Top pianists set to return to Wigmore Hall

12 May 2020
By Ellie Palmer
London-based musicians are set to perform at an empty Wigmore Hall, live on BBC Radio 3

BBC Radio 3 will broadcast the first live classical performances since UK lockdown with a concert series from Wigmore Hall every weekday in the Lunchtime Concert slot. The series will consist of 20 concerts taking place at 1pm (BST) every weekday throughout the month of June, starting on 1 June. 

The broadcasts are part of BBC Arts’ Culture in Quarantine which is a multiplatform BBC initiative aiming to continue to open the doors to culture in the homes of the British nation despite the lockdown.  


Who can we expect to hear?

The series opens on 1 June with a piano recital by Stephen Hough. The pianists set to perform during the series include Imogen Cooper, Angela Hewitt, Pavel Kolesnikov, Mitsuko Uchida, Julius Drake, Benjamin Grosvenor, Paul Lewis and Samson Tsoy.

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All musicians will be London-based due to travel restrictions. In addition, all musicians will of course be taking all the necessary precautions. Wigmore Hall will be audience-less during the performances. In addition, there will be a minimal set up involving one BBC Radio 3 producer backstage, a BBC sound engineer, one presenter inside the auditorium and one member of Wigmore Hall staff on duty - in strict compliance with the government’s social distancing guidelines and with more than 2 metres in social distancing.  

Alan Davey, Controller of BBC Radio 3, commented: “Live music is in the DNA of Radio 3 and so its loss is felt by all, not just at home but also in the music industry, it is therefore a great joy to restore this service to the nation whilst also ensuring maximum health and safety.

My thanks to Wigmore Hall for once again collaborating with us on the venture and also to the performers for helping us to bring live classical music back into the nation’s homes during quarantine.”

Every concert will be broadcast live on BBC Radio 3 and streamed both on BBC Sounds and the Wigmore Hall website.

Main image: ©Kaupo Kikkas

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