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Thursday, 25 April, 2002, 12:45 GMT 13:45 UK
Patriotism returns to Proms' Last Night
Leonard Slatkin
Leonard Slatkin conducted the Last Night in 2001
Land Of Hope And Glory and Rule Britannia are to return to this year's Last Night Of The Proms.

The traditional patriotic pieces were dropped last year, when the final concert came only days after the 11 September attacks on the US.

But festival director Nicholas Kenyon said organisers "thought long and hard" about the decision, and had decided to restore them to the event's showpiece concert, which will be held on 14 September at the Royal Albert Hall.

Sir William Walton
Sir William Walton's work will be celebrated

The programme for 2002 has a strong Spanish theme, bringing more than 60 Iberian works, including the flamenco of Paco Peña, to the Proms.

In a Proms first, the musical Oklahoma will be staged, as part of the centenary celebrations of composer Richard Rodgers.

In another first, Wynton Marsalis brings the Lincoln Center Jazz Orchestra to the Proms for the first time.

The centenary of Sir William Walton will also be marked and there will be new BBC commissions from Anthony Payne, David Sawer, Mark-Anthony Turnage and Joseph Phibbs.

Last year's change to the Last Night celebrations had prompted speculation that the flag-waving format would be dropped permanently.

Nicholas Kenyon
This is director Nicholas Kenyon's seventh Prom season
The event took place just four days after the terrorist attacks and included the US national anthem as well as Barber's Adagio For Strings.

Jerusalem was the only traditional tune to remain in the programme.

BBC Proms director Nicholas Kenyon confirmed the traditional pieces would return, but alongside new works and pieces relevant to this year.

"We talked long and hard about the format of the Last Night and I think the association between these pieces and the Last Night was so strong," he said.

'New commissions'

"We thought let's not stop doing these things, let's build on the Last Night and do more.
The Proms
Proms attendances grew by 2% from 2000 to 2001

"With the new commissions we thought we could broaden its appeal in that way.

"We thought we would make it as appropriate to 2002 as last year's was to 2001."

The Queen's Jubilee will be celebrated, with Sir William Walton's Coronation March and music from Henry V.

The Last Night will also include Scottish, Welsh and Irish folk songs, and once again there will be outdoor Proms In The Park events on the night, with live link-ups to the Royal Albert Hall.

The BBC Proms take place at the Royal Albert Hall in London from 19 July to 14 September.

The Proms, formally known as the Henry Wood Promenade Concerts, aim to bring musical excellence to the widest possible audience.

The nightly concerts are all broadcast on BBC Radio 3, and this year more Proms than ever before will be televised on BBC One, Two and Four.

"Prom" or standing tickets are available for £4 for most concerts on the night.

Full details of the BBC Proms 2002 season are available online and in the BBC Proms Guide, which is published on Friday.

See also:

17 Jul 98 | Entertainment
FAQs: The Proms
09 Sep 99 | Entertainment
Angel in the park
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