Brighton Philharmonic Orchestra presents a concert of two halves

The first Brighton Philharmonic Orchestra concert of 2019 takes place at Brighton Dome on Sunday, January 20 (2.45pm).

Friday, 18th January 2019, 10:04 am
Updated Thursday, 7th February 2019, 5:45 pm
Thomas Carroll. Picture by Kaupo Kikkas

A BPO spokesperson said: “This concert, in football manager’s parlance, is a concert of two halves, a clean classical early symphony to open the concert demanding a high standard of orchestral virtuosity, a cello concerto that demands huge technique from its soloist, and a second half that transports our audience to the delights of Victorian Scotland.

“We are delighted to welcome back the renowned cellist and conductor Thomas Carroll and he is looking forward to conducting three works that define three brilliant composers in differing stages of their composing life.

“To open our concert we have Prokofiev’s Classical Symphony written by a talented young composer writing very much in the 20th century. But here he composes a short four movement symphony written in the style of Haydn, full of tunes, clean harmonies and exciting orchestral writing. It was very well received on its first performance in 1918, so much so that the Russian Commissar of Education agreed to allow Prokofiev a passport to travel abroad.

“Thomas will then perform and direct Schumann’s Cello Concerto, written in the mid 1850s by a very busy composer in the middle of an intense and creative period of composition. This is a brilliant virtuosic concerto for the cello, written by a composer more known for his piano, orchestral and vocal writing, but here creating a brilliant and tuneful concerto for an instrument he had a huge affinity to. It has three movements, with the most stunning slow movement, full of yearning and haunting recollection; it is like a song for the cello with hints of German folk music. Sadly not performed in Schumann’s life, it has become one of the most popular of cello concertos.

“After the interval we perform Mendelssohn’s Symphony No.3 ‘The Scottish’ written by a hugely popular and very talented young composer while on a European tour. Mendelssohn was inspired to write this symphony after visiting one of the most beautiful areas in Scotland – Holyrood House and its ruined chapel near Edinburgh. It took him ten years to complete as he found it hard to “return to my misty Scottish mood”. He dedicated the work to Queen Victoria and it was first performed in London in June 1843.”

Tickets £12.50-£39.50 (50 percent student/u18 discount, children £1 with family ticket). Call 01273 709709 or visit

Discounted parking (£6) at NCP Church Street Car Park, 1pm-6pm.

Ian Brignall, the Brighton Phil’s artistic administrator, recently caught up with Thomas Carroll ahead of his concert with the Brighton Phil aand (with the help of Stephen Smart) filmed this fascinating chat (interspersed with illustrations by Thomas on the cello) about the music he will be conducting, and performing. Click here to watch the interview.