Last Night of the Proms ends classical music festival in London


LONDON, Sept. 8 — The world’s great classical music festival has finished at Saturday tonight at the Royal Albert Hall with a concert in front of a sell-out audience of 5,000.
The concert, which ends each season of the BBC Proms concerts, is known as the Last Night of the Proms.
This year the Last Night was conducted by a woman for the first time.
The season began two months ago, and dozens of orchestras from across the world have played in a total of 75 nightly concerts in front of 90 percent sell-out audiences.
American conductor Marin Alsop took the baton in a role that has always been held by a man since the Proms were founded by conductor Sir Henry Wood in 1895.
Proms director Roger Wright told Xinhua, “Marin Alsop is conducting the Last Night, and that is a significant thing because she is the first woman to conduct the Last Night.”
He added, “Violinist Nigel Kennedy is also playing in the Last Night for the first time as well as the superstar mezzo-soprano Joyce diDonato.”
Alsop is musical director of the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra in the United States and also principal conductor at the Sao Paolo Orchestra in Brazil.
Wright, who has been director of the annual season of concerts since 2007 said that the Last Night of the Proms was a celebration of the end of the long season of concerts and also a party.
Wright said, “For those who have not experienced the Last Night it is just that the second half with those moments in which the audience can sing as well is a very special thing.”
Members of the audience traditionally join in with the singing of several pieces of music, including ‘Rule Britannia’ and ‘Jerusalem’.
Wright added, “It is a very British event but also you will see masses and masses of international flags in the Albert Hall, and I have always regarded it to be an international festival which happens to take place in Britain.”
Planning for next year’s Prom season is already mostly done, said Wright, as is most of the planning for the 2015 season.[db:内容2]