Serious has a long history of working in partnership with Embassies and Cultural Institutions to showcase music and creative arts from our international partners to a wide UK audience.
Imagining Ireland was a concert inspired by the themes from the 1916 Proclamation of the Irish Republic, exploring the country’s cultural journey over the last 100 years and its place in the world today.
Produced by Serious and the National Concert Hall Dublin, and supported by Culture Ireland and The Embassy of Ireland in London, the Royal Festival Hall concert showcase featured Kevin Rowland and Sean Read of Dexys, Lisa O’Neill, Barry Douglas and Cathal Coughlan, Paul Brady, Martin Carthy, Martin Hayes & Dennis Cahill, Andy Irvine, James Vincent McMorrow, Cait O’Riordan and Camille O’Sullivan – and was hosted by writer and broadcaster John Kelly, celebrating the musical interplay between Ireland and England.
The Khōn – or masked play – is a centuries-old artform; the visually spectacular meeting point of Thai arts and culture. Singing, dancing, acting, acrobatics and music united in a spectacular performance at the Royal Albert Hall in a production bursting with character – bringing together movement and music presented within an ornate aesthetic.
Returning to the hall 130 years after the classical music ensemble from Siam performed for Queen Victoria, this unique evening saw artistic traditions passed through the generations come alive as over 60 Thai performers – and their stunningly beautiful costumes – performed Khōn to a wildly appreciate audience.
Working with our partner, the Korean Cultural Centre, we found new venues and developed the artistic programme for the inaugural Festival in 2013.
The result was an acclaimed festival starting with a gala opening concert of the National Orchestra of Korea, making their first appearance in the UK (to a sell-out Barbican) which also marked the official commemoration of the end of the Korean War. The other concerts, ranging from Korean rock to classical, played to capacity audiences and introduced Korean artists to British audiences for the first time.
We worked with the Korean Cultural Centre to reach London’s Korean audience using different media/tools for the different generations. Following the success of this initial Festival, Serious has gone on to produce two further editions, in 2015 and 2016, and 2017 is in planning stage.
‘Original, powerful and thrilling like nothing you have ever heard before.’ (Evening Standard)
Working with the Commonwealth
Serious has a long-standing commitment to the values of the Commonwealth, and is a prolific producer of Commonwealth work with a 16 year track record.
Serious has produced major projects across the Commonwealth; in Barbados, Ghana, South Africa, Swaziland, as well as presenting a wealth of artists from Commonwealth countries or with Commonwealth backgrounds in events throughout the UK.
UK Projects include:
- Commonwealth in Concert – where Serious brought together over 120 artists for the Commonwealth Heads Of Government Meeting in Edinburgh in 1997. This performance was produced in collaboration with The Prince's Trust and The British Council.
- Commonwealth at the Millennium Dome. Working in partnership with the Foreign & Commonwealth Office, Serious produced five days of music programming at the Dome in London.
- Commonwealth Week. Serious delivered programmes and projects to celebrate Commonwealth Week for several years
- Manchester Commonwealth Games
Serious were the producers of On Track – a UK-wide concert hall tour led by Courtney Pine to mark the lead up to 2002 Commonwealth Games in Manchester. 2,500 young people across the country experienced the event as part of our workshop and audience development schemes.