The Proms, London’s eight-week season of daily orchestral classical music concerts and events, has kicked off for 2018 and Cadogan Hall on Sloane Street is playing host to a series of concerts throughout, held every Monday lunchtime.
A bit of history: Prom is short for promenade concert, a term which originally referred to 18th Century outdoor concerts in London’s pleasure gardens, where members of the audience could stroll around as the orchestra played.
The first of the annual series of Proms continuing today inaugurated in 1895 by the businessman and impresario Robert Newman, who wanted to entice a wider audience for concert hall music by offering tickets to standing areas in the hall, where prices for tickets were considerably lower than those in seated areas, and an informal atmosphere, where eating, drinking and smoking were permitted to the standing “Promenaders” or “Prommers”.
This year, Cadogan Hall’s line-up BBC Proms concerts includes several standout events, from moving choral music from the BBC Singers and Bernstein showtunes to contemporary chamber music and an array of 20th-century French chamber music performed by the soloists of the Berliner Philharmoniker.
For more information and to book tickets, visit www.cadoganhall.com and check out the highlight events below to see what’s happening…
Monday 6 August 2018, 1.00pm
Dame Sarah Connolly and Joseph Middleton
Inspired by themes of lullabies and dreams, sleep, and insomnia, British mezzo-soprano Dame Sarah Connolly makes her Proms recital debut in a programme that combines familiar favourites like Britten’s cycle A Charm of Lullabies and songs by Vaughan Williams with world premieres by Mark-Anthony Turnage and Lisa Illean. Dame Sarah will also world premiere of Britten’s “A Sweet Lullaby”.
Monday 13 August 2018, 1.00pm
Colin Currie & JACK Quartet
Award-winning British percussionist Colin Currie joins forces with dynamic contemporary music specialists, the JACK Quartet, for a programme of 20th- and 21st-Century works, including world premieres by Simon Holt and Suzanne Farrin, and two virtuosic Iannis Xenakis chamber works, including the impossibly demanding Rebonds B for solo percussion.
Monday 20 August 2018, 1.00pm
A beautiful programme of English choral music by the BBC Singers is underscored by themes of endings – whether of a day, a relationship or a lifetime, with poetry by Donne, Shelley, Campion, and Rossetti reimagined in evocative settings by Bridge, Vaughan Williams, and centenary composer Hubert Parry, whose choral cycle “Songs of Farewell” is a powerful statement of a man nearing the end of his life.
Monday 27 August 2018, 1.00pm
Bernstein on Broadway and Beyond
The BBC Proms’ Bernstein series continues with a recital of hits by Bernstein and his associates, including Stephen Sondheim and Aaron Copland. You’ll hear Samuel Barber’s Hermit Songs, Op. 29 – “Sea Snatch” and “The Monk and His Cat”, Copland’s “Pastorale” and the UK premiere of Bernstein’s unfinished ballet “Conch Town”, containing the song now better known as “America” in “West Side Story”, which has now been completed using other material by Bernstein. Mezzo-soprano Wallis Giunta will be joined by pianists Michael Sikich and Iain Farrington.
Monday 3 September 2018, 1.00pm
Soloists of the Berliner Philharmoniker
Hear some of the Berliner Philharmoniker’s finest players perform as soloists in a concert of 20th-century French chamber music at a performance that marks the 100th anniversaries of both Debussy and Lili Boulanger. The programme includes the latter’s evocative sequence of miniatures, “Trois Morceaux”, alongside the neo-Classical melancholy of the Debussy’s Sonata for Flute, Viola and Harp.