Cross-arts: January 2012 monthly round-up
For issue: 30 November 2011

January 2012 marks the start to a bumper New Year, and there is much to look forward to. We have some newly-confirmed artists in our Spring 2012 contemporary music season, and the Mariinsky Theatre Orchestra & Chorus have now announced an extra date in the Barbican Hall. Barbican Art Gallery’s OMA/Progress Talks and Events programme continues throughout the festive season, while in the Cinema we have the Met Opera Live’s The Enchanted Island and a series of two-reeler shorts with silent era comedian Charley Chase. Hofesh Shechter and artist Antony Gormley collaborate with Survivor in the Barbican Theatre, and the London International Mime Festival bring three shows in their annual January slot.

January 2012 guide
The January events guide is available to download as a PDF here .


Further artists announced for our Spring 2012 contemporary music season
The next round of artists and concerts coming up include the return of Nashville-based music pioneers Lambchop; an exciting collaboration from The Mountain Goats and legendary vocal quartet Anonymous 4; the Portico Quartet stepping out with their third, self-titled album; and Krzysztof Penderecki conducting the AUKSO Tychy Chamber Orchestra presenting a selection of his own repertoire and music by Jonny Greenwood. Urban music artists Ms Dynamite , Fazer, Devlin and Skepta have been confirmed to join the line-up for Urban Classic, a collaboration with BBC Symphony Orchestra, which forms part of the BBC’s Music Nation weekend. The La Linea festival returns to London and events at the Barbican feature concerts by Madredeus, onstage again after a six-year sabbatical, and the mighty Afro Cuban All Stars with their leader Juan de Marcos Gonzalez, who return to London after seven years. FatCat label mates Hauschka, Jóhann Jóhannsson and Dustin O’Halloran feature in a special triple-bill where post-classical, electronica, ambient and song meet.
Read the full announcement

Mariinsky Theatre Orchestra & Chorus / Gergiev – Verdi: Requiem
Extra date of UK tour announced: 4 April 2012
3 April / Barbican Hall / 5pm
4 April / Barbican Hall / 7:30pm
Valery Gergiev’s relationship with the St Petersburg-based Mariinsky musicians has been a profoundly important part of his career for more than three decades and their UK tour in 2012 further celebrates this rapport. Now, in addition to the much-anticipated performance of Wagner’s Parsifal on 3 April, the Barbican announces an extra concert the following day: Verdi’s Requiem on 4 April. Joining Gergiev and the Mariinsky Theatre Orchestra & Chorus for this masterpiece are Victoria Yastrebova, Olga Borodina, Sergei Semishkur and Ildar Abdrazakov.
Read further details on the 3 April and 4 April concerts

English-language Oratorios
January – April 2012 / Barbican Hall / 7:30pm
Continuing the Barbican’s series of English-language oratorios, Paul McCreesh and the Gabrieli Consort & Players launch the Gabrieli’s 30th anniversary year with a performance of Haydn’s culminating masterpiece The Seasons, on 14 January. There will be another opportunity to explore the music of one of the greatest musical innovators on 12 January, when the world premiere of Phil Grabsky’s film In Search of Haydn is screened in the Barbican Hall. The Endellion String Quartet also performs Haydn’s Op 76/1 live before the film.
Find out more about Paul McCreesh and the Gabrieli Consort & Players’ concert and In Search of Haydn

Awakenings: A Kronos Quartet Residency
January 2012 / See for venues and times
For more than 30 years, the Kronos Quartet has pursued a singular artistic vision, combining a spirit of fearless exploration with a commitment to expanding the range and context of the string quartet. Paying no heed to boundaries placed between genres, the group’s collaborations range from a Chinese pipa player, to rock bands and DJs – as well as some of the most significant classical composers and artists working today. In the process, they have become one of the most celebrated and influential contemporary ensembles of our time. In January 2012 the Quartet comes to the Barbican for a week-long residency of concerts and creative learning events. Each of the three concerts between January 24-27 takes place in a different venue and focuses on a specific theme: Made in America; Awakening: A Musical Meditation on the Anniversary of 9/11; and Early Music.

Present Voices & BBC Total Immersion – Jonathan Harvey
28-29 January 2012 / See our website for venues and times
The Barbican’s biennial series of new opera – Present Voices – features two UK premieres and one European premiere in 2012. Present Voices begins with the long-awaited UK premiere of Jonathan Harvey’s third opera Wagner Dream ( 29 January ), presented by the BBC Symphony Orchestra and the Barbican. First performed in 2007, the work is set in the final moments of Wagner’s life. Complementing the presentation of Wagner Dream, the first of the BBC Symphony Orchestra’s Total Immersion days in 2012 is dedicated to Jonathan Harvey on 28 January.
Read more on Total Immersion: Jonathan Harvey

Present Voices continues on 26 April 2012 with the European premiere of Gerald Barry’s The Importance of Being Earnest by the Birmingham Contemporary Music Group, conducted by Thomas Adès and the first UK performances of Philip GlassEinstein on the Beach in the Barbican Theatre from 4-13 May 2012.
Find out more about Present Voices

The music of Thomas Adès also features throughout 2012, beginning with two London Symphony Orchestra concerts in January. On 10 January the LSO, conducted by Antonio Pappano will perform dances from his chamber opera Powder Her Face and on 15 January, Adès himself conducts the LSO in a performance of his own In Seven Days for piano and orchestra (performed by Nicolas Hodges), and the orchestral work Tevot. Further features include the UK premiere of Polaris on 17 February with the New York Philharmonic and Alan Gilbert.
Read further details on the LSO conducted by Antonio Pappano, the LSO conducted by Thomas Adès, and the New York Philharmonic conducted by Alan Gilbert.


OMA/Progress Events Programme
December 2011 & January 2012 / See for venues and times

Questions of progress within architecture and society will be debated within the Talks and Events programme throughout the run of the OMA/Progress exhibition at Barbican Art Gallery. Events during December and January include panelists who are associates and collaborators of OMA, plus invited experts, including: Theodore Zeldin, historian and philosopher; Reiner de Graaf, OMA; Bas Princen, photographer; Paul Finch, Design Council; John-Paul Flintoff, School of Life; and Alistair Guthrie, Arup.

OMA/progress is the first major UK presentation of the work of OMA, co-founded by Rem Koolhaas in 1975, which delves into the inner workings of one of the most influential architecture practices working today.

Weekly highlight events include:

Architecture, Photography, Landscape, Image
1 December / Barbican Art Gallery / 7:30pm
Dutch photographer Bas Princen talks with independent curator Elias Redstone about how architecture is communicated. Princen is known for capturing contemporary transformations of the urban landscape, using photography to research, document and critique the built environment.

Salon: All Bricked Up and Nowhere to Go
8 December / Barbican Art Gallery / 7-10pm
Admission free
Assemble CIC, the emergent talent behind this summer’s hit Folly for a Flyover, a pop-up cinema built under the A12 flyover, spend a constructive evening building model structures and arguing about building.

OMA in Conversation: On London
8 December / Cinema 2 / 7:30pm
Director of AMO and partner in charge of several projects in London (as well as Russia and Europe), Reinier de Graaf talks with architectural writer and Deputy Chair of the Design Council, Paul Finch, about the extreme difficulties of building in the capital.

Conversations on Progress
15 December / Barbican Art Gallery / 7:30pm
Have you ever thought that there could be more to your conversational life? Historian and philosopher Theodore Zeldin hosts an evening of conversations on progress. Participate in stimulating interactions with people you have never met, and be inspired and provoked. Zeldin is author of An Intimate History of Humanity and President of The Oxford Muse.

Making Progress in 2012
12 January / Barbican Art Gallery / 7:30pm
January is a time for reflection and resolution. How can we transform good intentions into lasting change, and realise goals that actually allow us to live more fulfilling lives? The School of Life Faculty Member John-Paul Flintoff takes advice from great thinkers and doers throughout history to explore our own potential for progress.

Efficiency and Elegance in Building Design
19 January / Barbican Art Gallery / 7:30pm
Explore the benefits and impact of sustainable building design with Alistair Guthrie, global sustainable buildings leader of the engineering company Arup, in which he shares the stories behind buildings of the past and the future.

OMA in Conversation: On Bank
26 January / Cinema 2 / 7:30pm
OMA partner Ellen van Loon discusses the design and construction of the new Rothschild Bank headquarters, OMA’s first completed building in London.
For full listings, see our Talks & Events press release

Next exhibition in The Curve – Song Dong: Waste Not
15 February – 12 June 2012
Admission free
This is the first solo exhibition in the UK by the Chinese artist, Song Dong. For The Curve, the artist is creating an installation, entitled Waste Not, comprising over 10,000 items collected by Song Dong’s mother over five decades. Ranging from a section of the house to metal pots and plastic bowls to blankets, bottle caps, toothpaste tubes and toys, the installation is a personal meditation on family and the artist’s own childhood during the Cultural Revolution. The activity of saving and reusing things is in keeping with the Communist adage wu jin qu yong – ‘waste not’ – a prerequisite for survival during periods of social and political turmoil.


12-14 January / Barbican Theatre / 7:45, 3pm
The season commences with a unique collaboration between two artists at the top of their game – Hofesh Shechter and Antony Gormley. Survivor has at its centre an original score by Shechter, set within a visual landscape by Gormley. For the first time Shechter focuses his creative energy on the music and its performance with a 30-strong live band, 200 drummers and 5 male performers inhabiting the Barbican stage (press night 12 January).
Read the full press release

London International Mime Festival
18-28 January / Barbican Theatre, The Pit / 7:45pm
London International Mime Festival bring three shows to the Barbican in their annual January slot. Cie L’Immédiat / Camille Boitel present L’Immédiat – sixty minutes of beautifully orchestrated circus-theatre chaos in the Barbican Theatre (18 – 21 January, press night 18 January). Theatre Ad Infinitum bring their award-winning Edinburgh hit Translunar Paradise to the Pit (17 – 21 January, press night 17 January). Using live accordion accompaniment, Translunar Paradise is an exquisite piece of mask and movement theatre. Fleur Elise Noble creates a richly imagined parallel world in 2 Dimensional Life of Her – an award-winning visual performance installation, set in an artist’s studio (24 – 28 January, press night 24 January).


Met Opera Live – The Enchanted Island
21 January / Cinema 1 / 6pm
During January, the Barbican hosts one of the New York Met’s award-winning series of live, high-definition performance transmissions: The Enchanted Island. Inspired by the musical pastiches and masques of the 18th century, the Met presents an original Baroque fantasy, featuring a who’s who of Baroque stars led by eminent conductor William Christie. With music by Handel, Vivaldi, Rameau, and others, the new libretto by Jeremy Sams combines elements of The Tempest and A Midsummer Night’s Dream .

David Daniels is Prospero, Joyce DiDonato is Sycorax, Danielle de Niese is Ariel, Luca Pisaroni is Caliban, and Plácido Domingo makes a special appearance as Neptune. Lisette Oropesa and Anthony Roth Costanzo also star.

This dazzling production is directed and designed by Phelim McDermott and Julian Crouch (Satyagraha and the Met’s 125th Anniversary Gala).

Silent Film & Live Music Series: Charley Chase – Crazy Like a Fox + His Wooden Wedding (1925) + Mighty Like A Moose (1926 ) (U*) (US, 1925-26, Dir Leo McCarthy, 90min) - With live piano accompaniment by John Sweeney
22 January / Cinema 1 / 4pm
In a series of two-reeler shorts made with legendary producer Hal Roach, Charley Chase established himself alongside Buster Keaton, Charlie Chaplin and Harold Lloyd as one of the funniest comedians of the silent era. He elevated comedy to an art form with his unique combination of madcap adventures and wild misunderstandings. Known as the master of 'the comedy of embarrassment', Charlie Chase's nonchalant mannerisms, as well as his good looks, made him one of the most seductive silent-comedy heroes of the 20s.
Read the Barbican Film January 2012 highlights


Notes to Editors

Contact details
For further information or images contact Lorna Gemmell +44 207 382 7147,

Barbican newsroom
All Barbican Centre press releases, news announcements and the Media Relations team’s contact details are listed on our website at

About the Barbican
The Barbican Centre is one of the world's leading arts centres, founded and run by the City of London Corporation. It encompasses dance, film, music, theatre, visual arts and creative learning who work together in creating the model of tomorrow's international arts and learning centre. Committed to providing a world-class programme, which inspires, challenges and amazes its audiences, the Barbican is also home to Resident Orchestra, London Symphony Orchestra, Associate Orchestra, BBC Symphony Orchestra and Associate Producer Serious. Its Artistic Associates include Boy Blue Entertainment, Cheek by Jowl, Deborah Warner, Fabulous Beast Dance Theatre and Michael Clark Company. International Associates are Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra of Amsterdam, New York Philharmonic, Los Angeles Philharmonic, Leipzig Gewandhaus Orchestra and Jazz at Lincoln Center. The architecturally renowned Centre, now Grade II listed, opened in 1982, and comprises the 1,949 seat Barbican Hall, the 1,166-seat Barbican Theatre, the Pit theatre, a 286 seat cinema, the Barbican Art Gallery, a second gallery The Curve, foyers and public spaces, a library, Lakeside Terrace, roof-top tropical conservatory, conference facilities and three restaurants.
For more information visit