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Scottish Fantasy, A Taste of Scotland at the Hong Kong Cultural Centre Concert Hall (6 & 7 April)
Source: HK Phil

[12 March 2018, Hong Kong] The Hong Kong Philharmonic Orchestra (HK Phil), together with renowned violinist Ning Feng under the baton of Principal Guest Conductor Yu Long, will bring a taste of Scotland to the Hong Kong Cultural Centre Concert Hall. They will tantalise the audience with the sights and sounds of Scotland as revealed by three composers - Mendelssohn, Bruch and Maxwell Davies on 6 & 7 April.    


“Ning Feng’s sensitivity bears fruit in a deeply poetic account of the introductory section to the Scottish Fantasy, his delicate, lonely presence contrasting beautifully with the solemn, gloomy orchestral setting. And he’s in his element with the virtuoso high jinks of the Scherzo and finale, tossed off without turning a hair.”

--- Gramophone


Following on from Gramophone magazine’s praise of Ning Feng’s recording of Bruch’s Scottish Fantasy, the Hong Kong audience will be able to sample it live. Composed in 1880, the Scottish Fantasy is based on wholly authentic Scottish melodies which Bruch took from a collection prepared by the famous Scots poet, Robert Burns. These melodies include ‘Auld Rob Morris’, ‘Dusty Miller’ and with ‘Scots Wha Hae’ making an exuberant finale.


Opening the Scottish evening is a musical postcard depicting an actual wedding on Hoy in Orkney with the evocative swirl of bagpipes which British composer Peter Maxwell Davies attended. He composed An Orkney Wedding, with Sunrise in 1984 for John Williams and the Boston Pops Orchestra. The Boston Globe described it as “folk like, delightful, and increasingly boozy and woozy as the celebrations go on until the majesty of dawn... ingenious and fun… a celebration of nature and of humanity's place in it”.    


Closing the concert is Mendelssohn’s Symphony no. 3, Scottish, which was inspired by the composer’s visit to Scotland in 1829 when he saw a ruined and decayed chapel where Mary Stuart had been crowned Queen of Scotland. However, it took a further 12 years for Mendelssohn to complete the work and he conducted its premiere in Leipzig in 1842. Although the symphony follows no written programme, and contains no genuine Scottish folk melodies, it does evoke many of the sensations Mendelssohn experienced during his visit to Scotlan

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