Today at the Proms - Prom 6

Continuing our daily coverage of what's on at The Proms 2018, Susan Omand has a quick look at the programme for Prom 6: An American in Paris & Turangalîla ...

An unusual mix with Gershwin and Messiaen but both with a common theme of Paris. The Gershwin is, as ever, a gloriously jazzy tone poem (a descriptive piece of music) that picks up the sights and sounds of the Parisian streets on a stroll around in the 1920s with the added influence of the Blues, apparently when the American visitor feels a bit homesick! Anyhow, second only to Rhapsody in Blue, I almost guarantee you'll have heard this before.

More interesting for me is the Messiaen. With cyclic themes and short movements, it was written in 1948 and is said by Messiaen to be "a love song" which was his reason for including an ondes Martenot in the orchestration. This is an electronic organ type thing that makes eerie oscillating noises similar to a theremin. You can see one being played in this little snippet from The Proms in 2012 and it will be the same soloist, Cynthia Millar, along with pianist Angela Hewitt, who will be playing tonight.

Here's the full programme for this evening's Prom which you can listen to live on Radio 3 or on the iPlayer

George Gershwin
An American in Paris(17 mins)


Olivier Messiaen
Turangalîla Symphony(74 mins)

Image - Photo © Chris Christodoulou
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