Doctor Who makes his debut at the Proms

The Tardis will make its debut at the Royal Albert Hall this summer when the BBC stages a Doctor Who prom in an attempt to attract new audiences. Roger Wright, the controller of BBC Radio 3 and the festival's new director, denied the event represented "dumbing down". He said it was "very much in the Proms mould".

The concert on 27 July, presented by Freema Agyeman, who played the Timelord's assistant Martha Jones, is one of a series designed to encourage more diverse attendance.

The theme for the evening is time and space, with the BBC Philharmonic Orchestra playing Aaron Copland's Fanfare for the Common Man, "Jupiter" from Gustav Holst's The Planets and Richard Wagner's "Ride of the Valkyries", as well as Murray Gold's theme from Doctor Who. In a nod to contemporary music, the evening also includes the UK premiere of The Torino Scale by Mark-Anthony Turnage.

This year's season, from 18 July to 13 September, will also feature Nigel Kennedy, returning for the first time in 21 years on 19 July. He will play Elgar's Violin Concerto, the work that established his reputation, and will reunite with Vernon Handley, who conducted the original recording.

Tributes will also be paid to Ralph Vaughan Williams on the 50th anniversary of his death, with a concert devoted to him on 26 August. In a twist to the Last Night, his Sea Songs will be played instead of the Fantasia on British Sea-Songs by the Proms founder, Sir Henry Wood.

The festival will also mark the centenary of the birth of the French composer Olivier Messiaen with a series of organ recitals.

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