Flyer 1 donates test kits to help orchestras perform
A Cumbria-based company is doing its part to help reopen the country by donating Covid-19 test kits to music halls in London and Manchester.
Circular 1 Health donated 1,700 COVID tests to allow the Philharmonia Orchestra to return to the Royal Festival Hall in London and the Hallé Orchestra to return to Bridgewater Hall in Manchester.
Tests will be distributed to orchestras on a weekly basis, with 100 delivered in each batch, ensuring enough tests to regularly screen both ensembles prior to each performance.
The initiative was led by Matt Parry, Circular 1 health lab technician, who is also a professional trombonist.
“I’ve been performing in concert halls and theaters for over 15 years and watching the shutters close during the lockdown was heartbreaking,” Matt said.
“Now, with the support of my employer, I am able to give something back and get the music back on its feet while keeping everyone safe.”
Venues across the country are looking to return to live indoor music next month, in line with the government’s roadmap to ease lockdown restrictions in England.
Stuart MacLennan, Founder of Circular 1 Health, added: “Our mission throughout the lockdown has been focused on helping the country regain a sense of normalcy.
“Thanks to team members like Matt, we can use our resources to help groups that would otherwise have trouble getting back to normal with ease.”
The Philharmonic will receive 900 tests over the two-month period as it gives three concerts at the Royal Festival Hall, seven concerts at the Three Choirs Festival, which is held this year at Worcester Cathedral, and heads to the Royal Albert Hall and finally back. in the recording studio.
The Hallé Orchestra will receive 800 tests to project its musicians throughout its twelve performances from Bridgewater Hall, Manchester.
Philharmonia Managing Director Alexander Van Ingen said: “We are delighted to be back making music for real audiences live from June 4, and it is understandable that there is still a level of nervousness around. of security.
“Through the partnership with Circular 1, our musicians can feel confident and ready to perform at their best, and we know that a positive outcome can be quickly isolated so the rest of the orchestra can continue playing. without having to cancel concerts.
Hallé CEO David Butcher added: “Le Hallé is delighted – and very grateful – to work with Circular 1 Health in this way.
“The solace he provides is invaluable and will help us immensely as we head into an exciting season live at Bridgewater Hall next month.
The Philharmonie’s first concert will open on June 4 at the Royal Festival Hall with The Hallé Orchestra at Bridgewater Hall from June 3 to July 22.
Circular 1 Health is a testing company born out of the Covid-19 pandemic.
Stuart Maclennan, former CEO of Cows and Co, based near Carlisle, started his new company, Circular 1, in March 2020.