Arts in Harmony

Monday 27 April 2015


An exciting new exhibition celebrating the centenary year of the Ben Uri Gallery opens today in the RCM Museum of Music. Arts in Harmony: An Art Gallery’s Musical Heritage will run until Friday 28 August and focuses on the lives and work of émigré musicians.

With material selected from Ben Uri’s unique collection of more than 1,300 works usually kept in storage, this exhibition provides a rare opportunity to see artworks, photographs, cuttings, correspondence and programmes that will reveal the powerful stories of émigré musicians fleeing Nazi persecution during 1933-1945.

This collaboration is inspired by the recent rediscovery of material from Ben Uri’s extensive archives and the RCM’s research and performance project ‘Singing a Song in a Foreign Land’, which will run in tandem with the exhibition.

The project, led by Norbert Meyn, investigates the impact of émigrés on British musical life and includes video testimonies from eminent performers and composers including Dame Janet Baker, Anita Lasker-Wallfisch and Alexander Goehr. A Grove Forum lecture on Thursday 14 May will present these testimonies alongside song performances, as well as the launch of a free online resource allowing access to the research material. A Grove Forum Seminar with Geraldine Auerbach on Sunday 31 May in the RCM Museum of Music will focus on researching and safeguarding the musical legacy of émigré musicians.

Gabriele Rossi Rognoni, Curator of the RCM Museum of Music, said: “I am particularly proud to host this exhibition at the RCM Museum of Music, a small treasure in the heart of London. Ben Uri’s musical activity occupied a prominent role in London when it started 100 years ago and thanks to the collaboration between Ben Uri and Royal College of Music professor Norbert Meyn this activity is now re-emerging.

The RCM Museum of Music is open Tuesday to Friday 11.30am–4.30pm. For more information, visit

The Ben Uri Gallery and Museum will also celebrate its centenary year in 2015 with a major exhibition entitled ‘Out of Chaos; Ben Uri: 100 Years in London’, which takes place in the Indigo Rooms, Somerset House East Wing, in association with the Cultural Institute at King’s College London, from 2 July to 13 December 2015.

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