Posted on: August 14, 2015 in: Pick of the week

What’s been happening in the arts this week? As part of our latest blog series, Pick of the Week, we’ve picked our favourite stories and most thought-provoking debates we’ve seen and heard in the news this week.


Can music relieve the pain of surgery and help recovery?

There’s been some fascinating research published in the Lancet this week about music in hospitals. They found that listening to music during and after operations helped to reduce pain and speed up healing. We’ve definitely seen first-hand how live music helps with stress and anxiety in hospitals. Brilliant that they’re doing more research in the area!

Orchestras are broadening their scope for the better

Have a look at the changing roles orchestras have played in people’s lives in Robert Ziegler’s fascinating article. From whole family affairs in communist Europe, to playing soundtracks live over their films, orchestras are always looking for ways to engage their audiences and to be relevant to their lives. With funding cuts and music education under threat, orchestras are leading the way in discovering new ways to bring their music to new audiences in new and exciting ways.

French right-wing tells artists: Earn your keep

France has long been a safe haven for the arts, with state subsidies and support for artists. But things might be changing. The local government in Frejus, on the French Riviera, has demanded that artists provide free workshops for school-children in return for their subsidised rents. In what is becoming a heated debate, supporters of the local government are in favour of the artists giving back to society, while the artists are wary of being forced to volunteer without the infrastructure or training to do so.

Where do you stand on the issue? Should volunteering be forced upon the artists, or are they doing enough to revitalise the town already? You can comment below, and we’d love to hear from you.