Classical highlights for the week ahead: 23-30 October

Andrew Clements
·2-min read

Goldberg Variations Reimagined

Of necessity this year’s Brecon Baroque festival is an online event, and its centrepiece is a specially commissioned arrangement of Bach’s Goldberg Variations. The harpsichordist Chad Kelly has reimagined the keyboard masterpiece for nine instruments, and the performance, by violinist Rachel Podger and Brecon Baroque, has been filmed in Brecon Cathedral.
Available on demand from 24 October (£)

National Youth Orchestra

The National Youth Orchestra of Great Britain’s summer-long project reaches its climax with a concert recorded at the Royal Festival Hall of Errollyn Wallen’s work, Mighty River, performed by a group of NYO musicians; preceded by with pieces by little known and under-performed black composers, including Samuel Coleridge Taylor, Mason Bynes, Florence Price and Jessie Montgomery.
BBC Radio 3 on 29 October at 8.45pm then on demand on BBC Sounds

New Dark Age

Hannah Kendall’s one-man opera The Knife of Dawn, depicting the hunger strike of the Guyanese political activist and poet Martin Carter, directed by Ola Ince, with Peter Brathwaite as the protagonist, is paired with a multi-media work devised by Katie Mitchell, which brings together film by Grant Gee and music by Anna Meredith, Missy Mazzoli and Anna Thorvaldsdottir.
Royal Opera House, London, 24 October, ticketed live performance, also streamed online (£)

La Voix Humaine

David Pountney’s 2016 WNO staging of Poulenc’s monodrama, with soprano Claire Booth as the desperate L, has been reworked for film, and presented as an intimate Zoom party in L’s studio flat. The performance was recorded in Booth’s home, with the pianist Christopher Glynn in one room and the singer acting out her tragedy in another.
Available on demand from 25 October

London Philharmonic Orchestra

Joshua Weilerstein replaces Jutta-Pekka Saraste to conduct Sibelius, Ravel, Schubert and the UK premiere of Magnus Lindberg’s Second Cello Concerto from 2014, which was composed for Anssi Karttunen, who is also the soloist here.
Streamed live from the Royal Festival Hall, and available free on demand for a week.