The Week in Light & Sound
Tuesday, 5 March 2019
Catastrophic - Equity, the UK trade union for creative practitioners, has written an open letter to MPs urging them to prevent a no-deal Brexit, warning that leaving the EU with no agreement would be “catastrophic” for the entertainment industry. It states that no deal is “simply unconscionable” and “must be prevented at all costs”.
The letter is signed by Christine Payne, general secretary of Equity, and is jointly written by other unions. It reads: “The political chaos of the last few years has led us to the brink of a no-deal Brexit that would have a catastrophic impact on our economy and society. The information we hear from our members in industries affected by Brexit makes it clear that no deal is simply unconscionable and must be prevented at all costs.”
Harnessing Technology - Music teaching could be left behind in an outdated acoustic age if it does not keep up with technology, a report says. Too much music education does not reflect the reality of how young people engage with music, according to the inquiry from the Music Commission. It says there is a risk this "disconnect" means current teaching methods may become outdated. It argues technology could help stop music from disappearing from schools.
The commission, led by key figures in contemporary music and set up by the Arts Council England and the Associated Boards of the Royal Schools of Music, says technology is rapidly evolving. From apps that allow users to compose digital music on smart phones to 'teach yourself the guitar' YouTube videos, the opportunities technology offers for learning, making and engaging in music are significant.
The report says: "There is a danger that the ‘disconnect’ between how young people use technology and music education may see current models of teaching rapidly becoming outdated. This is not about one replacing the other, but about bringing together the best in technology to work alongside and challenge acoustic music-making to create more relevant contemporary practice . . . The current generation of music learners can explore any era or kind of music at any time. Technology allows them to access and to merge 'musics' from any culture."
Shows Off - Ryan Adams has cancelled his UK and Ireland tour dates amid sexual abuse allegations. The American singer-songwriter cancelled dates including performances at the O2 Apollo in Manchester, the Royal Albert Hall in London and the O2 Academy Newcastle. A post on the Royal Albert Hall's Twitter feed said: "The Ryan Adams UK & Ireland tour has been cancelled. Full refunds to ticket purchasers from authorised outlets will be processed in due course.” Other venues booked for the tour have posted similar messages.
Plastic Ban - Single-use plastic bottles will be banned from sale at Glastonbury Festival for the first time this year. The bottles will also not be supplied to musicians backstage, in dressing rooms or to production and catering staff, according to the music festival's website. In 2017, more than 175,000 festival-goers bought more than a million plastic bottles, many of which ended up being left on the ground at the end of the event. The festival aims to prevent around a million plastic bottles being used at the farm
Festival organiser Emily Eavis said: "We are thrilled that, together, we'll be able to prevent over a million single-use plastic bottles from being used at this year's festival. I really hope that everyone - from ticket-holder to headliner - will leave Worthy Farm this year knowing that even small, everyday changes can make a real difference.”
In Technicolour - Sheridan Smith will play the narrator in the forthcoming West End revival of Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat. Smith is the first lead cast member announced for the production, which begins performances at the London Palladium in June. Andrew Lloyd Webber and Tim Rice’s musical will be directed by Laurence Connor, with choreography by JoAnn M Hunter. Design is by Morgan Large, lighting by Ben Cracknell and sound by Gareth Owen.
(Jim Evans)
5 March 2019

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