THE internationally-renowned Prague Symphony Orchestra are set to give Sage Gateshead’s premiere of Mahler’s epic Third Symphony on Thursday.

Never before performed in the region’s musical home, Mahler 3 is the longest symphony regularly performed on the classical concert platform, full to the brim with trumpet fanfares, marches, children’s songs and even a hymn to love. It is a full concert in its own right.

Involving the vast forces of a full symphony orchestra, mezzo-soprano soloist, women's chorus and children’s chorus, the Prague Symphony Orchestra will be joined by Ester Pavlů, the Czech mezzo-soprano winner of the Antonin Dvořák Singing Competition and regular performer at the Prague State Opera and Prague National Theatre. The evening will be conducted by Pietari Inkinen.

The Czech musicians will join forces with local favourites, the Ladies of the Chorus of Royal Northern Sinfonia and a children’s chorus made up of choristers from Newcastle Cathedral to present Mahler’s musical tour-de-force.

The choristers of Newcastle Cathedral are drawn from numerous schools across Newcastle and Gateshead. Their director, Ian Roberts, said: “This is a really exciting project for the choristers to be part of. Before now this symphony was completely new to them. It’s been a great challenge and a very unique opportunity.”

Chief conductor of the Prague Symphony Orchestra, Japan Philharmonic Orchestra, and the German Radio Philharmonic, Inkinen said: “Mahler 3 is a larger than life work with choir, soloists and huge orchestra. It’s truly a life changing experience to see this colossal work come to life in front of your eyes.”

Tickets for the concert at 7.30pm are available at or from Sage Gateshead’s Box Office on 0191 443 4661.