Spring season announced

Wednesday 6 December 2017


The Royal College of Music is delighted to welcome world-renowned conductor Bernard Haitink to lead the RCM Symphony Orchestra in Richard Strauss’ magnificent tone poem An Alpine Symphony on 1 and 2 February. BBC Young Musician and RCM Concerto Competition winner Martin James Bartlett also takes to the stage to perform Mozart’s beautiful Piano Concerto no 24, the manuscript of which is in the RCM collections.

We celebrate our new organ with a special Organ Festival on Sunday 25 February. Works by RCM alumni Vaughan Williams, Parry and Stanford are performed alongside new works by RCM composers. Flentrop Orgelbouw will be on hand to provide fascinating insights into the design and build of the new instrument and Thomas Trotter closes the festival with a solo recital. On Tuesday 6 February Dutch organist Ton Koopman visits the College to lead a unique masterclass.

This season we celebrate Igor Stravinsky in partnership with the London Philharmonic Orchestra for their Changing Faces: Stravinsky’s Journey series. Martyn Brabbins conducts RCM musicians and visiting singers from the Moscow Tchaikovsky Conservatory in performances of Renard and Mavra on Tuesday 27 February. The RCM Chamber Choir and Ensemble perform Stravinsky’s radical score Les noces at the Royal Festival Hall with Vasily Petrenko on Friday 23 February.

Benjamin Britten’s enchanting A Midsummer Night’s Dream is this season’s opera,directed by Liam Steel with performances from Monday 5 to Saturday 10 March. Based on Shakespeare’s play, this much-loved opera has enchanted audiences since its first performance over 50 years ago. Britten brings the story to life with brilliantly distinctive orchestration, from the ethereal woodland scenes to the antics of the Rustics.

We celebrate International Women’s Day on Thursday 8 March with a concert featuring works by groundbreaking female composers Pauline Viardot, Clara Schumann, Lili and Nadia Coulanger and Judith Weir, alongside poetry and prose by Emily Dickinson, Virginia Woolf and Sylvia Plath. Our annual Keyboard Festival on Sunday 11 March marks the centenary of Claude Debussy’s death. His two books of Préludes are performed in full alongside works by Prokofiev, Rachmaninov, Fauré, Ravel and Vierne, all composed during the final years of the Belle Époque period (1909-13).

Maxim Vengerov (Polonsky Visiting Professor of Violin), American tenor Michael Fabiano, cellist Natalie Clein, trumpeter Matthias Höfs and many other internationally renowned musicians give masterclasses this season. The Harlem Quartet returns on Tuesday 16 January with vibrant music from around the world. The Harlem Quartet Residency is generously supported by Victoria, Lady Robey OBE and the Freakley Family. Author and journalist Dr Simon Heffer marks the centenary of the death of former RCM Director Sir Hubert Parry in the annual Crees Lecture on Tuesday 6 February.

Booking is now open for RCM Friends; general booking opens on 13 December 2017. For full details of what’s on this spring visit www.rcm.ac.uk/events, call the RCM Box Office on 020 7591 4314, or visit the RCM in person on Prince Consort Road, SW7.

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