Job’s worth it for Joshua Bell

The US violinist has renewed as music director of the Academy of St Martin in the Fields until 2023.

It’s essentially a touring post. Neville Marriner’s ensemble has all but lost its London profile.


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  • Maintaining a London profile is amazingly expensive and loss-making. ASMF haven’t so much lost it as deliberately moved away from splurging cash on vanity concerts in London, preferring to concentrate on excellent musical projects for promoters and audiences who want them, providing good, coherent project-based work for players. That’s quite sensible!

  • Well, I’m glad they don’t stay in London all the time. They even come to Birmingham! And with JB leading from the front desk, their performances are electrifying, and music heard many times before sounds new and fresh.

  • Huh. I always thought the ASMF was mostly a recording-and-touring ensemble. Didn’t know they ever had a big London residency. (But who provides music for the church nowadays?)

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