Chineke! Voices and Orchestra at the Proms

Very much a concert of two (unequal) halves, I am afraid.  The first Proms performance of George Walker’s 1995 Lilacs promised and delivered much.  However, the following performance of Beethoven’s…

A stirring The Dream of Gerontius from Edward Gardner and the LPO at the Proms

The final weeks of this Proms festival are serving up some terrific big choral works and, sitting in the stalls before this performance of Elgar’s Dream of Gerontius, how wonderful…

Bath Camerata on excellent form at Leominster Priory

Now in its fortieth year, the Presteigne Festival once again brought an eclectic mix of cultural events (music, film, art and poetry) to this unassuming Welsh border town.  Under the…

Stateliness and sincerity from John Butt and the OAE: Bach’s Mass in B Minor at the Proms

Why Bach wrote the B minor Mass is a puzzle that keeps musicologists occupied.  How to perform it today is a probably unresolvable question for practitioners.  The Mass began life…

Prom 49: An overwhelming ‘Resurrection’ Symphony from Sir Simon Rattle

There can be no better venue in London for a performance of Mahler’s ’Resurrection’ Symphony than the Royal Albert Hall.  Those fortunate enough to acquire tickets for this sell-out concert…

VOCES8 and the VOCES8 Scholars perform Vaughan Williams’ Mass in G in Milton Abbey

The closing concert of VOCES8’s annual summer school and festival at Milton Abbey was a contribution to this year’s commemoration of the 150th anniversary of the birth of Ralph Vaughan…

Prom 43: Handel’s Solomon

Some of Handel’s oratorios aspire to theatre; some have had theatre thrust upon them.  Solomon has neither sustained drama nor a coherent narrative, but it does have some fantastic music…

Prom 41: Superb Nielsen from Thomas Dausgaard and the BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra

“I think many people are in for pleasant surprises as they get to know Nielsen: his rough charm, his swing, his drive, his rhythmic surprises, his strange power of harmonic…

Prom 31: Outstanding Wagner, but an uneven Four Last Songs, from Daniele Rustioni and the Ulster Orchestra.

The Proms is the only time many orchestras around the United Kingdom can get to perform in London – and, conversely, the only opportunity critics and audiences have of hearing…

Prom 24: Mendelssohnian playfulness and Mahlerian darkness

A premiere, an outstanding debut and a distinctive symphonic account formed a programme given by the BBC National Orchestra of Wales under its principal conductor Ryan Bancroft in the third…