Championing the ensemble music of 20th century modernism, The Facade Ensemble was founded by its conductor and artistic director - Benedict Collins Rice and drew its members originally from the finest singers and instrumentalists at Cambridge University. Already then with pedigrees including National Youth Orchestra principal seats and BBC Young Musician Finalists, the ensemble has since developed as a dynamic collective of young professionals many of whom have been identified as 'rising stars' by institutions like the BBC and The Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment or have come through the fellowship programmes of groups such as The Sixteen and Tenebrae.
The ensemble has a core of 8 or so musicians but one of its strengths is a versatility which enables it to perform music outside the scope of most chamber ensembles.
With a reputation for binging a 'liberal seasoning of vivacity and wit' to performances, the ensemble carefully curates programmes which are both imaginative and accessible. Proving time and time again that music - often sadly dismissed as 'difficult' - can be a richly rewarding experience.
Recent highlights have included sell-out performances of Stockhausen; UK tours of Schoenberg (with Odradek Records) and Arvo Part; and a programme exploring ritual through pairing the Cantatas of Stravinsky and Birtwistle with medieval carols and Medieval inspired music by Bryars and Maxwell Davies.
Meet some of our regulars -
Meet the team behind The Facade Ensemble:
Sofie Vilcins - Producer
Sofie is a producer who has worked for BBC Radio 3, the Royal Opera House and the BBC Proms. She has worked in music radio and television for several years, having studied music at the University of Birmingham and Royal Holloway. Her role will be to make the artistic aims of the ensemble come to fruition, whether that’s producing events, organising recordings or promoting Facade’s work on social media.
William Searle – General Manager
William has a long association with The Facade Ensemble, having worked with Benedict to produce Benjamin Britten’s The Turn of the Screw in 2015 and singing in many Facade projects since then. His previous experience working with the RCM Development Department, Sinfonia Cymru and at Whitgift School, as well as organising events for artists from Stephen Fry to The King’s Singers, means he hopes to be able to set up The Facade Ensemble as an established fixture in the UK’s classical music scene.