The Art of Conducting 2012 | Classical music reviews, news & interviews
The Art of Conducting 2012
For the third year running, we bring you Chris Christodoulou's wonderful images from the podium at the BBC Proms
The BBC Proms are steeped in traditions, many admirable, some arcane, the odd one ever so slightly maddening. In the short life of The Arts Desk - we turned three on Sunday, the day after the 2012 Proms season came to a close - another tradition has come into being. Every year we publish a gallery of portraits of conductors at work. These astonishing photographs are all by Chris Christodoulou, who has been capturing the Proms in pictures for 31 years.
These, it should be stated, are the images which are very much not released for use by the press after each Prom. And you can see why. They find conductors in a state of unvarnished passion, committed to communication but seen in perhaps less flattering light than they may wish. Christodoulou snaps them at the very moment their eyes are at their buggiest, their hair at its wildest, their face at its most gurning. For most of us conducting is a rarefied art whose finer subtleties, for all the efforts of the TV show Maestro to explain it, is sometimes difficult to grasp. These pictures say what a conductor does better than words ever can.
We at The Arts Desk hope that you have been enjoying our coverage of the arts. If you like what you’re reading, do please consider making a donation. A contribution from you will help us to continue providing the high-quality arts writing that won us the Best Specialist Journalism Website award at the 2012 Online Media Awards. To make a one-off contribution click Donate or to set up a regular standing order click Subscribe.
With thanks and best wishes from all at The Arts Desk
more Classical music
Britten's fusion of war poetry and Latin mass shouldn't be the everyday occasion it was here
Weighty English song, Parisian froth and French baroque music from Caracas
A blistering finale to the LSO's triptych of 20th-century music
Breathtaking vocal line-up raises the roof at this Scouse tribute to Wagner
Bernard, Bruckner, and bikes: the second extract from flautist Gareth Davies's new book about the LSO
The first of two extracts from a new book by LSO flautist Gareth Davies follows the orchestra to the US a century ago
A pair of 20th century symphonies and a spiky Stravinsky ballet score
Andrew Litton's performance of Britten's paean to peace left one stirred and humbled
Infinite depths and dazzling orchestral breadth in the great Russian pianist's latest recital
Wagner and Vivaldi go head to head in a festival of old and new
A classic among modern operas, contemporary music from Bulgaria and some slimmed-down Wagner
Berlioz drowns out nationalism in a summer evening festival of unity