In This Programme
Glasgow City Halls
The freshly renovated City Halls in Glasgow are the new home for the BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra.
Dating from 1841, City Halls is located in the heart of Glasgow 's burgeoning arts quarter, the Merchant City , and has been completely re-designed as a centre for music for the 21st Century. Yet the development is far more than just a refurbished concert hall. Right next door to City Halls, the Old Fruitmarket was first built in 1852. It's now part of the whole complex, and the wrought iron balconies, cobbled floor and vintage signage make it a perfect place for jazz and folk, and for the BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra's more experimental programmes. The buildings represent the coming together of old and new. Tom goes on a guided tour of the new spaces with Louise Mitchell, Director of Glasgow Cultural Enterprises, and Kerr Robertson, Principal Architect on the project for Glasgow Civic Design, as well as meeting up with the Glasgow historian Ronnie Scott.
BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra
Education is one of the key considerations in any programme for cultural reform, and is a focal-point of the new City Halls complex. The BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra's own learning programme will be celebrated in the world premiere of a new commission from its resident composer, Anna Meredith . 'Casting' involves 250 young performers from Nursery, Primary and Secondary schools in Glasgow 's East End playing alongside the orchestra. Anna talks to Tom about her work with the orchestra and its learning programme.
Find out more about the BBC coverage of the opening events at Glasgow City Halls on the Radio 3 website .
Scottish cultural debate
The new City Halls development seems to represent an enormous cultural confidence in music in Scotland . However, recent headlines about Scottish culture suggest a different picture. First there was the Scottish Opera fiasco and their current 'Dark Season', then under-funded orchestras, theatres and music education. The Scottish Executive decided to respond to concerns by funding a Cultural Commission to report on the state of the nation's culture and to make recommendations for how things could improve. The report was published in June 2005, and to discuss its impact on the future of culture in Scotland , Tom is joined by Michael Tumelty, the chief music critic for The Herald, the composer and performer Eddie McGuire and Ian Smith, the Head of Music at the Scottish Arts Council.
Another new concert hall for Scotland opened in Perth last autumn. Horsecross will be hosting a performance of one of the seminal masterpieces of late 20 th Century vocal music, Stockhausen's Stimmung. It's going to be performed by Paul Hillier with his group, The Theatre of Voices. As a singer, Hillier transformed our view of early works, but he went on to found the Theatre of Voices to explore a wider repertoire - particularly new pieces. Paul Hillier talks about the unusual combination of ancient and modern music in his career.
Paul Hillier's tour of Stimmung starts on 16 th January in Oxford 's Jacqueline du Pre Concert Hall, then at Manchester 's Bridgewater Hall on 17 th January and finally at Horsecross in Perth on 18 th January.