2013 BBC Proms

Posted by: JohnK

2013 BBC Proms - 07/12/13 11:38 PM

Earlier this evening in London the First Night of the Proms took place, beginning 8 weeks of concerts in the world's greatest classical music festival. The finest orchestras visit to present performances, as they have for 119 years.

All concerts are broadcast live on BBC Radio 3 and most are available on demand for the following 7 days. The opening concert featured a nautical theme with Britten's Four Sea Interludes and the massive Vaughan Williams Sea Symphony. Pianist Steven Hough was featured in a performance of the Rachmaninoff Rhapsody on a Theme of Paganini. This is available for 7 days at the BBC iPlayer site here .

As I have in past years, I'll occasionally bring to your attention a concert that I thought was particularly enjoyable.
Posted by: Captain4105

Re: 2013 BBC Proms - 07/17/13 02:12 AM

If you have a spare 19 hours one of the highlights of the Proms this year is the Staatskapelle Berlin under Daniel Barenboim rendering Wagner's Ring Cycle: 1. Das Rheingold,July 22; Die Walkure, July 23; Siegfried, July 26 & Gotterdammerung, July 28.

Two other Wagner opera will be presented as well Tristan und Isolde (7/27)and Tannhauser (8/4).

Wagner is 200 this year and a 7 month festival celebrating his works will be presented in London...wish I could attend in person. I'd gladly put up with fish and chips (heavy on the vinegar) and jellied eels if I could be present for the entire Ring cycle.
Posted by: JohnK

Re: 2013 BBC Proms - 07/17/13 02:17 AM

Lee, I'll be listening to those. I'm looking forward to hearing this Friday's performance of the Rachmaninoff 2nd Symphony conducted by Pappano.
Posted by: JohnK

Re: 2013 BBC Proms - 07/19/13 09:23 PM

Earlier this evening in London the Santa Cecilia Orchestra from Rome, conducted by Sir Antonio Pappano, concluded Prom 10 with a fine performance of one of my favorites, the huge Rachmaninoff 2nd Symphony. This is available for 7 days at the BBC iPlayer site here (fast forward about 25 minutes for the beginning of the Rachmaninoff).
Posted by: Captain4105

Re: 2013 BBC Proms - 07/20/13 03:05 AM

Absolutely outstanding! I too love this symphony above all his orchestra works. Pappano has an operatic feel for this symphony and reveals real drama in the music and also tender sweetness. His climaxes are so natural sounding and masterful. There is yearning and drive...wonderfully paced.

I could not be more impressed with the orchestra. I've not regarded them highly, but with this performance, they've exhibited real style and a central European/Anglo-American sound combination for which I was unprepared. The symphony performance also has an idiomatic feel to it. I am stunned and hope the BBC puts out this concert (with audience noise and all). I am now compelled to listen to his 2011 recording on EMI with the same orchestra which received fine reviews. This performance goes to the top of my list. Really moving...thanks very much for the tip.
Posted by: JohnK

Re: 2013 BBC Proms - 07/20/13 03:54 AM

Lee, was delighted to read of your enjoyment of the performance. As I mentioned in the previous post, I was looking forward to it(I'd heard the 2011 recording you mention), but both Pappano and the orchestra exceeded my expectations.
Posted by: PatCase

Re: 2013 BBC Proms - 07/24/13 03:13 PM

Thanks for this. I'm going to try to access some of the Proms through Sonos since I don't have iPlayer linked to my stereo system. But you did inspire me and I am now listening to Karajan conducting the Alexis Weissenberg and the Berliner Philharmonic playing the Rach 2.
Posted by: JohnK

Re: 2013 BBC Proms - 07/24/13 09:53 PM

Pat, I hope that you can get full access to the programming. The BBC Proms home site is here . Clicking on "Listen in HD" in the upper right corner gets the live Proms broadcasts and other Radio 3 programs. The 7 day "Listen Again" feature can be brought up by clicking on the calendar dates of the performance. A different link to the Rachmaninoff 2nd Symphony performance that Lee and I enjoyed is here .

The other route to this is by installing the iPlayer. The iPlayer help page is here . With access to the iPlayer, its basic program listing page is here .
Posted by: JohnK

Re: 2013 BBC Proms - 07/24/13 10:11 PM

The Proms this year is featuring performances of all the Tchaikovsky symphonies, and earlier this evening concluded the concert with probably my favorite of them, the 4th. The BBC National Orchestra of Wales, conducted by Jac van Steen, presented a very energetic performance. Available for 7 days here on the iPlayer site(fast forward about 44 minutes to the beginning of the Tchaikovsky).
Posted by: JohnK

Re: 2013 BBC Proms - 07/25/13 10:26 PM

A Prom concert I missed previously was rebroadcast on the Radio 3 afternoon program earlier today. The new National Youth Orchestra of the U.S.A. was conducted by Valery Gergiev in a program that featured the Tchaikovsky Violin Concerto with Joshua Bell as soloist and Shostakovich's massive 10th Symphony(with an encore of selections from Gershwin's Porgy and Bess). After beginning with a seemingly almost obligatory new composition which consisted of about 7 minutes of noise(receiving its first and probably last public performance), the young musicians presented the Tchaikovsky and Shostakovich pieces very well. In fact they played remarkably well, especially considering that they were between 16 and 19 and had only gotten together a few weeks previously. This rebroadcast is also available for 7 days on the iPlayer site .
Posted by: JohnK

Re: 2013 BBC Proms - 07/31/13 01:01 AM

Another of the big Shostakovich symphonies, the 11th, received a fine performance from the BBC National Orchestra of Wales to conclude Prom 21. The re-broadcast of the concert was heard on the BBC afternoon program earlier today and is available for 7 days at the iPlayer site here . The Shostakovich begins after forwarding about an hour into the program.
Posted by: JohnK

Re: 2013 BBC Proms - 08/08/13 03:25 AM

Wednesday evening in London Prom Concert 32 concluded with an excellent performance of Holst's "The Planets" by the BBC Symphony Orchestra, conducted by Edward Gardner. The Planets is one of my top favorites and I have 8 CDs out of the 20 or more versions that I've listened to. This thrilling/beautiful music, from "Mars, the Bringer of War" to the concluding "Neptune the Mystic" slowly fading away, has been the gateway for many into the world of classical music which is waiting out there for us. The intermission featured a talk by journalist Paul Morley, describing his journey to musical taste, from his early pop and rock which can now sound "quaint and dated", for which The Planets served as his entryway.

Available for 7 days on the iPlayer site here . The Planets begins about 10 minutes in, following the conclusion of the intermission talk.
Posted by: JohnK

Re: 2013 BBC Proms - 08/14/13 04:09 AM

Yesterday Prom 39 concluded with a very good performance of the Vaughan Williams Symphony No. 2("London")by the BBC National Orchestra of Wales. Music mixing quiet beauty with dramatic moments. Available for 6 more days on the iPlayer site .
Posted by: JohnK

Re: 2013 BBC Proms - 08/21/13 03:12 AM

On the BBC Sunday afternoon program, Prom 42, with the Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra, was re-broadcast. A very enjoyable program overall, beginning with the stirring brass fanfares of Janacek's Sinfonietta and following with a performance of the Beethoven 3rd Piano Concerto. The concert concluded with Tchaikovsky's melodious 3rd Symphony("Polish"). Available for 5 more days on the iPlayer site .
Posted by: JohnK

Re: 2013 BBC Proms - 08/22/13 12:55 AM

Prom Concert 51 concluded with a fine performance by the London Symphony of the beautiful and elegant Elgar Symphony No.2. Available for 6 days at the iPlayer site .
Posted by: JohnK

Re: 2013 BBC Proms - 09/02/13 09:35 PM

Prom 68 opened the final week of the 2013 Proms earlier this evening with an excellent concert from beginning to end, with Vasily Petrenko conducting the Oslo Philharmonic. The program opened with the Tchaikovsky Symphony No. 1("Winter Daydreams")in which he had already demonstrated a mastery of the form. After forwarding about 20 minutes through the intermission, the exotic sounds Szymanowski created for his Violin Concerto No. 1 opened the second half. Rachmaninoff's final orchestral work, the beautiful Symphonic Dances, brought the concert to a strong conclusion.

Available for 7 days on the iPlayer site .