The 2012 Proms on TV, part two
As I write this I am waiting for Martin Creed's Bells to ring out over the country. And I am wondering how Danny Boyle is feeling this morning. For everyone who puts on events, there is always this moment just before, the quiet moment, when the stage is empty, just waiting for everything to begin. The moment when you think to yourself, goodness, will it all be okay! And you feel sick with anxiety! It's something you always think you will get better at but that feeling is always there, as intense as ever. But tonight is a whopping great big event like no other! So I can't imagine how everyone's feelng today, so I want to start by sending huge good vibes to Danny Boyle and wish him and his team all the very best of luck for the opening ceremony tonight. When it's all over Danny, please come to the Proms and chill out with us okay!
The other big event tonight for us is Daniel Barenboim and the West Eastern Divan orchestra performing their last concert in the Beethoven series at the Proms at 6.30pm. It's live on Radio 3 this evening and broadcast on BBC Two tomorrow night, together with a new documentary Barenboim on Beethoven, with the maestro himself, and the orchestral musicians and Tom Service talking us through the symphonies and why they are so special. The other concerts are on the iPlayer if you need to catch up. From the reaction in the hall this week, I think the audience won't let them leave tonight. You want to lock the doors and make them just keep on playing. The music-making is incredible, the precision of the playing out of this world, the interpretation of the music, just so powerful and moving. I do recommend you catch up with these performances on iPlayer.
Talking of chilling out at the Proms, the other night I want up to the gallery in the Royal Albert Hall. Great view from there, the hall looks so beautiful with the new lighting and stage design. The great thing to do up there is just lie flat out on the floor and let the music wash over you. It's a great place to be for the Proms.
I am now totally maxed out on my 3G on my iphone and turning to my lovely old radio at home, so next week in the evenings I will be on the sun (hopefully) lounger finally in my garden with the Radio on extension cable listening to Bach's B Minor Mass (Aug 2nd 7.30pm) and the Scottish Symphony doing Wagner and Bruckner. On TV we have Bach Live too on Thursday, Wagner live Friday and Handel's Water Music on BBC Two on Saturday night. God Bless technology.
The first time I heard Wagner's music live was years ago when I was working with Sir Peter Hall when he directed the Ring in Bayreuth with Sir Georg Solti. One of the many moments in my life when the privilege of working in music has been overwhelming. The English Ring was controversial and likely to be shot down. Bill Dudley the designer turned to Peter as they edged forward and took their curtain call expecting to be murdered by the audience - a general rule with The Ring cycle was: shot down first year, liked a little bit in second year, and third year hailed as the greatest Ring ever - and he whispered "it's only rock and roll".
Good luck to Danny Boyle and wishing you all a glorious Olympic opening weekend!
Jan Younghusband is BBC commissioning editor, Music & Events
- Listen to every prom live on BBC Radio 3 and in high-quality HD Sound online
- Details of every Prom, with programme notes, clips, pictures and links to every broadcast on TV and radio on the BBC Proms web site.
- All nine of the Beethoven Symphonies can be heard in full for thirty days in our 'Beethoven at the Proms' collection online.