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We are pleased to announce that Scottish Ensemble has been invited to participate in this year’s British Council Transform programme, an arts and creativity initiative led by the British Council to connect artists, artistic organisations and governmental bodies from the UK and Brazil.

As part of the Transform MultiOrchestra conference, which runs from 27 – 29 April in Rio de Janeiro and marks celebrations for the 450th anniversary of the city, we’ll be presenting a series of performances and outreach activity including:

Two concerts at the Cidade das Artes, Rio de Janeiro (pictured)
One concert at SESC Vila Mariana, São Paulo
A day of coaching with young string players from across Brazil

This year’s conference theme is ‘The Orchestra and the City’, and as such, SE has been invited to showcase two of its recent cross-artform and cross-genre projects – 20th-Century Perspectives: City Spaces & Strings and Seavaigers.

20th-Century Perspectives was a collaboration with visual artist Toby Paterson which connected 20th-century music and architecture with art, was performed in a derelict section of a Glasgow landmark Modernist building. Paterson created large-scale works of art to frame the space and performance environment. In Rio de Janeiro, we will present a short set of music which represents the event alongside a documentary film of the project.

Seavaigers is a double concerto for fiddle, Scottish harp and strings, written by leading British composer Sally Beamish. This evocative work tells the story of a dramatic sea journey through the turbulent waters around Scotland’s coast. Composed specifically for Scottish Ensemble and two leading Scottish musicians – fiddler Chris Stout and harpist Catriona McKay – the critically-acclaimed piece connects contemporary classical with traditional Scottish folk melody.

Taking place from 2012 – 2016, British Council Transform is an arts and creativity programme which aims to develop the artistic dialogue between the UK and Brazil. Working across seven artistic sectors (visual arts & museums, film, dance, creative economy, literature, music and theatre), the programme connects artists, arts organisations and governmental bodies from both countries with projects that support training for arts professionals and provide opportunities for new talent. Transform aims to deliver economic impact, social transformation and create mutually beneficial relationships with both nations.