Thursday, 25 April 2013

All Change in Scotland

Kilt, Flickr photo credit Tolka Rover - Éamonn O'Brien-Strain
The Edinburgh International Festival has announced its new director, and Scottish Opera has announced its new conductor. Fergus Linehan will become the festival director and chief executive of the Edinburgh International Festival from 2014. He is currently director of Warehouse Arts and was previously head of music at Sydney Opera House, he has also led the Sydney Festival and the Dublin Festival in his native Ireland. He will be planning his first festival for 2015. He replaces Jonathan Mills who has been in place since 2006. Mills, a surprising choice for director, has presided over a a successful expansion of the festival and has delivered as series of themed programmes. It will be interesting to see what direction Linehan takes, though some commentators have seen his appointment as indicating a move away from music at the festival.

And over at Scottish Opera, it has been announced that Emmanuel Joel-Hornak will take over as musical director in August, replacing Francesco Corti. Joekl-Hornak has worked with Scottish Opera, conducting Hansel and Gretel (2012) and La Traviata (2008-9). His first performances with the company, as musical director, will be announced in May. Trained at the Paris Conservatoire, Joel-Hornak has an extensive performing CV but does not appear to have led an opera company before. Joel-Hornak was described by the Scotsman as drawing 'flavoursome' playing from the Scottish Opera orchestra in La Traviata and Opera Britannia refers to him producing 'one sublime moment after another' in Hansel and Gretel. He replaces Francesco Corti, whose performances with Scottish Opera have not always been popular in critical circles. 

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