One man, a piano, and his favourite string quartet.

Rhona Maxwell

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Small City are huge supporters of ‘the Arts’ (that’s music, theatre and activities such as painting, music, literature, and dance). In fact so much so that last year we explored the very notion of their importance, and why both access and exposure to them matter so much when we met with Gwilym Gibbons, Chief Executive of Horsecross Arts  (read it here>).

Perth Concert Hall and the re-developed Perth Theatre due to open later this year have a reputation for bringing all that that is great about the arts to Scotland’s newest city; from National Orchestras to an evening with Brendan Cole or the annual Southern Fried Festival extravaganza of American roots music.

Doric String QuartetNext weekend from 17th-19th Feb sees a thrilling musical celebration of piano and string quartet; a combination which has inspired some of the greatest composers throughout the centuries. Perth born Alasdair Beatson, now one of Scotland’s foremost musicians, returns to his home town to present three very special concerts showcasing the partnership which he has developed with the Doric String Quartet.

Both the Friday and Sunday concerts take part in Perth Concert Hall, while the Saturday performance by The Doric String Quartet takes place in St John’s Kirk which Alasdair is looking forward to enjoying from the audience, a rare chance to relax and enjoy their compelling music and stage presence without joining in!

Looking forward to the weekend, Alasdair Beatson, who works prolifically as a soloist and chamber musician, had this to say;

Alastair Beatson profile“Our weekend residency at Perth Concert Hall will showcase many of the works we most love playing together, and some of the richest in the piano quintet repertoire.  Brahms and Elgar are glorious stalwarts, deeply expressive and noble.

Alongside these, we've programmed the less familiar - the subtle, exquisite lyricism of Fauré, and a short glimpse of the bold, architectural, and colourful music of Thomas Adès. 

The internationally acclaimed Doric String Quartet are also great friends of mine - our musical collaboration has been pretty constant since we first met as students, and our growth as musical artists since has in many ways been parallel.

It is a privilege to bring our partnership to my home town, and to offer such a breadth of music over the weekend - we hope and encourage music lovers to join us over any and all three concerts which promise the full drama, beauty and emotion of the piano quintet.”

Details for Alastair Beatson and The Doric String Quartet concert series;

Friday 17th Feb Elgar Piano Quintet

Fauré Piano Quintet No 1 in D minor

Adès Piano Quintet

Elgar Piano Quintet in A minor

Three masterworks for the combination of piano and string quartet. Elgar's quintet is regarded as one of his very finest works. Fauré's works bubbles with gallic charm and Thomas Adès's quintet is worthy of one of the world's leading composers. A brilliant pianist himself, Adès exploits the combination of piano and strings to the utmost.

Saturday 18th Feb Doric String Quartet (St John’s Kirk)

Haydn String Quartet Op 64 No 3 in B flat

Mendelssohn String Quartet Op 80 in F minor

Beethoven String Quartet Op 59 No 2 in E minor 'Razumovsky'

Three great string quartets! Beethoven's second 'Razumovsly' quartet offers an epic musical journey. Mendelssohn's mature F minor quartet is a rarely performed gem. Haydn's string quartets contain limitless musical invention and variety and Opus 64 No 3 is no exception.

Sunday 19th Feb Brahms Piano Quintet

Mendelssohn Quartet Op 12 in E flat

Schumann Kinderszenen

Brahms Piano Quintet in F minor

Alasdair Beatson has a particular love for the music of Schumann and his performances of his music are suffused with warmth. The programme opens with another beautiful quartet and ends with one of the greatest of all chamber works. Brahms's F minor quintet is symphonic in scale, offering a feast of dark driving energy and passion.


Various ticket prices are available, discounts available for booking all 3 concerts, and kids go FREE to these shows (but must be booked).

For details and to book visit the Horsecross website>

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