Alina Ibragimova, Nicola Benedetti and Sheku Kanneh-Mason are among the string players to be performing live at this year’s BBC Proms
Following its announcement in late May that the festival would not be taking place in its usual form this year, the team behind the BBC Proms has revealed further details of what we can expect this summer.
Although the majority of the season will consist of archive Proms material on radio and television, the last two weeks will feature live performers, although almost certainly no audience, in the Royal Albert Hall - broadcast on BBC Radio 3, BBC 4 and and iPlayer. Each of the BBC orchestras will perform during this period, beginning (under the baton of chief conductor Sakari Oramo) and ending (under principal guest conductor Dalia Stasevska) with the BBC Symphony Orchestra - on the 28 August and 12 September respectively. The musicians will comply with official regulations requiring orchestras using wind and brass instruments to sit three metres away from each other to minimise the risk of viral transmission.
Other artists will include the pianist Mitsuko Uchida performing with the London Symphony Orchestra under Simon Rattle; violinists Alina Ibragimova and Nicola Benedetti with the Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment under Jonathan Cohen; cellist Sheku Kanneh-Mason performing a recital with his pianist sister Isata Kanneh-Mason; pianist Stephen Hough; singers Allan Clayton, Sophie Bevan and Robert Murray; and sitar player Anoushka Shankar with electronic musician Gold Panda and the Britten Sinfonia under Jules Buckley.
There will also be contemporary music from composers including Thomas Adès and Andrea Tarrodiz, who have been commissioned to write works responding to the Covid-19 crisis, and from Richard Ayres exploring Beethoven’s journey into deafness, as well as his own.
The Last Night of the Proms, taking place on 12 September conducted by Dalia Stasevska, will feature the South African soprano Golda Schultz.
The presenting team for the live TV performances will include Katie Derham, Tom Service, Suzy Klein, Danielle de Niese and Josie d’Arby.
Archive material to be broadcast in the earlier weeks of the season include the 2007 debut of the Simon Bolivár Orchestra of Venezuela under Gustavo Dudamel, the 2017 debut of Chineke! Orchestra, Europe’s first majority BME orchestra, the Radio 1 Ibiza Prom from 2015 and the John Wilson Orchestra’s ‘Broadway Sound’ Prom of 2012.