Monday 22 August 2011

Russian Prom at The Royal Albert Hall

On Wednesday 17th August 2011 I attended BBC Prom 44 at The Royal Albert Hall with the Philharmonia Orchestra, Esa-Pekka Salonen - conductor, Zsolt-Tihamer Visontay - leader and Lisa Batiashvili - violin.

The programme for the evening consisted of The Age of Gold suite, Violin Concerto No.1 in A minor - Shostakovich, Petrushka (1947 version) - Stravinsky and Francesca de Rimini - Tchaikovsky.

The Age of Gold is music portraying a Soviet football team while Shostakovich's Violin Concerto is a very symphonic concerto. Lisa Batiashvili recorded this with Esa-Pekka Salonen on her album Echoes of Time which is a recording I highly recommend. It was brilliant to witness her play this live at this her Proms debut. A very powerful performance that charmed the audience at The Royal Albert Hall.

After the interval the Philharmonia Orchestra gave a stunning performance of Stravinsky's Petrushka which is a ballet based on St. Petersburg's Shrovetide fair. This outstanding evening of music finished with Tchaikovsky's Francesca da Rimini - symphonic fantasia after Dante. This was a rousing end to the concert as the powerful sounds of Tchaikovsky's symphonic poem filled the Hall like a hurricane.  

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