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Barbican announces plans to livestream concerts from the Barbican Hall

Photo of multicoloured seats in the Barbican Hall

The Barbican today announced that, despite a cancelled concert season in the autumn, live music will return to the Centre after the summer – but in a different form.

The ongoing situation with COVID-19 and the current Government guidelines mean that the Barbican and its partners have had to cancel all planned autumn 2020 concerts, ranging from 1 September to 14 December.

During its temporary closure, the Barbican has increased its digital content offer, attracting a growing number of new visitors to its Read, Watch, Listen section. This section features a curated mix of playlists, weekly podcasts, films, videos, talks and articles that have enabled audiences to continue to enjoy the Centre’s international programme.

Now the Barbican’s digital offer is taking a significant new step forward in the form of concerts that will be streamed live from the Barbican Hall. From October to December, a newly programmed series of concerts will take place in the Hall and be streamed on a pay-per-view basis. The new livestreamed concert programme will feature the Centre’s resident and associate orchestras as well as a hand-picked line-up of artists. Depending on the Government’s advice at the time, the Barbican will bring reduced live audiences back to the Barbican Hall for some of these events, once it is safe and permitted to do so.

Huw Humphreys, Barbican’s Head of Music says:

It has been heart-breaking for us to have to cancel our planned autumn concerts, something we were so looking forward to presenting with our partners, and for our audiences. But at the same time, it’s reassuring to be able to say that live music will return to the Barbican this autumn – just not in the same way as we had planned. Instead, we will present a series of one-act concerts which represent the full spectrum of the Barbican’s music offer across classical, jazz, folk, electronica and more, devised with artists with whom we have a close relationship. Plans are still under development, but the programme will feature performances from our family of orchestras: our resident London Symphony Orchestra with Sir Simon Rattle, our associate BBC Symphony Orchestra with Sakari Oramo, and our associate ensemble Britten Sinfonia. We will mark the EFG London Jazz Festival with performances in collaboration with our associate producer Serious, and feature an eclectic range of other artists who will be announced nearer the time. This autumn concert series aims to support artists and our partners in the music industry, while making sure we’re able to welcome audiences – first digitally and we hope eventually physically – back to the Hall.

Artists, schedules and details of the autumn concert series will be announced nearer the time. All concerts will be subject to Government guidance at the time.

Everyone who has booked a ticket for the cancelled autumn concerts is eligible for a full refund or ticket credit and will also be able to convert their ticket to a donation. To support the Barbican in reopening and offering the widest possible audience access to culture and creativity, donations can be made at  Audiences are also being asked to consider donating to the Centre’s Resident and Associate companies to support them through these difficult times.