New hall, new season: newly renovated Bristol Beacon unveils its 2024/25 season of orchestral concerts

New hall, new season: newly renovated Bristol Beacon unveils its 2024/25 season of orchestral concerts
Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra and Kirill Karabits at Bristol Beacon (Photo: Giulia Spadafora)
Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra and Kirill Karabits at Bristol Beacon (Photo: Giulia Spadafora)

Bristol Beacon reopened in November 2023 following a radical transformation which has seen significant improvement in the appearance and function of the main hall and the restoration of the historic core to the building incorporating imaginative new work. Built in 1867 and opened in 1873, the halls have had a series of rebuilds during the 20th and 21st centuries, and in 2020 adopted the new name of Bristol Beacon.

The recent renovation was driven by a vision to enhance and expand the venue’s orchestral and classical programme, capitalising on Beacon Hall’s world-class acoustics and bringing the very best orchestral music to enthusiastic audiences in the South West of England.  Now, Bristol Beacon has announced its first full season of orchestral music following the renovation.

For the 2024/25 season, the Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra is orchestra in residence with six concerts this season, including the opening and closing concert. Two of the performances are with the Orchestra’s new chief conductor Mark Wigglesworth, and their former chief conductor Kirill Karabits returns to present a folklore-inspired programme. They will also be joined by guest conductors Karl-Heinz Steffens, Valentina Peleggi and Gergely Madaras.  The London Symphony Orchestra returns as associate artists of Bristol Beacon with two concerts, the first of which is with its new chief conductor Sir Antonio Pappano, the second with Gianandrea Noseda.

The season sees Beacon Hall debuts for Sinfonia of London, with Sheku Kanneh-Mason and their conductor John Wilson, and the Hungarian Radio Symphony Orchestra. Other visiting ensembles include the London Philharmonic Orchestra with Karina Canellakis and pianist Benjamin Grosvenor, and the Prague Symphony Orchestra with chief conductor Tomáš Brauner. The Buenos Aires Symphony Orchestra of Colón Opera not only make their Bristol Beacon debut, but also their UK debut, conducted by Mariano Chiacchiarini, the programme includes Piazzolla’s rarely performed Bandoneon Concerto with soloist Pablo Mainetti. 

Bristol Beacon (Photo: Tim Crocker)
Bristol Beacon (Photo: Tim Crocker)

Before then, the BBC Proms is at Bristol Beacon for a weekend that includes the Bristol-based Paraorchestra and Charles Hazlewood, the BBC Singers celebrating their 100th anniversary and Kirill Karabits performs his last concert as Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra’s chief conductor and will be joined by Evelyn Glennie for a performance of Jennifer Higdon’s Percussion Concerto. Then in September, the hall hosts the grand final of BBC Young Musician 2024.

Full details from the Bristol Beacon website.


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