Lammermuir Festival Reveals 'Path of Miracles' 15th Festival Programme for 2024

The festival runs 5th- 16th September 2024.

By: Jun. 11, 2024
Lammermuir Festival Reveals 'Path of Miracles' 15th Festival Programme for 2024
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Lammermuir Festival has announced its programme for its fifteenth festival in September this year.  

James Waters Chief Executive and Co-Artistic Director said; “These last 12 months have been some of the hardest we’ve experienced in over 30 years of working and running arts festivals. But they have also been some of the most magical as our audiences, our friends across the industry, our patrons and supporters have all come together in voice and, where they could, with financial support to ensure that this year’s festival could go ahead. Their passion for what we do is incredibly humbling, exciting and motivating and we really would not be here without them. Thank you to each and every one who has supported.” 

This hugely valued East Lothian festival carefully brings together a programme of incredibly talented musicians, with music that resonates and expands the audience experience in locations across the undulating county between the coast east of Edinburgh and the Lammermuir Hills.  

At the heart of that programme this year is Joby Talbot’s Path of Miracles performed in the Concorde Hangar at the National Museum of Flight. Sung by one of the finest choral groups in the world, Tenebrae, for which it was written, the work which is both ravishingly beautiful and hugely dramatic has been performed once before at Lammermuir to a sold-out audience who stood cheering when it finished. This is an unmissable masterpiece and centrepiece of the fifteenth festival. 

Concerto Copenhagen, one of the best baroque orchestras in the world, makes its first appearance in Scotland. Embedding themselves in the festival as Ensemble in Residence, they give four concerts which highlight the brilliance of the 17th century masters who inspired Bach, from Dutch composer Dietrich Buxtehude to Biber to Schmelzer and lesser known geniuses like George Muffat and Johan Helmich Roman. 

Scottish Opera visits the market town of Haddington to entertain with Britten’s operatic comedy Albert Herring, set in a small Suffolk market town. The cast includes Susan Bullock as Lady Billows and Glen Cunningham as Albert Herring and, directed by Daisy Evans. 

The landmark programme also marks the festival debut of the incomparable Véronique Gens, one of the world’s greatest singers. Her back catalogue of award-winning recordings and star appearances at leading opera houses speaks volumes. One of the leading interpreters of French song, her more intimate recital at the festival offers wonderful songs by Fauré, Gounod, Duparc and Hahn.  

Amsterdam’s brilliant young Van Bearle Trio get completist playing all of Beethoven’s piano trios, some of the most beautiful music ever written, across the popular weekday morning Coffee Concerts, and with world-class cakes. 

The festival’s unashamed devotion to JS Bach continues with The Art of Fugue performed by pioneering viol consort Fretwork and Roman Rabinovich playing arguably Bach’s finest keyboard music, the Goldberg Variations.  

ZRI, named after the Viennese café often frequented by Schubert and Brahms, take audiences literally on a journey across three rural locations performing their own unique versions of great works by Schubert, Brahms and Janáček which draw out their gypsy and Hungarian musical influences.  

Some of the festival’s most enduringly popular artists celebrating the fifteenth festival including the Maxwell Quartet, Dunedin Consort, Royal Northern Sinfonia, Gesualdo Six, Hebrides Ensemble and many others. 

And this year welcomes the brand new Valo Quartet partnered with extraordinary American pianist Jeremy Denk who also contributes two other typically striking programmes including a celebration of the 150th anniversary of Charles Ives with the transcendent violinist Maria Włoszczowska plus a brass band and a choir. 

Across 37 concerts there are many more stories and gems to uncover. The full programme is now released online at www.lammermuirfestival.co.uk 

Co-Artistic Director Hugh MacDonald added; “I think this is probably the richest, most inspiring Lammermuir programme we have yet come up with. We are so delighted - and excited - to be back!” 

For those who approach the festival as an opportunity to roam and explore the countryside in which it nestles, the trip down to Crichton Collegiate Church and Humbie in the south, Dunbar and Stenton in the east and Dirleton and North Berwick on the northern coastline take in much of the beauty of East Lothian and its surrounds.  

The spread across 15 venues also invites those who might not be so familiar with classical music to discover something on their doorsteps, whether in one of the main towns or small villages. 

This year’s festival also invites young people in East Lothian through its doors to take front row seats in concerts. 

Front Row is a new two-year audience development and learning initiative developed in collaboration with East Lothian Instrumental Services and with support from Scops Arts Trust which helps to give people access to enjoy and participate in the arts. 

One hundred 12 to 18 year old school students in East Lothian will have the opportunity to attend a concert with a seat in the front row for free. They are also invited to attend rehearsals and meet the artists and two will be offered the chance to join with the team to see behind the scenes and get a taste of life working on the festival. 

 
In addition to the new Front Row programme, Lammermuir Festival is offering school students aged 7-18 free tickets, and full time students in further education aged 16+ half price tickets to hear the incredible line-up.  

The 2024 Lammermuir Festival has been made possible only with the generous support of our many partners, trusts and foundations, benefactors, friends and donors including The National Lottery through Creative Scotland, Foyle Foundation, McInroy & Wood and the Stevenston Charitable Trust. 

Muir Russell, Chair of Lammermuir Festival said: "This year’s Festival programme is our strongest yet. Thanks to the generosity of our supporters and friends, and with Creative Scotland’s contribution, we can go forward to provide another unique, rich cultural experience of the kind that Lammermuir has become famous for." 

Alan Morrison, Head of Music at Creative Scotland said: “East Lothian moves centre stage on the European cultural scene this September as the Lammermuir Festival returns with an international array of artists from Denmark, France, the Netherlands and beyond. As ever, the festival also provides a high-profile platform for some of Scotland’s best classical musicians to showcase their world-beating talents. It’s great to see a programme thread its way through a region in such an inventive way, with choral work in the Concorde Hangar and opera soaking up the atmosphere of Haddington’s history as a market town.” 

The Festival’s relationship with BBC Radio 3 continues with the broadcast of four Concerto Copenhagen concerts from the 2024 Festival.  




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