Critics at the ENO • Shostakovich and football • Marsalis and Benedetti




In our November 2019 podcast, we discuss the news that the English National Opera has stopped offering established critics a second free ticket to opening nights, and instead gives those free tickets to 10 novice bloggers. It's a story which has received a huge amount of debate on Twitter, so we dive in and give our opinions. We also celebrate the appointment of the new BBC National Orchestra of Wales principal conductor, 29-year-old Californian Ryan Bancroft. Plus, we introduce our November issue, in which we talk to the formidable pianist Igor Levit about the challenges of recording all Beethoven's 32 sonatas. To mark St Andrew's Day, we look back on all the great works that have celebrated the rugged Scottish landscape. In light of the release of a new book on Shostakovich and football, we explore how his love of the beautiful game found its way into his music. As usual, we all bring along a recording we've been enjoying this month, including new works by Wynton Marsalis and Stephen Hough.


Veprik: Orchestral Works
BBC National Orchestra of Wales/Christoph-Mathias Mueller
MDG MDG9012133

Beethoven: The Piano Sonatas
Igor Levit (piano)
Sony 90175843182

Olly's choice:
Bizet: Te Deum
Angela Maria Blasi (soprano), Christian Elsner (tenor), Münchner MottenChor, Munich Symphony Orchestra/Hans Rudolf Zöbeley
Hänssler HC19046

Jeremy's choice:
A Love Letter to Liverpool
Jennifer Johnston (mezzo-soprano), Alisdair Hogarth (piano) Rubicon RCD1044

Freya's choice:
Wynton Marsalis: Violin Concerto Nicola Benedetti (violin), Philadelphia Orchestra/Critistan Macelaru
Decca 485013


Chorus of rage as ENO gives critics' coveted extra tickets to young bloggers:

BBC National Orchestra of Wales chooses Ryan Bancroft as next principal conductor:

Our November issue:

Subscribe to BBC Music Magazine:


Subscribe to our weekly newsletter: