Saffron Hall and Britten Sinfonia announce new partnership as the ensemble becomes Resident Orchestra from 2016-17 season

17 November 2015

Britten Sinfonia finishing a piece during a concert on stage.

Saffron Hall and Britten Sinfonia today announce a dynamic new partnership which sees Britten Sinfonia become Saffron Hall’s Resident Orchestra from the 16-17 season. This cements a strong relationship that began at the venue’s opening concert in 2013 and has continued with hugely successful concerts for both adult and family audiences.

Both organisations share a passionate commitment to engaging audiences in long-term musical journeys. This openness to challenge presumptions about the role of a venue or a performing ensemble is at the heart of a partnership that will offer a range of extraordinary events.

Each season Britten Sinfonia will deliver a series of artistically outstanding and musically diverse concerts. Both organisations already offer extensive learning and participation programmes. The combined power of these ambitions will result in a truly immersive and sustained programme of music education and participatory activities for both secondary and primary schools and wider communities across the region.

Built in the grounds of Saffron Walden County High School, Saffron Hall has presented two seasons of world-class international concerts with some of the greatest international artists and orchestras as well as establishing itself as a leader in music education, becoming a trail-blazing model of state school and community music provision, inspiring through music and the arts.

Angela Dixon, Saffron Hall Chief Executive, comments:

“Saffron Hall is committed to changing the normal practices of a venue by developing a fully integrated concert series and learning programme that will reshape the way audiences and communities engage with us. With such great ambition it is absolutely vital that we collaborate with the right partners and we are therefore extremely excited that Britten Sinfonia, one of the most forward-thinking and creatively adventurous ensembles in the country, will be resident here.”

David Butcher, Britten Sinfonia Chief Executive, comments:

“We are delighted to have this very rare opportunity to build a residency from scratch. The joy of a new venue, is that it gives us the scope to think afresh about what a residency means. We are hugely excited about the plans we are developing with Angela Dixon and her team and to becoming a key part of one of the best things to have happened to music in the UK for a very long time.”

The residency, which begins in October 2016, consolidates Britten Sinfonia’s strong links with the East of England and will sit alongside the orchestra’s residencies in Norwich and at the University of Cambridge, and as an Associate Ensemble at the Barbican.

Further press information from:

Sim Eldem at Albion Media 020 3077 4945 /

About Britten Sinfonia

Britten Sinfonia is one of the world’s most celebrated and pioneering ensembles, renowned for the quality of its performances and an intelligent approach to concert programming that is centred on the development of its players. Unusually it does not have a principal conductor or director but chooses to collaborate with a range of the finest international guest artists from across the musical spectrum as suited to each particular project.

Founded in 1992, the orchestra is inspired by the ethos of Benjamin Britten through worldclass performances of the highest quality, illuminating and distinctive programmes where the old meets the new, and projects in the local community as well as in the world’s finest halls. Britten Sinfonia is Associate Ensemble at London’s Barbican Centre, is Cambridge University’s Orchestra-in Residence and resident in Norwich, and makes regular guest appearances at UK festivals including the BBC Proms. Its blossoming international profile has recently included acclaimed tours to India and North and South America. Britten Sinfonia is a BBC Radio 3 broadcast partner, and records regularly for Harmonia Mundi and Hyperion.