Radio 3 launches Postcards from Composers

As part of the Culture in Quarantine series, Radio 3 will premiere new 30-second works for solo instrumentalists by UK-based composers

Published: April 25, 2020 at 8:00 am

The BBC’s Culture in Quarantine virtual arts festival has launched another programme for listeners in lockdown.


On the Radio 3 Breakfast programme from Monday 27 April onwards, 30-second musical messages of hope by 20 UK-based composers will be broadcast to listeners. Each will be written for solo instrumentalists and will be performed by musicians from the BBC orchestras.

Composers featured include Jonny Greenwood, James MacMillan, Anna Clyne, Daniel Kidane, Dobrinka Tabakova and Belle Chen.

The programme for the first week will include the following postcards:

Monday 27 April: Belle Chen’s postcard for marimba – ocean shadows on turquoise reflection (Paul Patrick, principal percussion BBC Philharmonic)

Tuesday 28 April: Raymond Yiu’s postcard for French horn – Berceuse (with feathers) (Martin Owen, principal horn BBC Symphony Orchestra)

Wednesday 29 April: Anna Clyne’s postcard for cor anglais – Evening Light (Gillian Callow, principal cor anglaise BBC Philharmonic)

Thursday 30 April: Jonny Greenwood’s postcard for cello – Postcard (Benjamin Hughes, principal cello BBC Concert Orchestra)

Friday 1 May: Kuljit Bhamra’s postcard for tabla – It Rains Diamonds on Saturn (Stephen Whibley, percussionist BBC Concert Orchestra)


In conjunction with the Postcards from Composers programme, the BBC Young Composer Scheme has invited young composers aged 12 to 18 across the UK to create their own 30-second musical postcard for solo instrumentalist.


Freya ParrDigital Editor and Staff Writer, BBC Music Magazine

Freya Parr is BBC Music Magazine's Digital Editor and Staff Writer. She has also written for titles including the Guardian, Circus Journal, Frankie and Suitcase Magazine, and runs The Noiseletter, a fortnightly arts and culture publication. Freya's main areas of interest and research lie in 20th-century and contemporary music.

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