You can thank an ear, nose and throat specialist for the Proms, those raucous Albert Hall extravaganzas designed to bring classical music to ordinary folk. Dr George Cathcart gave financial backing to the first Proms at the Queen’s Hall in 1895, when tickets cost a shilling (5p). He also came up with the wheeze of plonking a fountain down in the middle of the arena to break up the crowds and adjust the temperature and humidity for performers. (Sadly there’s been no pond since 2010.)
This year watch out for the debut performances of ten international orchestras, including Greece, Iceland and Lapland, plus Gabby Logan presenting the first ever Sport Prom. The fun bit is of course the Last Night of The Proms in September, when everything goes ‘Rule Britannia’.
Don’t forget: To yell ‘heave-ho’ when the piano lid is lifted. It’s traditional.
(Image credit: Royal Albert Hall – Chris Christodoulou.)
For further reading, try The Bluffer’s Guide to Opera by Iceland PR honcho Keith Hann.