London is full of quirky music experiences. Whether you’re in a sweaty basement venue or on the side of the River Thames, there’s always music trickling through and under the streets of London. This hub of culture and sonic wonder is best expressed through the world-renowned BBC Proms in the Park, a string of events which can only be described as a colourful display of classical music, live and culminating with a dazzling fire display form the heart of Hyde Park. The events run through the spring and summer of 2017 and culminate on September 9th, meaning there is still time for guests at hotels in Paddington London to catch some of the highest quality music out there.
History of The Proms
Consisting of 8 weeks of orchestral and classical music concerts, the Henry Wood Promenade Concerts, most recently known as the BBC Proms is held mainly in the Royal Albert Hall but takes place in many other venues. The event has been hosted since 1895, making this its 122nd year. With over a hundred concerts affiliated with the proms and the term historically refers to “promenade concerts,” traditionally outdoor concerts which often took place in the pleasure gardens of London. There is a lot to choose from for potential “prommers” and knowing where to start can be tricky, especially when faced with the intimidating face of one of London’s most classy and well attended events.
5th September Missy Mazzoli, Bartók and Dvořák
The 5th of September sees the Royal Albert Hall hosting Missy Mazoli, Bartok and Dvorak performances. Missy Mazzoli opens the concert with her entrancing piano Sinfonia whilst pianist Jeremy Denk and Karina Canellakis join the BBC SO to play Bartok’s Second Piano Concerto. This breath-taking trip is not one to be missed, especially due to the fact that Bela Viktor Janos Bartok is thought to be one of the most important composers of the 20th century as well as being one of Hungary’s greatest composers.
6th September Stravinsky, Britten, Prokofiev and Shostakovich
With this year being the centenary of the Russian Revolution, it is no surprise that Prokofiev’s Mendelssihnian first violin concerto and Shostakovich’s Symphony No.11 will be performed by Russian violinist Alina Ibragimova and the London Philharmonic Orchestra. The composer will be the well-known Vladimir Jurowski, heading the orchestra as the legendary Russian Funeral by Benjamin Britten will be played alongside Stravinsky’s long-lost Funeral Song.
7th September Vienna Philharmonic – Mahler’s Sixth Symphony
The Royal Albert Hall will also play host to the Vienna Philharmonic and their rendition of the Romantic era Mahler’s Sixth. This experience is sure to be cathartic and grows and rolls into a thundering crescendo.
Proms in the Park
Proms in the Park bookends the finale of the Proms season with live filmed performances in Hyde Park. This year will see Kinks front man Sir Ray Davies perform alongside Sir Bryn Terfel, a Bass Baritone singer and actress Elain Paige. On top of this Steps will also perform, as well as much loved group Texas.