Thursday, April 19, 2007

What a surprise!

An announcement came today that the new director of the Proms will be Roger Wright, controller of Radio 3. Nicholas Kenyon, who's leaving to head the Barbican, was controller of Radio 3 before he took over the Proms. John Drummond, Proms supermo for years before that, was also controller of Radio 3 first. So we're really, really surprised. I wonder if they'd ever considered anybody else?

Still, gut reaction is that Wright's a good bet. His innovations at Radio 3 have been a willingness to embrace technology, the offering of groundbreaking downloads - they proved too popular for their own good - and occasional saturation bombing with whole weeks devoted to one composer. He has a feel for the big gesture, the grand style and the pushing out of technological boats, all of which go down like hot muffins at the Proms if they're carried off well. Perhaps he'll bring a breath of comparatively fresh air in to the arena.

That is, if he has the time - he's staying on at R3 as well.