mon 24/06/2024

Proms

Tristan und Isolde, Glyndebourne, BBC Proms review - endless love, perfect pace

“Now I’ve conducted Tristan for the first time,” the 27-year-old Richard Strauss wrote from Weimar to Wagner’s widow Cosima in 1892, “and it was the most wonderful day of my life”. Robin Ticciati, over a decade older but still young in terms of his...

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Aimard, Mahler Chamber Orchestra, Benjamin, BBC Proms review - a revealing composer portrait

Composer George Benjamin has dazzling talent, but he is difficult to showcase. He is not a naturally extrovert type, and most of his projects take years to formulate, and only come about through collaboration with close and trusted performers. But...

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Kopatchinskaja, BBCSSO, Volkov, BBC Proms Review - the spirit of the dance in Bartók

Violinist Patricia Kopatchinskaja has a joyous hunger for communication through music. She sometimes seems to dance through it. This was at its most vivid when she lunged towards BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra leader Laura Samuel to invite her to...

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Crowe, BBCSSO, Volkov, BBC Proms review - shining light on history and heritage

Minds in Flux is the largest of this season’s Proms commissions, and last night it afforded a rare chance for UK audiences to hear work of George Lewis outside the often insular new-music and avant-garde improvisation circuits. As a trombonist-...

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Jeneba Kanneh-Mason, Chineke! Orchestra, Bovell, BBC Proms - a star danced

Now that you've found her, never let her go. I hope that’s the mantra among players of the Chineke! Orchestra and their Artistic and Executive Director Chi-chi Nwanoku – leading the double basses last night – after this Prom with Panamanian-American...

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LSO, Rattle, BBC Proms review - dazzling Stravinsky showcase

Simon Rattle and the LSO marked the 50th anniversary of Stravinsky’s death with a concert of three “symphonies”. In fact, the programme had little to say about Stravinsky’s relationship with symphonic form: his early E flat Symphony was omitted, and...

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First Person: theartsdesk writer Bernard Hughes on composing for the BBC Proms

For many years, first as a punter then latterly as a reviewer, I have sat in the section of the Royal Albert Hall stalls near stage right, under the BBC Radio broadcast box, knowing that that is where they sit the composers being premiered at the...

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Esfahani, Gibson, Manchester Collective, BBC Proms review – variety, but not always in proportion

I was looking forward to this Prom by the Manchester Collective, an exciting young group founded in 2016, which has quickly established a reputation for innovative presentation of contemporary repertoire. And while I found the playing excellent,...

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A Night at the Opera, BBC Philharmonic, Glassberg, BBC Proms review - six of the best

This delectable Prom hid behind the title "To Soothe the Aching Heart" the failsafe concept of a programme of the world’s favourite opera extracts, plus some. Take six British opera stars – three sopranos, two tenors and a mezzo – and assign them...

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Ólafsson, Philharmonia, Järvi, BBC Proms review - a ravishing Proms debut

What does it mean to be Classical? It’s the question award-winning Icelandic pianist Víkingur Ólafsson has consistently asked in a career that has collided music from Bach to Debussy, presenting them as part of a single conversation and continuum....

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Isserlis, LPO, Jurowski, BBC Proms review - a final hand full of aces

We finished with a pure Hollywood moment when John Gilhooly – as Chair of the Royal Philharmonic Society – popped up after the warm applause to announce that the Society had awarded its gold medal to Vladimir Jurowski. Oddly, Covid rules meant that...

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Kolesnikov, Aurora Orchestra, Collon, BBC Proms review - dazzling musicianship and insight

It’s nobody’s fault, but – try as they might – the BBC Proms can often feel rather middle-aged. Whether it’s the lumbering albatross of a building, the ushers in their dated, casino waistcoats or the tone of zealous jollity (Have fun! But silently...

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