Festival Fresco is the creation of violinist Vanessa White and composer Natasha Sofla. Passionate about chamber music, and concerned that it is under-represented online, we decided to do something about it. We’re setting up an annual festival and a year-round website offering workshops, discussion groups, mini-concerts and a whole range of facilities specifically for chamber musicians.
The pandemic has been really hard on musicians. Being able to earn almost nothing from your chosen profession is a tough call, and many young musicians are giving up in despair, or coming to believe they’ll never make it. But that’s not the whole story. Musicians have dedicated their lives to an artform they feel passionate about: paid or not, not being able to share your love through performance has a devastating impact.
This year, 6 high-quality concerts will be streamed ‘as live’ over the weekend of 11-13 June, and will then remain available online. Each will feature our Fresco Musicians – a group of 12 young professionals committed to chamber music working together in different groupings to explore a wide range of exciting repertoire. There will also be outreach events – workshops, masterclasses, discussion groups and opportunities for amateur musicians to perform in a virtual orchestra led by our young professionals.
Alongside the Festival, we’re launching a new online platform as a resource for chamber musicians, both professional and amateur. Starting on 1 April 2021, the Fresco Musicians YouTube channel will host a regular series of vlogs and curated discussion groups on chamber music topics - how to rehearse effectively, how to select repertoire, how to track down opportunities, how to attract funding, etc – which will build over time into a really extensive library of resources on the topic.
Why do we need your support?
We are currently running on a shoestring. We badly need funds to pay our musicians properly, to promote our operations more effectively, to commission new work, to pay for performance rights for more contemporary music, to hire performance spaces, and for many other basic needs. We are a non-profit organisation, with an application pending for charitable status. If you would like to make a donation, please click the 'donate' button above. Even a small amount will go a long way towards helping us achieve our goals, support our musicians, and grow and develop into the future. Thank you.