"Please don't try to make things nice. All the wrong notes are right". And they're never more gloriously right than in Charles Ives's delirious Second Symphony, where slave songs, majorette marches and good old-fashioned romance collide in an irresistible slice of pure Americana. It's the keystone of our American series, and of this all-American evening from BBC SSO favourite Martyn Brabbins. Ives is the spiritual forebear both of Sean Shepherd's irreverent new curtain-raiser, and of the magnificent Piano Concerto by another great American original: George Gershwin. You'd expect unforgettable tunes from Gershwin, and you'd be right; though with soloist Freddy Kempf, you can also expect charisma, flair and virtuosity of skyscraper proportions.
Prelude: 6.45pm in the Recital Room (free to ticket-holders, limited seating availability)
Peter Nelson from the University of Edinburgh discusses the pioneering spirit of America's composers.
Post-Concert Coda (approximately 10 minutes after the main concert)
Freddy Kempf performs a selection from Schumann's Fantasiestücke.
The concert will be recorded for future broadcast on BBC Radio 3.