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Young artists

The BBC Symphony Orchestra with Lionel Bringuier and Clare Hammond, piano

Theatre Royal and Royal Concert HallTheatre Square, Nottingham, Nottingham, East Midlands, NG1 5ND, United Kingdom
Dates/times in London time zone
Saturday 11 March 202319:30

A prize-winning maestro from an early age, Lionel Bringuier conducts this typically colourful programme, beginning with George Gershwin’s 1928 symphonic poem. Described by the composer as ‘the most modern music I have ever attempted’, An American in Paris is a heady love affair with the city, its bluesy melodies rubbing shoulders with tooting taxi horns. Its popularity inspired the hit movie of the same name, with Gene Kelly starring in its lavish climactic ballet. The spirit of the dance also animates two of Bringuier’s other concert choices: Albert Roussel’s witty and agile ballet score to The Spider’s Feast was the biggest hit for this unjustly neglected composer, whilst Ravel’s spectacular Poeme Choreographique, La Valse turns the Viennese waltz into a symbol of decadent societal decline, its whirling figures spiralling into oblivion.

Rachmaninov’s much-loved Rhapsody on a Theme of Paganini was written in the autumn years of his career, and after his composing had been largely overshadowed by his fame as a performer. But its freshness and ingenuity speak volumes for his undimmed powers of invention, not to mention his unrivalled dexterity as a pianist. Its deft lyricism is tailor-made for our soloist, Nottingham-born Clare Hammond, recently praised by the BBC Music Magazine for her ‘shimmering pianism and lightly-worn virtuosity.’

Free pre-concert talk, 6.20pm in the auditorium: Paul Hughes, former General Manager of the BBC Symphony Orchestra, looks back on 23 years in charge.

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