Scottish Ensemble return to Shetland

29 September 2015

Members of Scottish Ensemble, the UK’s only professional string orchestra, will begin their 2015/16 Shetland season tonight with a programme of duos for violin and viola, performed by husband-and-wife team Jonathon Morton and Clio Gould, at Mareel, Lerwick. Morton is the current Artistic Director for Scottish Ensemble, while Gould is the current leader of the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra.

This is the second time Scottish Ensemble have visited Shetland thanks to the generous support of Inksters Solicitors. In 2013, Inksters enabled the group to come to the islands and perform a genre-defying repertoire of music including Seavaigers - a double concerto for Scottish fiddle and harp composed by Sally Beamish for fiddler Chris Stout, harpist Catriona McKay and Scottish Ensemble. The partnership was so successful that Inksters and Scottish Ensemble were awarded the Arts & Business Scotland Placemaking Award in 2014.

Brian Inkster, founder of Inksters, said: “We are delighted that the success of our partnership in 2013 has now turned into a longer term relationship for the benefit of the Shetland community. On the back of having won the Arts and Business Scotland Placemaking award, it is very fitting to see us cementing this and ensuring a place on Shetland for Scottish Ensemble for years to come.”

Their programme includes selections from a range of composers including 12th century French composer Leonin, Belgian composer Orlande de Lassus, Hungarian composer Bartók and baroque giant Bach, as well as more substantial offerings such as Mozart’s Duo for Violin and Viola and Martinů’s Three Madrigals for Violin and Viola.

Members of the local classical community have expressed their excitement about the upcoming season. Ffancytunes flautist Brian Gregson said: “It's always a treat to hear first class musicians playing live and Scottish Ensemble includes some of the very best string players in the country. As well as playing standard repertoire, sometimes in new arrangements, they have an uncanny knack of unearthing less familiar pieces. It's as if they are saying "here's something interesting we found and we love playing it - hope you like it too".”

This initial concert will be followed by a performance of string quintets on Friday 26 February 2016, and a concert of violin and cello duos, including Halvorsen’s Passacaglia for Violin and Viola on Thursday 21st April.

For more details see: Shetland Chamber Music

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