Live from the Royal Albert Hall, London
Presented by Sara Mohr-Pietsch
The BBC Symphony Orchestra and Martyn Brabbins live at the BBC Proms. Music by Ivor Gurney commemorating 100 years since the outbreak of World War I, plus Sally Beamish & Walton.
Gurney: War Elegy
Sally Beamish: The Singing
8.20pm Interval (see separate billing)
Walton: Symphony No. 1 in B flat minor
James Crabb (accordion)
BBC Symphony Orchestra
Martyn Brabbins (conductor)
The BBC Symphony Orchestra explores responses to conflict across the generations. Gassed while fighting in the trenches in 1917, Gurney never fully recovered. His War Elegy (1920) is a characteristically personal lament - heavy with bittersweet sadness and regret. While not explicitly programmatic, the slow movement of Walton's First Symphony is among the 20th century's most poignant orchestral cries of grief - an echo in the 1930s, perhaps, of horrors past, and a foreshadow of horrors yet to come.
Sally Beamish's accordion concerto 'The Singing' will replace the earlier billed Violin Concerto, which has been cancelled due to performer illness. Originally premiered in 2006 by tonight's soloist, James Crabb, the piece commemorates the Highland Clearances. Meditating on the displacement of Scottish Highland communities in the 19th century to far shoreside allotments, and the emigration of yet others to the New World, Beamish uses Gaelic psalm and working songs, bagpipe pibrochs and birdsong to give voice to the story.
This Prom will be repeated on Tuesday 5th August at 2pm.