In celebration of a remarkable 20 year partnership, the BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra is delighted to announce that Ilan Volkov’s position as Principal Guest Conductor will be extended for a further three years, until the end of the 2020/21 season.

Volkov first worked with the BBC SSO 20 years ago. Appointed Principal Conductor of the BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra in 2003, Volkov subsequently became Principal Guest Conductor in 2009. Through his imaginative and creative programming, he has worked with the BBC SSO to champion works by new and underserved composers alongside world-class performances of core repertoire.

Ilan Volkov said: “I am delighted to have prolonged my relationship with the BBC SSO for a further term. This orchestra is my second family (it’s our 20th anniversary!) and I am so proud of the rich variety of music-making we achieve together. I feel the quality and versatility of this orchestra in every rehearsal and concert. Thank you BBC SSO – it’s really GREAT working with you!”

As a result of the unique relationship between Volkov and the BBC SSO, together they launched Tectonics Glasgow in 2013. Tectonics features vibrant and diverse programming of contemporary classical music combined with improvisation, electronics and rock. Since 2013, Tectonics Glasgow has become a flagship concert series in the BBC SSO’s concert season.

Dominic Parker, Director, BBC SSO, said: “Ilan Volkov continues to bring a unique mix of music-making to the BBC SSO, and his long-standing relationship with the BBC SSO is a mark of the high esteem in which he is held. With equal skill, he can bring to life the core classical repertoire alongside the experimental and contemporary music for which he is internationally renowned. The annual Tectonics festival, which Ilan masterminds, showcases his fascination and expertise in this area, which in itself reflects the diversity of repertoire that the BBC SSO expertly handles.”

In the current BBC SSO season, Volkov set out to redefine the listener’s ideas about how an orchestra can sound in October’s concert, which paired Frank Zappa and Julian Anderson with Charles Ives. Most recently with the BBC SSO, Volkov presented music by one of America’s leading female composers, Gloria Coates, as part of the BBC SSO’s free contemporary music series ‘Hear and Now’. Together, Volkov and the BBC SSO performed three of Coates’s symphonies, which served as both a musical portrait of an outstanding artist, and, for some, an introduction to a unique musical voice. In February 2019, Volkov promises to bring a revelatory insight to bear on Bruckner’s monumental Seventh Symphony.


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