Barts Heritage is delighted to announce a new partnership with the City Music Foundation. This collaboration will bring will bring exceptional, wide ranging music to the historic heart of St Bartholomew’s Hospital with regular, free performances in the Great Hall throughout 2021. This programme aims to draw lovers of music and architecture, of history and medicine, and all those seeking the companionship and solace of shared musical experience to one of the most important and ancient institutions in the City of London.
The City Music Foundation (CMF) is a charity that was founded in 2012 and its mission is ‘turning talent into success’. It was conceived, gestated, born and has grown up in the City, and has it’s headquarters currently in Church House, Cloth Fair. Each year CMF takes a cohort of exceptional, accomplished, emerging musicians and they join the CMF Artist Programme – career development and management – for about two years starting in the autumn each year.
CMF arranges mentoring, runs workshops, does agency and management, makes CDs, videos and websites, commissions new music, secures airtime on BBC Radio 3 and promotes artist through online, print and social media, as well as putting on recitals and concerts. CMF alumni speak of the many ways CMF has helped them during the very fragile early stages of their professional careers – careers which have become even more fragile since the devastation of the performing arts by restrictions due to Covid-19.
Since lockdown CMF has delivered workshops online, set up a hardship fund and developed expertise in live-streaming recitals. CMF is now aiming, while mainstream commercial promoters are struggling to be financially viable because of restrictions on audience numbers, to increase the number of concerts and recitals it curates ‘in house’, as a way of supporting both the performers, and the audiences who thrive on live music.
Dr Clare Taylor, managing director of City Music Foundation says:
It’s hard to put into words exactly what this collaboration means to me and to CMF. I trained as a doctor at Barts in the 1980s, living in Charterhouse Square, and I did my medical house job in Annie Zunz and Dalziel wards in the KGV wing. Always a dedicated musician in my spare time, I continued to sing, including in the choir at Barts the Great, for many years. In 2012 I ceased medical work to support my husband in his City role, and soon after began a second career running CMF. The role of music in health and well-being is well established. This is a unique opportunity to bring CMF musicians to experience this and share their music with Barts as it approaches its 900 year anniversary, and to support Barts Heritage as they preserve and promote these magnificent buildings.
Will Palin, CEO of Barts Heritage says:
We are thrilled to be working with the City Music Foundation to bring the very best of live music to the heart of this beautiful site. We look forward to hosting monthly free concerts in the Great Hall throughout 2021 and to working with the Foundation on pioneering projects exploring the ways in which music can contribute to the wellbeing of staff, patients and other visitors to the Hospital – ahead of our major restoration project.
Photo: Emile Holba