BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra

BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra
Founded in 1935 by Scottish composer and conductor Ian Whyte, the BBC SSO’s repertoire ranges from highly complex modern scores to the classics, from music by Scottish composers to film and TV scores. Its concert performances and recordings are broadcast exclusively on BBC Radio and television. Its innovative programmes and acclaimed recordings have made it the recipient of numerous awards, including two Gramophone Awards (including NMC D141) and a Grammy nomination. The Royal Philharmonic Society presented the BBC SSO with its award for Best Orchestra in 2002, and its Chief Conductor, Ilan Volkov with the prize for Best Young Artist in 2004.
The BBC SSO is especially active in commissioning and promoting new music, having worked with many leading composers over the years from Britten and Shostakovich to Kurtág and Tan Dun: it is especially proud of its support for Scottish composers – including Stuart MacRae, whose music the orchestra has recorded to great acclaim for NMC (on NMC D115).
The BBC SSO regularly tours Europe, and in recent years has visited China, the USA and South America. It appears annually at the BBC Proms and Edinburgh International Festival, and is in demand at festivals including Cheltenham, Huddersfield and St. Magnus in Orkney. The orchestra takes live music to towns and cities across Scotland every season, and is increasingly involved in the community, with its learning programme, dedicated to bringing the inspiration of great music to people of all ages and backgrounds.

Brabbins, Martyn

Artistic Director of the Cheltenham International Festival of Music 2005-2007, he was Associate Principal Conductor of the BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra 1994-2005. He is Principal Guest Conductor of the Royal Flemish Philharmonic, a position which started in September 2009. After studying composition in London and then conducting with Ilya Musin in Leningrad, his career was launched when he won first prize at the 1988 Leeds Conductors' Competition. Since then Brabbins has regularly conducted all the major UK orchestras and is much sought-after in Europe, notably in Germany, Holland, Belgium and Scandinavia.   
Brabbins’ symphonic engagements have included appearances at London's  South Bank in subscription with the London Philharmonic and Philharmonia orchestras, his Tokyo debut, with the Tokyo Metropolitan (where he returns in 2011); and visits to the Netherlands Radio Chamber in the prestigious Matinee series, the Residentie Orkest, Salzburg Mozarteumorchester and Lahti Symphony.  He is a regular guest with the City of Birmingham Symphony, Halle and BBC Philharmonic orchestras, and appears several times each season with the BBC Symphony and BBC Scottish Symphony orchestras in subscription and at the BBC Proms.
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Two works, separated by 60 years, from one of the most remarkable figures in British composition of recent times. Keal's Cello Concerto, completed in 1994, is coupled with her romantic 1929 Ballade for cello & piano.


'Her 22-minute Cello Concerto (1988-94) is a superb achievement, tautly crafted, terse in its distinctive Anglo-European idiom, yet with an emotional charge that becomes increasingly apparent.'  The Sunday Times


Produced in association with BBC Radio 3


Recording date: 24 July 1996

Recording venue: Studio 1, Broadcasting House, BBC Scotland, Glasgow

Engineer: Tony Kime
Producer: Simon Lord
Editing & mastering: Simon Lord

Cover image: Angela Walters

(P) 1997 NMC Recordings Ltd

Catalogue number:
Release Date:
1 September 1997