Thursday 24 Jan 2019, 7.30pmRoyal Festival Hall, London

Philharmonia Box Office : 020 7921 3907

Santtu-Matias Rouvali conductor

Alice Sara Ott piano

Ravel La valse

Ravel Piano Concerto in G


Sibelius Valse triste

Sibelius Symphony No. 1

Ravel’s jazz-inspired piano concerto is framed by two waltzes with dark undercurrents, and Sibelius’s First Symphony.

In 2016, Bachtrack hailed “Alice Sara Ott’s startling performance with the Philharmonia, a barnstorming rendition which gripped from first note until last.” She returns to perform Ravel’s Piano Concerto in G, composed after a concert tour of the USA in 1928 and woven through with the sounds of the jazz he encountered there.

Ravel wrote of the ‘joie de vivre’ he found in the rhythm of the waltz, but in La Valse we survey his ‘immense hall peopled with a whirling crowd’ through the prism of the destruction of the First World War. The work was originally commissioned by Diaghilev for a ballet, but though he declared it a masterpiece he said it was ‘not suitable’ – the two men never spoke again, and had to be dissuaded by friends from fighting a duel over the incident.

Sibelius’s Valse Triste, another darkly beautiful subversion of the dance, paves the way for his First Symphony. Finnish conductor Santtu-Matias Rouvali, appointed Principal Guest Conductor of the Philharmonia last season, brings his irresistible energy to this work full of sweeping melodies, evocative of vast Nordic landscapes.



  • Prices: £58 (premium); £45; £36; £28; £19; £12
  • Discounts: Subscription discounts available; under-18s and concessions discounts available; £8 tickets for students via Student Pulse one month before the concert (limited availability)
  • Running time: 120 minutes, including 20-minute interval
  • Before the concert: FREE Insights Talk, 6pm, Royal Festival Hall

This concert is part of the Piano Masterworks series