Big and meaty symphony week at the BBC Proms

Karl Amadeus Hartmann's Symphony No 6 is arguably his greatest work. Best known as a member of the musical resistance to Hitler, he composed this symphony between 1951 and 1953. It is a two movement work that looks resolutely forward while staying linked to the great Austro-German tradition that Hartmann championed. (The painting to the right is Hartmann). The exquisitely executed orchestration includes harps, bells and piano duet.

There is a rare opportunity to hear Hartmann's 6th Symphony next week in the Prom concert on Thursday 11th August when it is conducted by Ingo Metzmacher. It is a good week for the late-romantics as the following evening (12th Aug) brings Nielsen's mighty 5th Symphony (one of my candidates for the greatest symphony of the 20th century) played by the Danish Radio Symphony Orchestra. And the mainstream romantic repertoire is well represented by Elgar's Symphony No 1 on Saturday 6th August, with the National Youth Orchestra, plus Holst's The Planets (8th Aug), Elgar's Enigma Variations (9th Aug) and Bruckner's 6th Symphony (10th Aug). What a feast of symphonic masterpieces in one week, and you can listen in to every single concert on the BBC's webcasts.

Lots of new music as well with premieres from Paul Patterson and Bent Sorensen, shame about the drought of early music though.

Mainstream Highlights:
Elgar, Symphony No 1: the annual Proms appearance by our National Youth Orchestra is always a highlight, this magnificent symphony with Tadaaki Otaka conducting should be unmissable. Saturday 6th August, 7.30h
Symphony No 5; Danish National Radio Symphony under Thomas Dausgaard should guarantee an authentic Danish performance, Friday 12th August, 19.30h

New Music:
, Orchestra on Parade; London premiere ith National Youth Orchestra. Saturday 6th August, 19.30h.
Symphony No 6; Austro-Germanic symphony conducted by Ingo Metzmacher. Thursday 11th august, 19.30h
Sorensen, Little Mermaid; world premiere of Hans Christian Andersen setting for soprano and tenor. Friday 12th August, 19.30h

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.

This preview of the following week's Proms appears every week on an overgrown path. If you want to share an upcoming concert with a friend email the post to them using the envelope icon at the foot of the post.

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Anonymous said…
As a member of the NYO, I want to say thanks for the support and good advertising!!! Any chance of hearing what you thought of our performance?
Pliable said…
Thanks for that kind comment, it's appreciated.

I said before the concert it would be unmissable, and that is also my view after.

I have to say that the opening bars of Elgar 1 always send a shiver of anticipation down my spine. Anticipation of the 45 minute journey down that extraordinary musical overgrown path. The NYO Prom performance didn't disappoint.

On the one hand we have the technically impeccable, polished, but ultimately musical vaccuous performances of the touring 'super' orchestras. On the other we have the equally technically superb musical events produced by the NYO and a select group of others who are not part of the growing music-like-waterculture.

There is an obvious opportunitu for the NYO to license BBC recordings and issue them on a NYO Live label. This would generate valuable revenue, as well as reaching a very apprecitive audience. Worth pursuing?

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