BBC Proms 2011 gets underway

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Benjamin Grosvenor is youngest ever first-night soloist

Jiří Bělohlávek tonight raises his baton at the Royal Albert Hall in the first Prom of 2011 with a programme of Judith Weir, Brahms, Liszt and Janácek.

Pianist Benjamin Grosvenor (right), aged 19, will become the youngest ever soloist to perform at the Proms opening night when he plays Liszt’s Piano Concerto No.2 with the BBC Symphony Orchestra.

The concert is being broadcast live on Radio 3 and BBC Two at 7.30pm (15 July).

The Proms opening weekend also includes a concert performance of Rossini’s William Tell on Saturday 16 July, conducted by Antonio Pappano, and a rare outing for Havergal Brian’s gargantuan Gothic Symphony on 17 July. (See our interview with conductor Martyn Brabbins on the challenge of conducting this mammoth work.)

Throughout the season BBC Music Magazine will be reporting from the Proms with our online Proms Diary and keeping you up to date with all the latest news from the festival.

Don't forget to head over to the iTunes 'Proms Room' where you can claim your free download of Benjamin Grosvenor playing Chopin and also download recordings of the music to be performed at this year's festival.

 

Elizabeth Davis