How do you inspire the next musical minds during a pandemic

How do you inspire the next musical minds during a pandemic that has prevented live music?  Central Bedfordshire’s Inspiring Music & the Bath Phil have the answer: Orchestras in Context, a new digital resource for the classroom and home.

The pandemic has made it near-impossible for music students to experience live classical concerts, which are vital for their development.

So that A/AS Level students don’t miss out on live concerts, Inspiring Music commissioned Bath Phil to bring to life the great musical minds from the 20th and 21st centuries. All performances will be available to stream at home or in classrooms.

Recorded live by professional musicians and a socially distanced chamber orchestra, Orchestras in Context: The Set Works Sessions are a set of three online broadcasts and accompanying lesson plans. These online sessions provide an in-depth, user-friendly contextualisation of them - against wider orchestral listening examples.

The three performances¹ include excerpts from:
  • An English Sound (the New & the Old): Ralph Vaughan Williams, On Wenlock Edge
  • A Myriad of French Colours & Timbres: Debussy, Estampes
  • Flowers, Forests, Dreams & Cellos: Saariaho, Petals
Charlotte Payne, Music Director, Inspiring Music says “This is a great opportunity to be able to work with professionals to create a resource that will be so useful to students, particularly when they haven’t been able to hear live music for such a long time.”

Jason Thornton, Music Director of Bath Philharmonia comments: ‘We want to bring the music to life so that students can understand it from the inside out. Students will be able to watch our musicians perform and enthusiastically discuss the music and the context in which it was written.”
Orchestras in Context² will be released nationally on the 19th of April. You can find out more about the resources and purchase licenses via

¹ The performances, along with teaching aids, will be released online from the 19th of April. They are available to schools and music hubs both across our region (Central Bedfordshire) and nationally

**The online performances and resources are available for a license fee. Performances and recording were done so adhering to the coronavirus restrictions and safety measures at the time.

² Orchestras in Context has been commissioned and funded by Inspiring Music, performed by the Bath Phil and recorded at The Grove Dunstable Theatre.