Daniele Gatti conducts Amsterdam’s Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra

Amsterdam’s Royal Concertgebouw returns: The best classical music this month

Upcoming performances by pianist Lucy Parham, composer Sally Beamish and poet David Harsent are also worth marking in your diary
August 16, 2017
Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra 

Royal Albert Hall, 1st & 2nd September 

Regularly topping lists of the world’s greatest symphony orchestras, Amsterdam’s Royal Concertgebouw returns to the BBC Proms for the first time in nearly 10 years. What makes the RCO so special? Maybe it’s the plush depth of its strings, or the penetrating bite of its brass. But above all it’s about collective understanding and painstaking intelligence. The first concert pairs Wolfgang Rihm’s In-Schrift with Bruckner’s mighty Ninth Symphony. The second is a joyous combination of two of the repertoire’s sunniest symphonies: Haydn’s dancing Symphony No 82 (“The Bear”) and the youthful delight of Mahler’s Fourth.

Beloved Clara 

St John’s Smith Square, 24th September 

Pianist Lucy Parham’s love of Brahms and both Clara and Robert Schumann has evolved into a fascinating concert piece combining live performance and spoken word. The passionate lives of the three musicians are illuminated through their music, performed by Parham, and extracts from letters and diaries, delivered here by Harriet Walter and Tim McInnerny. The result is an evocative window into three powerfully entangled lives.

The Judas Passion 

Saffron Hall, 24th September 

What would a Passion look like from the perspective of Judas? That’s the question composer Sally Beamish and poet David Harsent ask in their major new choral work The Judas Passion, performed here by the Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment. A pre-performance discussion will explore the creative process before the world premiere from one of England’s most eclectic and engaging composers.