Prom 21 (part 1): Colin Matthews, Prokofiev and Shostakovich
Live from the Royal Albert Hall, London
Presented by Katie Derham
The BBC National Orchestra of Wales and Thomas Søndergård live at the BBC Proms with Russian masterpeices by Prokofiev and Shostakovich plus a UK premiere by Colin Matthews
Colin Matthews: Turning Point (UK premiere)
Prokofiev: Violin Concerto No. 2 in G minor
Shostakovich Symphony No. 11, 'The Year 1905'
Daniel Hope (violin)
BBC National Orchestra of Wales
Thomas Søndergård (conductor)
The BBC National Orchestra of Wales reutrns to the BBC Proms with Principal Conductor Thomas Søndergård to give the UK premiere of Colin Matthews's mercurial Turning Point. First performed in 2007 by the Concertgebouw of Amsterdam, it's a work the composer wrestled with over several years. The fast opening section came into being in 2003, but Matthews couldn't immediately find the way forward, and when he did a year later, the continuation was even faster, a whirling, scherzo-like episode. Once again, the composer ground to a halt, unable to continue. The 'turning point' came with a complete change of direction, music that was very slow and intense though based entirely on the same material that was heard earlier. The overall impression is, as Matthews puts it "of complex momentum countered by expressive simplicity".
British violinist Daniel Hope has toured the world as a virtuoso soloist for many years. Acclaimed by critics as adventurous and brilliant, of probing intellect and commanding style, he's also been described as "the most exciting British string player since Jacqueline du Pré" by the Observer. Prokofiev's Second Violin Concerto was a landmark in his search for a new simplicity and a directness of expression. The flinty beauty of the concerto stands in sharp contrast to the granite heft of Shostakovich's Symphony No. 11, 'The Year 1905' written four years after the death of Joseph Stalin and studded through with revolutionary songs.
This Prom will be repeated on Tuesday 30th July at 2pm.