Tag Archives: Edinburgh International Conference Centre

Commonwealth Forestry Conference

Yesterday I accompanied a small group of NBHS pupils to the 18th Commonwealth Forestry Conference held in the Edinburgh International Conference Centre (EICC). This short promotional video gives some idea of what the conference is about:[kml_flashembed movie="http://www.youtube.com/v/C4c7_WlS33E?rel=0" width="425" height="350" wmode="transparent" /]

Our remit was to round the opening ceremony with some culture of the host country and we performed four songs by Robert Burns. As a result of various trips we were reduced to a skeleton crew (4 missing from a group of 7 seniors) and I was really impressed with the pupils’ ability to cope with the extra pressure – not the least of which was the jetlag experienced by one pupils who had returned from a school trip to China the previous evening! This pressure was in no small way reduced by the quiet, friendly and assured professionalism of the EICC team who were fantastic. The sound in the venue was clear as a bell and it was a pleasure to play there.

The Lea Rig:[kml_flashembed movie="http://www.youtube.com/v/JjBNj8iFDZ0?rel=0" width="425" height="350" wmode="transparent" /]

John Anderson My Jo; Ca’ The Yowes; The Deil’s Awa’ Wi’ The Excise Man:[kml_flashembed movie="http://www.youtube.com/v/Vwtw7grxU8s?rel=0" width="425" height="350" wmode="transparent" /]

Many thanks to Libby Jones for inviting us to play and to Caroline Davis for minibus driving, filming, recording and general joie de vivre.

Thanks also to Zoë (vocals) who, in her last two years of life at NBHS, transformed the life of the senior Guitar Ensemble members. In that time we’ve done more gigs in and out of school than one could ever have imagined. We’d all like to wish her luck with her musical future.

The Lammermuir Festival 2010

Yesterday was an interesting and unusual one. NBHS Activities Week had conferred upon my Tuesday a blank canvas which would normally be spent on a variety of tasks: reports; admin; writing ensemble arrangements for next session – or for primary/secondary liaison events towards the end of this term.

However, this day was a little different. It kicked off with a meeting to talk through the logistics (transport, amplification, etc.) of a group of NBHS pupils who are to appear at the opening ceremony of the 18th Commonwealth Forestry Conference in the Edinburgh International Conference Centre. This is a real coup for the pupils to represent their school, county and country at this prestigious event. The opening ceremony is on Monday 28 June and I hope to post any ensuing audio or video footage here.

Following this I went with Julia Wilson (PT Music) to the National Museum of Flight (East Fortune)

for the launch of The Lammermuir Festival 2010. From 10-19 Sept, this new festival will feature a variety of concerts in some of East Lothian’s most attractive and unusual venues. James Waters of Festival & Events International talked us through the genesis and gestation of the idea and Hugh McDonald (director of the BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra from 1991 to 2006) talked us through some of the events, featuring artists such as: Scottish Chamber Orchestra; BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra; Dunedin ConsortPhilip Higham; Navarra String Quartet; National Youth Choir of Scotland & Mahan Esfahani featured here in Bach’s English Suite No. 5:

[kml_flashembed movie="http://www.youtube.com/v/dkDOYCjJI08?rel=0" width="425" height="350" wmode="transparent" /]

On Saturday 18th September, my East Lothian colleague and friend, Chris Day (on the right of the picture),

will give performance (or rather three performances at 1:00, 2:00 and 3.00) of Steve Reich’s Electric Counterpoint. This work features one live electric guitar in conjunction with eleven pre-recorded guitars (there go his summer holidays) – in surround sound. In the hangar which houses Concorde, this should be an audio treat. This clip will give you some idea of the work:

[kml_flashembed movie="http://www.youtube.com/v/dwxKtr5nF7Y?rel=0" width="425" height="350" wmode="transparent" /]

Later in the day, the team were to discuss ways in which pupils in East Lothian school pupils can  become involved. When I find out more, I’ll post details here.