The week in broadcasts

We round up the best TV and radio classical music broadcasts of the coming week

The week in broadcasts

What: Opera on 3 – Strauss’s Elektra from the Met
When: Saturday 17 March, 6.30-9pm
Where: BBC Radio 3

This week’s opera from the Met is Strauss’s 1903 drama Elektra, based on ancient Greek mythology. It follows the story of Elektra, who seeks to avenge the death of her father, who was murdered by her mother. All this is achieved through a highly modernist, condensed one-act score by Strauss.

Christine Goerke plays the eponymous role, accompanied by Michaela Schuster as her mother and Mikhail Petrenko and Elza van der Heever her brother and sister. This production is conducted by Yannick Nézet-Séguin.


What: Sunday Feature – Blind, Black and Blue
When: Sunday 18 March, 6.45-7.30pm
Where: BBC Radio 3

There was a huge group of blind, black bluesmen in the Deep South a hundred years ago, all working to create a musical legacy of blues and spirituals that stood the test of time.

In a feature made by an entirely blind production team, ‘Blind, Black and Blue’ explores this phenomenon which enabled blind musicians to overcome racial prejudice, disability and poverty to make such a lasting mark on American music.


What: The Marriage of Figaro
When: Sunday 18 March, 3.45-7pm
Where: Sky Arts

Recorded in 2016 at the Salzburg Festival, the Vienna Philharmonic’s production of Mozart’s The Marriage of Figaro is conducted by Dan Ettinger and directed by Sven-Eric Bechtolf. Luca Pisaroni and Anett Fritsch play the roles of Count and Countess Almaviva, while the servant couple Susanna and Figaro are played by Anna Prohaska and Adam Plachetka.


What: Rain
When: Monday 19 March, 7.45am
Where: Sky Arts

A dance production choreographed by Anne Teresa De Keersmaeker set to Reich’s Music for 18 Musician, performed in 2014. Ten dancers use the minimalist, pulsating soundtrack to create virtuosic dance phrases.



What: Late Junction – Nick Luscombe with Ilan Volkov
When: Tuesday 20 March, 11pm-12.30am
Where: BBC Radio 3

Conductor, improviser and champion of various genres of music Ilan Volkov returns to Late Junction with some new discoveries. His choices include a piece from Australian saxophonist Rosalind Hall, who uses innovative techniques to create unusual timbres and resonances from the instrument.

Volkov has held the role of principal conductor of the BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra and the Iceland Symphony Orchestra. He founded Tectonics Festival in Reykjavík, which focuses on contemporary music, including improvisation, electronics and hip-hop alongside classical works.


What: Radio 3 in Concert – BBC Symphony Orchestra perform Britten and Beethoven
When: Wednesday 21 March, 7.30-10pm
Where: BBC Radio 3

Live from the Barbican, the BBC Symphony Orchestra perform under the baton of chief conductor Sakari Oramo. Norwegian violinist Vilde Frang will be joining the orchestra to perform Britten’s Violin Concerto. Also on the programme is British composer Anna Clyne’s 2015 orchestral work This Midnight Hour and Beethoven’s Sixth Symphony.

Anna Clyne: This Midnight Hour 
Britten: Violin Concerto Op.15
Beethoven: Symphony No.6 'Pastoral' 


What: In Tune – Debussy’s Paris
When: Friday 23 March, 5-7pm
Where: BBC Radio 3

Katie Derham presents a special edition of In Tune to mark the anniversary of the death of Debussy with music and discussion inspired by Debussy’s Paris and the Belle Époque. Guests include music director of the BSO Mirga Gražinytė-Tyla, Birmingham Contemporary Music Group, soprano Ruby Hughes and pianist Jean-Efflam Bavouzet.


What: Radio 3 in Concert – BBC National Orchestra of Wales and Steven Osborne perform Mozart’s Piano Concerto No. 27
When: Friday 23 March, 7.30-10pm
Where: BBC Radio 3

Broadcast live from St David’s Hall in Cardiff, Pianist Steven Osborne joins the BBC National Orchestra of Wales to perform Mozart’s Piano Concerto No. 27 under the baton of Jac van Steen. The evening’s performance will also feature Debussy’s La mer and Messiaen’s meditation for orchestra, Les offrandes oubliées.

Debussy: Nocturnes
Mozart: Piano Concerto No.27 
Messiaen: Les offrandes oubliées
Debussy: La mer



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