To classical music lovers of a certain age, the words “BBC Northern Orchestra, conducted by John Hopkins”, spoken by the veteran BBC North Region announcer Tom Naisby, remain a vivid memory of 1950s wireless listening.
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Monday 26 May 2008
This was Gianandrea Noseda's debut with the LSO. Let's just say that his presence was felt. So much so that it was his and not his soloist Janine Jansen's personality that was initially stamped on Beethoven's Violin Concerto.
Thursday 08 May 2008
Friday 28 March 2008
The Brodsky Quartet has been around for some time, 30 years according to the programme book. But what one is not told is how many changes of personnel there have been while the group still performs under the same name. Certainly, something felt not right about the quartet's playing at this concert, as if the first violinist, Daniel Rowland, who joined the quartet in July 2007, was in another world from his colleagues.
Tuesday 11 March 2008
Monday 10 March 2008
Like so many of Vladimir Jurowski's intriguing programme ideas, the pairing of Ravel's Piano Concert for the Left Hand and Shostakovich's 7th Symphony "Leningrad" amounted to much more than the musical equivalent of speed-dating. Both works were, in different ways, the products of war and heroism: the concerto inspired by the pianist Paul Wittgenstein, who rebuilt a concert career despite losing an arm in the First World War; and the symphony an ode to the people of Leningrad, whose endurance in the face of Nazi oppression had been well-practised under Stalin.
Wednesday 27 February 2008
Prokofiev, the purveyor of dreams, and Shostakovich, the grim realist, rubbed shoulders for this LSO concert under the suave Yuri Temirkanov. Attending to the dreams was the Japanese violinist Sayaka Shoji, whose performance of Prokofiev's First Violin Concerto established that her fragile appearance was no indicator of her sound.
Tuesday 15 January 2008
Monday 14 January 2008
It was a nice touch to pair works by Britten and Prokofiev for this concert's first half. These are the composers whose A Young Person's Guide to the Orchestra and Peter and the Wolf have introduced so many young people to the orchestra's workings. The Four Sea Interludes (from Peter Grimes) and the Romeo and Juliet Suite, the works performed this evening, have served as ideal vehicles for the musicians of the NYO to explore this subject at a more advanced level, as the guest conductor, James MacMillan, noted in his introduction.
Bruce Anderson: Leader's speeches are important, but they only lay the foundations for future policies
Monday 02 October 2006
Considered purely as rhetoric, it was not as fine a speech as Tony Blair's. In the hall there were fewer tears. When Mr Blair started off, he was facing a partially hostile audience. By the time he had finished, the hostility was gone - for about 15 minutes.
Friday 19 May 2006
A 15-year-old boy has been stabbed to death outside the gates of his London school.
Tuesday 18 April 2006
Sunday 01 January 2006
Monday 31 October 2005
Sunday 23 October 2005
Tuesday 18 October 2005
Migrants in Kos: Photos show real tragedy after Brits abroad complain of 'awkward' holidays
British tourists complain that impoverished boat migrants are making holidays 'awkward' in Kos
Michael Gove determined to scrap the Human Rights Act – even if Scotland retains it
Thousands of teenage girls enduring debilitating illnesses after routine school cancer vaccination
Threat to scrap Human Rights Act could see UK follow Nazi example, warns UN official
Why this year's general election was the most unfair in Britain's history
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