The big guns really are out at next week's Promenade Concerts. Choose from Verdi's Requiem, Mahler's 3rd and 6th Symphonies, Strauss' Also sprach Zarathustra, and Rimsky's Scherezade. New music includes Boulez and an Esa-Peka Salonen world premiere.
My choice of the European Youth Orchestra's Walton 1 as my Prom of the week last week turned out to be a shrewd one. Wow! - didn't those brilliant young musicians play their hearts out? And wasn't John Eliot Gardiner's conducting revelatory in a work miles away from his Baroque roots? The youth orchestras this year have brought a spontaneity and electricity that has made some of the 'London today, Edinburgh tomorrow' visiting orchestras sound positively routine.
Wednesday's Missa Solemnis nearly got my vote for the next Prom of the week. But I'm becoming so used to authentic instrument performances that I reserve judgement on this Cleveland Orchestra concert until I've heard it.
So call me predictable but my Prom of the week is not one of the big guns. It is The Sixteen directed by Harry Christophers with a late night concert on Thursday (photo above). They start with two works by two little known 15th century English composers, Robert Wylkynson and William Cornysh. It's then Tallis all the way. Listen out for the 'Why fum'th in sight' from Tallis' Nine Tunes for Archbishop Parker's Psalter. It's one of the two Tallis works that everyone knows, albeit in the guise of Ralph Vaughan-William's Fantasia on a Theme by Thomas Tallis. And the last work is the other one everyone knows - Spem in Alium.
Verdi Requiem; Italian Gianandera Noseda conducts. Sunday 28th August, 18.30h
Strauss, Also sprach Zarathustra; David Zinman with Tonhalle Orchestra from Zurich. Monday 29th August, 19.30h
Mahler, Symphony No 3; Franz Welser-Most conducts Cleveland Orchestra. Tuesday 30th August, 19.00h
Beethoven, Missa solemnis; Second of two Cleveland blockbuster programmes. Interesting forces these days for this work. Wednesday 31st August, 19.30h
Mahler, Symphony No 6; Mahler week for the Proms, after No 3 two days ago Mariss Jansons and the Royal Concertgebouw doubles the stakes with No 6. Thursday 1st September, 19.00h
Lutoslawski and Brahms Symphony No 1; Dutch visitors second programme. Friday 2nd September, 19.30h
Salonen, everyone can reveal a sigh of relief. EPS has finished his new commission, and an overgrown path can reveal it's called Helix. Will Valery Gergiev will have his head down in the scarcely dry score? Saturday 27th August, 19.30h
Boulez, Messiaen and Stravinsky; includes Boulez’s cummings ist der Dichter. Tuesday 30th August, 22.00h
Monteverdi and Carissimi; motets and instrumental works; sung by I Faglioni. Monday 29th August, 13.00h
Tallis, Spem in Alium and more; Harry Christophers conducts The Sixteen. Thursday 1st September, 22.00h
All the concerts above are being broadcast live by BBC Radio 3, and are available as live web casts. Many of them are also available for seven days after broadcast on the BBC Listen Again service but some aren’t. Check BBC listings for which are available via ‘listen again’ but as a rule of thumb high profile orchestras and artists are usually too expensive for the BBC to buy repeat broadcast rights.
This is a personal, and fallible, selection of the week's concerts. The full weeks programmes are available through this link. Concerts start dates are given in British Summer Time using 24 hour clock (19.00h = 7.00pm) Convert these timings to your local time zone using this link
The Guardian are reviewing every Prom this season. Access their reviews via this link.
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