WildKatPR is excited to introduce our newest client, Constella Ballet & Opera in the run up to their performances of ‘Clown of Clowns’ as part of the Grimeborn Opera Festival this August.

This two-part operatic and balletic circus spectacular ‘Clown of Clowns’ takes the audience on a rollercoaster ride of emotions, following  Pierrot the clown’s quest to gain a place amongst the other Sideshows acts – a story told through new choreography and Schoenberg’s iconic score.

Sideshows features conductor and composer Leo Geyer‘s explosive jazz-inspired score. Broadcast on Radio 3, it was also described as, ‘what modern opera should be, complex yet approachable, highly characterised and brilliantly realised’ by Planet Hugill in 2014.

Dancers, singers and instrumentalists will come together on the stage, all in character – just an arm’s reach from the audience, promoting an immersive and intimate experience for all involved as this show spirals out of control!

We are very much looking forward to working with Constella on this exciting and innovative project. Keep checking the WildKat PR blog for updates as well as the Constella website.

Performances will take place at 20.00 every night from 4th – 8th August at the Arcola Theatre and can now be purchased on the Arcola Theatre website.

Clown of Clowns

Photo credit: Constella website

(Written on June 26, 2015 )

WildKat PR is delighted to introduce our newest client Anneleen Lenaerts. The 28 year old Belgian harpist is making  a name for herself as one of the leading soloists on her instrument. Since December 2010, Anneleen has been the Principal Harpist of the Vienna Philharmonic. With her Album ‘Harp Concertos’, she presents a 2015 remastering of fellow Belgian composer, Joseph Jongen’s music. Anneleen has also released two other CDs, ‘Chopin&Liszt’ and a collaboration with oboist Karel Schoofs. She furthermore collaborated with last season’s raising star clarinetist Dionysis Grammenos.

From an early age she started winning an impressive array of prizes, namely 17 prizes between 1997 and 2009, of which the “Grand Prix International Lily Laskine” and the ARD International Music Competition in Munich are particularly outstanding. Since then, she has played in many high-profile venues all over the world, including Wigmore Hall in London and the Festspielhaus in Salzburg.

Whilst the romantic lyricism of these works is closely associated with the qualities of the harp, it is her virtuosity which gains particular attraction, thanks to Anneleen Lenaerts’ skill and articulation. Highly praised by critics, she is known for her impressive technical ability, her precise playing, variety of tone and excellent musical phrasing. This year she will be touring the USA as well as Germany, Austria and Belgium.

We are very much looking forward to working with Anneleen and to help her getting a bigger audience for her wonderful music. Keep checking the WildKat PR blog for updates and also WildKat PR blog for updates and also Anneleen’s website.

Anneleen Lenaerts

Anneleen Lenaerts

(Written on June 24, 2015 )

Congratulations to the Berlin Philharmonic who have finally chosen a new Chief Conductor: In a new secret election, a large majority of the members of the Berlin Philharmonic, including the designated Chief Conductor of the orchestra and Artistic Director of the Berlin Philharmonic Foundation chose Kirill Petrenko to be the new conductor. Kirill Petrenko himself states: “Words cannot express my feelings – everything from euphoria and great joy to awe and disbelief. I am aware of the responsibility and high expectations of me, and I will do everything in my power to be a worthy conductor of this outstanding orchestra. Above all, however, I hope for many moments of artistic happiness in our music-making together which will reward our hard work and fill our lives as artists with meaning.”

At the moment, Kirill Petrenko is the director of the Bayerische Staatsoper and will be Sir Simon Rattle’s successor to one of the most famous and renowned orchestras in the world from 2018. On 11th May, the first round of the secret election was not conclusive and time stood still in Berlin. All eyes in the classical world focused on Berlin on this day, but after 12 hours of discussion they still had not come to a conclusion. So today they can proudly present themselves, as the only orchestra that is allowed to elect their Chief Conductor by themselves, having found someone who will take over the most desirable position in the classical world.

In the past weeks, the press, including The Guardian, has harshly criticised the orchestra, which seemed incapable of finding a new conductor. But choosing a person to lead such a great orchestra isn’t something that can be decided in just 12 hours, since the result is something which has a huge impact for several years. Furthermore, the Berlin Philharmonic faced losing their remarkable reputation if they made the wrong decision.

Congratulations to Kirill Petrenko and good luck with an assignment many other conductors would not dare to take.

 

Kirill Petrenko (Photo: Wilfried Hösl)

Kirill Petrenko (Photo: Wilfried Hösl)

(Written on June 22, 2015 )

Controversy surrounding Nicola Benedetti’s interview with Scotland on Sunday last month, in which she argued that children should be exposed to classical music whether they like it or not, certainly has sparked debate as to whether this approach helps or hinders children’s learning and appreciation of the great classical works.

The benefits that music has on the human brain are largely undisputed. Neuroscientist and musical educator Anita Collins elucidates these, with particular attention to the playing of instruments, in a TED-Ed talk. In short, listening to music stimulates the brain, and playing it is even more constructive – ‘stimulating practically every area of the brain at once…and especially the visual, auditory and motor cortices’ and we’ve all heard of the Mozart Effect.

This is interesting stuff, but we are all aware that children and teenagers would rather listen to the Top-40 or perhaps the latest indie record from those bands that you or I wouldn’t have heard of. So shouldn’t we just let them? And if we do let children listen to what they want, when they want, what does the future of classical music look like?

Concert pianist James Rhodes seems to hit the nail on the head in his article in the Guardian where he explains the necessity for music to be taught in a different way to fractions or the Ottoman Empire. It is, after all, there to be enjoyed, as well as promoting brain development. He tells of his own experience and the 30 years it has taken for him to ‘undo the damage’ of being dragged to the opera against his will as a child. And he was one of the lucky ones. Many people never do have this musical epiphany, and go through their whole adult life without ever truly appreciating classical music, or even giving it a second chance. Perhaps the reason for this is purely down to the fact that we associate classical music with school, exams, and being forced to practice scales against our will.

So what is the solution? Eliminating classical music from the curriculum and hoping children will stumble across it by themselves seems like a risky strategy. Rhodes suggests stopping the segregation between genres – presenting classical music alongside hip-hop and rock. However, this will not be an easy task – hundreds of years of technological advances, changing mind-sets and cool new bands lie between Tallis and Taylor Swift, but perhaps today’s teens would be surprised and maybe even interested to see just quite how close the links are between Lady Gaga’s ‘Alejandro’ and Monti’s ‘Czárdás’? And do they know that it’s Handel they’re hearing each time they flick over to watch the Champion’s League?

It’s only a start, but if we show children just how ingrained classical music already is in their daily lives, at least they’ll be engaged. Then we can start to branch out into some tracks that they might not already know. Who knows, maybe some will even be inspired to do some research of their own and ‘discover’ some of the great works before we even get there.

Share your thoughts and opinions with us in the comments below or tweet us!

Young girl playing the piano, UK...B5T28D Young girl playing the piano, UK

Photo: Edward North/ Alamy

(Written on June 22, 2015 )

Am 11. Mai stand die Welt in Berlin viele Stunden still, als die Berliner Philharmoniker den Nachfolger für Sir Simon Rattle in einem ersten Durchgang wählen wollten. Dies sollte sich schnell als schwerer erweisen, als zuvor angenommen. Rattle, der den Posten des Chefdirigenten seit 2002 innehat, soll 2018 abgelöst werden. Ohnehin schon als Ausnahmeorchester bekannt, sind die Berliner Philharmoniker die einzigen weltweit, die ihren neuen Chefdirigenten selbst wählen dürfen, und dass dies keine einfache Entscheidung ist und war, wurde nach dem ersten Wahlversuch im Mai sehr schnell deutlich, wie einige Artikel, wie z.B. der Zeit, der Epoch Times oder auch der Welt sehr deutlich belegen.

Nun darf gratuliert werden, denn das Orchester hat Kirill Petrenko zum Nachfolger gewählt. Momentan ist der 1972 in Omsk geborene Petrenko Chef der Bayerischen Staatsoper in München. Dies wird nicht das erste Mal sein, dass er nach Berlin kommt, denn er war bereits von 2002 bis 2007 Generalmusikdirektor der Komischen Oper. Er selbst reagierte mit folgenden Worten: “Words cannot express my feelings – everything from euphoria and great joy to awe and disbelief. I am aware of the responsibility and high expectations of me, and I will do everything in my power to be a worthy conductor of this outstanding orchestra. Above all, however, I hope for many moments of artistic happiness in our music-making together which will reward our hard work and fill our lives as artists with meaning.”

Diese Wahl hat wenig mit Musik als solcher zu tun, sondern vielmehr mit dem, was von vielen auch als Vermächtnis bezeichnet wird. Die international renommierten Berliner Philharmoniker mögen sich mit der im Geheimen stattgefundenen Wahl schwer getan haben, doch letztendlich zeugt dies von der Ernsthaftigkeit und auch einer immens folgenschweren Entscheidung, die auf mehrere Jahre getroffen wird. Gratulation an Kirill Petrenko, der ab 2018 den wohl begehrtesten Posten der Klassikwelt antreten wird. Wir gratulieren!

Kirill Petrenko   |  © Sven Hoppe/dpa

Kirill Petrenko | © Sven Hoppe/dpa

(Written on June 22, 2015 )

Süffisant wird der Streit am “grünen Hügel” in Bayreuth mittlerweile als “älteste Seifenoper des deutschen Kulturprogramms” bezeichnet. Es geht um die Familie Wagner und um die Festspiele in Bayreuth, welche, wie beinahe jedes Jahr, unter keinem guten Stern zu stehen scheinen. Eskalation ist das, was von allen gefürchtet wird und alle in die Festspiele involvierten Wagner-Damen scheinen genau auf eben diese Eskalation hinzuarbeiten.

Aber was genau macht nun den Streit aus? Ganz konkret geht es um das Hausverbot, welches der im September 2015 von diesem Posten scheidende Leiterin Eva Wagner-Pasquier während der Probenphase vom 1. Juni bis 20. Juli erteilt worden sein soll. Dies würde weiterhin beinhalten, dass Wagner-Pasquier kein Mitspracherecht bei der Besetzung der Rollen und in Vertragsfragen mehr hätte.

Bayreuther Festspielhaus  Foto: www.bayreuther-festspiele.de

Bayreuther Festspielhaus
Foto: www.bayreuther-festspiele.de

Dies sind nicht die ersten Streitigkeiten, welche auftauchen. Wir erinnern uns daran, dass ein Bariton mit Nazitattoo und Jonathan Meese verbannt wurden, was jeweils für immense Schlagzeilen gesorgt hat. Bereits 2014 konstatierte Katharina Wagner im Interview mit der Süddeutschen Zeitung: “Wenn Sie frühere Kritiken der Bayreuther Festspiele lesen, werden Sie sehen, dass es seit Bestehen der Festspiele immer wieder negative Kritiken gab. Das ist kein besonderes Vorkommnis dieses Jahres.” Ob sich diese Aussage des letzten Jahres so einfach auf 2015 übertragen lassen kann, bleibt fraglich.

Namhafte Dirigenten wie Daniel Barenboim setzen sich für Eva Wagner-Pasquier ein – er bewertet das Verhalten des Festspielhauses gar als menschnunwürdig.

Dass Eva Wagner-Pasquier und ihre Halbschwester Katharina nicht die besten Freundinnen sind, ist hinreichend bekannt. Doch inwieweit beeinflusst der familieninterne Rosenkrieg die künstlerische Durchführung der Festspiele? Christian Thielemann und Kirill Petrenko drohten in der Vergangenheit mit Absagen. Doch offensichtlich wurde die Aussage Thielemanns, “nicht den Taktstock zu heben, solle Eva Wagner-Pasquier auf dem Gelände sein” dementiert. Ein jährliches Hin und Her also, dem sich Besucher und auch die Künstler beugen müssen.

Kirill Petrenko hingegen drohte mit dem Rückzug, sollte das angebliche Hausverbot für Eva Wagner-Pasquier bestehen bleiben – somit schließt sich Petrenko Barenboims Meinung an. Die Kritik an den Festspielen ist ebenfalls gespalten, somit bleibt abzuwarten, inwiefern sich diese auf die Inszenierungen auswirken oder ob es – wie jedes Jahr – ein Krieg ist, der in Bayreuth gefochten und allein dort ausgetragen wird.

Katharina Wagner und Eva Wagner-Pasquier Foto: dpa

Katharina Wagner und Eva Wagner-Pasquier Foto: dpa

(Written on June 12, 2015 )

WildKat PR is delighted to introduce our newest client Hideko Udagawa. The renowned violinist has recently released a collection of unusual 18th century concertos with the Scottish Chamber Orchestra and Nicholas Kraemer. This disc is particularly exciting since it includes three previously unheard world premieres recordings, which Hideko discovered herself.

Hideko has also released two other CDs since last spring, both receiving high praise from international critics – a Khachaturian recital disc with Russian pianist Boris Berezovsky and a re-issue of the Brahms/Bruch violin concertos with Sir Charles Mackerras and the London Symphony Orchestra.

This year also marks the re-release of Hideko’s recording of Glazunov’s Violin Concerto with the London Philharmonic Orchestra, to celebrate the 150th anniversary of his birth.

Praised by critics for her passionate commitment, dazzling agility and refinement of taste, she has performed extensively across the globe in over thirty countries in Europe, North America and Asia-Pacific with some of the world’s top orchestras and in international concert series.

We are very much looking forward to working with Hideko on her future releases and recitals. Keep checking the WildKat PR blog for updates and also Hideko’s website.

Hideko Udagawa - Photo credit Sheila Rock

Photo credit: Sheila Rock

(Written on June 12, 2015 )

The Danish composer Carl Nielsen is one of the most unusual romantic composers of all time. If you think of Denmark, then the beautiful landscape and the almost romantic way of living come to mind, but nothing at all ostentatious. So why is it that Carl Nielsen’s symphonies are praised and performed by so many renowned conductors including Herbert von Karajan, Simon Rattle or Leonard Bernstein?

As you can hear on the latest recording with the New York Philharmonic and Alan Gilbert, but not so much about the music’s length, but the brilliant way in which Nielsen understood how to compose big symphonies. The 5th and 6th symphony were both recorded live in Avery Fisher Hall in October 2014 and are seen as a “battle between good and evil”, says Alan Gilbert. On the occasion of the composer’s 150th Anniversary on June 9th, they are included in the New York Philharmonic’s concert cycle. As Carl Nielsen is regarded as one of the most underappreciated composers we should pay all the more attention to his works. In their recording, the New York Philharmonic brilliantly interprets his music, which often consists of simple melodies and harmonies.

If you try to compare Carl Nielsen to his contemporaries, you’ll be a long way off. Even though Gustav Mahler is only five years older than Nielsen, they could not be more different from each other. Although he is sometimes rather overshadowed by Mahler, Nielsen’s soft, often simple melodies, which Alan Gilbert expertly performs with his orchestra are extremely relaxing. So is it just simple chords and harmonies that made Carl Nielsen to one of Scandinavia’s most important and influential composers? We believe that it is the combination of the music being both light but not superficial. We have come full circle by agreeing with Gilbert’s statement that these symphonies combine good and evil, bright and dark.

Is it really that easy? Yes it is, because both the 5th and 6th symphonies seem to be formed of many small pieces, but result in a homogenous, beautiful and perfectly balanced work. So the New York Philharmonic, under Alan Gilbert, dignifies the Danish composer by both lightening and darkening his music in such a skillful way.

Carl Nielsen - Foto: The Royal Library/Department of

Carl Nielsen – Foto: The Royal Library/Department of

(Written on June 10, 2015 )

Junior Account Manager/in

für Presse- und Öffentlichkeitsarbeit mit dem Schwerpunkt Musik am Standort Berlin

In dieser Position entwickeln Sie PR-Kampagnen für Kunden aus dem Musik- und Kulturbereich und helfen bei deren erfolgreicher Umsetzung. Sie sollten daher eine Begeisterung für klassische Musik und darstellende Künste haben, können aber sehr gerne aus einem branchenfremden Feld kommen. Eine Affinität zu Online-Medien und Spaß an kreativen Herausforderungen ist ebenfalls wünschenswert. Nach Abschluss einer erfolgreichen Probezeit, ist eine Anstellung mit Festvertrag möglich.

 

Ihre Aufgaben

Entwicklung und Umsetzung internationaler, kreativer PR-Kampagnen für Kunden- und Agenturprojekte

Recherche und Pflege von Pressekontakten für eine optimale Medienbetreuung unserer Projekte

Erstellung von Pressetexten und effiziente Verbreitung von Pressematerialien

Content-Betreuung der Webinhalte auf den Kundenwebseiten und der Agenturwebseite

Teilnahme an Kundenveranstaltungen sowie geschäftliche Reisen während und außerhalb der Bürozeiten

Recherche und Reporting neuer Entwicklungen und Trends in den Bereichen Musikindustrie und Kultur-PR

Beobachtung und Reporting neuer Online-Medien-Tools, von denen WildKat PR und seine Kunden profitieren können

Unterstützung täglicher Agenturabläufe des Berliner Büros

 

Ihr Profil

Sehr gute Kenntnisse und Begeisterung für klassische Musik, Kultur und PR

Hervorragende mündliche und schriftliche Kommunikations-Skills

Exzellente administrative und organisatorische Fähigkeiten

Sehr gute Englischkenntnisse

Fähigkeit zum selbstmotivierten und eigeninitiativen Arbeiten

Zuverlässige und flexible Arbeitsweise

Fähigkeit auch unter hohem Zeitdruck zu arbeiten

Ausgeprägte Teamfähigkeit

Affinität zu Online-Medien

Sichere Computer-Kenntnisse (MS Word, Excel, WordPress)

 

Bitte senden Sie Ihre Bewerbung mit Lebenslauf und einem aussagekräftigen Anschreiben bis 15. Juni 2015 mit dem Betreff “Junior Account Manager/in” an berlin@wildkatpr.com.

 

(Written on June 10, 2015 )

Yesterday marked the unveiling of ‘Apple Music‘ – pioneering app, streaming service and 24 hour radio which claims to bring ‘the largest and most diverse collection of music on the planet’ directly to your fingertips.

According to Jimmy Iovine, “Online music has become a complicated mess of apps, services and websites” and in the classical music world, this statement could not be more true. Despite the plethora of options available to the tech-savvy listener, how is it that classical music lovers are still struggling to find recordings of their favourite pieces online? In a recent article on The Record, Anastasia Tsioulcas argues that the problem lies with metadata (the information that coexists with every digital music file.)

But what does this actually mean? Well, if you have ever tried to find a specific aria or overture on Spotify for example, you have probably already fallen victim to this complex phenomenon. Who do you select as the artist? The composer? The orchestra? The soloist? The opera company? The conductor? Unlucky for you, the answer is different every time. Just one incorrect search term and you risk eliminating the result you are looking for.

From Grooveshark to Pandora, numerous streaming and downloading websites have appeared on our computer screens over the past decade, but none of them provide such a comprehensive selection of music, the possibilities to connect with artists nor the personalized services which ‘Apple Music’ promises to do. With its Worldwide Debut on 30 June, we will be interested to see whether this new interactive app will put an end to our classical music streaming struggles. If it does, $9.99/month seems like a small price to pay.

(Written on June 9, 2015 )