If we want to build a future for music in the UK, new music needs to be seen more as part of the mainstream; something to be embraced in the same way as we celebrate new literature, theatre or art. Yes, we need to commission music but we also need to be creative and bold in programming it, not just on rare occasions or as an adjunct to more recognisable, traditional fare, but often, regularly, as second nature.
That’s why RPS and BBC 3 have come together for a third time in ENCORE to promote a range of outstanding works by living composers which deserve to be heard again. Only by doing this can we ensure that great contemporary works don’t simply disappear from view after one or two outings, and make the most of some marvellous music that is waiting ‘off-stage’, ready to be rediscovered.
Choral music is enjoying a renaissance and in the UK, we boast some of the world’s finest professional choirs. There is also a huge interest in amateur music making, with an estimated 25,000 choirs all over the country – and whilst traditional repertoire predominates, we want too encourage choirs to embrace a wider repertoire and enjoy the dynamism of performing music that can be both unfamiliar and challenging.