London Symphony Orchestra to play Trafalgar Square concerts

A classical concert is a great way to top off stays at 5 star hotels in London, and this year visitors to the capital can enjoy something a little different with the London Symphony Orchestra (LSO) announcing a string of open-air performances.

The orchestra will play three concerts in London's Trafalgar Square, with the date of the first now confirmed as May 12th.

Speaking to the Guardian, Kathryn McDowell, the LSO's managing director, said the concerts would help to bring classical music to a wider audience.

"It will appeal to first-time concert goers of all ages and also to more established classical music enthusiasts. Trafalgar Square is the perfect venue," she said.

The event will be completely free and see Valery Gergiev conduct a programme of Stravinsky.

The conductor has been part of similar previous events in Munich, New York and Red Square, Moscow.

While he admitted the outdoor space and noise of central London would present acoustical issues, Mr Gergiev hopes the concerts will boost interest in classical music.

"Acoustics is an issue of course but there are many, many ways of making it work," he said. "And look, if classical music were to always hide behind the walls of Carnegie Hall or the Barbican, I don't think that would be the smartest solution.

"I hope that performing these great works in such an impressive outdoor space will encourage many new people to experience the very special sound and experience of a truly great orchestra."

The programme will include a performance of Stravinsky's Firebird Suite and The Rite of Spring.

Meanwhile, 100 young musicians from LSO Discovery – the orchestra's music education and community programme – will also perform The Lite of Spring, a Stravinsky interpretation by Gareth Glyn.

Sponsored by car maker BMW, it is thought to be the first time a full symphony orchestra concert has been held in the square.

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