Rhinegold Photo credit: BBC
Thomas Dausgaard and the BBC SSO

Katy Wright

Deputy Editor, Classical Music

Glasgow arts institutions collaborate on performance and exhibition

11:54, 30th January 2018

The Royal Conservatoire of Scotland, the Glasgow School of Art, the University of Glasgow and the BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra are to collaborate on a large-scale performance event and exhibition at Tramway, Glasgow in March 2018.

Last Futures will explore the socio-political movements of 1968 through music, performance, visual arts and design, reflecting on their relevance to contemporary society and proposing visions of alternate futures.

The multi-arts experience will open on 17 March (exhibition only), with the opening night for the performance and exhibition the following night; it will run until 25 March, bringing together hundreds of artists, academics, curators, performers, writers, musicians and designers. Four composition students from the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland will write new works for the occasion; their pieces will be performed by Royal Conservatoire musicians and members of the BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra.

The performance element of Last Futures will explore ‘radical visions of the future’, by combining music, design, drama and text in a contemporary version of the experimental creative methodologies that emerged in the late 1960s. The exhibition will present critiques of the proposed futures of 50 years ago and imagine alternative versions of the future. A programme of curated live events, including talks, screenings, music and performances, will take place within the exhibition space.

This is the third collaboration between the institutions: in 2016, New Dreams celebrated the 400th anniversary of Shakespeare’s death with music, drama, dance and visual art inspired by themes in A Midsummer Night’s Dream, and in 2013, MONAD, supported by Scottish Ballet, commemorated the centenary of Stravinsky’s The Rite of Spring.

The students leading the project are Josh Armstrong, a lecturer and graduate of the contemporary performance practice programme at the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland; Becky Sik, a lecturer in sculpture and environmental art at the Glasgow School of Art, and Sukaina Kubba, a lecturer in the School of Fine Art at the Glasgow School of Art.

Professor Jeffrey Sharkey, Principal of the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland, said: ‘When creative and artistic minds come together, magic happens, so we’re excited about the opportunity Last Futures presents to harness the collective force of these dynamic artists, academics and performers to create an ambitious, exciting and thought-provoking experience for audiences in Glasgow and Scotland.’

Dominic Parker, director of BBC SSO, said: ‘Together with the other organisations involved in this project we want to provoke and support the next generation of creative talent. There is a fantastic spirit of openness and collaboration between us, and we hope to give the students a space to explore their own creative responses. We are really looking forward to working alongside the students and seeing where their ideas lead.’

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