Letter: Musical `elite'

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Sir: In a mistuned attempt to conduct an argument that classical music has become "an elitist pastime", your leader writer (12 August) gets his scores mixed up, and tries to settle too many of them at once.

The BBC Proms are the most accessible festival of great music in the world, elitist only in their commitment to quality and range of repertory. Each night you can stand for pounds 3 and hear the great central classics performed alongside new commissions, rarities and novelties. A season on this scale, involving the world's leading orchestras and musicians, is possible because every concert is broadcast (and most repeated) on Radio 3, and a number televised.

The commitment of the BBC that this demonstrates, to live music and the patronage of musicians, orchestras and composers, shows how absurd it is for your writer to bracket Radio 3's music policy with that of commercial broadcasters. All the year round, Radio 3 invests in bringing great performances and the widest possible repertory of classical music - including opera from all the companies your writer mentions - into every home in the country.


Chief Executive

BBC Broadcast

London W1