Music to my Ears: Conductor Nicholas Collon
Founder and conductor of the groundbreaking Aurora Orchestra, Nicholas Collon explores the music that has inspired him over the years, from the Bach piano pieces he learnt as a child to glorious moments of English choral music
BBC Music Magazine speaks to the English conductor Nicholas Collon, founder of the groundbreaking Aurora Orchestra, about his musical loves, from the Bach piano pieces he learnt as a child to chamber masterpieces by Mendelssohn and haunting English choral works.
Nicholas Collon’s musical upbringing was wonderfully varied, including a spell as a viola player in the National Youth Orchestra before a scholarship to Cambridge University saw him hone his skills in the organ loft at Clare College. At Cambridge, he met Robin Ticciati, with whom he would go on to set up the London-based Aurora Orchestra in 2004. The orchestra has gone on to win huge acclaim for its inventive approach and livewire performances, both in concert and on disc. Its performance of Berlioz’s Symphonie Fantastique at the BBC Proms, played entirely from memory, was undoubtedly one of the highlights of the 2019 season.
Nicholas talked to BBC Music Magazine’s deputy editor Jeremy Pound over Zoom in the midst of lockdown and shortly after the Aurora Orchestra had released Music of the Spheres, its new disc of works by Mozart, Dowland, Thomas Adès, Max Richter and David Bowie.
How to download the Music to my Ears podcast
Download this episode as an mp3
Click here to open the mp3 player.
Click on the three little dots to the right of the player and click 'Download'.
Right click (or control click on Mac computers) on the player and select 'Save Audio As...'. Occasionally, on Safari it may ask you to select 'Download video'. If this is the case, select 'Download video' and it will download as an audio file (mp3) as normal.
Listen to Nicholas's musical choices here: