Stories » Max Richter's eight-hour epic; 'SLEEP' provides an apt soundtrack for lockdown, when hours stretch into the distance / Keep The Faith

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Max Richter's eight-hour epic; 'SLEEP' provides an apt soundtrack for lockdown, when hours stretch into the distance / Keep The Faith

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Max Richter's eight-hour epic SLEEP, his ‘lullaby for a frenetic world', returns to BBC Radio 3's airwaves this Easter weekend in a simulcast with the European Broadcasting Union – uniting quarantined nations across the continent in moments of meditative stillness.

The BBC will join with broadcasters across Europe and beyond, including USA, Canada and New Zealand, for the live simulcast of Richter's eight-hour lullaby, a re-broadcast of the world premiere from 2015.

SLEEP seeks to examine the relationship between music and the subconscious mind, and to foreground the communal aspect of music performance and listening. This remarkable broadcasting moment aims to bring together listeners around the world in a collective moment of musical reflection.  The piece indeed provides an apt soundtrack for these times of lockdown – when hours seemingly stretch into the distance. Sleep offers a mindful way to forget everything going on around us.

The original world premiere performance will be rebroadcast overnight on BBC Radio 3 from 11pm on Saturday (April 11) to 7am on Easter Sunday (April 12) as part of ‘Slow and Mindful' series, BBC Radio 3's offering of music for the mind in the time of lockdown.  Meanwhile, the European Broadcasting Union (EBU) will bring together radio members across the globe to air the full 8-hour piece – with in Europe and beyond, including USA, Canada and New Zealand. They will all broadcast SLEEP during the Easter weekend.

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