The BBC Proms will open and close with a female conductor for the first time, with Dalia Stasevska conducting the First Night and Marin Alsop leading the Last Night of the Proms.


They are two of 10 women conducting concerts this year, three of whom will be making their Proms debut.

David Pickard, the director of the BBC Proms, said (via The Guardian): "We're moving in the right direction towards equitable representation, but it's a slow process.

"Is it enough? No, not yet I don't think, but, the motivation to change these things is enormous."

Meanwhile, 11 of this year's 21 premieres are by female composers, and a third of the festival's 84 concerts include works by women.

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More than 3,000 musicians will perform during the 2023 BBC Proms, which will run from Friday 14th July until Saturday 9th September.

While the core events will be held at the festival’s home venue, London’s Royal Albert Hall, there will also be various performances held across the UK, including Derry’s Guildhall and Sage Gateshead.

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This year’s schedule sees the usual blend of classical and contemporary musical talent.

The team behind Horrible Histories is bringing ’Orrible Opera to the Proms, featuring the Orchestra and Chorus of English National Opera, while contemporary singers Rufus Wainwright, Self Esteem, and Jon Hopkins have also been announced as part of the line-up.

Rebecca Lucy Taylor aka Self Esteem
Rebecca Lucy Taylor aka Self Esteem. Getty Images

Of course, there'll also be plenty of space for classical composers, with international ensembles such as the Boston Symphony Orchestra, the Budapest Festival Orchestra and the Tonhalle Orchestra Zürich also on the bill.

Traditionalists will also be pleased to hear that the Proms' Last Night celebration, which was cancelled last year because of the death of the Queen, will be in its familiar format, with Rule, Britannia! and Land of Hope and Glory.

"The Last Night is part of the Proms tradition and people love it," said Pickard. "There are going to be strong feelings either way about it, but it is just one of 72 concerts in the Royal Albert Hall in which we are trying to reflect a whole range of music; the Last Night is just one part of that."

You can find the full 2023 schedule on the official BBC Proms website.

BBC Proms 2023 starts on Friday 14th July and runs to Saturday 9th September. Check out more of our Entertainment coverage or visit our TV Guide to see what's on tonight.


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