About Us

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Formed in 2007, the Auricle Ensemble burst into musical life in Scotland with an array of intriguing programmes, virtuoso playing and an approachable and inclusive style to performance. Auricle's diverse repertoire attracts some of Scotland's finest professional players who have performed works by Schoenberg, Copland, Britten, Shostakovich, Daugherty, Ives, Walton, Bernstein, Stravinsky, Milhaud, Weill, Strauss, Dukas, Gershwin, Wagner and Prokofiev. Auricle’s first concert saw some of Scotland’s top jazz artists performing alongside classical musicians to a sell-out audience. The ensemble has since received many favourable reviews and invitations to perform around the UK.

The group's name, Auricle, refers to both a part of the ear, and a chamber of the heart.

Auricle Timeline Highlights

2007 saw Auricle's first concert of jazz classics, including Shostakovich, Milhaud, Bernstein, Miles Davis, Gershwin and Stravinsky. Other projects included Chamber Ensemble Classics (Schoenberg Chamber Symphony, Wagner Siegfried Idyll and Ives Unanswered Question)

2008 saw Auricle's first performance of Walton's Facade, plus its American Icons project, including West Side Story and Rhapsody in Blue alongside Daugherty and Ives at the Edinburgh Festival.An project of small orchestral works of Copland was also performed, including Appalachian Spring, Music for Theatre and the Clarinet Concerto.

2009 saw Auricle tour Scotland with Schoenberg's Pierrot Lunaire, its Reduced Classics project and the first performance of its unique 'Evening at the Cabaret'

2010 saw the start of Auricle's residency at St. Bride's, Glasgow, and the beginning of its acclaimed two year 'Mini-Mahler' project performing the reduced versions of Mahler's works that were arranged for Arnold Schoenberg's Private Music Society ('Verein') in Vienna. Other projects included a concert version of Kurt Weill's 'Threepenny Opera', Mozart Requiem and Peter Maxwell Davies' Music Theatre Works.

2011 saw the Scottish premieres of Wynton Marsalis' A Fiddler's Tale and incidental music by Thomas Wilson, and another chance to hear Auricle's Facade, with Crawford Logan and Joanna Tope.

2012 saw the final concerts in our Mini-Mahler seasons and a new beginning with DWAM artist management taking on the ensemble

2013 saw Auricle perform to film in a number of projects, firstly performing Copland's score to 'The City', a European premiere, at the Glasgow Film Festival. A major new commission was premiered by Steve Forman at City Halls, Glasgow as part of the same project with funding from the PRS for Music Foundation.

2014 saw further Façade's, Schoenberg's Verklarte Nacht and other works for piano trio and a celebration of Adolphe Sax' 200th birthday.

2015 saw Auricle's first UK tour, including its debut at the University of Leeds International Concert Series

Auricle Education

Members of the Auricle Ensemble education team have worked in and helped devise educational projects for the Scottish Chamber Orchestra, Scottish Opera and the RSAMD Youthworks and Outreach programmes. We are delighted to offer workshops to all ages from 1 to 100 years old encompassing mainstream schools, special needs schools, community groups and strongly believe that music education does not finish at school. Our workshops may be interactive, involve creative music-making, engage a school orchestra in our side-by-side scheme, or may simply be a mini-concert in form, but all workshops cover several curriculum concepts outlined in not just the existing 5-14 curriculum, but also in the emerging Curriculum for Excellence. We also offer a Have-A-Go instrument stall at selected concerts with our players on hand to supervise and help people of all ages get their first note and inspire them to take up a musical instrument.

Though flexible in number to cope with the demands of its diverse repertoire, the group is formed around a core of eight regular players under Musical Director Chris Swaffer, and includes some of the finest and most experienced musicians in Scotland. The ensemble is available for hire for a wide range of projects. We can tailor concerts and music to suit your requirements; please see our booking page for more information. The ensemble is managed exclusively by DWAM artist management.

"Dazzling and audacious playing from this fearless ensemble" (Glasgow West End Festival, 2008)

"There's something in their programming which suggests a group on the move" (Michael Tumelty, The Herald, 2010)

"a delicate, technically impeccable and sensitive reading" (The Herald - Four star review of Schoenberg's Pierrot Lunaire, October 2009)

The group's name, Auricle, refers to both a part of the ear, and a chamber of the heart.

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