A remote premiere for a global concerto

A remote premiere for a global concerto


norman lebrecht

August 03, 2022

The world premiere of James MacMillan’s second violin concerto has been scheduled for Perth in the north of Scotland at the end of next month. MacMillan is Scotland’s most successful composer. The soloist is Nicola Benedetti, incoming director of the Edinburgh Festival.

The concerto will then make its way quietly to Edinburgh and Glasgow (where London newspapers will fail to send a reviewer), before galloping off on a world tour to Dallas, St Louis, Sweden, Poland and all other points of the compass.

Funny how things get launched these days.


  • Jba says:

    Perth is not located in the north of Scotland……..not that remote with motorway access to Edinburgh & Glasgow

  • Lars says:

    In my opinion MacMillan is a contemporary composer that is important and definitely worth hearing. He’s of declining interest to the metrocentric diversity squads though, probably because Catholicism isn’t the right kind of diversity for them.

  • Paul Brownsey says:

    Remote from where?

  • Tony Sanderson says:

    May be reading too much into this. The UK premiere of MacMillan’ Chistmas Oratorio took place in Lindon at the Royal Festival Hall in December 2021 and was reviewed.

    The world premiere took place a year earlier in the Netherlands. The Spectator reviewed the live stream of this concert and said we need this music now.

    (COVID restrictions prevented travel at the time.)

  • boots says:

    If the papers aren’t sending a reviewer (really??), is SlippeDisc? I would volunteer but I hardly ever go outside London as there really is no point. Not that much happens elsewhere that is worth the effort of attending.

    • GuestSM says:

      Well, it’s obvious you never leave London – or you’d know that saying “not that much happens elsewhere” is a load of utter nonsense. What a ridiculous statement.

    • Peter Seivewright says:

      That really is an almost unbelievable (or is it ‘all too believable’?) bit of ignorant parochial ‘London-ism’……………It would be hilarious were it not so tragic.

    • Graeme Hall says:

      I really hope that is meant as a joke and that you are not as ignorant and stupid as it would appear.

  • DH says:

    MacMillan’s second violin concerto was commissioned by the Scottish Chamber Orchestra, Swedish Chamber Orchestra, the Adam Mickiewicz Institute and the Dallas Symphony Orchestra. This provides a context which makes sense of the initial tour.
    Orchestras in Scotland usually repeat their regular concert series around the country.
    Perth in Scotland (32 miles from Edinburgh, and yes, there is a road and a railway connecting them) has an excellent concert hall and theatre. People there also have limitless running water (unlike remote London at the moment).
    There is a well known piobaireachd called The Bells of Perth (Cluig Pheirt) for those wanting an introduction to the classical music of the Highland Bagpipe.