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BBC accused of editing out new music from Proms on television
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Composers left disappointed by broadcaster's decision to cut works out of televised versions as BBC blames scheduling

Since 1927, when the BBC took over the Henry Wood promenade concerts, the Proms have been Britain's most important champion of new music, commissioning countless works from composers that have been experienced by an enthusiastic and open-minded audience that, in the words of Sir Harrison Birtwistle, is "in for anything".

But this year, those watching selected Proms on BBC2 and BBC4 have been confronted by a mystery: the case of the disappearing contemporary music.

Prominent figures from the classical music world have united to condemn the excision of new music from the televised Proms. Susanna Eastburn, the chief executive of Sound and Music, the national agency for new music, said it was "a policy-by-implication which assumes that audiences won't like new music, and that it's not valued by the BBC".

Composers whose works were edited out of the televised versions of the Proms include Birtwistle, Jonathan Dove, Helen Grime, Roxanna Panufnik and John McLeod.


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