The Proms – time for a shakeup to reflect the diversity of the UK music scene

There was an  article in The Guardian (24.04.15) on the BBC Proms. Martin Kettle  looks for a critical angle  for the proms each year and every year he fails . Perhaps Martin Kettle, Alan Davey and the BBC live in a different universe to me. The BBC publicity states “While the Proms celebrates its 120th year in 2015, it still remains true to its original aim: to present the widest range of music, performed to the highest standards, to large audiences”. Here we are in 2015 with a programme of 76 Proms of which 7 are non classical music. To give some idea of this years broad range the late night Bhangra and Bollywood is with the BBC Philharmonic. But where is the reflection of the “widest range of music”; no brass bands, no folk music,  world musics, jazz in the shape of Frank Sinatra and swing – nothing adventurous, no opera that I could see, in fact no recognition of the  incredible range of musics enjoyed by the UK public who pay for the Proms.

For the avoidance of doubt 15% of the uk population is made up of people of diverse ethnicity and the audience for opera is 1.67 million attenders, for classical music 3.29 million and for jazz 2.67 million.

The UK public deserve better than this. What is required is a music festival that celebrates the incredible diversity, adventurousness and vibrancy of the UK music scene that would also act a shop window to the world

Attached documents (click to download)

Share this post: