Pick of the Proms 2012

My pick of the Proms:

Prom 4: Respighi, Ravel and Adams - John Adams conducting (UK premiere ?) of City Noir plus orchestral colours from Italy and France - Adams excels in this kind of pictorial music.

Prom 5: R Strauss, Saariaho & Sibelius -  BBCPO/Jena awesome team and a very full programme.  I'm eager to hear Mena's way in two well established pieces by Strauss and the enigmatic final Sibelius Symphony.

Prom 9,10, 12, 13, 17 & 19: Beethoven and Boulez - the first time in 60 years anyoen has given a cycle of Beethoven symphonies but don't forget the Boulez.  Fantastic opportunity to hear boulez music performed live. All televised too!

Prom 11: Berlioz: The Troyans - ROH Orch/Pappano - great chance to hear this mammoth (4:30 - 10pm!!!) opera and Jonas Kaufmann to boot.

Prom 17: Beethoven & Boulez: Le Marteau sans Maitre - a rare chance to see 87 yo Boulez conduct (if he is well enough) in the Late Night Prom

Prom 23: RVW, Ireland, Delius & Walton: BBCNOW/Otaka - super Prom of English music in the safe hands of Otaka

Prom 27: Wagner & Bruckner: BBSSO/Runnicles - this is a programme which will test Runnicles once and for all for me.  If he can pull off Bruckner 8 (and he's already chosen the wrong edition to perform) then he will go a long way to allaying my doubts.

Prom 33: Wagner, MacMillan & Bruckner - BBCPO/Mena - if his performance of Bruckner Sym No 6 last Christmas was anything to go by this could be a very special Prom.  Mena remains a great favourite - he let's the music breathe and time stand still but he can also can whip it up into a frenzy when it demands.  This concert, with a MacMillan UK premier, is a tasty prospect. In short MUST SEE (it's on TV too!)

Prom 34: Schuber, Dubnon & R Strauss: BBCSO/Bychkov - this conductor does great things with this orchestra

PCM 5: Benedetti/Grynyuk & Elschenbroch trio in bach, Korngold and Brahms

Prom 46: Vaughan-Williams: Symphonies 4, 5 & 6 - BBCSSO/Manze at last all together in one concert.  RVW's war time symphonies - lots of rubbish written about these in terms of WWII.  I think of them as anger, greiving and loss. MUST SEE

Prom 50: Beethoven, Mozart, Delius and Nielsen: BBCSO/Vanska - a fromer Proms favourite of mine is on safer ground with this programme than of late.  But it is a crazy programme noentheless.  Has he lost the power to enchant a Proms audience - we'll see.

Prom 51: DSCH Leningrad Symphony - CBSO/Nelsons - dynamite

Prom 56: Goehr, Knussen, Grime & Debussy - BBCSO/Knussen anothe rpowerful combination - Knussen has been doing fantastic work with this orchestra of late.  Claire Booth with him.  Always compelling.  MUST SEE

Prom 57: Wagner, Berg, Strauss & Ravel: GustavMahler Jugendorchester/Gatti - Gatti persuades most orchestras to make beautiful sounds - this youth orchestra is a crack squad.  Combination in this repetoire is very tasty.

Prom 63 & 64: BPO/Rattle - Most of Rattle's interpretations of mainstream musis I can do without - but in these concerts (neither of which are televised!) there is Ligeti and Lutoslawski - he will excel in both.  I'll be tuning in for those bits.

Prom 72: Adams: Nixon in China - BBCSO/Adams a chance to hear Adam's breakthrough opera under the composer - huge kudos to the BBC for even contemplating it.

Prom 73 & 75: Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra/Haitink - traditional fare here Beethoven, Bruckner, Haydn and R Strauss - it will be great to hear this orchestra in repetoire which is central to its core and which they have been playing since it was written.  BUT if an all male orchestra takes to the stage again - the shine will be taken off its hallowed status.


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