Arts Case study Video projects

Launching the BBC Philharmonic’s 2019-20 season

I’ve had the pleasure of working with the BBC Philharmonic for a while, producing video content for their website and social media. This particular edit was for a more offline purpose, though: the launch of their 2019-20 season. They wanted to impress the opinion formers in attendance, not just with the orchestra’s playing but with its commitment to reaching new audiences in diverse and innovative ways.

To make the edit work, we needed a range of different media from the previous couple of years, which was a Herculean task for the BBC Phil team to gather together and then for me to comb through for shots that would work. And because the material was all shot by different people on different cameras, it was important that I got the colour grade right so that the video felt coherent.

Selecting the music for BBC Philharmonic video content is always tricky. It needs to be from the classical repertoire otherwise it feels off-brand. But because orchestral music is inherently a long-form medium, it’s difficult to find pieces that work for short digital video. The Philharmonic team left it up to me decide, and I ended up going with Beethoven – primarily the finale of his 9th symphony. Not only is Beethoven heavily featured in the orchestra’s 2019-20 season, his music also has the kind of energy and drama that I wanted the film to have. There are some crafty edits in there to make the timings work, but hopefully they’re not noticeable to the casual viewer.

By Ben Horrigan

I've been producing digital content since 2012, primarily for flagship BBC brands like Blue Peter and BBC News. Now I run Studio 91 Media, a video production agency on a mission: to create content that is good for platforms, good for people and good for the planet. When I'm not behind a camera, I can often be found playing cello at weddings or riding a three-wheeled cargo bike called Babs.