Baritone Alexander Robin Baker replaces Leigh Melrose in SCO ‘Homecoming’ concert
Baritone Leigh Melrose has had to pull out of his concerts with the Scottish Chamber Orchestra on Friday 27 and Saturday 28 November in Glasgow and Edinburgh due to ill-health. The Orchestra is very grateful to Alexander Robin Baker for replacing Leigh at extremely short notice.
Baker will take on the solo baritone role in the world premiere performance of the complete version of Edward Harper’s Second Symphony. The Symphony is one of three works being performed in a ‘Homecoming’-themed programme at Glasgow City Halls and Edinburgh’s Queen’s Hall on Friday 27 and Saturday 28 November. As well as paying tribute to the music of Harper, who died in April this year, the Orchestra celebrates the music of Kenneth Leighton in the 80th anniversary year of his birth with a performance of his Concerto for String Orchestra, and marks the 50th birthday of James MacMillan with his tour de force Tryst. Garry Walker, who conducted Harper’s Second Symphony at both the 2006 premiere and on the Delphian recording, directs the Orchestra in these concerts.
Harper’s Second Symphony replaces Symphony No 3 ‘Homage to Robert Burns’ which was scheduled to receive its world premiere in these concerts. Harper had sketched out the first movement of the new symphony prior to his death, and the Orchestra has asked composer Lyell Cresswell to complete the movement with a view to performing it in the 2010/11 Season.
Symphony No 2 was premiered by the Orchestra in October 2006, recorded for Edinburgh’s independent classical music label, Delphian, in the summer of 2007 and released on CD in March 2008. The concerts in November will be the first live performances of the full symphony, as the first movement of symphony was incomplete when the Orchestra premiered the work in October 2006. The full work was recorded following the completion of the first movement.