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Perform in Perth

Scottish Charity Number: SC010789
Affiliated to the British & International Federation of Festivals for Music, Dance and Speech.
Patron: Her Majesty the Queen


We look forward to welcoming back the following accompanists to our 2019 Festival:

Scottish Country Dancing:  Maureen Rutherford

Maureen Rutherford was born into a musical family in Keith, Banffshire. She started dancing at the age of 3, and commenced piano lessons at 4. Mo graduated from Aberdeen University with a Bachelor of Music (honours) in performance, specialising in piano. Whilst in Aberdeen, she frequently appeared on Grampian TV as both a pianist and dancer, and at the same time began to feature regularly in broadcasts of Scottish music by BBC Scotland. Mo then trained as a music teacher, and worked for many years in the classroom, ultimately becoming a Principal Teacher of music at a Dundee school. However, she realised that this was not working out, so in 2002, joined Allan Young's team of instrumental instructors in Perth and Kinross, and quotes that it was the best decision ever. Mo loves her daytime career as a piano instructor and accompanist, but has other "strings to the bow" as well. Mo is a former director of music for the Royal Scottish Country Dance Society, a role that has taken her to Europe, Australia, New Zealand and South Africa along with her husband, accordionist Neil Copland. She plays fiddle in Neil's band and is well respected in Scotland and abroad as a performer, teacher and adjudicator of Scottish and classical music, but in particular, has been a major influence in raising the standard of accompaniment for Scottish fiddle music to artistic levels.

General Music Accompaniments: Robert Melling

Robert moved to Scotland in 1991 with a scholarship to study at the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland.  Whilst at the RCS, Robert won all the duo and accompaniment prizes including the Principal’s overall prize.  He performed regularly both as a soloist and accompanist for singers and instrumentalists in master classes with Roger Vignoles, Geoffrey Parsons, John Streets and Martin Isepp at the Britten-Pears School.  After being awarded a commendation in the Maggie Teyte prize at Covent Garden, Robert was chosen to perform in Graham Johnson’s Songmakers’ Almanac master classes and concert at St John Smith Square, London.  Robert’s concerto performances include Shostakovich’s Second Piano Concerto, Gershwin’s Rhapsody in Blue and Jolivet’s Concertino for Trumpet, Piano and Strings.  He has performed both in Britain and on the continent, most notably in the Queen Elizabeth Hall, the Wigmore Hall, the Academy of St Martin in the Fields, Auckland Palace Durham and extensively throughout Scotland and Iceland.  Robert has worked with the Chamber Group of Scotland, the BT Scottish Ensemble, Paragon, the Royal Scottish National Orchestra, Capella Nova, Robert McFalls Chamber, and the John Currie Singers.

He was the official accompanist at the Festival International de Musique et des Arts de Latour de France for 10 years and holds the same position at "Perform in Perth".  Radio broadcasts include a recital for Radio 3 at the National Portrait Gallery and work with Radio Scotland.  In Europe, he performed in a voice and piano recital at the Louvre for Radio France and a Dutch Radio recital in s’Hertogenbosch, repeated in Edinburgh and Glasgow.  In collaboration with the Scottish based composer John Rose, Robert recorded his piano works for “Divine Arts Records” to much critical acclaim.  He recently gave a solo recital in the South of France performing music by Mozart, Debussy, Schubert and Kokkonen and a voice and piano recital in Switzerland.

Robert’s opera experience includes work with the RCS, Mananan Opera, D'oyly Carte Opera, Scottish Opera Connect, British Youth Opera, "Opera Galactica" and he conducted Carmen with Opera on a Shoestring.  He was also the musical director for their touring production “An Evening in Paris”.  Robert’s theatrical experience has seen him performing with the Citizens Theatre, Cryptic, Suspect Culture and the National Theatre of Scotland with whom, as the musical director for Wolves in the Walls, he made his US debut on 42nd Street New York.  In the same role he performed with the National Theatre of Scotland at the Edinburgh International Festival for the world premier of “Caledonia”.  Robert completed a year’s contract in 2012 as assistant musical director with the Mamma Mia International Tour, returning to Switzerland in a series of concerts in November and December in 2014.