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Tchaikovsky's First Piano Concerto, Ethel Smyth's Mass

Live at the Barbican, Martyn Brabbins conducts the BBC Symphony Orchestra and Chorus in Ethel Smyth’s Mass in D. Pavel Koleshnikov joins them for Tchaikovsky’s Piano Concerto No 1.

Live from the Barbican Martyn Brabbins conducts the BBC Symphony Orchestra & Chorus in Ethel Smyth’s Mass in D. Pavel Koleshnikov is the soloist in Tchaikovsky’s Piano Concerto No.1

Presented by Martin Handley

Tchaikovsky: Piano Concerto No.1 in Bb Minor, Op.23 (original version)

08.00 Interval:

Dame Ethyl Smyth, in a radio talk from 1935, briefly reminisces about Brahms at the piano

Prelude and Fugue in B Minor BWV 544
Ton Koopman (Rudolf Garrels organ built 1729-1732, Grote Kerk, Maassluis, Holland)

Eleven Chorale Preludes, Opus posth.122 – No.11 O Welt, ich muss dich lassen
Kevin Bowyer (Marcussen organ of Odense Cathedral, Denmark)

Martin Handley talks to Neil Ferris Chorus Director of the BBC Symphony Chorus in this their 90th year; and we hear from Chorus members: Lizzie Howard, Alan Barker, Helen Tierney and Simon Frais.

08.20 Concert Part 2 Ethel Smyth: Mass in D

Pavel Kolesnikov (piano)
Lucy Crowe (soprano)
Catriona Morison (mezzo-soprano)
Ben Johnson (tenor)
Duncan Rock (bass-baritone)
BBC Symphony Chorus
BBC Symphony Orchestra
Martyn Brabbins (conductor)

The BBC Symphony Chorus launches its 90th birthday season with a concert featuring Ethel Smyth’s Mass in D. Admired by Adrian Boult and Thomas Beecham, and counting Tchaikovsky among her personal friends and supporters, composer-suffragette Ethel Smyth was a pioneer both in and out of the concert hall. Her Mass in D, fittingly performed in the centenary year of women’s suffrage, is a major work whose highlights include the blazing Sanctus and a delicate Benedictus.

Tchaikovsky’s Piano Concerto No. 1 is deservedly considered one of the Romantic greats; the majesty of its opening movement, the lullaby of the slow, and the fleetness of finger work required in the finale will tonight be in the sympathetic hands of young Russian pianist Pavel Koleshnikov. After Tchaikovsky’s death unauthorised editions of the concerto were circulated; these are stripped away in this evening's performance of the work in its original version.

2 hours, 28 minutes

Music Played

  • Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky

    Piano Concerto No.1 (original version)

    Performer: Pavel Kolesnikov. Orchestra: BBC Symphony Orchestra.
  • Dame Ethel Smyth

    Mass in D

    Choir: BBC Symphony Chorus. Orchestra: BBC Symphony Orchestra.
  • Richard Wagner

    Spinning Chorus transc Liszt (The Flying Dutchman)

    Performer: Llŷr Williams.
    • Signum.
  • Claudio Monteverdi

    Zefiro Torna

    Performer: Stephen Stubbs. Performer: Erin Headley. Ensemble: Red Byrd. Singer: Andrew Lawrence‐King.
    • Factory.


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