sun 19/11/2017

Rattle rolls up for The Night Shift | Arts News

Rattle rolls up for The Night Shift

Sir Simon Rattle has a reputation as one of classical music's most persuasive talkers. Only not with a baton in his hand. His skills as both a verbal and musical communicator will be simultaneously on view for the first time next month when he makes his debut in The Night Shift on 10 June.

Rattle has been with the Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment since the start in 1986 while The Night Shift has been running for only five years. But the occasional series of late-night concerts has quickly taken root and become an integral part of the orchestra’s ceaseless efforts to draw new audiences to the concert hall. (Rattle's Berlin Phil have recently introduced their own version.) The idea is that audiences can chillax rather more than protocol requires of them at conventional concerts such as the one taking place in Royal Festival Hall at 7pm that same evening, when a full programme of Debussy will be performed by Rattle and the OAE.

For the later engagement, the rules are slackened, you can come and go, slurp cool beers, clap between movements if you damn well like and even talk without being shushed. And ever now and then Alistair Appleton will leap up before, say, Prélude à l’après-midi d’un faune or during cherry-picked bits of La Mer, poke a microphone in Sir Simon’s face and ask him to explain what’s going on in the music. Anyone intrigued to see and hear the results can buy tickets for £12 on the day, £9 in advance and only £4 for full-time students (with a beer thrown in). There is live music in the bar from 9pm and a DJ set from 11pm to midnight. Book on the OAE website or for £5 text "Southbank" plus your surname to 82023 (numbers limited).

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