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For three weeks in August every year, Edinburgh showcases the very best in international opera, music, theatre and dance as part of the Edinburgh International Festival. Here are some of our favourite performances of 2012
Opera North’s production of Janáček’s The Makropulos Case featured at the Edinburgh Festival Theatre
Scottish violinist Nicola Benedetti performed at the Edinburgh International Festival with the London Symphony Orchestra at Usher Hall
The period-instrument Ricercar Consort performed two concerts of early English music at Greyfriars Kirk
Internationally renowned British lyric tenor Toby Spence and pianist Julian Milford prepare for their performance at The Queen’s Hall
Concerto Caledonia, one of Scotland’s premier early-music ensembles perform at Greyfriars Kirk as part of the Edinburgh International Festival
Les Arts Florissants performed David et Jonathas at the Festival Theatre, Edinburgh. This 1688 opera by Marc-Antoine Charpentier contains incredibly poignant music, used brilliantly to convey the opera’s themes of love, loyalty and valour
Conductor Valery Gergiev, the Edinburgh International Festival’s Honorary President has brought the London Symphony Orchestra to the festival for a four-concert residency at Usher Hall
Clemency is a new work for Scottish Opera written by James MacMillan performed at the King’s Theatre. The opera puts a contemporary twist to a Biblical tale, here Janis Kelly plays Sarah in the new work.
Two of the world’s greatest guitarists, John Williams and John Etheridge collaborate for a fantastic performance at The Queen's Hall
Led by Principal conductor Esa-Pekka Salonen the Philharmonia Orchestra perform one of Bruckner’s most popular works, the Fourth Symphony at Usher Hall
The CBSO perform as part of the Edinburgh International Festival at the Usher Hall
The opening concert presented one of the grandest choral pieces ever written: Delius’s A Mass of Life performed by the Royal Scottish National Opera conducted by Sir Andrew Davis at Usher Hall
Conductor Franz Welser-Möst and the Cleveland Orchestra performed Smetana's Má Vlast and Lutoslawski Concerto for Orchestra at Usher Hall
The Calder Quartet from Los Angeles performed their incisive interpretations of Classical repertoire at The Queen's Hall. Alongside the short piece ‘... toward sunrise and the prime of light...’ by young US composer Andrew Norman they performed Mozart's String Quartet in C K465 ‘Dissonance’, British Composer Thomas Adès's Arcadian and Mendelssohn’s last major work, String Quartet in F minor Op 80
Trio Zimmermann was formed in 2007 by violinist Frank Peter Zimmermann, violist Antoine Tamestit and cellist Christian Poltéra. They performed Schubert's String Trio in B flat D471, Schoenberg's String Trio and Mozart's Divertimento in E flat at The Queens' Hall.
Conducted by Philippe Herreweghe, the period-instrument Orchestre des Champs-Élysées returned to Edinburgh International Festival to perform Brahms's Gesang der Parzen and Bruckner's Te Deum Symphony No 9 at Usher Hall
Performed by the Musicians of the Imperial Household Agency, Tokyo. Gagaku is the world’s oldest living orchestral tradition. This music dates back to 5th century Japan and is performed by a powerful ensemble of wind instruments, plucked strings and deeply resonant percussion. The slow-moving melodies and exquisite harmonies suggest a serene world of ancient ritual and contemplation.
One of the foremost mugham singers in Azerbaijan, Alim Qasimov performed at The Hub with his ensemble. They present the complex art of Azerbaijani mugham, illustrating a thousand years of musical tradition with vocal and instrumental performances. Described as one of the world’s greatest vocalists Alim Qasimov, here he shares the stage with his daughter Fargana.
Under the guidance of conductor Gianandrea Noseda, the exceptional young players of the European Union Youth Orchestra performed Richard Causton Twenty-Seven Heavens a New Music 20x12 UK premiere, Debussy's Nocturnes and the incredible Piano Concerto by Busoni.
Praised for his astonishing technical command and his overwhelming energy, young Russian pianist Daniil Trifonov performed Scriabin's Piano Sonata No 3, Medtner's Three Fairy Tales, Stravinsky's Three Dances from The Firebird, Debussy's Images, Book 1 and Chopin Etudes Op 25 at The Queen's Hall