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United Kingdom's Guide to Classical Music, Opera and Dance

July 2014
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Evening performance
Matinee performance

Proms Preview: Week 1

The 2014 BBC Proms season is almost upon us. Read our editor's pick of the first week at the Proms here. 

July 2014: Drawing children into classical in the holidays

Schools have broken up for the summer and the dilemma about how to keep the children occupied during the holidays raises its head again. We’ve explored what classical music events are available – either free or at low cost – to entertain children and perhaps encourage them to explore something new.
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Prom 7: Shostakovich, Bartók & Tavener

Tavener, Bartók, Shostakovich
BBC Symphony Orchestra; Jiří Bělohlávek; Sarah Connolly; Isabelle Faust

Norma

Bellini: Norma
Peter Robinson; Olivia Fuchs; Niki Turner; Yvonne Howard; Heather Shipp; Joseph Wolverton

Prom 8: Late Night with ...Pet Shop Boys

Pet Shop Boys
BBC Concert Orchestra; Dominic Wheeler; Pet Shop Boys; BBC Singers; Chrissie Hynde; Juliet Stevenson

Coppélia

Delibes: Coppélia
Ronald Hynd; English National Ballet; Desmond Heeley; Tamara Rojo; David Mohr

Adriana Lecouvreur

Cilea: Adriana Lecouvreur
Manlio Benzi; Martin Lloyd-Evans; Jamie Vartan; Cheryl Barker; Peter Auty; Tiziana Carraro
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Cow-bells and alpine calls: the Zurich Tonhalle bids Zinman a fond farewell

After 19 years, David Zinman took his leave from the post of music director of the Tonhalle Orchestra Zurich yesterday with an affectionate Proms programme of Strauss, Dvořák and Beethoven. 
****1
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Game, set and match to Prom 3

This was the first time I've been to a concert with a 10:30 kick-off, but then this was the first of its kind. Nor did the inaugural Sport Prom turn out to be merely a game of two halves...
****1
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Diversity within unity: Valery Gergiev conducts the World Orchestra for Peace

Valery Gergiev conducts the unique World Orchestra for Peace in a devastating perfomance of Mahler's Sixth Symphony at the BBC Proms. A Strauss rarity and a European premier were programmed alongside.
***11
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JPYA Summer Performance at Covent Garden

If you want to have your operatic head seriously messed with, imagine the following: Così fan tutte staged on the Act I/IV set of John Copley’s soon-to-be-mothballed La bohème, which closed with a double performance on Saturday afternoon and evening. Throw in Don Alfonso sporting frock coat, wig and cane, looking for all the world like Baron Scarpia, and the mash-up of references had my head spinning.
****1
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Norma at Opera Holland Park

An excellent orchestral performance and fine singing from Yvonne Howard and Heather Shipp make Opera Holland Park's Norma well worth seeing, in spite of imperfections.
***11
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