Backstage Extras






John Williams * * * *

“And Williams […] is a guitarist whose style, dexterity and finesse have long place him in a class of his own.” The Herald, Conrad Wilson

The Tallis Scholars * * * *

“the sumptuous grandeur of these works was undeniable, especially performed in the flowing, sonorous style for which the Tallis Scholars are renowned.” The Herald, Rowena Smith#

The Gurzenich Orchestra * * * *

“Everything was right in this performance, gauged and paced with intelligence and style by conductor Markus Stenz. […] Hands up who didn’t cry?” The Herald, Michael Tumelty


Happy 60th Birthday – The Future * * * *

”It was an interesting and thought provoking discussion” The Evening News, Sandy Scott

Capriccio * * * *

“Daring to be different, this world premier of a new production from the Cologne Opera of Richard Strauss’ Capriccio is a fitting climax to this year’s International Festival.” The Evening News, Thom Dibdin

Ysaye Quartet * * * * *

“The remarkable performances they produced yesterday instantly established their concert as one of the enduring highlights of this year’s festival. […] Their style is distinguished by a combination of sophistication and understatement.” Michael Tumelty, The Herald

* * * *

“Playing at around 20 minutes, this slow movement is full of long, sustained notes, and it was a tribute to the skill and concentration of the quartet that they kept the momentum going, even in the most static passages.” The Scotsman, Susan Nickalls

The Tallis Scholars * * * *

“As with Mozart, there’s a certain inexorable quality to Palestrina’s writing, particularly given the liquid purity of The Tallis Scholars’, with one phrase following another in a way that seems almost pre-ordained.” The Herald, Rowena Smith

* * * * *

“The blend of voices was stunning, particularly the sopranos who hit the top notes with crystal clarity above equally vigorous alto, tenor and bass lines.” The Scotsman, Susan Nickalls


Bavarian Radio Symphony Orchestra * * * *
”The changing scenes of the opening movement were delicately presented and the performance contrasted the delicacy of the second movement against the sheer power of the third.” The Evening News, Sandy Scott

Huelgas Ensemble * * * *
“Their sound has a timeless beauty, with director Paul Van Nevel moving on the pulse while achieving a still serenity that is the perfect antidote to a busy day. The essentials of blend, balance and intonation are impressive in this group. The Scotsman, Carol Main

* * * *
“Far from being oppressively doleful, however, the effect was richly rewarding, a marvellous, almost uninterrupted tide of beautiful music.” The Scotsman, Conrad Wilson


Christine Brewer/Roger Vignoles * * * *
”With a big personality and presence Brewer gives the audience her all, and her radiant voice envelops listeners like a meteor swarm circling the skies.” The Scotsman, Carol Main

* * *
“Her personable and immensely characterful delivery of Benjamin Britten’s extremely clever Cabaret Songs confirmed Brewer to be just as authoritative and engaging an entertainer as she is commanding in a more formal lieder setting.” The Herald, Michael Tumelty

La Venexiana * * * *
“…the intensity of this music was matched by the passion of the performance. The Herald, Rowena Smith

* * * *
The Scotsman, Susan Nickalls

Bavarian Radio Symphony Orchestra * * * * *
“The Bavarian Radio Symphony Orchestra, conducted by Mariss Jansons, sensitively paced this unsettling journey through a tense but vibrant emotional landscape.” The Scotsman, Susan Nickalls

* * * * *
“There are some moments when a music critic should just down tools and revel in the privilege of being present at an event where something miraculous is happening. Last night, the second concert by Mariss Jansons and his great Bavarian Radio Symphony Orchestra, was just such an occasion.[…] Jansons has genius. And if I sound awed, then that’s because I am.” The Herald, Michael Tumelty

Dido and Aeneas * * * * *
“Nicholas McGegan’s well-placed performance underlined the composer’s keenness to maintain interest for participants and audience alike. A strong team of soloists supported him well in keeping things on the move.” The Evening News, Sandy Scott

Prima La Musica, Poi le Parole * * * * *
“A very able quartet of soloists took obvious pleasure in the lively comedy of the piece.” The Evening News, Sandy Scott

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