Marin Alsop conducts the last night – ending an extraordinary summer of music making

James B. Wilson’s 1922, celebrating the BBC’s centenary and Laura Karman’sHigher. Further. Faster.(main theme from The Marvels) will be performed alongside traditional Last Night favourites

The BBC Proms 2023 season culminates in the celebratory Last Night of the Proms, which takes place on Saturday 9 September at the Royal Albert Hall. This year’s festival finale is led by conductor Marin Alsop, who hosts the concert alongside the BBC Symphony OrchestraBBC Singers, BBC Symphony Chorus and two star soloists: soprano Lise Davidsen and cellist Sheku Kanneh-Mason.

The full programme, announced today, features a suitably festive selection of opera arias, spirituals, choral anthems, all the traditional Last Night favourites and two world premieres:

  • Young British composer James B. Wilson’s 1922, which was specially commissioned to commemorate the BBC’s centenary last year. The piece reflects the last 100 years of broadcasting and the technology, energy and innovation we have borne witness to. The premiere was scheduled for 2022 but unfortunately cancelled due to the death of Her Majesty The Queen.
  • Laura Karpman’s Higher. Further. Faster. Together., the main theme for the upcoming American superhero film, The Marvels.

Katie Derham will present The Last Night of the Proms on TV, and will be joined by special guests Sandi Toksvig and Danielle de Niese. The TV broadcast will be live and in two parts: Part 1 on BBC Two at 7pm, and Part 2 on BBC One at 9pm. BBC Radio 3 will broadcast live from 7pm, presented by Petroc Trelawny and Georgia Mann, featuring special guest Grayson Perry.

There will be two pieces of music performed to mark one year since the death of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth and the Coronation ofKing Charles III. The BBC Singers and BBC Symphony Chorus will perform Coronation Te Deum, which was written by William Walton for the Coronation of Queen Elizabeth II in 1953, and the BBC Singers will also perform Roxanna Panufnik’s Coronation Sanctus, which was commissioned by King Charles III for his Coronation that took place at Westminster Abbey on 6 May 2023.

David Pickard, Director of BBC Proms says: “This summer’s Proms season has seen fantastic numbers coming to the Royal Albert Hall, celebrating the greatest classical music festival in the world. Audience attendance across the season average is 90% which is up from 85% we had in 2019. I’m immensely proud of the range and diversity of this summer’s programme: from a complete performance of Berlioz’s The Trojans – the first in the UK for more than 10 years – to orchestral interpretations of Northern Soul and Bollywood, 23 premieres – 15 of which have been commissioned or co-commissioned by the BBC –  to performances from some of this country’s most celebrated orchestras and visiting ensembles from across the globe. The Proms continues to redefine the boundaries of a classical music festival, and I hope our audiences have been thrilled, inspired and moved by the concerts over the past eight weeks. Thank you for joining us.”

Sam Jackson, Controller of BBC Radio 3 says: “In my first BBC Proms season as Controller of Radio 3, I’m delighted at the degree to which audiences have enjoyed the world’s greatest classical music festival: whether in person, on TV or on the radio. At the Royal Albert Hall and in venues across the UK, we’ve presented 84 concerts and welcomed over 3,000 musicians – with every note broadcast live on Radio 3. What’s more, the Proms lives on via BBC Sounds and iPlayer, where listeners can now enjoy a wealth of outstanding performances from across this eight-week season. ”

BBC Proms content reached 3.2 million on TV over the opening weekend. This includes the First Night of the Proms which had its strongest overnight TV audience since 2009. There has been strong digital performance as well: up until 3rd September there have been 3.7 million requests for Proms content on BBC Sounds and BBC iPlayer, this is nearly double the figures seen by the same point in 2022 and includes a record breaking first weekend.

Last Night of the Proms Programme

R. Strauss Don Juan
Bruch Kol Nidrei
Roxanna Panufnik Coronation Sanctus
James B. Wilson 1922 (BBC commission: world premiere)
Walton Coronation Te Deum
Wagner Tannhauser – ‘Dich, teure Halle’ with Lise Davidsen
Mascagni Cavalleria Rusticana – Easter Hymn with Lise Davidsen
Mascagni Cavalleria Rusticana – Intermezzo
Verdi Macbeth – ‘Vieni t’affretta’ with Lise Davidsen
Laura Karpman Higher. Further. Faster. Together. Main Theme from The Marvels
Coleridge-Taylor Deep River with Sheku Kanneh-Mason
Kálmán The Gypsy Princess – ‘Heia, heia, in den Bergen ist mein Heimatland’ with Lise Davidsen
Villalobos Bachianas brasileiras No. 5 – Aria (Cantilena) with Sheku Kanneh-Mason and Lise Davidsen
Trad. arr.Henry Wood Fantasia on British Sea Songs
Arne arr. Sargent Rule, Britannia! Verses 1, 3, 6 with Lise Davidsen
Elgar Pomp and Circumstance March No. 1
Parry arr. Elgar Jerusalem
The National Anthem arr.Britten
Trad. Arr. Paul Campbell Auld Lang Syne


Lise Davidsensoprano

Sheku Kanneh-Masoncello

BBC Singers

BBC Symphony Chorus

BBC Symphony Orchestra

Marin Alsopconductor

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