Events Calendar

An artwork image showing clouds, trees and lightening in dark grey and red colours

Vasily Petrenko conducts Mahler's Symphony No.8

Sunday 23 October 2022, 3.00pm
Royal Albert Hall

Mahler Symphony No.8, ‘Symphony of a Thousand’

Vasily Petrenko Conductor
Philharmonia Chorus
Bournemouth Symphony Chorus
City of London Choir

Schola Cantorum of The Cardinal Vaughan Memorial School
Tiffin Boys' Choir

Royal Philharmonic Orchestra

A rare treat for Mahler-lovers and anyone who likes their symphonies on the grandest scale.

‘Can you imagine a symphony that is, from beginning to end, song?’ This was the ambitious vision that struck Mahler "like lightening" and had him composing in a frenzy. Within three months he had sketched his most epic work, echoing religious themes from earlier symphonies while taking them to a whole new level.

The first half is a celebration of the divine spirit. The second half, inspired by Goethe’s Faust, starts with ‘woodlands wavering into view’ and ends with dazzling visions of angels and the life eternal.

From the thundering organ chord and the double choir of the opening to the amassed brass at the end, the symphony delivers its message of redemption with the largest forces imaginable on stage. Initially promoted as the ‘Symphony of a Thousand’ due to the numerous performers, Mahler is both exuberant and restrained. His more subdued, economic writing is every bit as powerful as the big set-pieces.

Neither cantata nor opera, the composer's lightning-strike vision was for how the worlds of instrument and voice might come together: a ‘True Symphony’, in Mahler’s words.

Cast includes: 

Sarah Wegener Soprano 
Jacquelyn Wagner Soprano
Regula Mühlemann Soprano 
Jennifer Johnston Mezzo-soprano
Benedict Nelson Tenor
Michael Nagy Baritone
James Platt Bass

This concert has no interval.

This concert has been rescheduled from Sun 18 Oct 2020 due to the coronavirus pandemic.

The Royal Philharmonic Orchestra gratefully acknowledges the generous support of Mrs Aline Foriel-Destezet.

Large print versions of the programme for this concert are available on request. Please email your request to Doran Crowhurst at least one full week before the performance.

Ticket information

Tickets from £10.50.

Book as early as you can to secure the best choice of seats at the best possible prices. Ticket prices will be adjusted in real-time and will reflect the most current price for each performance based on demand. Prices are subject to change without notice.

Series Discounts: 20% off the full ticket price when you book for all three concerts. Please phone the Royal Albert Hall Box Office on 020 7589 8212 for details.

Royal Albert Hall booking fees apply (7.5% of the total transaction, plus a recovery levy of £2 per ticket).

RPO Club discounts apply

Groups of just 6+
 save up to 35%
 phone 020 7608 8840

We use cookies to provide you with the best experience of our website.