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Orchest ras Piano Ser i es Cham b er Mu si c S er i es Organ S er i es

W E LC O M E Welcome to a new season of classical music at Southbank Centre. Visits from West-Eastern Divan Orchestra under Daniel Barenboim, and Sir Simon Rattle and the Berliner Philharmoniker, are among the highlights of a rich and varied season. We’re proud to announce pianist Pierre-Laurent Aimard as our newest Artist in Residence. He has programmed Ligeti In Wonderland: a weekend-long festival of concerts and talks where you can step inside the adventurous world of this pioneering composer. The Orgelbüchlein Project, a mission to complete Bach’s set of organ miniatures, and two tasters from the Berliner Philharmoniker’s Tapas series – commissions under 6 minutes long – bring you brief encounters with the music of the 21st century. Many of this year’s concerts form part of two festivals: Belief and Beyond Belief explores what it means to be human in the 21st century and features the Emerson Quartet playing Beethoven’s late quartets, and Nordic Matters takes a look at what’s happening in Nordic art, culture and society. Our four Resident Orchestras also present around 100 concerts, playing music from the Baroque to the brand new – you can find details in their own season brochures and on our website Join us for some of the finest music you’ll find anywhere in the world, right here on the South Bank. Gillian Moore MBE Director of Music


Saturday 14 October 2017

Saturday 28 October 2017

Monday 25 September 2017



International Orchestras

International Orchestras

International Organ Series

Matthias Pintscher conductor

JS Bach Prelude and Fugue in A minor, BWV.543; Chorale-prelude, Liebster Jesu, wir sind hier, BWV.633 Simon Johnson Wohl dem, der in Gottes Furcht steht - No.87 from the Orgelbüchlein Project Franck Choral No.1 in E for organ Jonathan Harvey Toccata for organ & pre-recorded tape Julius Reubke Sonata in C Minor on Psalm 94

Boulez ...explosante-fixe... (In memoriam Stravinsky) Phillipe Schoeller Hermès V Jonathan Harvey Bhakti

Daniel Barenboim conductor Kian Soltani cello


Simon Johnson, the organist of St Paul’s Cathedral, pairs two mighty works by Bach and Reubke. Johnson’s own contribution to the Orgelbüchlein Project, a completion of Bach’s unfinished set of chorale preludes, and Jonathan Harvey’s Toccata add a contemporary twist.

Matthias Pintscher conducts the ensemble in one of Boulez’s most ethereal works alongside the more overtly spiritual Bhakti, the Hindu word for a devotional act of faith, by Jonathan Harvey. The programme is completed by Philippe Schoeller’s piece inspired by the Olympian god, Hermes. Royal Festival Hall, 7.30pm £45, £35, £25, £15

Tuesday 17 October 2017


Royal Festival Hall, 7.30pm £15

International Piano Series, Nordic Matters

Royal Festival Hall at 6.15pm: Free pre-concert talk

Grieg Selection from Lyric Pieces; Ballade in G minor, Op.24 Liszt Sonata in B minor


Listen to the charming, intimate music of Grieg. The Lyric Pieces are performed as part of Southbank Centre’s year-long focus festival, Nordic Matters. They are steeped in folklore, the echoes of traditional instruments and the distinctive, lively and soulful melodies of Norwegian folk music. Alice Sara Ott finishes the recital with Liszt’s Sonata in B minor, one of the best-loved and most dramatic works in the romantic piano repertoire, displaying to the utmost the pianist’s formidible virtuoso skills.

Thursday 5 October 2017

B E RTRAND C H AM AYOU International Piano Series Saint-Saëns Les Cloches de Las Palmas from 6 Etudes, Op.111; Allegro appassionato in C sharp minor, Op.70 Ravel Miroirs Liszt Les jeux d’eaux à la Villa d’Este and Sonetto 123 del Petrarca from Années de pèlerinage; Miserere from Verdi’s Il Trovatore transc. for piano, S.433; Venezia e Napoli, S.162 Beginning with two evocative pieces by Saint-Saëns, Chamayou presents Ravel’s set of ravishing soundscapes, Miroirs. The second half is devoted to Franz Liszt’s romanticism, and a sizzling transcription from Verdi’s Il Trovatore. St John’s Smith Square, 7.30pm £38 £28 £15 £10

St John’s Smith Square, 7.30pm £38 £28 £15 £10

Richard Strauss Don Quixote Tchaikovsky Symphony No.5 Daniel Barenboim and academic Edward Said formed the West-Eastern Divan to open dialogues between Israeli and Palestinian musicians. Under Barenboim’s leadership, the ensemble performs Tchaikovsky’s Symphony No.5 and Strauss’ Don Quixote, featuring cellist Kian Soltani. Proceeds from this concert will go to the MS Society, as part of the Stop MS Appeal, which aims to unlock breakthroughs on the horizon at a critical juncture in multiple sclerosis research. Royal Festival Hall, 6.30pm (Please note start time) £125 £100 £75 £55 £35 £20

Tuesday 31 October 2017

L E IF OVE ANDS NES, P IANO International Piano Series, Nordic Matters Sibelius Selected works Jörg Widmann Idyll & Abgrund (6 Schubert Reminiscences) Schubert 3 Piano Pieces, D.946 Beethoven Sonata in D minor, Op.31 No.2 (Tempest) Chopin Nocturne in B, Op.62 No.1; Ballade No.1 in G minor, Op.23 The Norwegian pianist plays Sibelius’ tender and chilling music as part of our Nordic Matters festival. Schubert’s Three Piano Pieces follow Jörg Widmann’s tribute. The second half matches Beethoven’s turbulent ‘Tempest’ Sonata with Chopin’s most dramatic Ballade. Royal Festival Hall, 7.30pm £55 £40 £30 £20 £10


Tuesday 14 November 2017

Tuesday 21 November 2017


Monday 26 February 2018


Tuesday 31 October 2017


Tuesday 23 January 2018


Tuesday 13 March 2018



International Organ Series

International Organ Series

International Chamber Music Series, Belief and Beyond Belief

International Chamber Music Series, Belief and Beyond Belief

JS Bach Die Kunst der Fuge (The Art of Fugue), BVW.1080


Beethoven String Quartet in E flat, Op.127, String Quartet in F, Op.135, String Quartet in C sharp minor, Op.131

Steven Osborne piano James Ehnes violin Alban Gerhardt cello Jean Johnson clarinet

Bach’s last composition, left unfinished at his death, has long been the source of intrigue. Was it written for organ? Was it intended as an abstract, instructive work, or a monument of instrumental polyphony? Anne Page returns to Royal Festival Hall to tackle this musical odyssey.

The Emerson Quartet are known for their technically extraordinary interpretations of Beethoven’s electrifying late quartets. Beethoven was profoundly deaf and well aware that he was approaching death when he wrote these emotionally searching works. St John’s Smith Square, 7.30pm £38 £28 £15 £10

NOVEMBER Wednesday 1 November 2017

EMERS ON QUA RTE T International Chamber Music Series, Belief and Beyond Belief Beethoven String Quartet in A minor, Op.132, String Quartet in B flat, Op.130 vers. with Grosse Fuge, Op.133 The Emerson Quartet continue their exploration of Beethoven’s late quartets. These concerts form part of Belief and Beyond Belief, our festival examining art that speaks of the divine and the human spirit. St John’s Smith Square, 7.30pm £38 £28 £15 £10

Friday 3 November 2017

AU STR ALIAN CHAMBER ORC H ESTRA International Orchestras Richard Tognetti conductor Pierre-Laurent Aimard piano Bach Contrapuncti 1 – 4 Mozart Piano Concerto No.15 in B flat, K.450 Tchaikovsky Souvenir de Florence, Op.70 arr. for string orchestra Shostakovich 2 Pieces (Prelude & Scherzo) for string octet, Op.11 Richard Tognetti’s arrangements of JS Bach and Shostakovich invite the audience to enjoy these masterworks in fresh guises, while Pierre-Laurent Aimard brings his exceptional sensitivity and understanding to Mozart’s Piano Concerto No.15. Royal Festival Hall, 7.30pm £55, £45, £35, £25, £15

Shostakovich Piano Trio No.2 in E minor, Op.67 Messiaen Quatuor pour la fin du temps Hear two great works that emerged from the horrors of war. Shostakovich’s Piano Trio No.2 was composed in the aftermath of the Siege of Leningrad, during which a million citizens were killed. Messiaen wrote his Quartet for the End of Time in a prisoner of war camp, and performed it there with three fellow detainees to an audience of prisoners and their guards. St John’s Smith Square, 7.30pm £38 £28 £15 £10

Wednesday 15 November 2017

VÍ K I N G U R Ó L AFS S O N , PIANO International Piano Series, Nordic Matters JS Bach Partita No.6 in E minor, BWV.830 Chopin Etude in F minor, Op.10 No.9; Etude in F minor, Op.25 No.2; Nouvelle Etude No.1 in F minor, Op.posth.; Ballade No.4 in F minor, Op.52 Brahms Sonata No.3 in F minor, Op.5 Join us at this multifaceted concert featuring rising Icelandic star Víkingur Ólafsson. Bach’s Partita No.6 in E minor opens the evening, and is followed by a selection of works by Chopin and Brahms’ epic third sonata, all linked by the key of F minor. St John’s Smith Square, 7.30pm £38 £28 £15 £10

Royal Festival Hall, 7.30pm £15 Royal Festival Hall at 6.15pm: Free pre-concert talk

Tuesday 28 November 2017

M I TS U KO U C H I DA , PI A N O International Piano Series Schubert Sonata in C minor, D.958; Sonata in A, D.664; Sonata in G, D.894 Continuing her three-year collaboration with Southbank Centre, Mitsuko Uchida performs the great C minor Sonata D.958, a work of overwhelming drama and almost fevered imagination. She follows it with the ‘little’ A major Sonata D.664, one of the most lyrical and intimate in Schubert’s output. After the interval, Uchida traverses the sublime expanses of the Sonata in G major. Royal Festival Hall, 7.30pm £65, £50, £35, £20, £10

DECEMBER Friday 1 December 2017

M I TS U KO U C H I DA , PI A N O International Piano Series Schubert Sonata in B, D.575; Sonata in A minor, D.845; Sonata in D, D.850 In the second recital of her series exploring Schubert’s sonatas, Mitsuko Uchida highlights some of the lesser-known works, ending with the high-octane D major Sonata D.850, an exceptionally extroverted sonata for the composer. Wit, humour and good nature dance through its four movements. Royal Festival Hall, 7.30pm £65, £50, £35, £20, £10

International Piano Series Haydn Sonata in C, Hob.XVI/50 Beethoven 6 Bagatelles, Op.126 Brahms 6 Pieces, Op.118 Haydn Sonata in G, Hob.XVI/40 In a new series spanning this season and next, Paul Lewis brings together three key figures – Haydn, Beethoven and Brahms – by tracing the thread of musical heritage from one to the next. Haydn’s sparkling and witty sonatas bookend Beethoven’s lyricism and Brahms’ reflectiveness.

Bach Fantasia and Fugue in G minor, BWV.542 Stanford Sonata No.2 in G minor, Op.151 (Eroica) Duruflé Prelude et Fugue sur le nom d’Alain, Op.7 Louis Vierne Symphonie No.6 in B minor, Op.59

Royal Festival Hall, 7.30pm £55 £40 £30 £20 £10

Principal organist to Westminster Abbey’s Choir, Daniel Cook is recognised internationally as a liturgical and concert organist. His programme includes Stanford’s tribute to those who gave their lives for France in the Great War, and Vierne’s thrilling sixth organ symphony.


Royal Festival Hall, 7.30pm £15

Wednesday 7 February 2018

M ARTIN H E L M C H E N, P IANO International Piano Series Schumann Novelletten, Op.21 Nos.1, 2, 5&8 Beethoven 33 Variations on a waltz by Diabelli, Op.120 Helmchen has built an enviable reputation particularly in the classical and romantic repertoire. Schumann’s Novelletten form the largest and the least known among Schumann’s major piano cycles with the music clearly written in an exultant mood. In the second half we hear Beethoven’s Diabelli Variations, a startlingly original masterpiece filled with power, wit and virtuosity. St John’s Smith Square, 7.30pm £38 £28 £15 £10

Royal Festival Hall at 6.15pm: Free pre-concert talk

Wednesday 28 February 2018

B ORIS GILTB U RG, P IANO International Piano Series Brahms 7 Fantasias, Op.116 Shostakovich String Quartet No.8 in C minor, Op.110 arr. Boris Giltburg Rachmaninov Etudes-tableaux, Op.39 Particularly praised for his performances of Russian music, Boris Giltburg plays the immensely colourful, intense and poetic set of Études-tableaux, Op.39 by Rachmaninov. The programme also features Giltburg’s own muchacclaimed transcription for piano of Shostakovich’s String Quartet No.8. St John’s Smith Square, 7.30pm £38 £28 £15 £10

M AU RIZ IO POLLINI, P IANO International Piano Series Programme to be announced The Italian pianist’s performances at Southbank Centre have always proved highlights of the season. In recent years, he has been praised for his ‘peerless, supremely authoritative performances’ (The Guardian). Royal Festival Hall, 7.30pm £65 £50 £35 £20 £10

Tuesday 20 March 2018

GEOR GE LI, PIANO International Piano Series Beethoven Sonata in F, Op.10 No.2 Chopin Sonata No.2 in B flat minor, Op.35 (Marche funèbre) Rachmaninov Variations on a theme by Corelli, Op.42 Liszt Consolation No.3 in D flat; Hungarian Rhapsody No.2 in C sharp minor (Lento a capriccio) Since winning silver medal at the International Tchaikovsky Competition in Moscow, George Li has been attracting rave reviews as his impressive career accelerates. At the centre of his programme is Chopin’s haunted, feverish second sonata ‘Funeral March’. St John’s Smith Square, 7.30pm £38 £28 £15 £10


Wednesday 19 April 2018

Thursday 26 April 2018


Sunday 13 May 2018

Wednesday 30 May 2018

Thursday 5 April 2018



Wednesday 9 May 2018



ST EPHEN HOU G H , P I A NO International Piano Series Debussy Clair de lune from Suite bergamasque; Images, Set 2 Schumann Fantasie in C, Op.17 Debussy La terrasse des audiences du clair de lune from Préludes, Bk.2; Images, Set 1 Beethoven Sonata in F minor, Op.57 (Appassionata) Stephen Hough’s recital programmes are always ideas-focused, and today he makes an unusual pairing of tempestuous German Romantic music with French musical impressionism from Debussy. Royal Festival Hall, 7.30pm £55 £40 £30 £20 £10

Monday 10 April 2018

ST EVE REICH’S D I FFER ENT TRA I N S International Chamber Music Series London Contemporary Orchestra Soloists Programme includes: Steve Reich Different Trains (London premiere of this version) Hear Steve Reich’s meditation on the Holocaust on the 30th anniversary of its world premiere in Queen Elizabeth Hall. Written for string quartet and tape, the work’s melodies emerge from the spoken reminiscences of Reich’s governess, an American Pullman porter and three Holocaust survivors. Bill Morrison’s new film accompanying Reich’s music receives its London premiere. Queen Elizabeth Hall, 7.30pm £38 £28 £21 £15 £10

International Chamber Music Series Morton Feldman King of Denmark Stockhausen Klavierstück X Harrison Birtwistle New work (Southbank Centre commission) Hear a world premiere commissioned to mark the reopening of Queen Elizabeth Hall. Sir Harrison Birtwistle’s music has long been associated with the hall, which has hosted world and UK premieres of his works over the last five decades. Queen Elizabeth Hall, 7.30pm £25 £20 £15 £10

Tuesday 24 April 2018

WI LLIAM W HI T E HE A D, O RG A N International Organ Series Nicholaus Bruhns Praeludium in E minor (Great) Orgelbüchlein Project Five selected pieces Schumann Mässig, doch nicht zu langsam (No.4) & Lebhaft (No.5) from 6 Fugues on the name BACH, Op.60 Parry Fantasia and Fugue in G, Op.188 Liszt Fantasia and fugue on ‘Ad nos, ad salutarem undam’, S.259 William Whitehead is currently curating a major international project to fill in the gaps in Bach’s Orgelbüchlein. 118 new pieces by different composers complement Bach’s original works and ‘complete’ his intended collection of 164 chorale preludes. Tonight, hear a selection of these new preludes, alongside earlier composers’ homages to Bach. Royal Festival Hall, 7.30pm £15 Royal Festival Hall at 6.15pm: Free pre-concert talk

International Piano Series Bach French Suite No.5 in G, BWV.816 Brahms 4 Pieces, Op.119 Brett Dean Hommage à Brahms Debussy Prélude à l’après-midi d’un faune arr. Leonard Borwick/George Copeland Berg Sonata, Op.1 Ravel Gaspard de la nuit Young pianist Benjamin Grosvenor opens this recital with a delicate, ebullient Bach suite. This is followed by a cocktail of Brahms’ last set of piano pieces, interspersed with a contemporary tribute to them by Brett Dean. The second half features a rare arrangement of Debussy’s sensual orchestral tone-poem Prélude à l’après-midi d’un faune. Queen Elizabeth Hall, 7.30pm £38 £28 £21 £15 £10

Friday 27 April 2018

DAN I E LL E D E N I ESE , S O PR AN O International Chamber Music Series Navarra String Quartet Albert Roussel 2 Poèmes de Ronsard, Op.26 Schubert Der Hirt auf dem Felsen (Shepherd on the rock), D.965 Ernest Chausson Chanson perpetuelle, Op.37 Schubert Der Tod und das Mädchen (Death and the Maiden), D.531; String Quartet in D minor, D.810 (Death and the Maiden) The charismatic soprano Danielle de Niese performs musical reflections of spring and winter, life and death. This key event in Queen Elizabeth Hall’s reopening gives Southbank Centre audiences a chance to get up close and hear ‘opera’s coolest soprano’ (New York Times Magazine) performing chamber music in an intimate setting. Queen Elizabeth Hall, 7.30pm £38 £28 £21 £15 £10

KHATIA BUNIATISHVILI, P IANO International Piano Series Brahms Sonata No.3 in F minor, Op.5 Liszt Rhapsodie espagnole, S.254 Tchaikovsky The Nutcracker Suite (arr. Pletnev) Stravinsky 3 Movements from The Firebird Suite (transc. Guido Agosti) Khatia Buniatishvili is known for her noholds-barred risk-taking at the keyboard. Praised for her ‘keyboard magic of exceptional sensitivity’ and ‘jaw-dropping virtuoso technique’ (Evening Standard), she has won a devoted following. Queen Elizabeth Hall, 7.30pm £38 £28 £21 £15 £10

Friday 11 May 2018


Ligeti in Wonderland Pierre-Laurent Aimard piano Patricia Kopatchinskaja violin Marie-Luise Neunecker horn Ligeti Violin Concerto, Chamber Concerto, Piano Concerto, Hamburgisches Konzert (Horn Concerto) Three of the world’s great Ligeti interpreters join Aurora Orchestra under Nicholas Collon to perform some of his most imaginative and powerful music. Queen Elizabeth Hall, 3pm £35 £25 £20 £15

Tuesday 15 May 2018

SP IRA M IRAB IL IS International Orchestras Beethoven Symphony No.7

International Orchestras Sir Simon Rattle conductor Hans Abrahamsen Tapas Bruckner Symphony No.9 Sir Simon Rattle visits London as Artistic Director of the Berliner Philharmoniker for the last time. Their programmes combine contemporary innovation with Romantic masterpieces. First, Danish composer Hans Abrahamsen’s short Tapas acts as an appetiser for Bruckner’s powerful Ninth Symphony. Royal Festival Hall, 7.30pm £125, £100, £75, £55, £35, £20

Thursday 31 May 2018


The orchestra continues its journey through Beethoven’s symphonies with the majestic Symphony No.7. Framing the famous slow-build of the Allegretto are a boisterous first movement, scintillating Presto and ebullient finale.

International Orchestras

Reich Clapping Music Ligeti Etude No.8 (Fém) Nancarrow 2 Piano Player Studies arr. F. Boffard & P.L.Aimard for 2 pianos Ligeti Poème symphonique for 100 metronomes; Etude No.4 (Fanfares); Trio for horn, violin & piano (Hommage à Brahms)

Queen Elizabeth Hall, 7.30pm £45, £35, £25, £15

The Trio represented an aesthetic turning point in Ligeti’s career. The choice of instruments is in homage to Brahms’ horn trio, and as in Ligeti’s subsequent work, the piece revisits and transforms traditional forms.

Benjamin Grosvenor piano Hyeyoon Park violin Brett Dean viola Kian Soltani cello Leon Bosch double bass

A second helping from the Berliner Philharmoniker’s series of short commissions heralds two symphonies written just over a century apart. Whereas Brahms felt that he was following in the hallowed footsteps of Beethoven, Lutosławski broke new ground by giving players instructions to perform certain sections of his symphony ‘in their own time’, building up rich and complex textures.

Ligeti in Wonderland, International Chamber Music Series Pierre-Laurent Aimard piano Patricia Kopatchinskaja violin Marie-Luise Neunecker horn

Queen Elizabeth Hall, 7.30pm £25 £20 £15 £10

Saturday 12 May 2018

P IE RRE-L AU RE NT AIM ARD, P IANO Ligeti in Wonderland, International Piano Series Ligeti Etudes Followed by interview and audience Q&A The 18 Études are arguably one of the most significant piano masterpieces of the last century. Stretching the performer to extraordinary technical feats, they are unified by poetic imagery that ranges from Autumn in Warsaw to the ‘Sorcerer’s Apprentice’, from rainbows to ‘The Devil’s Staircase’. Queen Elizabeth Hall, 7.30pm £25 £20 £15 £10

Tuesday 29 May 2018

TH E TROU T QU INTE T International Chamber Music Series

Brahms Piano Quartet No.1 in G minor, Op.25 Schubert Piano Quintet in A, D.667 (Trout) In 1969, a group of young stars including Daniel Barenboim and Jacqueline du Pré took to the stage in the recently opened Queen Elizabeth Hall to perform Schubert’s much-loved Trout Quintet. Now Benjamin Grosvenor and his friends unite for a contemporary presentation of this piece with a powerful history, alongside another gem of the chamber music repertoire. Queen Elizabeth Hall, 7.30pm £38 £28 £21 £15 £10

Sir Simon Rattle conductor Jörg Widmann Tapas Lutosławski Symphony No.3 Brahms Symphony No.1

Royal Festival Hall, 7.30pm £125, £100, £75, £55, £35, £20

JUNE Tuesday 5 June 2018

PAU L LEWIS, PIANO International Piano Series Beethoven 11 Bagatelles, Op.119 Haydn Sonata in E flat, Hob.XVI/49; Sonata in B minor, Hob.XVI/32 Brahms 4 Pieces, Op.119 In his second recital of the season, Paul Lewis takes on the witty and occasionally eccentric set of 11 Bagatelles by Beethoven and Brahms’ final work for solo piano – four lyrical short pieces that show the essence of the composer at his strongest and most succinct. Royal Festival Hall, 7.30pm £55 £40 £30 £20 £10

BOOKING Onsale dates International orchestras go on sale to Southbank Centre Supporters Circles on Tuesday 31 January, to Southbank Centre Members on Thursday 2 February, and to everyone on Friday 10 February. All other events in this brochure go on sale to Southbank Centre Supporters on Monday 20 February, to Southbank Centre Members on Tuesday 21 February, and to everyone on Thursday 23 February. Online £1.75 transaction fee* Phone 020 7960 4200 (9am – 8pm daily) £2.75 transaction fee* *No transaction fees for Southbank Centre Members and Supporters Circles In Person Royal Festival Hall Ticket Office Mon – Sun, 10am – 8pm

Book more and save Series discounts are available for concerts in the International Piano Series, International Chamber Music Series or International Organ Series. The discount will be applied to standard tickets booked in the same transaction. Full details are available online or from our Ticket Office. Student Pulse A limited number of £7 student tickets are available via the Student Pulse app in the month before each concert. Visit to find out more or download from any app store.

Profile for Southbank Centre

Classical Series 2017/18  

Welcome to a new season of classical music at Southbank Centre. Visits from Sir Simon Rattle and the Berliner Philharmoniker, and the West-E...

Classical Series 2017/18  

Welcome to a new season of classical music at Southbank Centre. Visits from Sir Simon Rattle and the Berliner Philharmoniker, and the West-E...