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The Proms and British Musical Life: International Conference

British Library, London, UK, 23-25 April 2007


You are warmly invited to attend the first ever international conference
devoted to the Henry Wood Promenade Concerts: The Proms and British
Musical Life. This three-day non-residential conference will be held at
the British Library on 23-25 April 2007 in partnership with the BBC and
King's College London.

This event offers a unique stimulating opportunity to participate in
discussion with experts from various disciplines, who will be considering
the role the Proms play in British musical life. It will provide a
fruitful forum for anyone interested in the history of musical
performance, patronage, cultural politics, and the BBC. More generally,
the conference provides an opportunity to reflect on the current status of
classical music.

Our aim is to establish a productive environment for exchanges between
practitioners, media commentators and academics. The conference includes
an introductory lecture by Lord Asa Briggs, plenary lectures, panels,
interviews, demonstrations and sessions of papers, as well as a concert by
the BBC Symphony Orchestra and an exhibition at the British Library
devoted to the history of the Promenade Concerts since their foundation.
The events culminate in the launch of the 2007 BBC Proms.


Day 1: Monday 23 April 2007

09.00 - 10.00 Registration (tea/coffee provided)

10.00 - 10.30 WELCOME Rick Trainor (KCL), Lynne Brindley (BL)

10.30 - 11.00 INTRODUCTORY LECTURE Lord Briggs: Leading to the 'Moment of

11.00 - 11.30 PLENARY PANEL: Introducing main conference themes: Proms
History, Media, Repertory, Festival and Ritual, Public and Private
Funding. Jenny Doctor, Alain Frogley and Paul Kildea

11.30 - 11.45 Break (tea/coffee provided)

11.45 - 13.00 PLENARY PANEL: What did the Proms Sound Like?
Lewis Foreman, David Patmore

13.00 - 14.00 Break


i) The Henry Wood Era
ii) The Proms during World War II

16.00 - 16.30 Break (tea/coffee provided)

16.30 - 17.30 PLENARY LECTURE David Cannadine: The Last Night

17.30 End of sessions

19.30 BBC Symphony Orchestra concert at Maida Vale Studio 1
Conducted by Oliver Knussen
Proms premieres by Schoenberg, Bridge, Anderson, Goehr, Britten.

Day 2: Tuesday 24 April 2007

9.30 - 10.30 PLENARY LECTURE Paddy Scannell: The Proms as a National and
Historic Media Event that is part of national life.

10.30 - 11.00 Break (tea/coffee provided)

11.00 - 13.00 PLENARY DEMONSTRATION PANEL: Changing Visions: The Proms on
Radio and TV. Richard Witts and Roy Tipping

13.00 - 14.00 Break


i) Legacies: From Sargent to Glock
ii) Programming and performance

16.00 - 16.30 Break (tea/coffee provided)

16.30 - 17.30 PLENARY DISCUSSION: Filmed interviews with Pierre Boulez and
Colin Davis; discussion on conductors, composers, orchestra musicians,
audiences. Chaired by James Naughtie, with George Benjamin, William

17.30 End of sessions

17.45 - 18.75 CONFERENCE DRINKS at British Library conference centre.

Day 3: Wednesday 25 April 2007

09.30 - 11.30 PLENARY PANEL 'The Cultural Politics of the BBC': role of
technology, changing cultural & political scenes, live broadcasting,
disaggregation of listening, changing aesthetics
Chaired by John Deathridge, with Georgina Born, Norman Lebrecht and Byron

11.00 - 11.30 Break (tea/coffee provided)


i) 'Reaching Wider'
ii) Listening & Audiences

13.00 - 14.00 Break

14.00 - 15.00 PLENARY LECTURE
Prof John Deathridge, Standing Up for Classical Music

15.00 - 15.30 Break (tea/coffee provided)

15.30 - 17.00 PLENARY PANEL: 'The Future of the Proms': Final plenary
session about the future of the Proms, and the future of new music':

i) Media, technology and the Proms (including the influence of television)
ii) Demographics and the Future of the Proms
iii) The role of the Concert in the 21st Century music scene (including 
the survival of the Proms as a series of concerts)
iv) The Future of 'New Music'
Jean Seaton, Ivan Hewett, Daniel Leech-Wilkinson, Jenny Doctor, Roger
Parker, Paul Kildea

17.00 End of sessions

Please note that this programme is subject to change.
To book please visit
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