Edinburgh ■ The Sugarboat Reivers Leith Folk Club, The Village, South Fort Street, 07502 024852. 7.30pm. £6. Fiddler Jon Bews (Cantrip) in a new line-up with cellist Seylan Baxter, harpist Cheyenne Brown and multi-instrumentalist Ruairidh Pringle. ■ Ceilidh Club The Lot, Grassmarket, 225 9922. 8pm. £6. Ceilidh dance with callers to lead you through the steps. Music from Free Range. FREE Andrew Gordon The White Hart Inn, Grassmarket, 622 7118. 9pm. Folk singing entertainer. Arran ■ Arran Folk Festival Various Venues, Times vary. Prices vary. See Sat 5.
Dundee ■ Scots Song Workshop Central Library, The Wellgate, 07792 336804. 2pm. £5 (under 25s £2.50). See Tue 1.
Edinburgh ■ Abagail Grey and The Heartbreak Kid The Voodoo Rooms, 19a West Register Street, 556 7060. 7pm. £5. Acoustic folk band hailing from Inverness featuring vocalists Claire Campbell and Steve Obern, harpists Freya Thompson and Gillian Fleetwood, and beats and bass from Ally and Dougie Brown. ■ Willie Nelson Playhouse, 18–22 Greenside Place, 0844 847 1660. 8pm. £41.25–£46.75. See Mon 7. FREE The Whistleblowers Whiski, High Street, 556 3095. 10pm. A mixture of Scottish and Irish music, with a few contemporary tunes thrown in for good measure.
Arran ■ Arran Folk Festival Various Venues, Times vary. Prices vary. See Sat 5. Bathgate ■ RSAMD Presents – A Dozen Drams Regal Community Theatre, North Bridge Street, 01506 630085. 7.30pm. £6 (£4). Award-winning musicians from RSAMD mix Scotland’s musical traditions with ideas from cultures around the world in an evening of energised folk and neo-traditional music.
Dunfermline ■ Joe Topping Dunfermline Folk Club, Thistle Tavern, Baldridgeburn, 01383 729673. 8pm. Free (collection for artist). Talented singer-songwriter in the Northern English acoustic/folk tradition.
Peebles ■ Anna Massie & Mairearad Green Eastgate Theatre & Arts Centre, Eastgate, 01721 725777. 7.30pm. £12 (£10). Powerful young Scots duo has fret and fiddle player Massie teamed with accordionist and border pipes player Green.
Edinburgh ■ Rantum Scantum The Jazz Bar, Chambers Street, 220 4298. 6pm. Donation. See Thu 27. FREE Stan Reeves Ghillie Dhu, Rutland Place, 222 9930. 7pm. See Thu 27. FREE The Gorms Whiski, High Street, 556 3095. 10pm. See Thu 27.
Arran ■ Arran Folk Festival Various Venues, Times vary. Prices vary. See Sat 5. Falkirk ■ three4five Falkirk Folk Club, The Polish Club, Arnot Street, 01324 613395. 8pm. £5. Three folk acts for a fiver.
88 THE LIST 27 May–10 June 2010
Classical Events are listed by date, then city. Submit listings at least 14 days before publication to firstname.lastname@example.org. Listings are compiled by Tasmin Campbell and Carol Main. ✽✽ Indicates Hitlist entry
Glasgow FREE Kelvingrove Organ Recitals Kelvingrove Art Gallery & Museum, Argyle Street, 276 9599. 1pm. Free lunchtime organ recitals every day by different organists. Edinburgh ■ Verdi’s Macbeth Royal Lyceum Theatre, Grindlay Street, 248 4848. 7.30pm. £10–£25 (concessions available). Edinburgh Grand Opera performs Verdi’s powerful setting of the Shakespeare tragedy. With Phil Gault/Ivor Klayman as Macbeth and Susan McNaught/Christina Dunwoodie as Lady Macbeth.
Kelso ■ Borders Music & Arts Guild Concert Mellerstain House, Gordon, 01573 410225. 7.30pm. £17.50 (BMAG Members £12.50). Music by Fauré, Franck, Messiaen, Poulenc and Prokofiev performed by flautist Matthew Featherstone and pianist Philip Shannon. Peebles ■ Piano Recital: Young-Choon Park Eastgate Theatre & Arts Centre, Eastgate, 01721 725777. 7.30pm. £12 (£10). The South Korean pianist plays music by Scarlatti, Schubert and Chopin.
Glasgow ■ String Day RSAMD, 100 Renfrew Street, 332 5057. Times vary. Prices vary. The RSAMD’s String Day crams a truckload of string-related concerts and activities into one day, with performances by the resident string players, a masterclass and a lecture. See www.rsamd.ac.uk for times of specific events. Edinburgh ■ Flute Concert Canongate Kirk, 153 Canongate, 6pm. £5. Works for flute by Ian Clarke. Tickets available on the door. ■ Macbeth (Verdi) Royal Lyceum Theatre, Grindlay Street, 248 4848. 7.30pm. £10–£25 (concessions available). See Thu 27. ■ Mr McFall’s Chamber & Michael Marra The Queen’s Hall, 87–89 Clerk Street, 668 2019. 8pm. £10 (£8; children £5). A colourful patchwork quilt of pieces from around the world as Mr McFall’s once again teams up with Marra. With new workings of his songs, Finnish instrumental works, 19th- century salon music from Cuba, folk- influenced classical music from the Czech Republic and tango music from Argentina.
Glasgow ■ Junior Academy Concert RSAMD, 100 Renfrew Street, 332 5057. 3.30pm. £5 (£3). The wind orchestra’s end-of-term performance. Edinburgh ■ Pyjama Chords St Cuthbert’s Church, 5 Lothian Road, 668 4949. 7.30pm. £10 (£4–£7). Mixed voice choir Jubilo presents a concert in aid of the Sick Kids Charity Foundation. Go along, enjoy the music and do your bit! ■ Edinburgh Symphony Orchestra Greyfriars Kirk, Greyfriars Place, 2251900. 7.30pm. £8 (£3–£5). The
sounds of Scandinavia in the ESO’s summer concert, with violinist Daniel Bell as soloist in Sibelius’ virtuosic Violin Concerto. On either side, two works by Nielsen: the Aladdin Suite and Symphony No 5. ■ Sypert Summer Concert Series 2010 St Cecilia’s Hall, Niddry Street, 668 2019. 7.30pm. £14 (£5–£10). This first of three concerts features soprano Emma Kirkby and pianist Marcia Hadjimarkos on fortepiano. The duo performs songs by Mozart, Dussek, Haydn and Schubert, as well as a piece written by Marie-Antoinette, Amour fuis loin de moi. ■ Verdi’s Macbeth Royal Lyceum Theatre, Grindlay Street, 248 4848. 7.30pm. £10–£25 (concessions available). See Thu 27. Galashiels ■ Scottish Chamber Orchestra: Nicola Benedetti Volunteer Hall, St John Street, 01896 753587. 7.30pm. £12 (£5–£8). Classical superstar Nicola Benedetti joins the SCO and conductor Christian Curnyn in a selection of sparkling bravura pieces by Vivaldi, which share the programme with works by Haydn and Rameau.
Sunday 30 Glasgow FREE University Mass for Trinity Sunday St Columba’s Church, 74 Hopehill Road, 11am. Strathclyde University Chamber Choir performs a specially written motet by James MacMillan as well as some Scottish Renaissance music. FREE Kelvingrove Sunday Organ Recitals Kelvingrove Art Gallery & Museum, Argyle Street, 276 9599. 3–3.45pm. Sunday promenade concerts with different organists.
Edinburgh ■ Edinburgh Royal Choral Union: Spring Concert 2010 Usher Hall, Lothian Road, 228 1155. 3pm. £12–£15 (concessions available). The choir is joined by the Halifax Choral Society in Vaughan Williams’ Five Mystical Songs, Widor’s Organ Mass and Kodály’s Missa Brevis, conducted by Michael Bawtree. ■ St Giles’ at Six St Giles’ Cathedral, Royal Mile, 226 0673. 6pm. Retiring collection. Soprano Jillian Faith Thomson and pianist Ingrid Sawers perform songs and arias by Mozart, Handel and Purcell.
POETRY ADAPTATION A DRUNK MAN LOOKS AT THE THISTLE Red Note Ensemble, RSAMD, Glasgow, Fri 4 Jun; Traverse Theatre, Edinburgh, Wed 9 Jun
Made up of over 2500 lines, Hugh MacDiarmid’s A Drunk Man Looks at the Thistle can safely be labelled a long poem. Written in Scots, its length gives ample opportunity for MacDiarmid’s 1926 stream of consciousness to explore a wide array of topics – political, cultural, sexual and scientific – viewed from the nationalist/communist perspective of the writer as he contemplates what Scotland is all about.
In setting it to music, originally for Glasgow’s 1992 Mayfest, composer
Bill Sweeney has condensed the poem to a manageable length of just over an hour. ‘If it was all to be set to music,’ he says, ‘we’d be there for ever! But, although the text is edited down, it’s all in the right order and there is an overall shape to it, starting off with MacDiarmid’s rant against Burns’ culture.’ At that point, the poem is witty, funny and comical, but, as Sweeney explains, ‘It then descends into different depths. He’s sober and straightforward, but then drunk and obscene, then very beautiful.’ Scored for narrator – Scottish actor Crawford Logan in Red Note Ensemble’s new production – along with nine-piece instrumental ensemble including the composer himself on jazz clarinet and Chick Lyall on piano, there’s also solo baritone and a trio of female voices. ‘I’ve tried to find a musical rhythm,’ says Sweeney, ‘in terms of styles and pacing, while not being overtly theatrical.’
Although MacDiarmid’s words were written over 80 years ago, they remain uncannily relevant to present-day Scotland. ‘I think that contemporary audiences, if they open themselves up,’ says Sweeney, ‘will get quite a jolt by recognising themselves as freshly as when the poem was first written. It’s about the psychology of being Scottish and the same sort of psychological characteristics that make up the Scottish character are still recognisable today.’ (Carol Main)