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The Aberdeen Season 2013/2014

Welcome The BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra has been contributing to the sounds of Scotland since 1935. Vibrant, modern and cosmopolitan, it is a symbol of Scotland’s cultural life. The orchestra flourishes as never before under a remarkable conducting team, and among British orchestras there are few with such a powerful commitment to sustaining the old whilst at the same time embracing the new. The BBC SSO’s flexibility and the range of work is also greater than ever – from regular series of broadcasts on BBC Radio and Television, award-winning commercial recordings, to international touring and music-making with children, students and families, it provides diverse and distinctive programming that touches audiences not just in Scotland but worldwide. Broadcasting is still its primary role and these days, thanks to the airwaves and internet, all the performances in this brochure will be heard right across the world, many of them broadcast live on BBC Radio 3. This season will be another great milestone in our relationship with Donald Runnicles, who will lead the orchestra through many favourites including Tchaikovsky’s Fourth Symphony, Grieg’s Piano Concerto and Arvo Pärt’s Cantus in Memoriam Benjamin Britten.

BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra BBC Scotland City Halls, Candleriggs Glasgow G1 1NQ Email:

The Music Hall in Aberdeen is adored by the BBC SSO for its glorious acoustics and wonderful audience, and it’s the perfect space in which to enjoy musical favourites and make new discoveries with good friends and admired guest artists such as pianist Denis Kozhukhin, violinist Sarah Chang and Scottish tenor and broadcaster, Jamie MacDougall. And whether you’re getting to know orchestral music, or you’re a regular concert-goer, every concert in our season is a musical journey. Bring your imagination and your ears and immerse yourself in a season of music-making with our magnificent orchestra.

Gavin Reid, Director

With the exception of Christmas Classics, which will be recorded for broadcast on BBC Radio Scotland, all concerts are currently scheduled to be broadcast live or recorded for future transmission on BBC Radio 3.

Photo: Donald Runnicles Chief Conductor by John Wood

BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra 2013/14 Aberdeen Season World Class Performances Music You Love Join us on Friday nights for unforgettable music at The Music Hall. Experience the grandeur of both Mahler’s epic Ninth and Tchaikovsky’s thrilling Fourth Symphonies under the baton of our Chief Conductor, Donald Runnicles; there’s Rachmaninov’s Second Piano Concerto, made famous by the film Brief Encounter; and experience the brass extravaganza of Aaron Copland’s Third Symphony which ends in a blaze of glory with his Fanfare for the Common Man.

There’s a host of classical favourites this season, including Elgar’s Cello Concerto and Samuel Barber’s elegiac Adagio for Strings. If you’re a fan of that piece don’t miss his glorious Violin Concerto or Arvo Pärt’s Cantus in Memoriam Benjamin Britten. There’s also Finlandia by Sibelius and Elgar’s jaunty homage to the bustle of London, his Cockaigne Overture.

International Soloists

SAVE up to 25% with a Season Ticket

Once again we are bringing the cream of international talent to Aberdeen. American artists include the acclaimed cellist Alisa Weilerstein, violinist Sarah Chang, and conductor David Alan Miller. Lars Vogt will bring Grieg’s Piano Concerto to life while the Russian pianist Denis Kozhukhin returns, this time with Rachmaninov’s second concerto.

Last year hundreds of music lovers saved money and booked their favourite seats by buying a Season Ticket for the BBC SSO’s concerts at The Music Hall. By booking in advance you can save 25% - that’s up to £30 per booking and packages start from as little as £45 for all 6 concerts. Please see the back of this brochure to book.


“Alisa is a star... Her technical abilities serve a taste for sweep and intensity; she performs with soulful expression and physical abandon.” The New York Times


BERLIOZ OVERTURE: LE CORSAIRE (c.9 mins) ELGAR CELLO CONCERTO (c.30 mins) TCHAIKOVSKY SYMPHONY No.4 (c.43 mins) ALISA WEILERSTEIN CELLO DONALD RUNNICLES CONDUCTOR Tchaikovsky called it “Fate” - and however you choose to hear it, the savage fanfare that opens Tchaikovsky’s Fourth Symphony launches one of the most gripping autobiographical dramas in all music. But then, everything in this concert tells a powerfully emotional secret story, whether it’s Berlioz unleashing his inner swashbuckler in the rip-roaring Corsaire overture, or Elgar letting a cello speak of his anguish in the aftermath of World War I. Under the BBC SSO’s inspirational chief conductor Donald Runnicles, these three masterpieces will sound like new, and with the superb young American cellist Alisa Weilerstein as soloist in the Elgar, there’ll be no shortage of passion – or poetry.

Photo: Alisa Weilerstein by Jamie Jung



SIBELIUS FINLANDIA (c.8 mins) RACHMANINOV PIANO CONCERTO No.2 (c.35 mins) NIELSEN SYMPHONY No.4 .4 (THE INEXTINGUISHABLE) (c.34 mins) DENIS KOZHUKHIN PIANO THOMAS DAUSGAARD CONDUCTOR “Music is life” declared Carl Nielsen of his Fourth Symphony “and like it, inextinguishable”. Jean Sibelius, on the other hand, drew his inspiration from Finland’s long struggle for cultural freedom. Yet whether they’re portraying a primal struggle for existence against the guns of the Great War, or a joyous surge of patriotic pride, both Nielsen and Sibelius grab you by the throat and hurl you straight into the music. Thomas Dausgaard loves every note; and if you heard Denis Kozhukhin’s breathtaking Prokofiev concerto performances in recent BBC SSO seasons, you’ll know to expect every bit as much electricity when the two of them tackle Rachmaninov’s best-loved piano concerto.

“Genius in action.” The Herald on Denis Kozhukhin

Photo: Denis Kozhukhin by Paul Marc Mitchell




Our annual Christmas Classics concert, recorded for broadcast on BBC Radio Scotland every year, is a highlight of Aberdeen’s festive celebrations. Where better than The Music Hall to gather with friends and family for a traditional concert with the BBC SSO on the Friday night before Christmas? Tenor Jamie MacDougall is your host for an evening of music that includes works by Tchaikovsky, Handel, and Leroy Anderson, and invites you to join in as the orchestra plays some much-loved carols. Your Christmas just wouldn’t be the same without it…

“The BBC SSO’s unique selling point is the chance to hear yourself on the radio singing along with the tenor Jamie MacDougall… the perfect host for such a cosy family event.” Press and Journal on Christmas Classics


“The touch throughout was light as a feather, while also possessing steely strength.” The Independent on Lars Vogt

FRIDAY 17 JANUARY 2014, 7.30PM

ELGAR OVERTURE: COCKAIGNE (IN LONDON TOWN) (c.14 mins) GRIEG PIANO CONCERTO (c.30 mins) SHOSTAKOVICH SYMPHONY No.1 (c.31 mins) LARS VOGT PIANO DONALD RUNNICLES CONDUCTOR At the dawn of the Edwardian era, Edward Elgar took a step back and looked at the City of London. He didn’t see quite what you might expect; true, there’s plenty of pomp and pageantry, but it’s spiced with both quiet beauty and knockabout comedy – and tinted with gorgeous sunset hues. That same playfulness and inner glow gives Grieg’s youthful Piano Concerto its perennial freshness, and few pianists are better equipped than Lars Vogt to draw out the Concerto’s latent poetry. It’s followed by one of the most extraordinary explosions of youthful energy in all 20th century music: the teenage Dmitri Shostakovich’s brilliant First Symphony. Donald Runnicles reveals both the boy-poet and the raspberry-blowing prankster behind this deliciously deadpan masterpiece.

Photo: Lars Vogt by Felix Broede


“Her gifts are at a level so removed from the rest of us that all we can do is feel the appropriate awe.” The New York Times on Sarah Chang


BARBER ADAGIO FOR STRINGS (c.8 mins) BARBER VIOLIN CONCERTO (c.22 mins) COPLAND SYMPHONY No.3 (c.42 mins) SARAH CHANG VIOLIN DAVID ALAN MILLER CONDUCTOR Three pages from American history. Samuel Barber’s Adagio for Strings may have begun life in a neglected string quartet, but it’s become one of those rare pieces that echo the heartbeat of a nation. On the eve of war, that same blossoming lyricism made Barber’s Violin Concerto an instant modern classic, its glorious tunes perfect for the gleaming tone of Sarah Chang. And seven years and a victory later, Aaron Copland saluted a new era in a symphony of blue skies and boundless optimism, crowned by – what else? – a Fanfare for the Common Man. Is this the Great American Symphony? Expect the roof of The Music Hall to be blown off as Albany Symphony Orchestra music director David Alan Miller makes a powerful case for it!

Photo: Sarah Chang by Colin Bell


“Runnicles succeeded where so many other conductors fail: he created a sense of symphonic catharsis that makes you understand music – this music – as a journey rather than a succession of peaks” The Financial Times on Donald Runnicles and the BBC SSO’s performance of Mahler 2



The very first bars of Mahler’s Ninth seem to falter. The stricken composer put the rhy thm of his failing hear t into the orchestra – and began his Ninth Symphony with a sigh of “farewell”. But that’s the beginning, not the end, and over eighty minutes of music Mahler wrings every last drop of sweetness, terror and love from a life of total emotional commitment. Ever y per formance of Mahler’s Ninth is a unique occasion, and given Donald Runnicles’ special relationship with late Romanticism, this will prove to be one of the highlights of the season. Peace, meanwhile, comes dropping slow in Arvo Pär t’s minimalist elegy for Britten; a perfectly chosen upbeat to Mahler’s overwhelming symphonic swansong. Please Note: there will be no interval in this concert.

Photo: Donald Runnicles by John Wood

Booking Form/ Seating Plan





Payment PLEASE COMPLETE IN BLOCK CAPITALS Please send completed form to: Aberdeen Box Office, Union Street Aberdeen AB10 1QS (please note: a £1.00 handling charge will be added if tickets are posted out)

Upstairs (Balcony)

Downstairs (Stalls)

Name Address Postcode




Please tick box for preferred series [ ] 5-concert series (excluding the Christmas concert) [ ] 6-concert series Please mark preferred position with a cross on the seating plan above PRICE AREA

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] I enclose a cheque (made payable to ‘ABERDEEN PERFORMING ARTS’) ] I authorise you to debit my credit/debit card

VISA / MASTERCARD / MAESTRO* (please delete as appropriate) CARD NO. 3-DIGIT SECURITY CODE

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We would like to send you information about other BBC SSO concerts and events. To allow us to do that, please tick this box to have your name and address added to the BBC SSO mailing-list.

Save 25% with an Aberdeen Season Ticket Why book a season ticket?

6 Concert Season Ticket (saving 25%)

• Save Money booking 5 or 6 concerts means that you can save 25% across the Season.

Seating Area

• Advance book the seats you want, guaranteeing you your preferred view at the best price. Exclusive Season Ticket booking opens on Friday 15 March 2013. • Plan your year of music in one simple booking. It’s a great way to get those dates in your diary now and to make sure you never miss a concert. • Season Ticket Discounts are also available for senior citizens and registered unemployed. Proof of status required.

How to Book a Season Ticket Simply decide which concerts you would like to book: a 5-concert series (excluding Christmas Classics) or a 6-concert package and indicate where you would like to sit. Then fill in the form, cut off and return to the Aberdeen Box office using the address provided. Priority Booking: Season Ticket Priority Booking is by post only and runs until Wednesday 24 April 2013.

1 11 111 1V

£92.25 (save £30.75) £81.00 (save £27.00) £60.75 (save £20.25) £45.00 (save £15.00)

5 Concert Season Ticket (saving 25%) Seating Area 1 11 111 1V

£76.80 (save £25.70) £67.50 (save £22.50) £50.60 (save £16.90) £37.50 (save £12.50)

Discounted Season Ticket

(Areas III and IV only)

6 Concerts: £43.00 5 Concerts: £36.50 Available to over 60s, registered unemployed. Proof of status required.

How to Book Box Office: 01224-641122 or via Single Tickets

Box Office

Seating Area

Aberdeen Box Office Union Street, Aberdeen AB10 1QS

£20.50 1 £18.00 11 £13.50 111 £10.00 1V

Single Tickets Discounts £5 Standby for Students and Unemployed Full time students and registered unemployed can book any unsold seats for £5, only available on the day of the concert. Proof of status required.

Box Office opening hours: Mon-Sat 9.30am-6.00pm (and from 6.30pm on concert nights)

Tel: 01224-641122 Single tickets can be booked online at: All the concerts in this series are promoted in association with The Music Hall.

£5 for Under 16s and School Pupils Children under the age of 16 and all school pupils are entitled to any seat for £5. Savings for over 60s Patrons over 60 are entitled to £2 off any single concert ticket. Special Group Rates Group rates are available for bookings of 10 or more. For details please telephone the Box Office (Mon – Fri). Single ticket booking opens on Friday 26 April 2013.


Customers’ personal details are held in accordance with the terms and conditions of the Data Protection Act 1998. If consent is given at the time of ticket purchase, this information will be passed to the BBC SSO and may be used to contact you with information about forthcoming concerts or BBC events. These details will not be passed on to any third party. If youwish to have your name removed from the orchestra’s mailing-list please e-mail: or telephone: 0141-422 6728.

A large print, text-only version of this brochure is available, for a copy please telephone: 0141-552 0909

All the information carried in this brochure was believed to be correct at the time of publishing. The BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra reserves the right to amend artists and programmes if necessary.

Brochure design by

BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra Aberdeen Season 2013/2014  

Season brochure for the BBC SSO's classical music season at the Music Hall, Aberdeen for 2013/2014

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