She returns to perform Ravel’s Piano Concerto in G, composed after a concert tour of the USA in 1928 and woven through with the sounds of the jazz he encountered there.
Ravel wrote of the ‘joie de vivre’ he found in the rhythm of the waltz, but in La Valse we survey his ‘immense hall peopled with a whirling crowd’ through the prism of the destruction of the First World War.
The work was originally commissioned by Diaghilev for a ballet, but though he declared it a masterpiece he said it was ‘not suitable’ – the two men never spoke again, and had to be dissuaded by friends from fighting a duel over the incident.
Sibelius’ Valse Triste, another darkly beautiful subversion of the dance, paves the way for his First Symphony.
Finnish conductor Santtu-Matias Rouvali, appointed Principal Guest Conductor of the Philharmonia last season, brings his irresistible energy to this work full of sweeping melodies, evocative of vast Nordic landscapes.
RepertoireRavel: La valse; Piano Concerto in G
The Clore Ballroom, Level 2, Royal Festival Hall at 6pm: pre-concert talk. Admission free
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These discounts are not available on Premium seats or for the following concerts: Moscow Nights (25 Oct 2018), Philharmonia Orchestra – Christmas with King's College Choir (13 Dec 2018), Philharmonia Orchestra – Christmas at the Movies (16 Dec 2018), Philharmonia at the Movies (14 Feb 2019) and Music of Today: Wu Wei Artist Portrait (5 Apr 2019).