BBC Radio 3
Andrew Caspari, Head of Speech Radio and Classical Music, Multiplatform
Andrew Caspari introduces the new version of the iPlayer Radio app, which allows us to download almost all BBC Radio 3 programmes, including the 2015 Proms season of concerts.
Head of Speech Radio and Classical Music, Multiplatform
Today is a really big day for all of us who enjoy being able to choose a radio programme to listen to according to our mood and listen to it wherever we are. I know I am not alone in doing this because over 17 million podcast episodes from BBC Radio are already being downloaded every month in the UK. The only problem with our marvellous podcasts is that they only exist for a relatively small proportion of Radio 3's output and even less on other networks.
With the release this week of the new version of the iPlayer Radio app on Apple and Android smartphones and tablets, it will be possible to download almost all of our programmes and keep them on your device to listen to whenever you want, for 30 days from their first transmission.
For Radio 3 listeners - like me - it is particularly exciting to have the new app in time for the 2015 BBC Proms. For the first time in its 120-year history this outstanding season of concerts can be yours to take with you and listen to anywhere... it's the Proms in your pocket.
The app has been designed to make this whole business as easy as possible.
Here is a step-by-step guide to show you exactly how to download whatever programme you like.
BBC Symphony Orchestra
The beautiful environs of Bad Kissingen
The BBC Symphony Orchestra has been coming to Bad Kissingen practically every summer since 1998. It is an idyllic spa town in the Franconia region of northern Bavaria, where the good burghers of the surrounding areas come to take the waters and the Cure. I must be getting old because although I've been here a dozen times, I increasingly look forward to our visits here.
Part of the reason is the air of relaxation amid the beautiful gardens, but also the venue, which is stunning. Built in 1913, the oak-panelled Regentenbau seats about 1000 people and has fine, warm acoustics.
Particularly warm this year, for, like London, 'Bad K' (as we affectionately call the place) is experiencing a scorcher of a heat wave. The opening piece in the first concert happily reflects this as we start with Grieg's first Peer Gynt suite. Most people like to think of the opening 'Morning mood' as a snow-covered mountain scene, set amidst the Norwegian fjords, yet it actually depicts sunrise in the...
Radio 3 Presenter
Heroes and Villains
The first time I ever played Värttinä on Radio 3 was back in 1997 on a programme called Musical Encounters where they rubbed shoulders with Dvořák, Mozart, Giya Kancheli, Jan Garbarek and the Hilliard Ensemble. Once Late Junction had begun, in 1999, they had a natural home for their music, and we recorded them at the Wychwood Festival and at Womad. I remember being at their 20th anniversary celebrations in Helsinki too. I just feel I’ve known them forever, and that this exciting collaboration with the BBC Concert Orchestra is a very natural next chapter.
I haven’t seen them since 2012 when I was honoured to present them with a Lifetime Achievement Award at Womex in Thessaloniki so I can’t wait for that moment when BBC 6 Music’s Tom Ravenscroft and I are live on Radio 3 sharing the stage with them and the orchestra and conductor Charles Hazlewood.
The Värttinä story goes back to 1983 to the Finnish village of Rääkkylä where mothers and grandmothers got some of...
Radio 3 Presenter
Jez Nelson previews this week’s Jazz on 3, paying tribute to saxophonist and composer Ornette Coleman
Time after time jazz musicians talk about the quest to find their own voice. It seems to me that Ornette Coleman found his at an early age and it was one of the most recognisable in this beautiful music’s history. Ornette's blues-drenched, heart-stopping alto call was as close to the cry of...
Chief Conductor, BBC Symphony Orchestra
Carl Nielsen at his piano. Photo: The Royal Library, Copenhagen
Most of the BBC Symphony Orchestra’s cycle of Carl Nielsen symphonies is now complete, and I am hugely looking forward to completing this fascinating survey of the great Danish composer’s music mirrored by that of his contemporaries.
This year's other great birthday hero, Jean Sibelius, is an obvious companion, despite the almost diametrically opposed nature of the two composers' musical...
BBC Symphony Orchestra
Dalibor at the Barbican Hall. Photo: Mark Allan/BBC
In the past the BBC Symphony Orchestra's former chief conductor Jiří Bělohlávek has conducted a number of Czech operas by Dvořák, Smetana, Janáček and Martinů in highly successful concert performances.
A few years ago we performed Dvořák's The Jacobin which was huge fun for everybody and I remember being surprised to learn that Dvořák had actually written nine others. Yet, surprisingly,...
Joining forces ‒ the BBC Singers and Singapore Symphony Chorus
This year saw another first for the BBC Singers: a tour to Singapore at the invitation of the Singapore Symphony Orchestra and Chorus, to join them in three performances of Beethoven’s Ninth Symphony in celebration of their 36th anniversary. We stayed in the Central Business District of Singapore, all elegant skyscrapers with gleaming surfaces, brand new shopping malls and futuristic parks,...
Editor, Live Music, BBC Radio 3
(L-R) Dame Evelyn Glennie, Danielle de Niese, Katie Derham, Nicholas Collon and pupils from Luton Music Service celebrate the launch of the 2015 BBC Proms ©BBC / Andrew Hayes-Watkins
This is always an exciting day for Radio 3: the moment when the truly salivating line-up of concerts and events that make up the world’s biggest classical music festival is revealed, and we begin in earnest the incredibly detailed planning that goes into broadcasting every Prom live. The technical challenges are huge ‒ in the course of a single day the team of highly skilled studio managers...
Controller, BBC Radio 3
Photo: Mark Allan/BBC
You may have read reports on comments I made this week about levels of classical music literacy now compared to the era of the Third Programme. The reports were given headlines that didn't really reflect what I actually said. Therefore I’d like to expand on my comments here and put them back in the context in which they were delivered.
I was asked about the challenges facing me as...
Resident Composer BBC NOW
Time to Write
The orchestra rehearsals are about to begin in advance of the premiere of A Violence of Gifts. I find the days immediately before rehearsals an unsettling time – a strange mixture of disquiet and anticipation. I think it’s due to the imminent transition from having a new work exist only in your mind to having it brought suddenly and vividly to life by musicians. As I prepare for this experience, I find thinking back to the solitude of the early stages of writing the music helps to calm my nerves…
I hadn’t paid much attention to the North Polar Vortex until the day before I...