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Shetland Art’s 2016/17 Classical Season begins on the 15th September with an intimate concert with Shetland born pianist and composer Neil Georgeson.

Returning to Shetland for his first concert in over 4 years, for his first concert Neil has chosen a selection of pieces exploring ideas of home and islands, including Beethoven'sTempest Sonata, inspired by the Shakespeare play set on a remote island, and Debussy's L'isle joyeuse, inspired by the Greek island of Cythera, as well as works concerned with homeland, exile and homesickness by Bach, Schubert, Ablinger, Grieg and Peter Maxwell Davies.

This will be the first of three concerts by Neil in this season. In December he will return with Soprano Anna Dennis to perform a varied and exciting programme of French, Russian, German and English song, including Strauss' audacious Ophelialieder, settings of Ophelia's “mad speeches” from Shakespeare's Hamlet, Sorabji's decadent setting of Verlaine's Fetes Galantes, Thomas Adès' jazz-influenced Life Story and Mussorgsky's hilarious and charming Nursery Songs, as well as works by Stravinsky and Wolf. This will be followed up by a final performance of Pictures at an Exhibition in February next year. These concerts will then be followed by a series of ensemble performances by Hebrides Ensemble, Mr McFall’s Chamber and Dunedin Consort.

The full season is on sale now through Shetland Box Office, and a package deal of 3 piano concerts or 3 ensemble concerts is also available in person at Mareel and Isleburgh, over the phone on 01595 745555 or online at www.shetlandboxoffice.org

Neil Georgeson is a pianist, writer, composer and director from the Shetland Islands, now based in London. He appears regularly and widely as a solo pianist and chamber musician, and has performed as a soloist all over the world; and at UK venues such as King's Place, London, the Queen Elizabeth Hall, the Barbican, St David's Hall in Cardiff, the Colston Hall in Bristol and the Queen's Hall in Edinburgh, as well as more unconventional venues like the Glastonbury Festival and the Village Underground, and at London contemporary music nights Kammerklang and Nonclassical. He has appeared at festivals such as 'Soundings' at the Austrian Cultural Forum, the York Late Music Festival, Sounds New in England and France, and the Johnsmas Foy in Shetland, for which he was commissioned as a composer. He has worked with a great many illustrious composers on their music such as Sir Peter Maxwell Davies, Martin Bresnick, Diana Burrell, Bent Sørensen and Jonathan Harvey.  Neil is Artistic Director and pianist for new-music group the Ossian Ensemble, a member of the renowned original six-piano group Piano Circus, and has performed with the Kammerklang Ensemble, the Arcomis Ensemble, the Continuum Ensemble, the Riot Ensemble and the London Contemporary Orchestra.  Neil studied on scholarship at the Royal Academy of Music.

Described by the Times as a "delectable soprano and a serene, ever-sentient presence", Anna Dennis studied at the Royal Academy of Music with Noelle Barker. Notable concert performances have included Britten's War Requiem at the Berlin Philharmonie, a programme of Russian operatic arias with Philharmonia Baroque in San Francisco, Thomas Adès' Life Story accompanied by the composer at the Lincoln Centre's White Light Festival in New York, Orff's Carmina Burana and Pergolesi’s Stabat Mater with the Orquestra Gulbenkian in Lisbon, Bach's Christmas Oratorio with the Australian Chamber Orchestra in Sydney Opera House and with Concerto Copenhagen in Amsterdam, and Haydn'sSchöpfung with Orchestra Ensemble Kanazawa in Japan. Her BBC Proms appearances include performances with the City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra, the BBC Symphony Orchestra, the Britten Sinfonia and the Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment.

Performances in the 2016/17 season include major roles in all three Monteverdi operas in John Eliot Gardiner's Monteverdi 450 anniversary international tour of the trilogy, Schoenberg's 2nd String Quartet at the Auditorio de Tenerife, Bach’s Christmas Oratorio with the Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment under Masaaki Suzuki, and Queen of the Night/The Magic Flute in performances with Clarion Music Society in New York.

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