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BBC Proms 2005

July - September 2005

Scottish Ensemble
Blazin' Fiddles
Rory Lakatos Ensemble

This summer the 111th BBC Proms will see over 70 concerts take place in the Royal Albert Hall.  Every year the BBC Proms attracts some of the biggest names in classical music.  The festival this year is no exception with tenor Plácido Domingo and Sir Colin Davis appearing, among many others.

Audiences will get the chance to see Scottish artists this year too.  Chamber group the Scottish Ensemble will be performing in August and Scottish traditional group Blazin' Fiddles took their lively style to the Royal Albert Hall at the end of July.

Scottish Ensemble

Scottish Ensemble players looking skywards; Photo: John Paul Photography The Scottish Ensemble are a dynamic group of twelve fantastic musicians, from among the most highly respected string players in Europe.  The group performs without a conductor, led from the violin by Artistic Director Jonathan Morton.

Proms Performance

Their appearance at the BBC Proms will be on 19 August 2005 at 10pm.  The concert will be broadcast simultaneously on BBC Radio 3.

The programme will include:

  • the London premiere of 'Hamartia', a cello concerto by Scottish composer Stuart MacRae, with award-winning cellist Li-Wei Qin
  • Elgar's ever-popular 'Serenade'
  • a 70th anniversary sample from Nicholas Maw's 'Life Studies'
  • and a chamber arrangement of Shostakovich's String Quartet No.8, which was conceived in the ruins of Dresden and was written 'in memory of the victims of fascism and war.'

Tickets cost from £4 to £12.50 and can be bought from the BBC Proms website.

Blazin' Fiddles

Blazin' Fiddles; Photo: Louis DeCarlo Blazin' Fiddles is a virtuoso ensemble presenting a celebration of the fiddle traditions of Scotland.  Their unique performance at the BBC Proms took place on 29 July 2005.

The audience were treated to a rare opportunity to hear pieces featuring the regional style of each individual fiddler.  From solo to ensemble sets, they all came together in a fiery blend that raised the roof!  Blazin's Fiddles are:

  • Fiddler Catriona MacDonald
  • Bruce MacGregor
  • Allan Henderson
  • Iain MacFarlane
  • Aidan O'Rourke
  • Guitarist Marc Clement
  • Andy Thorburn on keyboard

Blazin' Fiddles recently picked up the Live Band of the Year Award at the Scots Trad Music Awards, shared the bill with Sister Sledge for a Hogmanay show at the Sage Gateshead and featured in the BBC4 broadcast with their Celtic Connections project including singers Eddi Reader, Justin Currie (Del Amitri) and Colin MacIntyre (Mull Historical Society). Blazin' Fiddles; Photo: Louis DeCarlo

In the past decade no other band has quite captured the excitement, passion and the sensitivity of Scottish music as Blazin’ Fiddles.  Having grown from a showcase tour of individual fiddlers highlighting  the distinctive flavours of Highlands and Islands fiddle music, the Blazers have gone on to become a fully fledged band with a world-wide following.

Rory Lakatos Ensemble

Blazin' Fiddles shared the Royal Albert Hall stage with the Roby Lakatos Ensemble, a gypsy band who returned to the Proms following their hugely successful 2001 concert.  Lakatos is one of the world's greatest violin virtuosos in any style.  His playing showed the full range and intense passion of the gypsy tradition.

The Proms continues until September.  For information on the rest of the performances have a look at the BBC Proms website.

Both Blazin' Fiddles and the Scottish Ensemble have been supported by the National Lottery through the Scottish Arts Council.

Related links
* BBC Proms
* Royal Albert Hall
* Scottish Ensemble
* Blazin' Fiddles
* Scots Trad Music Awards
* Sage Gateshead
* Eddi Reader
* Celtic Connections
* Justin Currie
* Colin MacIntyre
* Music home
* Current music features
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