Friday, 15 July 2011

Proms Watch 2011: Week 1

A brief post to notice British works given during the 2011 season of Promenade Concerts. I have long felt that the BBC lets down both contemporary and historical British composers. I love many different traditions of Classical music- from Ravel to Reich and from Weber to Webern, so I do appreciate much in the Proms season that does not come from these native shores. However, it is important that the BBC does further the cause of British music and I wish to keep a check on this over the coming weeks. Lastly these Prom-Watches will act as an aide-memoire – reminding me and any readers as to what is on from the British perspective.

Friday 15 July
Alongside Liszt, Janáček, and Brahms there is a short piece by the Cambridge-born composer Judith Weir (b.1954) Stars, Night, Music and Light. This is a 2011 Proms Commission. However it a really short piece lasting c. 4 minutes.

Saturday 16th July
This evening is dedicated to a performance of Rossini’s William Tell.

Sunday 17th July
This is a big day for British Music enthusiasts. In the afternoon organ recital there is a performance of Judith Bingham’s The Everlasting Crown play by Stephen Farr. This work last more than 35 minutes. Other works by Jéhan Alain, J.S Bach and Franz Liszt.
In the evening, an extremely rare performance of Havergal Brian’s massive Gothic Symphony with over a thousand performers. One of the highlights of the entire season!

Monday 18th July
Mahan Esfahani harpsichord plays Bach’s Goldberg Variations. However the main event is Beethoven’s’ Triple Concerto alongside music by Pascal Dusapin and Messiaen. No British music today.

Tuesday 19th July
Igor Stravinsky’s The Rite of Spring, Weber’s Oberon Overture and Johannes Brahms Double Concerto. At the late concert is a performance of Quintet in C major, D956 by Schubert. No British Music today.

Wednesday 20th July
Two great works tonight. Dvorak’s Cello Concerto in B minor and Bedrich Smetana’s Má vlast. No British Music today.

Thursday 21st July
Jean Sibelius wonderful Symphony No. 7 alongside his lesser-known Scènes historiques. After the interval there is a performance of Bartok’s Piano Concerto No. 3 and Janacek’s Sinfonietta. No British Music today.

So the score for this week is three works by British Composers – two by contemporary artists and the Havergal Brian Gothic Symphony.

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