Messiah at The Foundling Hospital to repeat on BBC Four, Friday 3 April, 7.00pm

24.03.15

Reef Television’s award-winning film Messiah at the Foundling Hospital is to be repeated on Good Friday (3 April 2015) at 7.00pm on BBC Four.  Winner of the prestigious Czech Crystal for Best Documentary, and recently nominated for a Royal Television Society Award, the film tells the extraordinary story of the fundraising performance of Handel’s Messiah at the Thomas Coram’s Foundling Hospital in May 1750.  Handel’s Messiah remains one of the most popular choral pieces in western music but few people know how this much-loved piece came to public attention or how it helped save the lives of tens of thousands of children. Historian Amanda Vickery and BBC Radio 3 presenter Tom Service present this one-hour drama documentary which re-creates the first performance of Messiah at London’s Foundling Hospital in 1750, the “Live Aid” of its day, heralding the dawn of a golden age of philanthropy and helping catapult Messiah to the universal popularity it has enjoyed ever since.

Reef nominated for a Royal Television Society Programme Award

25.02.15

Reef’s Messiah At The Foundling Hospital film for BBC Two has been nominated for a Royal Television Society Programme Award in the Arts category.

Richard Farmbrough commented "This is a fantastic tribute to the brilliant work of everyone involved in this film and a great reflection of the work of Reef Television as a whole.  Huge congratulations in particular to Ben Weston and the director Rob Coldstream who produced and directed Messiah so brilliantly. It’s also a great accolade for the BBC commissioner Jan Younghusband who gave the project her unstinting support.

Put Your Money On Air on BBC One

16.02.15

Series 11 of Put Your Money starts airing this week for four weeks. 

The series kicks off with Kate Bliss and Phil Serrel going crazy for cars at a Gloucestershire Auction!

Reef Television to produce landmark opera film for BBC Two

16.01.15

Reef Television has been commissioned to produce a landmark music film for BBC Two about Verdi’s opera La Traviata for June 2015.  La Traviata and the Women of London will tell the story of how La Traviata confronted Victorian audiences in London with one of the most challenging social problems of the day – prostitution – and the legacy this had for society as a whole.

This new documentary follows on the success of Reef’s award-winning drama documentary Messiah at the Foundling Hospital which played on BBC Two over Easter 2014.  It will once again be presented by the historian Professor Amanda Vickery and BBC Radio 3 presenter Tom Service, who will lift the lid on the social history and music respectively.  The film will include excerpts of the opera specially staged for the film, and Reef Television have engaged Opera North to help produce this music.

The commission for BBC Two was announced by the BBC’s Director General Tony Hall at Sadler’s Wells on Wednesday 14 January as part of the BBC’s Year of Song and Dance which includes a raft of new commissions covering music and dance in 2015.

“La Traviata remains the most popular opera in the world and its tunes are almost like hit singles”, said Ben Weston, Head of Specialist Factual at Reef Television.  “But what most people don’t know is the profoundly shocking nature of its story for audiences of that time.  We’re thrilled to be working for BBC Two once again to bring that amazing story to life”.

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