The 2018 BBC Proms begin at 7pm on Friday 13 July with the Last Night on Saturday 8 September.
Both composers responded musically to the First World War – a key theme at this year’s Proms, which is marking 100 years since the Armistice.
Holst began writing The Planets Suite in 1914, and the piece premiered four years later on 29 September 2018, in the final weeks of war. Although the suite doesn’t explicitly comment on the war, its first movement, ‘Mars, the Bringer of War’, highlights the reality and ferocity of the impending conflict. Holst’s later works, such as Ode to Death do however serve as a reflection of waste and futility of war.
Toward the Unknown Region is a choral symphony based on a poem by Walt Whitman. The work focuses on aspects of death and the soul, and the work was completed in 1906. Vaughan Williams abandoned all musical endeavours during the First World War and enlisted as a private in the Royal Army Medical Corps. His experience of violence and death during this time would shape many of his post-war compositions.
There will also be a world premiere. Five Telegrams, created by composer Anna Meredith and creative design team 59 Productions, takes inspiration from letters written by young soldiers in 1918 and features digital projections.
How to go to the Proms
Order via telephone through the Box Office on 020 70704441 or +44 20 7589 8212 (for abroad).
For more information about how to book tickets to the Proms click here.
Watch and listen to the Proms on TV
For more information about where you can watch the Proms on TV, visit the BBC website. Performances will be televised throughout the season on Sundays and Fridays on BBC Four and Proms Extra on BBC Two.
You can also listen to a live broadcast of the Proms on Radio 3. To find out which performances are being aired, visit the Radio 3 website.