Scottish Chamber Orchestra on tour in Argyll and Bute

Scottish Chamer Orchestra 2015

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This July, the Scottish Chamber Orchestra (SCO) will tour throughout Argyll and Bute, returning first to Oban where the SCO Strings gave an exhilarating concert last summer.

The orchestra also makes a long-awaited return to Dunoon, and will perform in Campbeltown and Bowmore, Islay, for the first time in more than 20 years.

Joining them on the road is New Zealand-born conductor Holly Mathieson.

Conductor Holly Mathieson. Photograph: Cathy Pyle.

Mathieson takes the baton for an exquisite programme, including Mendelssohn’s much-loved and technically challenging Violin Concerto.

Soloist Benjamin Marquise Gilmore is certain to embrace this major piece of romantic music with panache. The programme opens with a rarity: Saint-Saëns’ Orchestral Suite, and to close the night, Beethoven’s monumental Symphony No 2: a superb evening of music not to be missed!

Talking about the orchestra’s summer tours, SCO sub-principal bass, Adrian Bornet said: ‘This is one of the happiest moments of music making in our yearly calendar as we explore a beautiful country and revisit familiar places and audiences.

‘As a national company the SCO takes pleasure and pride in visiting the length, breadth and width of Scotland, not only performing but receiving the friendship and enthusiasm of our audiences in places small and large.’

The SCO is passionate about sharing the experience of exceptional live orchestral music-making and inspiring new generations of classical music lovers. The summer tour supports this mission by making concerts as accessible as possible to younger audiences by offering free tickets to under-18s and £6 tickets for under-26s, students and the unemployed.

The orchestra will be at the Corran Halls in Oban on Wednesday July 24; Victoria Halls, Campbeltown on Thursday July 25; and Islay High School, Bowmore on Friday July 26. All concerts start at 7.30pm.

Tickets are on sale now at the Corran Halls, Oban; Aqualibrium reception, Campbeltown, and The Celtic House, Bowmore, or by visiting sco.org.uk