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Project information

Creation of a Welsh National Chamber Orchestra

There isn’t one in Wales, and there ought to be. It will be able to bear comparison with the best national and European chamber orchestras (15 to 35 players). The second season is continuing to develop new, and unfamiliar, repertoire, touring and education for the whole of Wales.

five years

Charity information: The Welsh Sinfonia

The Welsh Sinfonia logo
  • Need


    Chamber orchestral music is under-performed and under-appreciated in Wales, because no other professional Welsh orchestra is focusing exclusively on this particular area of classical orchestral music throughout Wales. There has been no national professional champion to bring it to new audiences, and the repertoire is even relatively unfamiliar to professional players, especially the work of notable Welsh composers of the 20th and 21st centuries. It is specialised, and needs particular skills.


    The development of The Welsh Sinfonia into a national chamber orchestra with expert status in this particular kind of music making will fill an empty niche, and focus the attention of audiences on this kind of music. We will use the annual series of chamber orchestral concerts in Cardiff to reveal and broaden the repertoire, through performance and commissions, and as a basis for education and concerts throughout Wales, working with emerging Welsh musicians to create a firm basis for the future

  • Aims

    Aim 1

    Continue the development of the orchestra through extended rehearsal schedules and performances


    » A second series of four chamber orchestral concerts in Cardiff, exploring unfamiliar repertoire, under-appreciated composers and unique interpretation

    What success will look like

    Success will be in being able to programme at least one full extra rehearsal per concert programme though the season, and in the cirtical feedback of reviewers and our peers

    Aim 2

    Broaden the appreciation and raise the profile of chamber orchestral music


    » Take tailor-made programmes of familiar and unfamiliar repertoire to smaller venues throughout Wales, linking them with workshops a mentoring.

    What success will look like

    Success will be an annual 10% increase in core audience and supporters in Cardiff and six invitations a year to perform in a variety of venues and Festival throughout Wales

    Aim 3

    We will expand the chamber orchestral repertoire, a contribution to its further development in Wales


    » We will commission a work for chamber orchestra from the best established or emerging Welsh composers every year, and promote its future performance

    What success will look like

    Success will be an annual commission of a chamber orchestral work from a Welsh composer as part of the Concert Series, and one further performance per year by ourselves or others

  • Impact


    The Welsh Sinfonia will become recognised as an expert, innovative and dedicated exponent of the chamber orchestral genre, and as the foremost performer of this kind of music in Wales. Audiences for classical orchestral music will increase, as will an appetite for more unfamiliar works. Measures of success in the face of public sector cuts will be the demonstrable interest and support of the private sector; a burgeoning Friends scheme and mailing list; invitations to record our repertoire


    Competition from other classical music events and orchestras: we are carving out a unique identity with a distinctive offering.
    Loss of public sector funding though budget cuts: 90% of our income currently is from private sector sources, and we are well placed to benefit from increased private philanthropy.
    Weakness of internal infrastructure to deliver the outcomes; we have a graduate intern, active management from the Board, and will apply for project management support from grant bodies


    We have an occasional newsletter for Friends and players which will be expanded and contain appropriate content for donors. We seek to develop a personal relationship with every major donor which will allow for genuine two way conversations about specific project/donor subjects.

  • Budget

    Budget - Project Cost: £200,000

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      Amount Heading Description
      £80,000 series concerts 4 chamber orchestral concerts in Cardiff every year for 5 years
      £50,000 touring 6 concerts outside Cardiff every year for 5 years
      £25,000 workshops associated workshops and education projects
      £17,500 commissions one new work from a Welsh composer every year
      £27,500 management marketing, orchestral management and admin over 5 years
  • Background


    The orchestra is based in Cardiff, and is in negotiation with the Royal Welsh College of Music and Drama to become the 'orchestra in residence' at their new auditorium. Outisde the series, the orchestra will tour smaller venues throughout Wales, using schools, theatres, churches, community centres and arts centres for concerts and associated education projects.


    There is no Welsh National Chamber Orchestra, so that this area of classical music is under-performed at the top level, and under-appreciated generally in Wales. The creation of a genuinely national chamber orchestra which educates and commissions while employing Welsh musicians and offering stimulating top quality concerts will benefit all music loving people and under-write the future of chamber orchestral music in Wales, while further raising the status of Wales as an artistic force.

  • Why Us?

    Why Us?

    The Welsh Sinfonia is the only fully professional chamber orchestra in Wales which is focused solely on the chamber orchestral repertoire, and which tours throughout Wales rather than just around its home patch. The Artistic Director is knowledgeable and passionate about the repertoire; the players are skilled and fully behind the project; management is already engaged in the education process which will create an environment for the orchestra and repertoire to flourish.

    Read more about the Charity running this project.


    Mark Eager

    Artistic Director and Principal Conductor. He chooses the programmes, is forging a unique identity through extended rehearsal and drives standards up

    Carl Grainger

    Chairman of Trustees, Financial Manager and occasional harpsichordist. He oversees budgets and delivery and contributes to repertoire choices.

    Robin Stowell

    Leader of the orchestra. As a hugely respected violinist , Trustee and Leader he is the bridge between the conductor and the players.

    Anne Curtis

    Marketing and Development Manager, plans and delivers PR and marketing, sponsorship and forges relationships with corporate and individual donors.

Animal Magic

Animal Magic


will pay one player for one concert and workshop

The Welsh Sinfonia's work is both valuable in the contribution it makes to the wider musical life of the community and of genuine intrinsic quality

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