Julia Holter & Chorus of Opera North: The Passion of Joan of Arc

★★★★★ “The mercurial composer’s brilliant score perfectly captures the raging agony and beatific ecstasy of Carl Theodor Dreyer’s silent movie masterpiece…” The Guardian

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★★★★★ “…a musical triumph to accompany a cinematic masterpiece…” The Times

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Ness by Robert Macfarlane & Stanley Donwood

Audiobook of the week: Actor Stephen Dillane narrates the rhythmic prose poem, inspired by a Suffolk nature reserve and cold war military base

“…a gently sinister score courtesy of composer Hugh Brunt, recorded at London’s Abbey Road Studios.” The Guardian

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BBC Proms: Jonny Greenwood

★★★★ “On Tuesday night, we were offered his [Jonny Greenwood’s] latest piece, in a cleverly conceived and superbly executed Prom from the BBC National Orchestra of Wales and the BBC Proms Youth Ensemble, under the incisive and perfectly precise baton of Hugh Brunt.” The Telegraph

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Philip Glass: The Bowie Symphonies

★★★★ “Hugh Brunt led impeccably prepared performances of Glass’s Bowie Symphonies: No 1 (Low) and No 4 (Heroes).” The Times

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There Will Be Blood: Live – New York

“Under the excellent 32-year-old conductor Hugh Brunt, in his Philharmonic debut, Jonny Greenwood’s hauntingly strange and inventive score for ‘There Will Be Blood’ made the movie seem both stunningly new and an instant classic.” The New York Times

“On the podium, conductor Hugh Brunt is polished, poised, and precise, neither intruding upon the movie, nor hiding away the labors required to produce music this complex.” ZEALnyc

Little White Lies

Catching up with the London Contemporary Orchestra ahead of ‘Phantom Thread’ live. Conductors and longtime friends Hugh Brunt and Robert Ames reveal how they helped bring Jonny Greenwood’s mesmerising score to life.

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There Will Be Blood: Live – Melbourne

★★★★ “MSO brings hard-edged grace to Greenwood score… the true triumph was in the softer arrangements. ‘Eat Him by His Own Light’, ‘Oil’ and ‘Prospectors Arrive’ were all magnified by Brunt’s restraint.” The Sydney Morning Herald


co-Artistic Directors of the LCO Hugh Brunt and Robert Ames talk about how the orchestra’s new sample library, LCO Strings, is giving composers new worlds of sound to explore

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Hugh Brunt is co-founder of the London Contemporary Orchestra (LCO), arguably the most unique group of musicians in the city. Unlike a conventional orchestra, the LCO fuses dynamic performance with smart, quirky locations, where overtones and frequencies can be as important as the scores themselves. Headliner is suitably impressed…

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Radiohead’s A Moon Shaped Pool: The 5 Most Important Things To Know

Jeremy D. Larson

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Actress & LCO

★★★★ “…flipped the relation between electronic musician and orchestra on its head: it was like a jolt of electricity.” Financial Times

“Brought into the broad chasm of the Barbican Hall, [Actress’] dense arrangements feel pried open; elements that were once laminated together are peeled apart, and oxygen rushes into the gaps as if an airlock has been broken.” The Wire

★★★★ “The triumph lay in the deconstruction and re-contextualisation of electronic sounds within a world-renowned concert space.” Resident Advisor


Using Blu-Tack, milk frothers and architectural blueprints of the Barbican as tools, techno figurehead Actress discusses embracing the avant-garde with the London Contemporary Orchestra

Tim Noakes

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The Times

Shades Lengthen

★★★★ “[‘Shades Lengthen’] was the centrepiece of a superb London Contemporary Orchestra concert in the incense-drenched cavern of St John-at-Hackney… Around it Hugh Brunt, the LCO’s conductor, constructed a gorgeous symmetry of music… All beautifully lit and staged for a big, enthusiastic audience.” (Richard Morrison)

h.Club 100 Awards

Hugh and LCO’s co-Artistic Director Robert Ames have won a place on The Hospital Club’s 100 list, “celebrating the 100 most influential and innovative people working across Britain’s creative industries”. The awards comprise 10 categories with 10 winners in each, with Hugh and Robert being selected in the Music category. This year’s winners include Alex Poots, Kristin Scott Thomas, Tom Hardy, Cornelia Parker, Kate Tempest, Idris Elba and Lauren Laverne.

There Will Be Blood: Live – Royal Festival Hall

★★★★ “Witnessing the orchestrations come to life, conducted by Hugh Brunt, illuminated the vital importance of music to ‘There Will Be Blood’… It brought home the contrasting subtlety of Greenwood’s music, and the restrained power with which the London Contemporary Orchestra played… a pitch-perfect accompaniment for the onscreen action.” Financial Times

★★★★ “…the effect was superb… a singular audio-visual journey into a heart of darkness.” The Times

Royal Philharmonic Society Music Awards

LCO was last night announced as winner of the Ensemble category at the annual Royal Philharmonic Society Music Awards. Presented in association with BBC Radio 3, the RPS Music Awards are the highest recognition for live classical music in the UK. The award was presented to co-Artistic Directors Hugh Brunt and Robert Ames, and accepted on behalf of the LCO’s players.


The Business – Six stylish Londoners show off a half-dozen timeless classics

The Independent

There Will Be Blood: Live – Roundhouse

★★★★★ “Sparse and at times just plain peculiar but always brilliantly original… It’s magnificent.” (Rob Hastings)


Carving a niche – Here, we profile some movers and shakers who are seizing the Zeitgeist

Channel 4 News

Jonny Greenwood & LCO Soloists – Wapping Hydraulic Power Station

“Greenwood’s work is harmonic, sumptuous, and emotionally deeply moving. It demands extraordinary talent and skill from the London Contemporary Orchestra under its 27-year-old conductor, Hugh Brunt. Like the other players, he was informally dressed, in a blue cable stitch sweater. His conducting is graceful, and maintains an extraordinary discipline in the players.” (Jon Snow – Snowblog)

The Arts Desk

Imagined Occasions – Aldwych Underground

★★★★ “Immersive music-making goes underground and comes of age with this cleverly programmed evening of new music” (Igor Toronyi-Lalic)

New Statesman

London Contemporary Orchestra’s ‘Imagined Occasions’: Not as scary as you might think

Alexandra Coghlan

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Time Out

Composer Claude Vivier divined his own death on the Paris Metro. Now, aided by two of the Secret Cinema team, his prophetic last work will play down the tube. Jonathan Lennie jumps the barriers

BBC Music Magazine

Reverb 2012

“Gifted young LCO conductor Hugh Brunt directed a vivid performance of Metastasis, Xenakis’s ground-breaking early work, and you could almost see the intense, seething masses of texture towering up out of the orchestra.” (Helen Wallace)

The Sunday Times

Reverb 2012

“As soon as the performance started, a sort of reverent rapture seemed to descend on the 1,000-odd souls… I felt that music had gained a new excitement out of the blue.” (Paul Driver)

The Arts Desk

Reverb 2012

“Brunt delivered a punchy rendition of Xenakis’s Metastasis – a model of Modernist clarity, economy and directness – and a Ravelian account of Vivier’s Orion that was nothing short of ravishing.” (Igor Toronyi-Lalic)

The Independent

Reverb Festival and the quiet evolution of live classical music

Tim Woodall

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The Times

Spitalfields Music Winter Festival

★★★★ “Some people can’t see a mountain without wanting to climb it. The players of Hugh Brunt’s terrific London Contemporary Orchestra give me a similar impression: that they are game for any avant-garde musical challenge, the tougher and craggier the better… under Brunt’s immaculate direction the entire ensemble was heroic.” (Richard Morrison)

The Guardian

Maddy Costa talks to the composers and musicians taking a genre-bending approach to pop-classical fusions

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The Times

Spitalfields Music Summer Festival

★★★★ “The furious panache of the LCO’s performance, expertly channelled by the conductor Hugh Brunt, was overwhelming… Frenzied patches suggested improvisation. But no: Brunt’s conducting of every bar, from the opening buzzing bass line to the sudden consonant end assertive, was graceful, just like the music. Wonderful.” (Geoff Brown)

The Telegraph

Aldeburgh Festival

★★★★ “The concert from the young players of the Britten-Pears Orchestra conducted by Hugh Brunt…contained one perfect, crystalline masterpiece, Webern’s Concerto for Nine Instruments. How difficult and crabbed this piece used to sound, and easy and graceful it seemed here.” (Ivan Hewett)

MUSO Magazine

London Contemporary Orchestra is determined to bring new music to the forefront of the Capital’s cultural scene as Claire Jackson discovers

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