RSNO seeks new Assistant Conductor

Global search starts for newest member of the RSNO’s Artistic Team

Jean-Claude Picard web

RSNO Associate Conductor Jean-Claude Picard

Scotland’s national orchestra is inviting applicants for the position of RSNO Assistant Conductor, commencing in the autumn of 2016.

The RSNO Assistant Conductorship is a two-year post and benefits from the continued support of the John Mather Charitable Trust. The scheme is a rare opportunity for conductors keen to develop their talent and experience, and previous post-holders have found that their time with a major symphony orchestra significantly improved their career prospects.

Current RSNO Associate Conductor Jean-Claude Picard has been appointed from the position of RSNO Assistant Conductor for the final year of his extended tenure with the Orchestra. As well as leading the RSNO for programmes as part of the Orchestra’s Season, its Learning and Engagement activities and for partners Children’s Classic Concerts, Picard has conducted performances for the Glasgow 2014 Commonwealth Games cultural celebrations and the Ryder Cup Opening Ceremony at Glasgow’s SSE Hydro. Jean-Claude has also worked alongside internationally recognised visiting soloists and conductors to the RSNO.

Successful candidates will be invited to the RSNO Centre in May for audition with full orchestra, where applicants will be invited to conduct a mixture of repertoire. Following the audition three candidates will be invited to the final round of interviews, from which the new RSNO Assistant Conductor will be selected.

As RSNO Assistant Conductor, the successful candidate will conduct a variety of the Orchestra’s concerts, and will also play an active role in engaging audiences and communities throughout Scotland. In addition to many conducting opportunities, a key aspect of the RSNO’s Assistant Conductor role is to receive a supportive mentoring and learning environment, through ongoing professional evaluation and guidance from RSNO Music Director Peter Oundjian and player-mentors in the Orchestra. Furthermore, the new appointment will have the opportunity to work with many guest conductors, and develop the multi-faceted leadership, organisational and public address skills required of modern conductors.

RSNO Associate Conductor Jean-Claude Picard: “What I have learned at the RSNO through my previous role as Assistant Conductor has by far exceeded my expectations. The experience I have gained here is beyond measurement. This position offers, to name but a few, the opportunity to closely work with world class musicians, conductors, and administrative staff, conduct numerous performances each year, from children’s concerts to main winter season presentations, and develop one's skills as a public speaker. I do believe that what the RSNO offers through this position is one of the finest learning opportunities in Europe for emerging conductors."

Applicants are invited to send a covering letter, CV, repertoire list, video work sample and full contact information for three professional references by email only to amy.glover@rsno.org.uk.   Deadline for applications is Monday 8 February 2016.

The RSNO is an equal opportunities employer. The RSNO is supported by the Scottish Government and local authorities in Scotland.

New Music ensemble focus on emerging composers

composersComposers’ Hub members programme first Alchemy concert in Glasgow’s newest concert venue

The Royal Scottish National Orchestra’s contemporary music ensemble, RSNO Alchemy, reconvene this Saturday to perform new works written by participants of the Orchestra’s latest forum for compositional development, the RSNO Composers’ Hub.

RSNO Alchemy’s Blow, Blow Thou Winter Wind will appear at the New Auditorium at The RSNO Centre on Saturday 16 January, 7.30pm and will give the première performances of five new works: Jay Capperauld’s The Enchantment of Vulnerability in Superficial Charm; Peter Longworth’s Winter Gusts; Lillie Harris’ Red; Blasted Echoes by Cameron Graham, and snowflake; pinprick by Desmond Clark. The five RSNO Composers’ Hub members have, in addition, each contributed a one-page score, to be used as a framework for a semi-improvised piece entitled Blow, Blow Thy Winter Wind, the title taking reference from Shakespeare’s pastoral comedy As You Like It. The evening concludes with RSNO Alchemy Director Peter Wiegold’s interpretation of Henry Purcell’s aria Cold Genius, from the 1691 opera King Arthur.

Aimed at composers in the early stages of their career, RSNO Composers’ Hub is an opportunity for a group of composers to write for orchestra in a range of different contexts, develop skills and creative relationships, as well as acquire an understanding of the business of a major arts organisation.

RSNO Alchemy’s mission since its birth in 2014 was to work with contemporary composers, exploring established repertoire, newly-commissioned works and collaborating with musicians from other musical genres. A principal goal of the ensemble, established by the RSNO and Peter Wiegold in 2014, is to meld structured performance with elements of improvisation, a departure for many orchestral musicians, expanding the responsibilities of participants and blurring the boundaries between conductor, performer and composer.

Alchemy Director Peter Wiegold: “I‘m very much looking forward to being back with the fine musicians of Alchemy. We’ve found a lovely way of combining scores with improvisation, and this time we have the added challenge and stimulus of the brand new music of the five RSNO Composers Hub members. I can’t wait!”

One of the RSNO Composers’ Hub mentors, award-winning composer Stuart MacRae: “There are very few opportunities for emerging composers to get the help they need in developing their approach to working with an orchestra; so the Composers’ Hub is a welcome move by the RSNO and I very much look forward to working with the first composers to join the Hub. I‘d encourage RSNO audiences to take full advantage of this new strand and lend their support to these very talented musicians.”

The RSNO Composers' Hub is supported by PRS for Music Foundation.

RSNO Alchemy with Director Peter Wiegold will appear at the New Auditorium at the RSNO Centre, Glasgow, on Saturday 16 January 2016, 7.30pm.

For more information on RSNO concerts and events, visit www.rsno.org.uk.