Christmas with a twist from ensemble

Violinist Jonathan Morton performs with the Scottish Ensemble this Saturday (Tommy Ga-Ken Wan).

Violinist Jonathan Morton performs with the Scottish Ensemble this Saturday (Tommy Ga-Ken Wan).

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THIS Saturday (December 10) in the Marryat Hall, Dundee, the Scottish Ensemble, Scotland’s most adventurous and versatile musical ensemble, will present its annual Christmas concert - with a twist.

This year, the Ensemble will be performing music by living composers originating from the Baltic countries of Latvia, Estonia and Lithuania interspersed with works by Byrd and Purcell in an ambient venue lit by flickering candlelight. As part of the Ensemble’s £10:11/12 Season, all tickets for Baltic Renaissance are £10.

Continuing what has become an established annual tradition for many of Scotland’s music-lovers, the Ensemble’s candlelit December performances once again offer a reflective and atmospheric alternative to the usual festive night out.

Concerts which juxtapose established classics from the rich heritage of music for strings alongside new works are a trademark of the Ensemble’s distinctive programming and this concert will be no different. Audiences will hear some of the most distinctive musical voices at work today in music that is affecting, moving and poignant alongside stately dances and processions from masters of British string music writing in the 16th and 17th centuries.

Winner of Classic BRIT Award Composer of the Year in 2011, Arvo Pärt is one of the most popular living composers, with people all over the world finding comfort and solace in his haunting, contemplative, and instantly-recognisable musical style. As the Baltic region continues to re-define itself amongst the international community, the works of Pärt and his contemporaries from the region are being discovered by an ever-growing audience globally. The refined and layered textures of these 20th and 21st century composers are echoed in the works of William Byrd and Henry Purcell whose work can sound remarkably modern.

At the Marryat Hall before Saturday’s concert, Scottish Ensemble Artistic Director Jonathan Morton will chat about this fascinating programme and the work of the Ensemble from 7.15pm. All audience members are welcome to join this conversation, which is free to ticket holders, at any point until 7.45pm.

Tickets are available from the Dundee box office on 01382 434940 or dundeebox.co.uk