First Night of the Proms: Part One

First Night of the Proms: Part One

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Review

Zosha Di Castri… well, I’m sold on the sound of her name alone. This Canadian composer has the daunting task of concluding the BBC’s meandering Our Classical Century season, launching the Proms and marking the 50th anniversary of Apollo 11’s mission to the Moon. I expect it’ll fly, so strap in for the world premiere of her new work Long Is the Journey — Short Is the Memory, which draws on evocations of the Moon across history.

Katie Derham returns as the Proms’ impeccable mainstay host, and it’s always good to see a woman on the podium, so welcome back Karina Canellakis for a third year on the trot, tonight conducting the BBC Symphony Orchestra, BBC Symphony Chorus and BBC Singers.

The programme includes Dvorak’s macabre, fairy-tale-inspired tone poem, The Golden Spinning Wheel, then you’ll have to switch from BBC2 to BBC4
for the main course. It’s Janacek’s Glagolitic Mass, invariably described as “monumental”, written as it is for two choirs, four soloist singers, orchestra and organ. Yes, the Royal Albert Hall’s massive piped centrepiece gets a blast.

Summary

New series. Katie Derham presents live from London's Royal Albert Hall, as the BBC Symphony Orchestra and choral forces, conducted by Karina Canellakis, begin the season with a brand-new commission by Zosha Di Castri marking the 50th anniversary of Apollo 11's mission to the moon, the first manned mission to land on its surface. Dvorák's fairy-tale tone-poem The Golden Spinning Wheel is also performed. Continues on BBC Four.

Cast & Crew

Presenter Katie Derham
Director Bridget Caldwell
Producer Cat Dixon
Music