Nicholas McGegan’s exuberance thrilled his audience at a concert with the BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra at City Halls last week. His knowledge of the repertoire and his sheer energy was admired by those who attended:
“I have never known conductor Nicholas McGegan turn out a dull, lifeless or routine performance with an orchestra. It’s simply not in his nature. He’s a dynamo, a true animator, an energiser and an ignition point from which music can take off and take wing. [...] McGegan and his orchestra, absolutely flying and in terrific form, roared through Leclair’s Scylla et Glaucus and a fabulous account of Haydn’s Military Symphony, with nice musical control of the seismic percussiveness that can be too-easily overwhelming.”
Michael Tumelty, Herald Scotland ****
McGegan and the orchestra were praised for their fine partnership as their response to each other proved particularly successful:
“It required a change in game plan for an orchestra more used to the opulence of later music, evident in a scaled-down string section that embraced the required style – clean, gutsy playing from front desk to back that gave buoyancy and precision, in particular to Haydn’s Symphony No 100 (the Military), which oozed wit, theatre and charisma. [...] Thrusting exuberance ignited the percussive eccentricities of the Haydn symphony, and brought thrills and spills to Jean-Marie Leclair’s music from Scylla et Glaucus, tightly packaged in McGegan’s own concert arrangement.”
Ken Walton, The Scotsman
The concert was recorded for Broadcast on BBC Radio 3.
Nicholas McGegan will be returning to Britain in May this year to conduct the City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra in a programme celebrating Shakespeare’s influence on music. This will have followed a visit Dublin to direct Bach’s St John Passion with the RTÉ National Symphony Orchestra on Good Friday.