Enjoying 2017 (with Scottish Ensemble)

January is not, traditionally, an enjoyable month for most people living in the cold, dark, wet UK. One quite simple way of battling through this, we have found, is planning things to look forward to. So, on the tenuous claim of providing some kind of service to the community, we’ve compiled a list of what… Read more »

A week with Scottish Ensemble – from the students’ mouth…

During Scottish Ensemble’s RCS Week, which takes place at the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland, a group of musicians from Scottish Ensemble spends an intensive week with a handful of promising students from the RCS’ Strings department, who have auditioned for a place on the programme. The students then enjoy five days of focused coaching, working… Read more »

Scottish Ensemble & Anna Meredith: Anno at Tramway, Glasgow (The Herald review)

Published on Sunday 13 November 2016 Written by Miranda Heggie Always challenging the norms of classical music performance, Scottish Ensemble’s latest project, Anno, presents one of the best known works of the classical repertoire, Vivaldi’s Four Seasons, in a startlingly fresh context. Its genesis, devised by soloist and Scottish Ensemble’s Artistic Director Jonathan Morton, this collaboration… Read more »

Creating with children: thoughts on the Anno workshop

Anno was many things: an immersive intermingling of sound and sight, old and new, electronic and acoustic; but at its heart it was a collection of personal responses to music – some of the most famous and popular music ever written, in fact: Vivaldi’s Four Seasons. Though this particular response required the extended efforts of… Read more »

Scottish Ensemble’s Guide To… Ascent: Concerts by Candlelight (tour)

Christmas is simultaneously an easy and difficult time to persuade people to come out to a concert (actually, Christmas is simultaneously an easy and difficult time, full stop). People are gathering together and making merry and whatnot, and ‘whatnot’ does often comprise music, but the demand is often for everything to be overwhelmingly festive. Cue… Read more »

Programme Notes: American Life

From the beginning of Scottish Ensemble’s 2016/17 season, we will make programme notes available online so that audience members can access them in a larger text format or through audio description. If there are any other ways in which you would like to receive these programme notes, please get in touch on office@scottishensemble.co.uk or 0141… Read more »

Music and Mindfulness – The Beginning

You will, no doubt, have heard of mindfulness. Its various guides litter the two-for-one bestsellers’ tables as you enter Waterstones, and you can’t read an issue of any broadsheet weekend supplement without it being mentioned at least once. It’s a new life tool which, it seems, everyone has taken up. But music fans may well… Read more »

Transfigured Night at Perth Concert Hall, Perth (The Herald review)

Published on Wednesday 5 September 2016 Written by Michael Tumelty It is just three weeks since the Scottish Ensemble added a few key instruments to its core strings and effectively transformed the group into a mini chamber orchestra for its last Glasgow concert, playing a range of American music. The tiniest change of instrumentation can alter… Read more »

Scottish Ensemble’s Guide To… Transfigured Night (tour)

Chamber music is a strange thing. It seems like it should be about paring back and cosying up – which many times, it is. It’s transportable music; a miniature orchestra in your front room; the ‘pop-up performance’ centuries before that became a thing. The sheer fact that it’s only four or five people suggests a… Read more »

On The Road… The Dundee Residency (September 2016)

Day One  Beginners’ Strings Day Sunday 4 September 2016 What a brilliant way to kick off our Dundee Residency – by getting together 70 young people, learning string instruments through the Dundee and Angus Instrumental Services and teaching them a brand new piece by composer James Redwood. The Tempest was written specifically for this purpose,… Read more »

Scottish Ensemble’s Guide To… American Life (tour)

We’ve been dotting all over the place this summer – all over Scotland, from Skye to Paxton, but also Europe, having just returned from the very successful German premiere of our contemporary dance collaboration, Goldberg Variations – ternary patterns for insomnia (the relief that came from remembering the music and the moves for this one… Read more »

In Photos… The 2016 Shetland Residency

We’ve returned windswept and exhilarated from four days on Shetland, during which we really did travel the length and breadth of this intriguing archipelago, dropped into the middle of an endless sea. Taking music with us to everywhere we went, we were rewarded with incredible views, warm Shetland welcomes and – every musician’s dream – enthusiastic, willing, curious… Read more »