Fiddle Music at Christmas

Fiddle, Cello, Double Bass

On the Winter Solstice, as we approach the end of one year and the beginning of another, it seems appropriate to have a look at some traditional tunes with associations to Christmas or New Year. [Read more…]

Aims of the SFO

Break during SFO Rehearsal, Perth High School - November 2014

Break during SFO Rehearsal, Perth High School – November 2014

The SFO dates from 1980 and, in 2006, it became a company limited by guarantee.

You can find more information about the Orchestra on our “About” page. [Read more…]

Scots Fiddle Festival 2014

Scots Fiddle Festival 2014

Scots Fiddle Festival 2014

What must be about the 19th annual Scots Fiddle Festival takes place in Edinburgh over the weekend of 21st – 23rd November 2014.

Run by Scots Fiddle Festival Ltd, a registered charity, it is a feast of fiddle music, with concerts, workshops, ceilidhs, recitals, talks, an “open stage”, sessions and stalls.

The festival’s committee are all volunteers and they put their heart and soul into the organisation. They deserve congratulations for bringing together another international cast of performers for the evening concerts – this year, extended to three nights (adding Sunday). [Read more…]

Willie Hunter – SFO Pays Tribute 20 Years On From His Untimely Death

The SFO’s concert programme for 2014 includes a tribute to Shetland fiddler, Willie Hunter, who died in 1994 at the age of 60.

Yla Steven plays probably Willie’s best-known composition – the Slow Air “Leaving Lerwick Harbour” – in an arrangement by the SFO’s late Musical Director, John Mason.

Leaving Lerwick Harbour

The tune was written after the return of his aunt Babsie to New Zealand following a holiday in her native Shetland. Willie always recalled her departure on the ferry and it inspired him to compose this beautiful melody. It is thought to have been Willie’s favourite among all his compositions. [Read more…]

Welcome to the new website

It’s been a busy summer,  hope to see you at a concert soon.

The SFO to Tour China!

We are incredibly excited to announce that the SFO has been invited to give a concert tour in China at Hogmanay 2012 and early January 2013!

Having previously toured in Canada, Australia and New Zealand, this will be the orchestra’s first visit to the Far East.

We will give 9 or 10 concerts in Shanghai and the provincial capitals of several regions of southern China. Cities to be visited include Shanghai, Hangzhou, Fuzhou, Haikou, Nanchang, Suzhou and Liuzhou. Plans are at an advanced stage of preparation and the formal arrangements, venues and dates are expected to be finalised in October.

The SFO is very grateful to Creative Scotland for a grant of £10,000 towards the costs of this venture. It is hoped that the concerts, which are expected to attract some 10,000 to 14,000 people, will generate interest in traditional Scottish fiddle music.

65 of the orchestra will depart on 28th December, after performing our now traditional ‘Hogmanay’ concert on the previous night in Edinburgh’s Usher Hall. The orchestra returns to Scotland on 13th January.

The concert programmes will include selections of traditional Scottish items, plus tone poems and slow airs written by the SFO’s founder, the late John Mason MBE. These will be mixed with some traditional Chinese tunes, in particular ‘Jasmine Flower’ and ‘Purple Bamboo’ arranged for the orchestra.

Watch this space for further details on venues and concert timings should you happen to be in the Far East!