Royal Albert Hall, London SW7 (0171-589 8212)
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The 105th Proms season opens on Friday night with a performance of the late Sir Michael Tippett's choral masterpiece, The Mask of Time. It is a typical Proms piece - big, challenging, ambitious - and sets the scene for the 79 concerts that follow. Next week, the newly appointed musical director of the Berlin Philharmonic, Sir Simon Rattle (left), conducts the Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment in a rare outing of Rameau's opera, Les Boreades. It's just one of the pieces which feature in a series of themes which celebrate French music and the works of Richard Strauss and Carl Nielsen. There's even a concert devoted to Duke Ellington - proof of just how wide ranging this great music festival is.