São Paulo Symphony Orchestra hits Europe

Brasil Observer - Aug 15 2016
Photo: Natalia Kikuchi

(Leia em Português)


Concerts bring Brazilian flair to London, Edinburgh and Lucerne


By Nathália Braga

This month, Europe will host performances by the São Paulo Symphony Orchestra – one of the most prestigious orchestras from South America. The passage through the old world starts at the Edinburgh International Festival, on August 22. On the 24th, London receives the orchestra at the Royal Albert Hall, with two concerts on the same night. On the 26th, the orchestra goes to Switzerland for the Lucerne Festival.

Presentations focus on Brazilian music. Altogether, 100 musicians will be present at the concerts. The group is quite diverse, with most formed by Brazilians, but also featuring musicians from 17 different nationalities. To represent the music and culture of Brazil at a time of political and economic instability is very important. “The São Paulo Symphony Orchestra is an ambassador for Brazil and showcases the world class level of music making going on in the country. At this time it is critical to represent the country in a positive, sophisticated light. We are so proud to be able to represent Brazil on the world stage,” says the music director and conductor Marin Alsop.

On August 22, it will be the first time the orchestra will have played in Scotland, during the Edinburgh International Festival. The presentation will highlight the composers Villa Lobos, Christopher Bell and Shostakovich.

On the 24th, at the Royal Albert Hall in London, there will be two concerts within the BBC Proms, the first at 19h and the second at 22h15. The first presentation will be the debut of Brazilian composer Marlos Nobre in the UK, with his own composition Kabbalah, plus a piano concert with the Venezuelan Gabriela Monteiro.

In the second event of the evening, the Late Night Concert at 22h15, members of the São Paulo Symphonic Jazz Orchestra will join the São Paulo Symphonic Orchestra in a presentation to celebrate the Brazilian popular music of the last 100 years, with compositions of Pixinguinha, Dorival Caymmi and Tom Jobim.

Tickets for the show at 19h are sold out, but you can try to buy at the door of the Royal Albert Hall on the day of presentation. Tickets are limited and will be available on a first come first serve basis. Admission is £6 with a guaranteed entry to watch the presentation stand. The event will also be televised on BBC Four. Tickets for the Late Night Concert are still available on the BBC Proms website.

It will be the second time that the São Paulo Symphony Orchestra takes part in the BBC Proms. The first time was in 2012, which was also the first participation of a Brazilian orchestra at the festival. Since then, the orchestra gained even more visibility and has been invited to events throughout Europe. “I am very proud to have a longstanding relationship with the BBC and the Proms, having appeared there regularly since the early 2000s. The Proms was very curious about my new relationship with Brazil and we are thrilled to now be returning for our second visit to the Proms. Our 2012 debut was truly exciting, with Brazilian fans waving flags and showing their support. This year should be even more exciting, especially since we will perform two concerts with a late night focus on Brazilian popular music,” says Marin.

After participating in the BBC Proms, the orchestra will go to Switzerland to perform at the Lucerne Festival. The concert will be on August 26 and the program will be the same presented in the British capital.




Edinburgh International Festival

August 22, 19h30 – www.eif.co.uk

BBC Proms

August 24, 19h and 22h15 – www.bbc.co.uk/events/epbhn3

Live at BBC Radio 3 and BBC Four

Lucerne Festival

August 26, 19h30 – www.lucernefestival.ch/en