2011 will see the first St Magnus International Festival programmed by the new Artistic Director Alasdair Nicolson who was joined by Festival Manager Tanya McGill as the new team at the helm of this 35 year old event which takes place from Friday 17 June to Thursday 23 June 2011.
The 2011 St Magnus International Festival will have the title “the isle is full of noises”. This Shakespearean quote neatly sums up what happens over midsummer in Orkney but also hints at some of the themes of this year’s Festival.
“2011 has been designated Year of Scotland’s Islands and so we shall be investigating island culture and, with island culture in mind, Shakespeare’s The Tempest.” said Artistic Director Alasdair Nicolson. “And, indeed, an epic and spectacular community production of the play will be the centrepiece of the Festival drawing together film, circus, physical theatre, acrobatics and live music in the Pickaquoy Arena.”
Over 40 events will take place over the course of 7 days spreading the work of the Festival throughout mainland Orkney and its outer islands. This year also sees a first, the opportunity to hear concerts on ferry crossings from Scrabster and Aberdeen.
“We have a very exciting line-up of musicians in the main programme with the appearance of the Scottish Chamber Orchestra at its heart. An oboe trio, brass quintet, flute quartet and viol consort will explore fascinating areas of repertoire and the wonderful baroque group Florilegium will give an unmissable concert of Bach Cantatas and Brandenburg Concertos in the Cathedral. I’m really thrilled to have secured the young, prize-winning pianist Alessandro Taverna – a new star of the piano playing world.”
Alongside the main Festival, MagFest continues a very different strand.
“I’ve called the MagFest programme “A cabinet of curiosities” to reflect the diversity of entertainment which will be presented, hoping everyone will find something of interest, something unusual, something intriguing and something exciting.”