Lancashire’s only professional chamber orchestra, the Lancashire Sinfonietta, has announced that it is to close after seventeen years of recording and performance.
It is filled with many local musicians and acts as the orchestra in residence at Lancaster University, where it established the Young Composer of the North West Competition. This programme will be taken over by the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Society.
Chairman of the orchestra, Malcolm Brown, describes the news as being ‘a huge loss to the schools, families and children who are increasingly denied exposure to music by the erosion of government support for the arts.’
He continues, ‘This is a very sad time for the orchestra, its fine players and the many enthusiastic fans who have made up its audiences over the years. Had we been given more time by the County Council we might have been able to plan for other ways of funding the orchestra. As it is we have no choice but to close the orchestra. This will leave a big hole in the cultural and educational landscape of Lancashire.’
The orchestra has worked with many international artists, including Alfie Boe, Kathryn Stott, Aled Jones and Amanda Roocroft.