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Audio: BBC Symphony @ 80: Maida Vale Studios

October 17, 2010

Formed in 1930 and based in Maida Vale studios in West London, The BBC Symphony Orchestra – along with a great many other orchestras like the City of Birmingham Symphony, Halle and London Philharmonic – is part of the fabric of the UK’s orchestral scene.

But is its longevity something which inevitably results in us taking its existence for granted? How does the band operate today in what is a considerably more competitive world than when it was first established? And, with a more fragmented listening audience, how does the Symphony Orchestra maintain its distinct proposition?

I put these questions to General Manager Paul Hughes when I met him earlier this week. Listen to our conversation recorded at BBC Maida Vale Studios here.

The BBC Symphony Orchestra will be marking its 80th anniversary on Friday 22 October 2010 with a special concert at the Barbican Concert Hall in London including a UK premiere of Kaija Saariaho’s composition for clarinet and orchestra D’Om Le Vrai Sens and a world premiere by Stephen McNeff. The concert will also feature Stravinsky’s Rite of Spring.

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