Wild and Majestic: An Evening with Scottish Opera: 6.30pm, 25 October 2019 at National Museum of Scotland, Chambers Street, Edinburgh #wildandmajestic

Burns and Beethoven will collide in the Grand Gallery of the National Museum of Scotland on World Opera Day in a special performance by Scottish Opera to celebrate works by some of the world’s great operatic composers, inspired by Scotland’s Romantic past.

The event is in association the National Museum’s critically acclaimed exhibition, Wild and Majestic: Romantic Visions of Scotland. One of the highlight objects in the exhibition is the manuscript score of Robert Burns’ Highland Harry, set to music by the hand of Ludwig Van Beethoven. It will form part of the recital, along with Schumann’s Burns settings, Schubert’s Ossian settings and, performed on the anniversary of his birth, Bizet’s Nous voilà seul (La jolie fille de Perth). 

Wild and Majestic National Museums Scotland Photo by Phil Wilkinson Photography

Dr Stuart Allan, Keeper of Scottish History and Archaeology at National Museums Scotland, said:“We are delighted to host this performance in collaboration with Scottish Opera. It really brings to life a key point made in the exhibition, Wild and Majestic: Romantic Visions of Scotland, about how a particular idea of Scotland, with its roots in Ossian and Burns, later made even more popular by Sir Walter Scott had a widespread influence on European Romanticism.”

Wild & Majestic:https://www.nms.ac.uk/scottishopera An Evening with Scottish Opera will be performed by Scottish Opera’s Emerging Artists, soprano Charlie Drummond and baritones Arthur Bruce and Mark Nathan, accompanied on piano by Scottish Opera’s Head of Music, Derek Clark. 

Derek Clark, Head of Music at Scottish Opera, said:“We are delighted to be performing at the National Museum of Scotland, and it’s especially pleasing to give the three young singers from our Emerging Artists programme, which is now in its 10th year, the chance to bring this music to life.”

Wild and Majestic: Romantic Visions of Scotland which is on until 10 November tells the fascinating story of how tartan, bagpipes and rugged, wild landscapes became established as enduring, internationally recognised symbols of Scottish identity and how Scotland became established in the popular imagination as a land of wilderness, heroism and history.

Through rich displays reflecting the colour and flamboyance of the Highland image, over 300 objects tell the story of key developments such as the aftermath of Culloden, the Ossian controversy, the over-turning of the ban on Highland dress, the pageantry around King George IV’s visit to Edinburgh in 1822, the Highland tourism boom, and the creation of a Romantic idyll for Queen Victoria at Balmoral.  

Wild and Majestic: An Evening with Scottish Opera, is at 6.30pm on Friday 25 October. Tickets are on sale now, priced £22.50, available here

The exhibition Wild and Majestic: Romantic Visions of Scotland is sponsored by Baillie Gifford Investment Managers and runs until Sunday 10 November 2019.

Scottish Opera also appeared at the National Museum of Scotland last Saturday with the touring production, Amadeus and The Bard. Read our review here. In the show, a cast of singers and instrumentalists blend traditional Burns folk tunes with music from some of Mozart’s most popular operas, from the magical and mystical in The Magic Flute and Tam O’Shanter to the heartfelt declarations of love in Don GiovanniThe Magic Flute and A Red, Red Rose.

Wild and Majestic National Museums Scotland Photo by Phil Wilkinson Photography