Santtu-Matias Rouvali – conductor
Sunwook Kim – piano


Wagner arr. Zumpe The Entry of the Gods into Valhalla, from Das Rheingold Listen

Brahms Piano Concerto No. 2 Listen

— Interval —

Schumann Symphony No. 3, ‘Rhenish’ Listen

Sunwook Kim joins the Philharmonia for one of the all-time greats of the piano repertoire.

Brahms teasingly described his concerto in a letter to Clara Schumann as ‘a very small piano concerto with a very small and pretty scherzo.’ In fact, it’s a 50-minute masterclass in how to compose for piano and orchestra. Its four movements explore every facet of the piano’s expressive potential, by turns graceful and dramatic, stormy and tender.

Thirty years before Brahms premiered his concerto, Robert and Clara Schumann enjoyed a trip from their new home in Düsseldorf, along the Rhine to Cologne. It was the inspiration for the ‘Rhenish’ symphony, the last Robert Schumann wrote. The second movement evokes the broad, peacefully flowing river, the fourth, with its sombre brass chorales, tells of a ceremony the couple witnessed in Cologne Cathedral, and the work ends in celebratory mood.

There’s musical treasure from the Rhine in Santtu’s choice of opening piece too. Between brass fanfares evoking the grandeur and power of the Norse gods, singing woodwinds and rippling harp play the ‘Rhinegold’ theme that runs like a golden thread through Wagner’s entire Ring Cycle.

This concert was originally advertised with piano soloist Daniil Trifonov. Due to continuing visa issues, Daniil Trifonov will be unable to perform with us on Thursday 2 May. We are very grateful to Sunwook Kim for stepping in. The programme remains unchanged.

Need to know

Prices & Discounts

£20 – £75

Multibuy offer available; under-18s and concessions discounts available

Running time

1 hr 55 mins, including a 20 minute interval

Recommended age

From 7+

Programme notes

Free printed programmes will be available at the venue. Digital programme notes available a week before the event.

Box office

Philharmonia Box Office: 0800 652 6717
Monday to Friday 10am – 5pm

Before the event

Close up of two flautists at a Philharmonia education performance
Thursday 2 May, 6pm, The Clore Ballroom at Royal Festival Hall

Sutton Youth Wind Orchestra & Philharmonia Musicians

The young musicians of Sutton Youth Wind Orchestra have been working with members of the Philharmonia to prepare for a free performance on the Clore Ballroom.


Royal Festival Hall

Royal Festival Hall

Southbank Centre
Belvedere Road

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