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Oratorio Concert
Event type: Large-scale vocal-instrumental concert
Hall: Concert Hall
Subscription: C2 - Symphonic concerts, Z2 - Golden subscription
Price: 30-90 zł


For two November evenings this autumn the Warsaw Philharmonic Concert Hall will be transformed into the Royal Albert Hall in London, which hosts the famous BBC Proms.

The concert will open with one of the stand-out pieces of Edward Elgar’s music – Symphony No. 1 in A-flat Major, which displays the composer’s truly inventive appropriation of Wagner’s Leitmotif technique. When he finished this First Symphony, he was already over fifty, even though  he had originally announced his intention to compose it ten years earlier. Hence this is a piece penned by a mature artist. And yet, writing a symphony was no easy task for him. Despite the fact that the piece has no title or programme, its deeply personal character and the array of emotions it conveys conjures up clear associations: it is – as British critics put it – music of love and glory.

Commissioned by the BBC and written in 1929, the oratorio Belshazzar's Feast is without doubt one of the most spectacular oratorio-cantatas in the entire history of music. With cinematographic-like precision, William Walton depicts in this work three episodes loosely connected with the history of the Biblical king of Babylonia – Belshazzar. Nonetheless, the piece is performed on very few occasions (it is being staged in Poland for only the second time) as it requires a huge line-up: a large orchestra complemented by a saxophone, an expanded percussion section, a piano, an organ, additionally two brass ensembles and, finally, a baritone solo and a double mixed choir, whose extremely demanding part constitutes a real tour de force. When listening to this extremely colourful and striking piece, especially the monumental and heavy marches in the second movement, we cannot avoid thinking of  film music. And not without reason: American and British critics have found similarities between it and John Williams’ score to Star Wars.


The Warsaw Philharmonic Patron of the Year – PGE Polska Grupa Energetyczna – warmly welcomes you to join us in this concert.








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