Following on from the success of Ball & Boe, The Greatest Showman and Sheku Kanneh-Mason, not to mention RAJAR reporting that 5.579 million people tuned in to Classic FM every week during Q1,a host of top execs told Music Week that 2018 is shaping up to be a landmark year.
Decca Records Group UK president Rebecca Allen, for one, said she was encouraged by a recent shift in audience’s perception of the genre, aided by streaming.
“There’s a generation of people growing up in this post-genre world,” said Allen. “They want to talk in terms of music they love. All of a sudden, young people have this amazing library of music at their fingertips that takes them on a journey through music they didn’t know they liked.”
If you look at the Royal Albert Hall and the open air festivals, ticket sales have never been higher
In particular, Allen stressed the manner in which TV and film have been hugely important in the streaming era in converting a captive audience into classical fans.
“Classical music is more relevant now than it has been for a few years,” continued Allen. “The music’s more available than it’s ever been. Soundtracks have become more important, such as Dunkirk and Game Of Thrones and the two [Michael] Ball And [Alfie] Boe albums have sold one million copies between them. The business is back in growth and we’re investing more in artists. It all feels much more positive.”
The rise of classical was also something Jonathan Shalit, artist manager, chairman/founder of InterTalent Rights Group and Classic BRITs co-chair, said can be seen in the live sector, too, stressing: “If you look at the Royal Albert Hall and the open air festivals, ticket sales have never been higher.”
The Classic BRITs ceremony will take place today (June 13) at the Royal Albert Hall and will be broadcast this Sunday on ITV. You can read the full list of Classic BRITs nominees here and our interview with presenter Myleene Klass here.