Sunday, October 05, 2008

Last Night at the Proms

I know this is a bit late. Way back in 1974 I attended the Proms at the Albert Hall in London, it wasn't the last night and I cannot remember the program but I have always dreamed that if I came into lots of money I would go and spend a summer living near to London and attend lots of Prom concerts and especially the Last Night. I guess with some planning I might be able to join the crowd sitting opposite in Hyde Park some year.
They use to broadcast the Last Night on television here but not for the last few years.

Classic FM here in Australia has been broadcasting all the prom concerts over the past few weeks. I have listened to a number, usually while doing other things like reading the blogs. I was feeling very down last Friday (see last post) but perked up considerably when I realised that they were going to broadcast the recent Last Night at the Proms that afternoon. I stopped doing anything else and just listened to the 2nd half. I think I am more English than the English and love the great British patriotic songs.

When I first visited England in July 1974 I thought I had come home. I may have been influenced by the fact that I had just spent a month in Asia and had been stuck in Tehran as all flights to Greece (my next ticketed stop) were cancelled due to the Cyprus crisis and I spent some time in police stations having my visa extended. I was offered flights to Moscow and Beirut by different airlines which I declined but finally Swissair offered to fly me to Zurich and onto London.

Anyway listening to the Last Night on radio cheered me up immensely and I was delighted to find this excerpt from the 2008 concert with the wonderful Bryn Terfel singing 'Rule Britannia' in the amazing costume that had been described on radio. Note the Aussie and Kiwi flags can be seen waving wildly at different times. (I bet most of you cannot tell the difference.unhappy smileys)


Davis said...

Well of course we know the differences! ;-)

Doorman-Priest said...

Me too! Honestly!

Brian R said...

Well D-P, I expect a Brit to know something about the colonies and Davis is not your typical American - he is half Aussie. :-)

June Butler said...

Brian, proms mean something entirely different over here, or up here, or however you folks refer to us. I honestly don't know the difference in the flags.

The music is nice to listen to, but I can no longer get into the spirit of the triumphalist patriotic songs of any country. The Bush administration has ruined many things for me. I am now such a cynic.

The costume is another thing altogether. It's sort of cowboyish at first glance, but then, not so much. Outré, for sure, but much fun.

Brian R said...

Glad you liked the costume Grandmere. Understand your feelings about patriotic songs and feel a post coming on. Perhaps I can also educate you on flags :-)