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24 September 2014
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BBC Proms 2007 
The fireworks finale at BBC Proms In The Park 2006, Hyde Park, London

BBC Proms 2007

Brass day: Saturday 28 July

The BBC Proms brings together hundreds of brass players for a day which promises to be one of the loudest and most memorable experiences of the season.


The day explores the stylistic range to be found in the world of brass instruments, from two of the finest brass bands in the world – the Black Dyke and Grimethorpe Colliery bands – to ancient Uzbek trumpets, from His Majestys Sagbutts and Cornetts to the Fanfare Trumpets of the band of the Coldstream Guards, and from star soloists such as Håkan Hardenberger and David Pyatt, to the youngest enthusiast who has just had his or her first trumpet lesson.


As with Violins!! in 2005, then The Voice in 2006, BBC Proms Learning has put together a spectacular centrepiece for the day. A new work, created specially as part of an ambitious collaborative project, is performed on the high-profile platform of a main evening BBC Proms concert at the Royal Albert Hall.


The BBC commission this year comes from Peter Wiegold, who has created a work for massed brass forces, part composed and part improvised, involving Manchesterand London-based students and professionals.


  • 200 professional and amateur brass players join the BBC Philharmonic for two concerts celebrating brass in all its diversity


  • Two world premieres including a huge creative work by Peter Wiegold for massed forces including professionals and students, plus a specially composed fanfare by Judith Bingham


  • Open 'come and play' workshop for anyone who plays a brass instrument at whatever level


The day starts with an invitation for anyone who plays a brass instrument, from beginners to professionals, to attend a morning playing session called 'Brass Massive', which culminates in the first performance of a version of Judith Bingham's specially created fanfare, Ziggurat, on the steps of the Royal Albert Hall, announcing that Brass Day has begun.


In the matinee concert, the ancient traditions of Uzbekistani trumpeters contrast with two of the finest exponents of the British brass band tradition – the Black Dyke and Grimethorpe Colliery bands.


Brass has one of the longest of traditions in classical music, and the earlier end of the spectrum will be represented by His Majestys Sagbutts and Cornetts in music by Monteverdi (from his opera Orfeo, 400 years old in 2007) and Giovanni Gabrieli.


By contrast, the liveliness of modern-day brass writing is represented by the official world premiere of Judith Bingham's Ziggurat, plus Henze's Ragtimes and Habaneras, a rip-roaring band work originally premiered at the 1975 Proms.


Central to the day are the fruits of an ambitious ongoing collaboration between the BBC Proms and Manchester-based forces including the BBC Philharmonic, the Royal Northern College of Music, Salford University and London-based brass students.


At the heart of this collaboration is an ambitious new piece called He is armoured without created by Peter Wiegold. It brings together the students from Manchester and London as well as the Fanfare Trumpets of the Band of the Coldstream Guards, musicians from the ancient ceremonial tradition of Uzbekistan, and players from the BBC Philharmonic.


He is armoured without, written with the spaces of the Royal Albert Hall in mind, is part composed and part improvised in workshops and Learning sessions beforehand. Peter Wiegold himself conducts the giant forces.


Brass students from the Royal Northern College of Music play 'Side-by-Side' with the brass players of the BBC Philharmonic in a version of Musorgsky's Pictures at an Exhibition, arranged for symphonic brass forces by Elgar Howarth. This will be conducted by Håkan Hardenberger, making his Proms conducting debut.


In the evening concert, Sir Charles Mackerras conducts two works which highlight brass – Schumann's rarely heard Konzertstück for with four leading British horn players and Janáček's blazing Sinfonietta, in which RNCM students again join the BBC Philharmonic. Håkan Hardenberger plays one of the most successful Proms commissions in recent times, H K Gruber's Aerial.


Listings for Saturday 28 July, Brass Day


Brass Massive, 10.00am–12.00 noon, Royal College of Music
Anyone with a brass instrument is invited to turn up and join a team of professionals for a two-hour brass workshop culminating in a world premiere on the steps of the Royal Albert Hall.


Prom 20: 2.00pm
Judith Bingham: Fanfare – 'Ziggurat'
(BBC commission: world premiere)
Players drawn from several of the groups participating in the concert


Monteverdi: Orfeo – Toccata; G. Gabrieli: Sonata pian'e forte Played by His Majesty's Sagbutts and Cornetts


Traditional music from Uzbekistan


Vaughan Williams: Overture 'Henry V' Hans Werner Henze: Ragtimes and Habaneras Played by Grimethorpe Colliery Band/Allan Withington


Heaton:Toccata ('Oh! The Blessed Lord') Philip Wilby: … Dove Descending Played by Black Dyke Band/Nicholas Childs


Elgar: Severn Suite Played by Black Dyke Band and Grimethorpe Colliery Band/ Nicholas Childs


Musorgsky (arr. Elgar Howarth): Pictures at an Exhibition Played by the brass of the BBC Philharmonic, and musicians from the Royal Northern College of Music/Håkan Hardenberger (conductor)


Prom 21: 7.30pm
Judith Bingham: Fanfare – 'Ziggurat'
(BBC commission: second performance)
Players drawn from several of the groups participating in the concert


Schumann: Konzertstück Played by David Pyatt, Michael Thompson, Martin Owen, Cormac Ó hAodáin (horns); BBC Philharmonic/André de Ridder


H K Gruber: Aerial Played by Håkan Hardenberger (trumpet); BBC Philharmonic/ André de Ridder


Peter Wiegold: He is armoured without (BBC commission: world premiere) Played by Håkan Hardenberger (trumpet); BBC Philharmonic; Students from Manchester, Salford, London and the South East; Fanfare Trumpets of the Band of the Coldstream Guards; Uzbek trumpeters/Peter Wiegold


Janáček: Sinfonietta Played by musicians from the Royal Northern College of Music; BBC Philharmonic/Sir Charles Mackerras



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