The BPO will be performing some rarely played music and will feature some rarely heard instruments in two concerts in June 2017.
Wagner’s tender and peaceful symphonic poem, Siegfried Idyll, has only been performed by the BPO on one previous occasion, 60 years ago in 1957.
Our performance of Bruckner’s epic and awe-inspiring 8th Symphony will be the first time that it has been played by the BPO; however, the orchestra has performed Bruckner’s 4th, 6th and 7th Symphonies in previous seasons.
Our concerts also provide an excellent opportunity to hear the rarely played Wagner Tubas in the Bruckner. The idea for this instrument was conceived by Richard Wagner whilst writing Das Rheingold with an aim to fill the sound gap between the horn and the trombone whilst also allowing the formation of a quintet of tubas in combination with the bass tubas. These instruments are played by a quartet of horn players who, in Bruckner’s 8th Symphony, switch between the horn and the Wagner Tuba throughout the work.
Despite the rich and sonorous sound produced by the Wagner Tubas, only a handful of composers have included the instruments in their works including Wagner, Bruckner, Richard Strauss, Stravinsky, Schoenberg and Bartók. However, the instrument is now being regularly being used by contemporary composers, in particular for film scores.