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Dalia Stasevska (Image courtesy: BBC)

BBC Proms 2023 to be Opened and Closed by Female Conductors

For the first time in its history, the BBC Proms program will feature women conductors for its opening and closing nights


Advocating gender equality, the 2023 BBC Proms will feature Finnish conductor Dalia Stasevska and American conductor Marin Alsop leading the opening and closing nights, respectively.

According to The Guardian, they will be among 10 other women conductors in the program — a first for the Proms in its 128-year history. 

Stasevska will lead the First Night with a world premiere work from Ukrainian female composer Bohdana Frolyak and featured pianist Paul Lewis.

The Last Night will feature Alsop conducting cellist Sheku Kanneh-Mason and soprano Lise Davidsen in a world premiere by British composer James B. Wilson.

The UK’s annual BBC Proms festival is being held this year from July 14 to September 9, namely, at London’s Royal Albert Hall. The 2023 edition will be held in venues across all four nations of the UK.

The event will feature over 3,000 musicians and 84 Proms performances — a third of which will comprise works by female composers, including 11 of this year’s 21 premieres. Other female artists will include conductor Elim Chan, pianist Yuja Wang, and singer Alice Coote.

“We’re moving in the right direction towards equitable representation…but it’s a slow process,” said BBC Proms director, David Pickard. “This year, two-thirds of our concert commissions are by women, while a third of our concerts include a piece by a woman in them. 

“This is hugely, hugely advanced on the figures we would have given you 10 years ago,” Pickard told BBC News. “Is it enough? No, but the motivation to change these things is enormous.”

For more information on the Proms programming and artists, click here.

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