While working on tomorrow's post I have been listening to a BBC Radio 3 broadcast from Aberdeen of Donald Runnicles conducting the BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra in Elgar's Second Symphony. This deeply impressive performance has reinforced my long held view that the quality of the music making of the BBC orchestras increases in direct relation to their distance from the Radio 3 ratings factory in London, while the full-bodied sound captured in Aberdeen's venerable Music Hall is a salutary reminder of just what an acoustic compromise the home of the world's greatest classical music festival is. Bravo to all concerned with the Aberdeen broadcast and great news that maestro Runnicles, seen above, has extended his BBCSSO contract to 2015. Let's hope that the BBC's choice to replace Jiří Bělohlávek at the London based BBC Symphony Orchestra is equally felicitous. But I am not holding my breath.
* An explanation for non-Elgarians: the score of Elgar's Second Sympony is headed by the opening line of Shelley's Invocation - "Rarely, rarely comest thou spirit of delight!"
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