Court and Coun­try fu­sion to launch the arts fes­ti­val

The Galloway News - - WEEKENDTIC­KET -

A world-class col­lab­o­ra­tion be­tween some of the finest mu­si­cians in Scot­land will launch the Dum­fries and Gal­loway Arts Fes­ti­val programme next month.

Top con­tem­po­rary string or­ches­tra Scot­tish En­sem­ble will be joined by tra­di­tional mu­sic’s su­per-duo Chris Stout and Ca­tri­ona McKay for a per­for­mance of Court and Coun­try – a con­cert fus­ing clas­si­cal strings with bristling tra­di­tional styles.

Fes­ti­val chair­man Ken Gouge said: “This cross-genre con­cert of in­ter­na­tion­ally recog­nised artists is a fan­tas­tic way to launch one of our strong­est pro­grammes.

“As al­ways, this year’s programme brings in­ter­na­tional award-win­ning theatre, mu­sic, dance and stand-up com­edy from around the world to the re­gion. It also show­cases the very best of our own per­form­ers..”

Shet­land fid­dle player Chris Stout and Dundee harpist Ca­tri­ona McKay are recog­nised as two of the fore­most soloists in the Celtic tra­di­tion.

With their roots firmly in Scot­tish folk mu­sic, Chris and Ca­tri­ona were driven to use this ground­ing as a start­ing point to chal­lenge their in­stru­ments and de­velop new mu­sic.

The re­sult is a dy­namic and ad­ven­tur­ous sound that re­tains the iden­tity of their tra­di­tions yet al­lows the mu­sic to have a free­dom and con­nec­tion to other mu­si­cal styles.

The Scot­tish En­sem­ble, above, re­quire lit­tle in­tro­duc­tion. This dy­namic group of Scot­land’s top string mu­si­cians are renowned for their dy­namism and flair.

They are reg­u­lar vis­i­tors to the arts fes­ti­val and re­turn to the re­gion at the end of May for a third res­i­dency, fea­tur­ing a se­ries of con­certs, work­shops and a few sur­prises.

The or­ches­tra’s on­go­ing creative re­la­tion­ship with Stout and McKay dates from their col­lab­o­ra­tion on Sally Beamish’s Seavaigers which was com­mis­sioned by Celtic Con­nec­tions in 2012.

Court and Coun­try is de­scribed as a toe-tap­ping ad­ven­ture through rhythm, melody and time.

It in­cludes Bach’s Bran­den­burg Con­certo No 3 with sec­ond move­ment by Sally Beamish and Vi­o­lin Con­certo in E ma­jor; Beamish’s Seavaigers; and Bartók’s Diver­ti­mento. Au­di­ences will also have a chance to en­joy a mini folk set by Chris and Ca­tri­ona.

The con­cert takes place at the Theatre Royal, Dum­fries, on Thurs­day, March 15 at 8pm.

Visit Tra­di­tional mu­sic su­per-duo Chris Stout and Ca­tri­ona McKay will join the en­sem­ble

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