Reviews Index

Valery Gergiev – Shostakovich: Symphonies 4-9

by Ben Hogwood

With the centenary of Shostakovich’s birth nearly upon us, Valery Gergiev will be the focus of the commemorations for many, the start of his Barbican…



Prom 72: Bruckner – Symphony No 8 @ Royal Albert Hall, London


Bruckner’s Eighth symphony is the biggest of all 19th century symphonies, and if any one orchestra could exercise a performing claim on it, that orchestra...

Prom 71: Stravinsky – The Rite of Spring; Berg; Haydn – Symphony No 103 @ R...


Any quibbles about this being yet another major orchestra to bring Stravinsky’s Rite Of Spring to the Proms were thrown emphatically out of court at...

Prom 68: Tchaikovsky – Symphony No 4; Rawsthorne – Piano Concerto No 2; Bri...


Rumon Gamba has made his name more recently as a prolific conductor of film scores by British classical composers, and on that basis the drama...

Prom 65: Brahms – Symphony No 1; Lutoslawski – Concerto for Orchestra @ Roy...


Considering the Concertgebouw rank as one of theworld’s top orchestras it was disappointing to see anumber of empty seats in the Albert Hall to greettheir...

Prom 60: Mahler – Symphony No 3 @ Royal Albert Hall, London


Phew. A hot Royal Albert Hall is not the place to be on such a clammy night, still less if the music programmed is a...

Prom 58: Verdi – Requiem @ Royal Albert Hall, London


This performance of Verdi’s Requiem by the BBC Symphony Chorus and the City of Birmingham Symphony Chorus satisfied in places but missed the mark in...

Prom 54: Gorecki – Symphony No 3 @ Royal Albert Hall, London


Henryk Gorecki’s third symphony has enjoyed an extraordinary popularity over the last decade or so, with a pioneering recording from Dawn Upshaw that has made...

Prom 53: Walton – Symphony No 1; Ravel – Sheherezade, Rapsodie Espagnole @ ...


A most endearing feature of the Proms is the encouragement of youth orchestras, and tonight it was the turn of the European Community ensemble to...

Prom 51: Shostakovich – Symphony No 8; Ravel – Piano Concerto, Alborada del...


Most definitely a programme of two halves – the relatively sunny disposition of Ravel in the first, the uncertainty and aggression of wartime Shostakovich in...

Prom 50: Schumann – Piano Concerto in A minor; Stravinsky – The Firebird; N...


After the dubious interpretation of Beethoven’s Ninth in Prom 49, it was nice to return to high quality music-making with this, the BBC Symphony Orchestra’s...

Prom 49: Beethoven – Symphony No 9; Gubaidulina – The Light of the End @ Ro...


Another Prom, another London orchestra, another Beethoven symphony coupled with another piece of modern music. It could well have been a re-run of Friday’s scintillating...

Prom 47: Tippett – Symphony No 4; Beethoven – Symphony No 3 @ Royal Albert ...


The ripple of applause after the first movement of Beethoven’s Eroica symphony at this Proms concert summed up the whole event. For not only were...

Prom 44: Mahler – Symphony No 4; Berg – Lulu-Suite @ Royal Albert Hall, London


She may not have been on stage for much more than ten minutes at a time, but the soprano Christine Schaefer managed to dominate this...

Prom 43: Shostakovich – Symphony No 11; Dalbavie, Stravinsky @ Royal Albert Hall,...


There’s a growing perception among the Prommers that the BBC Symphony Orchestra are in remarkably good form this season, and nothing we saw in this...

Prom 42: Tchaikovsky – The Nutcracker; Iolanta @ Royal Albert Hall, London


Welsh National Opera made a rare but welcome appearance at the Proms with a double bill of works by Tchaikovsky: excerpts from his last ballet...

Prom 36: Bruckner – Symphony No 6; Unsuk Chin, Weber @ Royal Albert Hall, London


At this stage of the season The Proms begin to welcome visitors from overseas, and this concert with the Deutsches Symphonie-Orchester of Berlin offered the...

Prom 35: Elgar – Enigma Variations; Coleridge-Taylor – Violin Concerto; Sta...


To my eyes it often seems that the BBC Concert Orchestra get a raw deal compared to their counterparts in the organisation, looked down on...

Prom 30: Sibelius – Symphony No 5; Tchaikovsky, Mahler @ Royal Albert Hall, London


It was to be the stuff of dreams. NeemeJarvi was sadly not well enough to conduct hisGothenburg forces at the Albert Hall, soresponsibility fell to...

Prom 26: Berio: Coro; Weill: Kleine Dreigroschenmusik @ Royal Albert Hall, London


This late night Prom marked what would have been Luciano Berio’s 80th birthday, with Coro an auspicious choice to celebrate the occasion. However the work...

Prom 23: Berlioz – Roméo et Juliette @ Royal Albert Hall, London


Berlioz remains one of the most unjustly neglected of composers of all time,which is extraordinary considering his contribution to the development ofmusic in the nineteenth...