Col­lab­o­ra­tion promises an evening to re­mem­ber

The Arran Banner - - News -

The McLel­lan Arts Fes­ti­val con­tin­ues with its packed sched­ule of events in­clud­ing the much an­tic­i­pated op­er­atic col­lab­o­ra­tions be­tween the Royal North­ern Col­lege and the Ar­ran Sum­mer School.

With two po­etry events sched­uled for this week­end, in­clud­ing David Con­stan­tine’s read­ing at Lit­tle Rock tonight at 8pm, (Fri­day) po­etry lovers will be spoiled for choice.

The week­ends events con­tinue with the ceilidh at Whit­ing Bay Hall on Satur­day where lo­cal artists and mu­si­cians will be per­form­ing.

There is a dis­cus­sion on trans­la­tion in Brod­ick li­brary on Sun­day af­ter­noon and on Mon­day Au­gust 29 at 8pm the film 45 Years will be shown in Cor­rie Hall.

On Wed­nes­day, an evening of Ar­ran mem­o­ries with is­land racon­teur John Sil­lars will be ac­com­pa­nied by mu­sic from Colin Donati and Robin Ma­son at Al­ta­chor-vie at 8pm. On Satur­day Septem­ber 3 stu­dents from the Royal Con­ser­va­toire of Scot­land will en­ter­tain with their own work in Cor­rie Hall on at 8pm with a new per­for­mance of Water­ship Down and The Lit­tle Prince.

This year a high­light of the fes­ti­val for many will be the sev­enth Peter Alexan­der Wil­son sum­mer school for voice, opera and song with stu­dents from the Royal North­ern Col­lege of Mu­sic who hail from Ul­ster, Wales, the Chan­nel Is­lands, Eng­land, Nor­way and Aus­tralia.

The opera gala night con­cert will take place at the com­mu­nity theatre at Lam­lash on Fri­day Septem­ber 2. The three pi­anists will be Roddy Barand, Daniel Brow­ell and, from Wales, Michael Davies.

Daniel is the head of Pi­ano Ac­com­pa­ni­ment at Birm­ing­ham Con­ser­va­toire of Mu­sic, while Roddy is se­nior fel­low in ac­com­pa­ni­ment, as is Michael at The Royal North­ern Col­lege of Mu­sic.

The sum­mer school is also very for­tu­nate to wel­come Philip Thomas this year, widely re­spected as one of the best vo­cal coaches in Bri­tain. The other singing teacher to join them is Pa­tri­cia Hay. Pa­tri­cia and Peter Wil­son taught at The Royal Con­ser­va­toire of Scot­land.

Peter said: ‘She was a won­der­ful col­league and I learned a lot from work­ing with her. She and her hus­band, John Gra­ham were both well known prin­ci­pals with Scot­tish Opera and John was also the artis­tic di­rec­tor there.

‘We are dou­bly de­lighted that John Gra­ham will be giv­ing us a short talk on the his­tory of Scot­tish Opera up un­til the present day.’

Alexan­der Crowe who has been with the school since its in­cep­tion will also re­turn as the mu­si­cal di­rec­tor of the Ar­ran sum­mer school.

Known for hav­ing the pa­tience of a saint, he will be joined by col­league Linda Or­mis­ton who takes care of the dra­matic side of the pro­ceed­ings and who will also be in­volved in the di­rec­tion of the opera scenes as well as the schools project.

The Cor­rie Par­ish Church ser­vice held on Sun­day (Au­gust 28) at noon is an­tic­i­pated to be full of won­der­ful mu­sic, both so­los and quar­tets with five great hymns which the con­gre­ga­tion will un­doubt­edly love.

Of par­tic­u­larly in­ter­est this year in the Opera Gala is the in­clu­sion of the third act quar­tet from La Bo­heme, con­sid­ered by many to be one of the most poignant scenes in all opera.

On the lighter side there will also be a good se­lec­tion from Die Fle­d­er­maus, Hansel and Gre­tel and the con­cert opens with the first scene of Verdi’s Rigo­letto, in­clud­ing the fa­mous tenor aria, Questa O Quella.

The Or­a­to­rio this year is Rossini’s Pe­tite Messe So-lenelle, a truly op­er­atic piece full of soar­ing arias and cho­ruses which will be sung by stu­dent soloists and the McLel­lan Fes­ti­val Cho­rus.

Or­gan­iser Peter Wil­son said: ‘Each year, fund­ing the sum­mer school be­comes more and more dif­fi­cult.

‘We are all hop­ing that a bene­fac­tor will come to our aid, and in say­ing that our thanks are al­ways due to the late Iain John­ston who cru­cially sup­ported us at the be­gin­ning.

‘Of course, we will con­tinue to in­ves­ti­gate all forms of fund rais­ing our­selves.

‘The mu­sic is won­der­ful. The singers are truly of the high­est cal­i­bre so please come and sup­port us.’

Lara Re­bekah Har­vey gives an an­i­mated per­for­mance of Cole Porter’s ‘The Oys­ter Song’ ac­com­ponied by Rod­er­ick Bar­rand.

Renowned au­thor and nov­el­ist David Con­stan­tine will present the po­etry prize.

Last year’s singers of the sum­mer school per­form the fi­nale at the high school au­di­to­rium.

John Sil­lars will talk about his love of Ar­ran and his rich and di­verse life at the Ar­ran Clam­jam­fry.

Ed­in­burgh duo Var­i­ous Moons made up of Colin Donati and Robin Ma­son will be per­form­ing at the Al­ta­chorvie.

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