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WildKat PR is excited to welcome Lizzie Ball to our roster. A truly gifted artist, Lizzie Ball is a classical trained violinist and vocalist. She is known for creating Classical Kicks, a series of shows that was established at London’s famous Ronnie Scott’s, as well as a number of other exciting collaborations. The series centres on broadening peoples’horizons for classical music by combining classical music performances at the highest level with a down-to -earth approach that allows everyone to engage with the genre.

This sums up what Lizzie is all about: She thinks outside the box to create opportunities for people to listen to stunning music while looking past all the usual conventions. She is always open to fresh and different approaches and thus her performances are always one of a kind.

Her exceptional musical skills are paired with an exuberant energy that immediately captivates the audiences. Her sounds are a combination of jazz, world, folk, bluegrass, rock and, of course, classical music. She delivers a modern and creative touch, combining all the musical impacts in her life and sharing it with the audiences. Through this she is rejuvenating the fundamentals of the classical genre. Her skills, her improvisation, her expression are the driving factors of finding a new sound, and a new perception. To quote Lizzie:

“I love creating an experience. It’s about connecting the music with the audience always. Whether it’s through my violin, my singing or when producing concert performance formats.”

Lately she has been working on a new show Viva la Vidacon Frida. This multi-media presentation is a musical journey through the life, times, art of Frida Kahlo which consists of part-concert, part talk, part imagery. Together with Mexican guitarist Morgan Szymanski, the duo play Mexican folk songs, jazz songs and classical compositions, that relate to the life of Frida Kahlo. The show also includes a live specially curated film that shows Frida Kahlo’s art, and images of the female icon aswell as Mexican imagery and illustration.

Besides her own projects, Lizzie has also been featured extensively as a classical performer with the BBC Proms, the Berliner Philharmonie and at Wigmore Hall. She has worked extensively with Nigel Kennedy, becoming the concertmaster of his orchestra of life. Her experiences in the world of rock and pop have earned her collaborations with artists, such as Jeff Beck and Brian Wilson. As a session musician, she has worked with a number of artists including Seal, Adele, Kylie Minogue and Kanye West.

She can transition between genres and styles like no other artist and through those abilities she is creating something new and exciting every step of the way.

Lizzie Ball ©Silvia Cruz

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(Written on October 16, 2017 )

The ninth Planet Tree Music Festival kicks off tomorrow, running until 26th October in Hampstead, North London.


Founder and composer Lawrence Ball has curated the festival with the aim of creating an immersive experience for those wishing to connect to a higher sphere through deep engagement with classical music. Audiences are encouraged to lie down, meditate and experience the sound worlds presented, championing an alternative way of listening. The outdated rules employed in traditional concert halls are discarded in favour of a more accessible experience rooted in spirituality and relaxation. 

Similar in format to Max Richter’s sold-out ‘Sleep’, the 2017 Planet Tree Music Festival offers concert attendees the opportunity to lie down and relax into cosmic sound worlds, with a host of international musicians performing music specially written for this year’s programme.

 

The festival was opened by Terry Riley in 1996, establishing its ethos and reputation as one that showcases tonal, non-elitist contemporary music. The programme deals with the brighter side of contemporary classical music, featuring pieces by popular composers including Max Richter and Arvo Pärt.

Collaborator and performer James D’Angelo says: “The Planet Tree Music Festival has established a new forum for contemporary music that returns music to its spiritual roots and gets people in touch with their souls hungry for impressions of who and what they are… No composer could ask for anything more than the refined atmosphere that is the Planet Tree Music Festival.”

Tickets can be purchased on the door of each of the venues, namely the Rosslyn Hill Unitarian Chapel and All Hallows Church, Hampstead. Full concert details can be found here.

WildKat has, so far, secured coverage for Planet Tree Music Festival in PRS M Magazine, Culture Whisper, International Arts Manager, and local newspaper Camden New Journal. Stay tuned for more!

(Written on October 6, 2017 )

WildKat PR offers a training fund to all members of staff to help them learn new skills, develop their interests, and also to bring something new back to the team. James Hardie returned to his home city of Edinburgh last month to attend International Festival Encounters. Read about his experience below:

I used my WildKat training fund this year to attend International Festival Encounters.  It is a week-long course run by the Edinburgh International Festival in conjunction with the University of Edinburgh and the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland.  The aim is to bring together artistic entrepreneurs with leading industry members and academics from all over the world.

It was truly ‘international’.  Amongst the participants were producers, writers, actors, programmers, and performers from Australia, America, Russia, South Africa, Denmark, Hong Kong, Singapore, India, and the UK.  It was a wonderful melting pot of different perspectives and experiences from both young and old, all taking place under the watchful eye of Edinburgh Castle.

We were treated to five productions over the week, including dance, theatre, and opera.  My own highlight was seeing the Nederlands Dans Theater, who performed a show in three segments with scores by Max Richter and Philip Glass.  The middle segment—a haunting series of scenes as a dying man recalls his life’s regrets—was like watching a film; the way the dancers manipulated their bodies brought to mind ‘The Exorcist’.

After each performance, we were given the opportunity to reflect critically on what we had experienced.  After seeing Gianandrea Noseda conduct the Teatro Regio Torino in a somewhat confused production of Verdi’s Macbeth, Kate Molleson (music critic for the Guardian) guided us through our reactions, whilst also giving us a fascinating insight into the dual role of the music journalist as both critic and evangelist.

There were two ideas that have really stuck with me from the course.  Firstly, the idea that financial constraint inspires creativity.  This was most effectively expressed for me by a participant from Russia, who used the phrase, ‘the artist must be hungry’, encouraging enterprise from a position of deprivation.  The second idea concerned caring for and looking after an audience.  The creator of a particularly moving production called ‘Flight’ spoke about the audience leaving an incredibly intense and personal experience in the theatre, and re-joining the busy outside world, and the steps they took to ease this often difficult transition.

My fellow participants were a really inspiring bunch, and I learnt just as much from them as I did the experts.  I’m certain I will collaborate with them again in the future. The training fund is an amazing perk to have, available to us all here at WildKat once a year, and I’m very grateful to have been afforded this opportunity.

(Written on September 25, 2017 )

Olivia Brown has taken up the position of Director, London Office at WildKat PR.  Previously Head of Creative Strategy & Marketing, Olivia will continue to be responsible for creative strategy at WildKat, exploring and implementing new services, and running the branding and social media strands of the company.

Her new role will also entail overseeing all business here in the UK and Ireland, and working with Carolin Denz (Director, Berlin Office) to develop and progress the WildKat brand, as well as working with the Founder, Kathleen Alder, to adapt WildKat to our ever-changing industry.

Kathleen Alder, Founder of WildKat PR commented: “It is with great delight that we announce the promotion of Olivia Brown to Director, London Office. Olivia has always been a dedicated and hardworking member of the WildKat PR team and has displayed a great deal of passion to the field of music and performing arts. Olivia first joined us in her ‘year in industry’ while studying at the University of Leeds, and after joining the London office as a full-time member of staff has overseen the expansion of our traditional services such as PR, marketing and social media to include more creative services such as branding, surveys and a more tailored approach to our services.

“Olivia has a proven track record of team leadership and a determination to provide the best possible service for our extensive client roster, and I am excited to see where she will lead the London office in the future. Olivia’s youth, talent and enthusiasm befits the overall company ethos and she will join myself and our Berlin Director Carolin Denz in running the company overall.”

Olivia commented: “It’s been an incredibly exciting and rewarding adventure to experience WildKat transform in the past 5 years, from when I started as an intern to the newly created position that I began last year.

“I am incredibly grateful to Kat for providing me with the structure and support to confidently lead the company from within, which is often very rare in our industry. Meanwhile, Kat continues to champion the young leaders of the classical music industry, regardless of age, gender, or background. As Director, London Office, I look forward to further leading the company into exciting new territories, both through anticipating the future of the industry and reacting to it, and also overseeing our expansion into the U.S. and France in 2018.”

(Written on September 25, 2017 )

WildKat PR is thrilled to be working with Blüthner on their inaugural Piano Series. Seven virtuosi will showcase the piano with its unique Golden Tone in a series of seven recitals held at St John’s Smith Square over the 2017/18 season.

From its founding in 1853 by Julius Blüthner, the eponymous firm has remained family-run. Current CEO, Dr Christian Blüthner-Haessler, enjoyed a successful career as a cancer surgeon, before taking the reins in 1996, and being named Businessman of the Year in Germany in 2004 after just 8 years in the industry.

From its inception, Blüthner has been an innovative company, which can be seen today in its impressive range of Design Pianos, and the extraordinary PH Grand. Blüthner has also pushed boundaries exploring the mechanics of tone production, with the creation of the Aliquot string, an added fourth string which vibrates sympathetically, cylindrical soundboards, and angle cut hammers, resulting in a truly special sound.

The starry list of Blüthner advocates includes Brahms, Mahler, Bartók, Debussy, Reger, Wagner, Tchaikovsky, Shostakovich, Rachmaninoff, Liberace, Stevie Wonder, and Ariana Grande.

The seven programmes held at St John’s Smith Square will be performed by outstanding talents from across the world, highlighting the versatility, depth, and character of the Blüthner instrument. Repertoire will include Bach, Mozart, and Beethoven; Tchaikovsky, Chopin, and Brahms; Stravinsky and transcriptions of Chinese music; Sjogren, Nielssen, and Nilsson. Tom Poster’s Kaleidoscope Chamber Collective will open the series performing Clara Schumann, Brahms, Schubert, and Robert Schumann.

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(Written on September 14, 2017 )

We are always thrilled when artists return to us to promote their exciting new projects. This is the case with Dmitry Masleev, one of the most promising, rising piano talents of our time. This is our third collaboration and this time Dmitry not only has concerts and debuts around the world, but will also release his highly anticipated debut album on the legendary label Melodiya.

After winning the International Tchaikovsky Competition in 2015, he went on to fascinate audiences all over the world, playing at the Berlin Konzerthaus, the Paris Philharmonie and Carnegie Hall, amongst many others. He has been joined on stage by orchestras such as the Orchestra of Radio France, Munich Symphony and Moscow Chamber Orchestra Musica Viva, also seeking artistic friendship with, Boris Berezovsky and Gidon Kremer.

In the past two years of successful concerts, Dmitry has enjoyed performing in front of a live audience, which has not only given him invaluable experience but has also allowed him to speak and engage with concertgoers directly. It quickly became clear that they highly anticipated a debut recording so, gladly responding to the audience’s demand, Dmitry is now announcing the release of his debut album under the Russian label Melodiya this October. WildKat PR will be supporting Dmitry for this release.

This debut album titled, in pure simplicity, “Piano” will include a selection of Domenico Scarlatti’s sonatas, alongside Prokofiev’s Piano Sonata No. 2 in D minor and Shostakovich’s Piano Concerto No. 2 in F major. Even though Dmitry stated in an interview that Russian music was very appealing to him because of the freedom he feels while playing it, it is no coincidence that the Italian Baroque composer Scarlatti can be found on his album. Scarlatti had an important impact on the development of Classicism, which largely shaped the way Shostakovich and Prokofiev composed.

The release of ‘Piano” will coincide with Dmitry’s debuts at the Concertgebouw in Amsterdam and St. Johns Smith Square in London, as part of the Blüthner Piano Series. He will be touring in the US, playing at the Schloss Elma and with the Bamberger Symphoniker at the end of the year. Stay tuned for more details as it will be – yet again – an exciting year for Dmitry!

Dmitry Masleev © Alikhan

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(Written on September 11, 2017 )

Ashia Bison Rouge is a Polish born, American raised composer, cello player and singer, who lives in Berlin. She is a citizen of the world and so is her music.  Combining elements from Jazz, Pop, classical music and ambient sounds, she creates what she calls a ‘Song Archipelego’.

WildKat will be working with her to promote her concert at Körnerpark, Berlin on October 22nd.

 

One could say that there are only so many ways to play an instrument, but Ashia is a virtuoso, bending what is supposed to be the sound and the use of the cello. Combine that with her powerful and soul soaked voice and you get the most beautiful compositions you could have ever wished for. Playing all over Europe and the US, Ashia has performed with the Salem Chamber Orchestra in Salem, Oregon, the Cirque du Soleil and as a soloist at Kater Blau in Berlin.

On October 22nd, Ashia will perform at Körnerpark Neukölln, which is, according to blogs and word-of-mouth, probably one of the best places in Berlin right now. For an exciting artist such as Ashia, it is just the perfect spot. She will perform her own songs and compositions, as well as some extraordinary covers. She will once again be her own one-woman-cello and orchestra. She will once again be her own band. She will be Ashia Bison Rouge at her best.

We are more than happy to support Ashia for her concert at the Körnerpark Neukölln. And since the concert is free, all we can do is recommend to be there early for a great show!

(Written on September 7, 2017 )

WildKat PR is thrilled to welcome Inclusive Creativity! The project, based in Northern Ireland, was devised by composer Frank Lyons of Ulster University. It aims to level the playing field in performance and composition for disabled musicians by developing innovative instrumental technology and methodologies that allow for side-by-side performance with professional musicians.

In 2015, three partner organisations (Walled City Music, Drake Music and St. Magnus International Festival) received funding from the Calouste Gulbenkian Foundation to develop a pilot participatory project using ‘inclusive creativity’ as its driving principle. The project brought together musicians and composers to research participant-led routes into collaborative music making. Under the direction of professor Lyons, an ensemble of disabled and non-disabled artists met regularly to improvise and compose music together in Derry/Lononderry. They used assistive music technology (AMT) as well as more conventional musical instruments. This ensemble became Acoustronic.

A performance featuring Acoustronic and partner ensemble the Benyounes Quartet will perform Lyons’s specially-commissioned work ‘NonZeroSum’ and George Crumb’s ‘Black Angels’ at Rich Mix on 5th September.

Olivia Brown, Head of Creative Strategy and Marketing, said: “Inclusive Creativity is an incredibly inspiring project that provides essential opportunities for disabled musicians. Especially with disability often being left out of diversity conversations in the classical industry and beyond, it’s vital that projects like this are championed across the sector and WildKat are delighted to support this pioneering and forward-thinking collaboration.”

The concerts in London and Dublin are kindly supported by PRS for Music’s ‘Breaking Borders’, CGF’s ‘Sharing the Stage’ and the British Council

(Written on August 31, 2017 )

We are looking for a Junior Account Manager to join WildKat PR in London!

WildKat PR

WildKat PR is a game-changer in the classical music industry. We adamantly believe in changing the status quo of our industry, embracing creative values both on- and offline.

WildKat PR is the only classical music PR agency to spread worldwide, having established ourselves in London, Berlin and New York. We are deeply devoted to seeking out and using online platforms to reach and engage substantial new audiences, producing all-encompassing, bespoke, international PR campaigns that are data-driven.

 

Job Description

WildKat PR is offering an exciting opportunity to join our London team. Working with the Founder, Director of the London Office, and Account Managers, they will learn how to develop and execute creative PR campaigns across the classical music and cultural industries in order to generate coverage and publicity for our clients.

 

Key duties

As a Junior Account Manager:

-To support the Director of the London Office with her administrative needs

-To assist the Account Managers in securing opportunities for clients and helping them to achieve their PR goals. This includes: researching publications and opportunities for coverage, organising client events, assisting with client reports and feedback

-To think creatively about how you (and your colleagues) approach campaigns. You will be asked to continually make new connections and approach your work in innovative ways. You will be expected to challenge how we, and the industry, are doing things

-To write copy in relation to client needs, including: fact sheets, bios, blogposts, newsletters, brochures

-To learn quickly and efficiently how to develop and execute creative PR campaigns in order to take on your own clients and manage their PR goals effectively. This will include liaising with journalists to generate and secure media coverage for clients

-To organise client events, as needed. This includes: concerts, VIP receptions, industry networking events

-To attend all relevant artists’ events (which regularly occur outside of office hours) including meetings and performances

-To network within the industry to build your reputation and that of the company.

-To be willing to take on additional responsibilities and grow into a more senior role within the company

 

Opportunities of working with WildKat PR:

-Small, open plan office

-Chance to do diverse things within the role and expand your skillset quickly

-Gain wider industry experience, not just PR

-Supportive colleagues and management welcoming your fresh ideas

-Personalised creative skills training and coaching

-Collaboration with mainstream brands and projects

-Opportunities for travel

-Sociable atmosphere

-Staff benefits, which include annual ski trip, Friday drinks, office yoga, opportunity for sabbatical and 6 hour working days

 

 

Person Specification

Essential

-Interest in classical music, culture and the arts

-A fast learner, able to absorb information quickly and confidently put it into practice

-Ability to remain calm when working under pressure and to manage conflicting deadlines

-Proven administrative and organisational skills

-Excellent verbal and written communication skills

-Ability to take initiative and responsibility when working alone

-Ability to work as part of a team

-High degree of accuracy and attention to detail

-A strong interest in online media

-Self-motivated

-Good standard of computer literacy (Word, Excel, WordPress)

Desirable

-Education to degree level

-Fluency in another language

We are an equal opportunities employer and welcome applications from all suitably qualified persons regardless of their race, sex, disability, religion/belief, sexual orientation or age

To apply, please send your CV and covering letter to olivia@wildkatpr.com with the subject title ‘WildKat PR Account Manager application’ by 5pm on 15th September 2017

Salary: Competitive – dependent upon experience

 

(Written on August 30, 2017 )

Over the past few weeks there has been uproar within the classical music world after the National Musicians Church, St Sepulchre-without-Newgate in Holborn, announced it would no longer be taking bookings of a non-religious nature from 2018.

The Church is where Sir Henry Wood, founder of the BBC Proms, is buried. It is also the home to a book of remembrance for musicians and windows commemorating singer Dame Nellie Melba and composer John Ireland. It has been known as the National Musicians Church for more than 70 years and is a prominent concert venue and rehearsal space that has been used by all types of musicians. Assurance had to be provided in 2013, after the appointment of Reverend David Ingall to the church, as many musicians were worried that the new priest would change the ethos of St Sepulchre as it was known. The recent move has therefore proven the need for this worry and has sparked a coming together of influential musicians to try and prevent the ban.

Since the new appointment of Reverend Ingall, the church has become part of the network founded by evangelical church Holy Trinity Brompton. The ‘evangelical group is known for its youth friendly rock-band style of worship’ and hosts the ever popular Alpha courses.  Reverend Ingall has stated in response to the reaction to the new ban; “Our ministry as the National Musicians’ Church continues to be a core part of our church’s identity and vision… While its expression may be changing, that underlying vision remains unchanged.” This, however, hasn’t settled the minds of leading musicians who believe that the “abrupt move was made without consent.”

In response to the ban on secular bookings, Richard Robbins started a petition to try and reverse the decision. He stated that “the church was particularly valued by musicians because of its heritage and for practical reasons.” He is helping to form a committee to “put forward a positive vision of what the Musicians Church actually is and to try and find a way that both music and ministry can co-exist together in a very open way.”

Photo credit: Making Music

This has consequently led to more than 50 musicians, including top composers, performers, and directors of music at cathedrals, to write a letter to The Guardian protesting against St. Sepulchre’s plans to ban non-sacred concerts. In the letter they state; “the unique ‘mission’ for St. Sepulchre’s has been to musicians, providing a welcoming space and encouraging them to be involved in running the parish. That its custodies are now willing to abandon this unique national cultural remit is difficult to understand and harder to accept.” Among those who signed the letter were Sir James MacMillan, John Rutter, Suzi Digby, Julian Lloyd Webber and Judith Weir.

Reverend Ingall has stated that “in the coming weeks we will reflect and pray, and consult with members of the musicians’ community about how best to fulfil that ministry moving forward.” The final outcome has not been announced yet, but we can hope that the hard work of Richard Robbins to start the petition and the influential musicians pays off.

Update: Over 7,000 people have signed the petition. Read all updates here.

(Written on August 29, 2017 )