At the LSO, we are proud to have been Classic FM’s Orchestra in the City of London for over 17 years. Each season, a selection of our concerts come recommended by Classic FM. Here’s our round-up of autumn’s Classic FM recommended concerts and a look at where the music sits in the LSO’s history.
Thursday 10 October: Rachmaninov & Mussorgksy
with Alain Altinoglu & Simon Trpčeski
First up: Mussorgsky’s Pictures at an Exhibition. Originally written for piano, this well-known work was inspired by the drawings and watercolours of Mussorgsky’s friend Viktor Hartmann. Though there have been numerous arrangements over the years, by far the most recorded and performed is that by Maurice Ravel, commissioned by Serge Koussevitzky. Ravel produced his orchestration in 1922 and that same year, the LSO gave the UK premiere, conducted by none other than Koussevitsky (who had sole conducting rights for several years following the commission).
Wednesday 13 November: Prokofiev Symphony No 5
with Michael Tilson Thomas
Over the years, the LSO have made numerous recordings of Prokofiev’s Symphony No 5. The LSO’s earliest recording of Prokofiev’s Fifth Symphony is from 60 years ago. Recorded with Malcolm Sargent at Walthamstow Assembly Hall in 1959, the same recording sessions also included Tchaikovsky’s Symphony No 5 (more on that later).
When it comes to the LSO's history, we can't fail to mention Michael Tilson Thomas here. Having stepped in at the very last minute, Tilson Thomas first conducted the LSO at the age of 25. Now in 2019, the LSO Conductor Laureate celebrates 50 years of history with the Orchestra. As Principal Conductor, Tilson Thomas enriched the Orchestra with his brilliantly devised thematic concert series and his Discovery concert lectures, and he still conducts the LSO every season.
Thursday 28 November: Tchaikovsky Symphony No 5 & Bruch Violin Concerto No 1
with Gianandrea Noseda & Janine Jansen
Tchaikovsky’s Fifth is another Symphony which has had a smattering of recordings over the LSO’s 115-year history. To name just a few examples, in 1964 it was recorded live at a BBC Promenade Concert at the Royal Albert Hall, and 30 years later in 1994 it was again recorded live for Austrian Radio at the Salzburg Festival (the LSO was notably the first British orchestra to be invited to the Festival in 1973 under André Previn).
Not forgetting Bruch’s Violin Concerto No 1, this piece goes down in violin history as the first concerto recording of a then 15-year-old Yehudi Menuhin, conducted by Landon Ronald and recorded way back in November 1931.
Thursday 12 December: Elgar Sea Pictures & Vaughan Williams Symphony No 4
with Sir Antonio Pappano & Dame Sarah Connolly
The LSO’s cycle of Vaughan Williams symphonies, recorded in the 1960s with conductor André Previn, remains one of the most acclaimed releases of the British composer’s symphonies to this day. ClassicsToday.com rated it ‘arguably the best such offering on the market today’. Previn was first introduced to the Orchestra in August 1965 by RCA. Just three years later, he succeeded Istvan Kertész to become Principal Conductor – he had already begun his acclaimed Vaughan Williams cycle in the intervening years.
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Pictures at an Exhibiton
MUSSORGSKY arr LIADOV Prelude to
Alain Altinoglu conductor
Prokofiev's Fifth Symphony
PROKOFIEV Symphony No 5
Michael Tilson Thomas conductor & presenter
Tchaikovsky's Fifth Symphony
RIMSKY-KORSAKOV The Legend of the
Gianandrea Noseda conductor
Thursday 12 December 7.30pm
TIPPETT Concerto for Double String Orchestra
Sir Antonio Pappano conductor
Supported by LSO Friends
Click here to explore the LSO’s complete 2019/20 season.