28 Aug 2017

BBC Proms 2017 - Week Five

From Music Alive, 6:00 am on 28 August 2017

Unfinished business at the Proms

Schubert's Unfinished Symphony, score

Schubert's Unfinished Symphony, score Photo: Public Domain via Wikimedia Commons

Just because something isn’t finished doesn’t mean it’s a lost cause. 

Schubert clearly demonstrated this in his Symphony No 8 in B minor (he only managed two movements) but it’s one of his best-loved works. It’s been given the title “Unfinished”, although nobody seems to be clear as to exactly why Schubert didn’t add more to this masterpiece. Swedish conductor Thomas Dausgaard conducts the BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra in Schubert’s Unfinished Symphony along with Mahler’s Symphony No 10, which was also left unfinished (but completed by Deryck Cooke), on Wednesday morning during Weekday Classics with Clarissa Dunn. This concert was a case of unfinished business for RNZ Concert too, as we tried to broadcast it last week but were foiled by a technical fault.

“With it I have given all I could. What I did I could not achieve again.” Those words from the composer Camille Saint-Saëns who felt very definitely finished with his Symphony  No 3, (the Organ Symphony). A mammoth work composed at the peak of his career, organist Cameron Carpenter performs it with the Royal Philharmonic this Wednesday night at 7. The same Proms concert also has violinist Joshua Bell as soloist with French composer Edouard Lalo’s love letter to Spain, his Symphonie Espagnole. Charles Dutoit conducts.

Friday night is ground breaking with the first complete live performance of Philip Glass and Ravi Shankar’s 1964 concept album Passages (it’s been called a ‘musical collision’ of two cultures). The Britten Sinfonia is joined by sitar virtuoso (and Shankar’s daughter) Anoushka Shankar.


Tuesday 29 August

7.00 Music Alive

BRAHMS: Tragic Overture Op 81; BERG: Violin Concerto, To the Memory of an Angel; LARCHER: Nocturne, Insomnia, SCHUMANN: Symphony No 3 in Eb Op 97, Rhenish

Christian Tetzlaff (violin), Scottish CO/Robin Ticciati (recorded by the BBC, Royal Albert Hall, London)


Wednesday 30 August

10.00 Weekday Classics with Clarissa Dunn

SCHUBERT: Symphony No 8 in B minor D 759, Unfinished; MAHLER (completed Cooke): Symphony No 10 in F# minor

BBC Scottish SO/Thomas Dausgaard (recorded by the BBC, Royal Albert Hall, London)

Joshua Bell

Joshua Bell Photo: Public Domain

7.00 Music Alive

FALLA: El Amor Brujo, Suite; LALO: Symphonie espagnole; SAINT-SAËNS: Symphony No 3 in C minor Op 78, Organ

Stéphanie d'Oustrac (mezzo), Joshua Bell (violin), Cameron Carpenter (organ), Royal Philharmonic/Charles Dutoit (recorded by the BBC, Royal Albert Hall, London)


Thursday 31 August

10.00 Weekday Classics with Clarissa Dunn

SAINT-SAËNS: La princesse jaune, Overture; DELIBES: Lakmé, Overture and Ballet Music; SAINT-SAËNS: Piano Concerto No 5 in F Op 103, Egyptian; FRANCK: Les Djinns; LALO: Suites Nos 1 & 2, from Namouna; SAINT-SAËNS: Bacchanale, from Samson & Delilah

Cédric Tiberghien (piano), Les Siècles/François-Xavier Roth (recorded by the BBC, Royal Albert Hall, London)

Friday 1 September

7.00 Music Alive


Anoushka Shankar (sitar), Britten Sinfonia/Karen Kamensek (recorded by the BBC, Royal Albert Hall, London)

Sergei Rachmaninov

Sergei Rachmaninov in 1921 Photo: Kubey Rembrandt, Public Domain

Saturday 2 September

7.00 Music Alive

RACHMANINOV: Piano Concerto No 3 in D minor Op 30; Symphony No 2 in E minor Op 27

Alexander Gavrylyuk (piano), Latvian Radio Choir, BBC Scottish SO/Thomas Dausgaard (recorded by the BBC, Royal Albert Hall, London)


Sunday 3 September

10.00 BBC Proms 2017

BBC Singers, City of London Sinfonia/Sofi Jeannin

Reformation Day: The Passion in History (recorded by the BBC, Royal Albert Hall, London)