Due to popular demand, globally-acclaimed conductor, pianist and humanitarian Daniel Barenboim has announced a second date with his West-Eastern Divan Orchestra at Southbank Centre’s Royal Festival Hall this October. The concert on Sunday 29 October at 2pm will raise funds for multiple sclerosis (MS) research in aid of the MS Society. Tickets go on sale from tomorrow.
The Jacqueline du Pré tribute concert will see Barenboim, who first performed at Royal Festival Hall aged just 13, bring his West-Eastern Divan Orchestra to the venue for the first time, in tribute to cellist Jacqueline du Pré, Barenboim’s wife of 20 years, who had MS and died aged just 42. This October marks 30 years since the death of du Pré, who was recognised as one of the most talented cellists in history before her illness forced her to give up playing.
Daniel Barenboim and academic Edward Said formed the West-Eastern Divan Orchestra to open dialogues between Israeli and Palestinian musicians. Under Barenboim’s leadership, the ensemble goes from strength to strength, defying political divides and delivering performances as profound as the philosophy behind its formation. This first appearance at Royal Festival Hall will feature Tchaikovsky’s Symphony No.5 and Strauss’ Don Quixote, with the young Austrian-Persian cellist Kian Soltani as soloist.
Daniel Barenboim says: “MS can be a cruel condition. For Jacqueline I saw it destroy the very essence of what it meant to her to be a human being. Progress is being made in the fight against this unpredictable illness and if Jacqueline had been diagnosed today, her experience of MS may have been more positive. But there is still so much to do. Therefore, every effort must be made towards finding a cure. I am honoured to be conducting this tribute concert at Royal Festival Hall to raise funds for MS research in support of the MS Society.”
Proceeds from this tribute concert go to the MS Society’s Stop MS Appeal which raises funds for groundbreaking research into multiple sclerosis. Through fundraising and generous donations the charity aims to revolutionise treatment and ultimately transform the lives of people affected by MS.