tue 27/09/2022

BBCSO

BBC Proms 2022 - silence after Mass

So John Eliot Gardiner’s fire- and-air way with Beethoven’s Missa Solemnis turned out to be the last night of the Proms. Just as I was about to cycle to the Royal Albert Hall for the first of the Philadelphia Orchestra’s two Proms the following...

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Prom 39, Hartwig, BBCSO, Oramo review - bright and breezy followed by a curate's egg

Two quirky concertos – one for orchestra, though it might also be called a sinfonietta – and a big symphony: best of British but, more important, international and world class. Sakari Oramo and the BBC Symphony Orchestra sounded glorious throughout...

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Prom 8, Kozhukhin, BBCSO, Stasevska review - Russian classics meet contemporary Iceland

Russia meets Iceland: not the most obvious of juxtapositions. But the connection between the four composers featured in Prom 8 is to be found in their filmic approaches: the two contemporary Icelanders are both better known as media composers than...

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Prom 1, Verdi's Requiem, BBCSO, Oramo review - introspective sorrow and consolation between the blazes

Any sensitive festival planner knows to begin the return to a new normal with something soft and elegiac – reflecting on all we’ve lost and mourned these past two years, as well as what we’re facing in the world now. Just over a fortnight ago, at...

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Album: Paul Weller - An Orchestrated Songbook

It’s a far cry from his beginnings in a tight, no-frills power-pop-post-punk three piece, that’s for sure. Last May, Paul Weller took to the stage with guitarist Steve Craddock, a smattering of guest vocalists and the BBC Symphony Orchestra to...

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First Night of the Proms, Hyde, BBCSO, Stasevska review - levitational ecstasies

Did absence from Albert’s colosseum from early September 2019 until now and a roof-raising finale hoodwink many of us into thinking Dalia Stasevska’s interpretation of Sibelius’s Second Symphony among the greats? Having listened to it again on the...

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BBC Proms live online: BBC Singers, BBCSO, Oramo review – threnodies to an empty hall

So the bubble of reactionary brouhaha over the Last Night of the Proms quickly burst: there can be no argument about singing “Land of Hope and Glory” or “Rule, Britannia!” when they’re to be presented in their original Proms forms (Elgar’s Pomp and...

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Skelton, Rice, BBCSO, Gardner, Barbican review – romanticism’s last stand

Only a modest audience turned up for this BBC Symphony Orchestra concert, though it was unclear if this was caused by the threat of airborne disease or the inclusion of Schoenberg on the programme. The result was a paradoxical intimacy, with the...

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Missa solemnis, BBCSO, Runnicles, Barbican review - affirmation in the face of adversity

The tough, knotty writing of the Missa solemnis – its “unrelenting integrity”, Donald Runnicles said in a pre-concert interview – was addressed unflinchingly last night by the BBC Symphony Orchestra and Chorus. They have a distinguished history with...

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Cargill, BBCSO, Saraste, Barbican review - less is more in Shostakovich

Jukka-Pekka Saraste doesn’t visit London much these days. He was Principal Guest Conductor of the BBC Symphony Orchestra, and there were rumours that he was in line for the top job. That didn’t happen, and his career soon took him elsewhere – which...

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prisoner of the state, Barbican review - beauty, but where is the drama?

You can see the temptation. With three different versions and four different overtures to choose from, as well as all that spoken dialogue to cut, substitute or omit, Beethoven’s Fidelio has always been a Choose Your Own Adventure sort of opera – a...

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Requiem for Hieronymus Bosch, BBCSO, Bychkov, Barbican review – fire and brimstone on a flat canvas

“Hieronymus!” bellowed David Wilson Johnson from the Barbican Hall’s circle on Saturday evening. “Hieronymus Bosch!” Commissioned by Dutch radio for a big piece to mark 500 years since the passing of the Dutch painter in 1516, the German composer...

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