For over fifty years (with an inevitable intermission due to COVID-19) Dunfermline Arts Guild – LIVE Music on Sundays in Dunfermline – has provided opportunities for members to enjoy live music in a
setting that allowed the audience to hear the music close-up and to interact with the artists. Those taking part are all professional musicians, many of whom are on the threshold of what will be glittering careers –
you heard them first in Dunfermline!
The 2022–23 season added an additional concert to our normal six-concert autumn/winter series, running from September to April, and the December concert was postponed to January because of illness.
Scots Baroque is an innovative new early music ensemble based in Glasgow, Scotland. We take music of the baroque period (c.1600–1750) as our starting point, performing on instruments appropriate to the period, whilst experimenting with a fusion of techniques and genres, including improvisation, folk styles, and contemporary music written for old instruments. Individually, we perform with leading ensembles such as Dunedin Consort, Concerto Caledonia, Academy of Ancient Music, Orchestra of the Age of the Enlightenment, and Les Musiciens de Saint Julien. We bring together an impressive range of experience, with programmes combining the latest research, unusual repertoire, and a flair for dramatic performance.
Our Scotland On Tour programme Reflections explores the ways in which musicians reuse and reimagine music from folk cultures and earlier periods. Taking a whirlwind tour through Scotland, England, Bohemia, and Poland, we guide listeners through our own personal journeys with this music, pairing works from the baroque period with newly written ‘reflections’, using older music as inspiration for contemporary works.
Founded in 2018 by musicians from the Royal Academy of Music and
the Guildhall School of Music and Drama, Ensemble Renard are an exciting and award-winning young
chamber ensemble looking to push the boundaries of wind chamber music.
returning to Scotland for the first time as a group since visiting the Isle of
Coll in July 2021, they are sharing a mixed programme of wind quintet
‘classics’ from America, France, Hungary, and England as well as some lesser-known, contemporary works.
For their Dunfermline programme, Ensemble Renard have included
three works by the Scottish composers Thea Musgrave, Judith Weir, and James
MacMillan, not just to celebrate Scottish music, but because these are some of their favourite pieces to play as a group. They enjoy exploring new repertoire and
are excited to share this programme with you!
The Silver Keys is an international clarinet quartet based in Central Scotland, who met in 2018 when they were all students at the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland under the tutelage of John Cushing, former principal clarinetist of the Royal Scottish National Orchestra. As each of the members are from different backgrounds, their passion is delving into the different traditions of music from all over the world.
As a clarinet quartet, they always like to experiment with different genres of music to illuminate how diverse clarinet is as an instrument. They have chosen this programme as an example of how clarinet can perform music from all different time periods as well as all different styles of music. Ranging from arrangements of standard classical operas like Aragonaise from Carmen or the Flower Duet from Lakme, to 20th century pieces written for clarinet quartet like Uhl’s Divertimento, all the way to wonderful arrangements of popular music like Scottish Folk Tunes or even the Beatles and John Williams.
Matas Ščerbauskas started playing the clarinet when he was only 8, beginning with lessons at a local music school, and continuing his studies professionally at age 15 at a conservatoire, also in his home city of Kaunas, Lithuania. Matas studied at the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland (RCS) and today performs across Scotland as a member of the ‘Silver Keys’ clarinet quartet, has been invited to perform with the National Symphony Orchestra in Ireland, and tours alongside guitarist Jacopo Lazzareti in recitals where they explore and perform classic and contemporary genres.
Jacopo Lazzaretti is a versatile and exciting guitarist from Rome, currently based in Glasgow. As a soloist, he has played in many concerts in Italy as well as abroad and won several prizes in national and international guitar competitions. Since 2018, he has been a solo artist for Live Music Now Scotland. Another important aspect of his musical life is his passion for chamber music, resulting in collaborations with other musicians, and giving recitals as the JKL Duo with his partner flautist Kerry Lynch.
Their programme explores the idea of pairing music from different composers in a voyage narrated by either a solo instrument (guitar or clarinet) or by the two together. Through connection or juxtaposition, the audience will participate with the performers in a journey of different sounds, musical languages and emotions.
For tonight’s concert, composer and clarsach virtuoso Savourna Stevenson – described as “a national treasure” by The Herald – joins forces with old friend and saxophonist Steve Kettley. Most of the music they will be playing is taken from their recently-released collaborative harp and saxophone album ‘Wine of Life’. This takes in elements of classical genres, folk, world and jazz to create a unique blend of haunting melodies, pulsating rhythms and stirring improvisations – music rooted in history and heritage, but given a contemporary twist.
Savourna Stevenson began playing the piano and composing from the age of 5 with her father, the composer Ronald Stevenson, made her concert debut with the harp at the age of 15 at the Queen Elizabeth Hall, London and is known for breaking stylistic barriers while maintaining her Scottish roots. She was recently honoured to have some of her music, a choral version of Psalm 121 and apparently a favourite of the late monarch, performed at the Thanksgiving Service for the life of HM Queen Elizabeth II at St Giles’ Cathedral in Edinburgh.
Steve Kettley leads several groups playing his original music, plus Orange Claw Hammer, interpreting the music of avant-rock legend Captain Beefheart. He is well known as a founder member of the international touring and recording group Salsa Celtica (1995–2013). The saxophonist also performs regularly with poet and former Scottish Makar Liz Lochhead.
Friends joined through their love of chamber music, the Resol String Quartet formed in the Autumn of 2018 at the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland. Taking their name from the Catalan word meaning “reflection of sunlight”, the members of the quartet come from a great variety of backgrounds but were brought together by their shared vision to make classical music more inclusive and accessible. Acting as ambassadors for chamber music, and keeping it alive in today’s society, Resol feel just as at home in education and care settings as they do on the concert platform and strive to blend all this work together. In the concert hall they approach their interpretations from a historically-informed perspective, bringing a unique take on repertoire from all eras.
During March to May 2023 Resol will be on a Female Composers Tour around the UK, and are really happy to be including Dunfermline as one of the stops on their tour.
As the Clyde Duo, harpist Sharron Griffiths is joined by the renowned flautist Aisling Agnew. Aisling and Sharron share a compelling interest in the flute and harp repertoire and have performed together across the UK and internationally.
Aisling Agnew is a flautist from Belfast who performs internationally and has toured across many continents. She is host of the successful podcast The Flute NI and has interviewed many performers, teachers and makers about their experiences. Aisling has made many successful recordings featuring CDs, radio broadcasts and live performances online. A graduate of the Guildhall School of Music & Drama and the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland, Aisling is flautist with Hard Rain Soloist Ensemble in Belfast, specialising in contemporary music, performs with the Irish Memory Orchestra, collaborating with Irish traditional musicians, and is involved with a variety of music education projects.
Sharron Griffiths started playing the harp at the age of ten in her native Wales, and has pursued a diverse and varied career as a soloist, chamber and orchestral musician. A keen soloist and chamber musician, Sharron recently appeared as concerto soloist with the Royal Northern Sinfonia and is a member of the Flute, Viola, Harp Trio with Ruth Morley and Scott Dickinson and the innovative Bardic Trio with tenor Jamie MacDougall and guitarist Matthew McAllister.