Friday 30 September at 1pm …
in Wagner Off Stage, programmer Stephen Wilson has chosen works by Wagner intended for the concert hall, not the stage. There are a number of early works, including the overture Polonia, which incorporated “material conceived after a night of drinking with exiles from Poland”. Most charmingly, Stephen has included the Siegfried idyll, composed for his wife Cosima, and performed for her at the foot of the staircase leading to her room, as she was lying in for the birth of their son.

Saturday 24 September at 8:00pm… 
in The Life Of A Composer, programmer Jennifer Foong celebrates the 350th anniversary of the French composer Antoine Forqueray. For a virtuoso of the bass viol, Antoine made a bad husband and a worse father. The program also includes music by Couperin, Rameau, Duphly and Marais, who lauded – and emulated – Forqueray’s genius. 

Wednesday 5 October at 8pm …
in At The Opera, programmer Peter Poolehas chosen two one-act operas based on Dante’s The Divine Comedy. Rachmaninov’s “symphonic opera” Francesca da Rimini was first performed in Moscow in 1906, and features a notably melancholy cello. Puccini’s Gianni Schicchi, concerning a character from the Comedy described as “imposter turned imp” was first performed in New York in 1918, and includes one of Puccini’s best-loved arias, “O mio babbino caro”.

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