“It’s a very exciting time to be creative in Southampton!”
són talk to the people behind “playlist”…
…a new musical voice in town

Here at són we know just how tricky it can be to launch a brand new musical venture. After all, we’re fledglings ourselves and despite our early success and new season launching soon, we know all about the hurdles that face a new arts organisation – no matter how small. So when our friends at brand new PLAYLIST told us about their fascinating project, we were all ears and keen to spread the word – not least because selected són players are amongst their ranks, too.

Southampton is expanding – culturally, artistically and musically. And PLAYLIST is a breath of fresh air on the scene, just like són. As arts organisations, our aims and approaches are similar. So it seems highly appropriate that we offer Playlist a voice here on the blog to share their story.

We talked to PLAYLIST’s Anna Durance – oboist and a member of the són woodwind section – to tell us more about their plans including their opening event next week.

Tell us more about PLAYLIST and why you’ve created it

PLAYLIST is a brand new night for Southampton, launching at God’s House Tower on Tuesday 11th October. Curated by a small team of Southampton-based professional musicians, PLAYLIST features high quality music in amazing and unusual spaces.

We like the idea of taking music out of the concert hall and bringing like-minded people together, making live music relevant for more people and celebrating local talent – as well as inviting guests from further afield to perform in some of the incredible spaces that Southampton has to offer.

When are your first PLAYLIST events and what we will hear?

On Tuesday 11th October at God’s House Tower, you will hear Nicola Heinrich playing Suite for Solo Cello by Gaspar Cassado, a set from Tenderlore and headline act Elizabeth Kenny (photographed below) who includes a piece by Southampton-based composer and Playlister, Benjamin Oliver.

On Tuesday 29th November at The Butcher’s Hook Alehouse, Alison Hughes will be playing a solo clarinet set to include Stravinsky’s Three Pieces, The Manusa Project will play a gypsy swing set and Olivia Jageurs will introduce us to her 15 second harp project.

All tickets available here

Tell us about the team behind PLAYLIST

Our little team consists of Anna Durance, Dan Mar-Molinero, Neil Valentine, Alison Hughes and Benjamin Oliver. We are all Southampton/Hampshire-based musicians, excited to be working together for PLAYLIST, as we all feel passionate about bringing this new night to Southampton.

Why Southampton?

When I first moved here only two years ago I heard that Southampton was a cultural desert. This is simply not true! Part of what we are doing with PLAYLIST is showing off some of the talent that gets overlooked here and hunting out special and intimate venues that people may not necessarily know about.

What about the venues you’ve been choosing so far? Why are they so distinctive?

We are so excited about both venues that we have lined up this Autumn. They each conjure up a wonderful atmosphere even when empty, so throwing in some live music will be really exciting.

God’s House Tower is a 700 year old Grade II listed building with an amazing history. It is not currently open to the public (apart from for a few events such as our PLAYLIST launch and the British Art Show 8 events) so it is a really exciting time to see the venue, ahead of the work they are doing with a-space to open as an arts centre soon.

The Butcher’s Hook Alehouse (photographed below) is a tiny micro-pub on Bitterne Park Triangle. We can squeeze about 30 people in at a push, which makes for a very cosy and intimate setting with fabulous beers available too!

As you’re aware, són is the new orchestra in town – are you keen to collaborate on projects in future?

Absolutely! són are already doing fantastic things around the city and we would love to collaborate at some point. One idea we have is to put on a PLAYLIST: són soloists in some kind of quirky venue. When you start digging around there are all sorts of interesting spaces which could work for this, from underground vaults and old ruins to bars, pubs and cafes. It’s a very exciting time to be creative in Southampton!

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