Entries by Cat McQuiggan

A Quick Q&A with James Ehnes

A Quick Q&A with Canadian violinist James Ehnes ahead of his performances of Beethoven's Violin Concert with the RSNO this week. What's your own history with the Beethoven Violin Concerto? How long have you been playing it? I was lucky to have the opportunity to first perform the Beethoven when I was quite young, 16 […]

Sitting in the balcony with an RSNO legend

There is electricity in the rehearsal hall today (Thursday). The atmosphere is positively charged with such energy, such emotion. And the focal point, the man wielding this power, is the legendary conductor Neeme Järvi. As Conductor Laureate, Neeme has a gloriously rich past with the RSNO. Principal Conductor for 5 years from 1984 to 1988, […]

Sitting in the balcony thinking about love...

Today (Tue 10 Feb) I'm sitting in the balcony thinking about love...or rather, the relationship between love and music! One of my favourite Shakespeare quotes is from Much Ado About Nothing, when Benedick says to no-one in particular: "Is it not strange that sheeps' guts should hale souls out of men’s bodies?"  And I quite […]

The faces behind the Enigma...

Elgar's Enigma Variations are well known for being dedicated to, as he put it, "my friends pictured within".  Each characterful variation is packed full of personality, and whilst the music can give a vivid portrayal of a person's nature, I've often found myself wondering what Elgar's friends actually looked like.  Well, wonder no more!  Thanks […]

Sitting in the balcony with old friends.

Today I'm back in my favourite seat in Henry Wood Hall; up in the balcony listening to the first rehearsal of the week. As poppies start appearing on lapels across the land, the RSNO will be performing a very special programme to commemorate Remembrance Day in Edinburgh and Glasgow. This week's concerts are conducted by Rory […]

Sitting in the balcony with Elgar

Sitting in the balcony with Elgar Listening to a professional orchestra rehearse is a privilege that not very many people get to experience, but every so often I like to take some time away from my desk in the RSNO's office and nip up to the balcony of the Henry Wood Hall to sit and […]

An Adventure with Messiaen - by Ian Taft

Rehearsing Turangalîla with the RSNO “Are you OK with volume?” says John Poulter. “I can get you some earplugs if you want.” “No, I'm fine thanks,” I grin back at him. My head might be ringing by the end of the day but I've been looking forward to this for a long time and I […]

An Aixtraordinary visit – 24 Hours With the RSNO & Nikolai Lugansky

In the auditorium of Grand Théâtre de Provence Last month the RSNO and Music Director Peter Oundjian traveled to Aix-en-Provence for a concert of music by Messiaen, Beethoven and Rachmaninov. The concert, which took place at the Grand Théâtre de Provence, featured Rachmaninov’s Symphonic Dances, Messiaen’s Les offrandes oubliéesand Beethoven’s Piano Concerto No.4 with soloist […]

New Season soloists

When the RSNO artistic and planning teams started to consider this Season, Peter’s second as Music Director, their focus was strongly on bringing new guest performers and young talent to Scottish audiences. As a result, this year’s Season brochure features many new names, a brilliant selection of up-and-coming and first-time RSNO guest artists for you […]

The Story of Vadim's Violin

Picture the scene... It's 1878 and the 38-year old Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky is taking a break in Clarens, Switzerland. He is working on a Violin Concerto with his composition pupil Iosif Kotek. Four years previously in 1874, Tchaikovsky had witnessed a performance in Moscow by violinist Leopold Auer (who had championed Tchaikovsky's symphonic works when […]