words Alexa Wang
If you’ve long been among those people who consider classical music dull, this year is a good time to think again, with lots of notable classical music events coming up.
And, if you have only recently caught the classical bug, you could easily relate to Southbank Centre artistic director Jude Kelly, who told The Guardian: “Classical music from all cultures and parts of the world is profound and important in its ability to speak of inner and outer landscapes.”
RNCM Film Orchestra
Royal Northern College of Music, Manchester, 24 February, 19:30, £10
Tom Redmond will be compere for the second fundraising event organised by the RNCM Student Development Board. This time, it’s the history of film music from the past century or so that is the focus for the RNCM Film Orchestra, which comprises selected musicians currently based at one of the world’s leading music schools.
Much-loved movies including The Wizard of Oz, Psycho, 2001: A Space Odyssey, The Godfather, Toy Story 2 and Skyfall will be represented with the music selections. All proceeds from this concert will go to the charities Save the Children Syria and the RNCM’s Roof Garden Fund.
BBC Proms in the Park
Hyde Park, London, 9 September
There are various classical music events promoted by Coach House Pianos, but one the classical music calendar’s highlights is the series of concerts known as the BBC Proms. These continue throughout the summer; however, we would especially draw attention to BBC Proms in the Park. Britain’s largest open-air classical music event is returning this September, as advertised by Visit London.
Attendees aren’t shy about showing their patriotic side at this annual event – and, while the line-up of performers for this year’s outing have yet to be announced, we can expect a wide array of glittering names. Frankie Valli and The Four Seasons, All Saints, Rick Astley, the BBC Concert Orchestra and the Royal Choral Society were among last year’s acts.
Daniel Barenboim and West-Eastern Divan Orchestra
Southbank Centre, London, 28 October, 18:30, £20-125
In January, the Southbank Centre announced its upcoming 2017-18 season of classical performances. Musicians set to visit include Daniel Barenboim – who, with his West-Eastern Divan Orchestra, will stage a tribute concert to late cellist Jacqueline du Pré, his first wife, who was prevented from performing after being diagnosed with multiple sclerosis in 1973.
Barenboim’s concert will include pieces by Strauss and Tchaikovsky and help the MS Society to raise funds. “MS remains a cruel disease,” Barenboim said. “It can be an illness that destroys the very essence of what it means to be a human being. Every effort must be made to work towards finding a cure.”
Oh, and don’t rule yourself out of attending on the basis that classical music can’t possibly be for you. Kelly has insisted: “The idea that we could ever hold it as the preserve of the few and not the many is laughable. Why would we ever want to do that?”