The BBC Proms 2013 season has been unveiled and includes a performance of Wagner’s Ring cycle conducted by Daniel Barenboim and the first ever female conductor of the Last Night of the Proms – Marin Alsop.


This year marks Wagner’s bicentenary (look out for a BBC Music Magazine Wagner special next month) and the Proms season includes not only his Ring, performed by the Berlin Staatskapelle 22-28 July, but also a performance of Tristan und Isolde by the BBC Symphony Orchestra conducted by Semyon Bychkov on 27 July.

Sir Mark Elder conducts Wagner’s Parsifal on 25 August with the Hallé and Donald Runnicles is on the podium for Tannhäuser with the BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra on 4 August.

Marin Alsop will make history on 7 September when she becomes the first woman to conduct the Last Night of the Proms. The closing concert will feature Vaughan Williams’s The Lark Ascending with soloist Nigel Kennedy and an appearance by mezzo-soprano Joyce DiDonato – who will surely don the now traditional Britannia costume.

Among the visiting orchestras this year is the recently founded National Youth Orchestra of the United States of America which, on its first ever tour, will perform Shostakovich’s Symphony No. 10 and Tchaikovsky’s Violin Concerto with soloist Joshua Bell, both conducted by Valery Gergiev.

There will also be Proms from the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra, with pianist Yuja Wang, the Rotterdam Philharmonic Orchestra, the Orchestra of the Accademia di Santa Cecilia conducted by Antonio Pappano and the Warsaw Philharmonic.

Britten, whose centenary falls this year, also makes an appearance with Glyndebourne Festival Opera’s performance of his opera Billy Budd. Another centenarian, the regularly overlooked British composer George Lloyd, at last gets his moment in the sun when the BBC Singers tackle his Little Requiem in September.

Other highlights of the 2013 festival include a Doctor Who Prom on 13 July, a rare performance of Tippett’s The Midsummer Marriage conducted by Sir Andrew Davis and a performance of Beethoven’s Piano Concerto No. 4 by Mitsuko Uchida.

Among the late night Proms is a performance of Frank Zappa’s The Adventures of Greggery Peccary and a JS Bach Prom from the English Baroque Soloists conducted by Sir John Eliot Gardiner.

For more information, visit the BBC Proms website and look out for our Proms issue, which will include full Proms listings, on sale 12 June.

Listen to music featured in this year's Proms in our Proms Spotify playlists (below).