Today [Thursday 12 November] the London Philharmonic Orchestra (LPO) launches its brand-new podcast Offstage. Saxophonist, composer and broadcaster YolanDa Brown will present the 12-episode series, talking to a range of musicians within the LPO about their experiences as orchestral musicians.

The behind the scenes podcast will cover a range of topics, with YolanDa Brown conversing with two or three musicians on each episode from across the orchestral sections. Each episode will explore different aspects of life as a working musician today, covering topics such as how the musicians approach rehearsals as opposed to performance, how venues and audiences affect a performance and working relationships with conductors. Two of the episodes will also take a deep-dive into some well-known repertoire, with this series covering Tchaikovsky’s 4th Symphony and Sibelius’ 5th.

Offstage will be of interest to a broad spectrum of listeners, from avid classical music lovers to those who are just curious about day-to-day life as an orchestral musician. The series will be split into two, with the first six episodes out before Christmas, and the second set of six released in the new year.

The podcast’s presenter, YolanDa Brown, said “Presenting the LPO Offstage podcast was just awesome! Being a musician myself, it was lovely to speak to the players artist to artist. We laughed together, reminisced plenty and dreamt about the future post Covid. The chat was insightful about the inner workings of an orchestra and will definitely take the audience into some of the anecdotes from backstage”

The podcast is available free on all podcast platforms, including SpotifyApple Podcasts, and Acast. The first six episodes of the series will be released weekly until 17 December, with the second six episodes coming in the New Year. The first episode ‘Life IS a rehearsal’ with principal flautist Juliette Bausor and principal percussionist Andy Barclay, is available to listen to now.

Full episode listing:

  1. Life IS a rehearsal
    How do rehearsals work?
  2. Cling film and rubber bands
    Keeping instruments in working order
  3. Where are we today?
    Venues and audiences
  4. Upbeats
    Conductors and their relationship with the orchestra
  5. Swapping seats
    Orchestral layouts
  6. On stage now!
    Concert preparations
  7. Escaping the 9-5
    Working life as an orchestral musician
  8. Inside Tchaikovsky’s 4th
    Repertoire focus
  9. Where are my reeds?
    Life on the road as a musician
  10. Inside Sibelius’s 5th
    Repertoire focus
  11. Oiling the valves
    How do you practise?
  12. Exploring the new
    Contemporary music