The Philharmonia Orchestra contrasts Chopin’s elegant and expansive concerto with the vivid colours of music by Anna Clyne and Bartók.

Chopin and Bartok with Benjamin Grosvenor @Southbank Centre

Anna Clyne’s inspiration for This Midnight Hour came from two poems – Baudelaire’s describes a heady evening where ‘sounds and perfumes swirl in the evening air’, and Jiménez’s pictures Music as a woman running through the night.

It’s an apt companion to Bartók’s Concerto for Orchestra – every member of the Philharmonia has their moment in the spotlight in this work fizzing with imagination. It’s hard to believe Bartók was in hospital in the early stages of his final illness when he accepted this commission, his music is so full of energy and life. Chopin’s Piano Concerto No.1 comes from a different place entirely – the virtuosity the young composer-pianist wanted to showcase was his own.

Tonight his sparkling heart-on-sleeve melodies are in the hands of electrifying British pianist Benjamin Grosvenor. Grosvenor’s 2020 recording of the Chopin Piano Concertos won both a Gramophone Concerto Award and a Diapason D’Or de l’Année, with Diapason declaring it ‘confirmation of an extraordinary artist.’


  • Philharmonia Orchestra
  • Joana Carneiro conductor
  • Benjamin Grosvenor piano


  • Anna Clyne: This Midnight Hour
  • Chopin: Piano Concerto No.1
  • Interval
  • Bartók: Concerto for Orchestra