Fireworks Concert: What you need to know

Virgin Money Fireworks Concert
Virgin Money Fireworks Concert
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ALL eyes in the Capital will be raised skywards tonight at 9pm as the Virgin Money Fireworks Concert lights up the night sky, bringing the 70th Anniversary International Festival to a spectacular close.

This year’s grand finale boasts an extended programme as Karen Matheson of Celtic super-group Capercaillie joins the world-renowned Scottish Chamber Orchestra for an evening of music and fireworks.

During the first part of the evening, Matheson will perform new versions of her songs specially arranged for the occasion by founding member of Capercaillie Donald Shaw.

Shaw is a critically-acclaimed musician, producer and composer, and has performed with artists such as James Taylor, Mark Knopfler and Rosanne Cash.

Now in its 36th year, the concert is brimming over with Scottish flavour, as foot-tapping pieces by renowned Scottish composers Sir James MacMillan and Sir Peter Maxwell Davies are performed to an outstanding display by fireworks specialists Pyrovision.

The concert will conclude with the special appearance of a lone piper.

More than 400,000 fireworks, choreographed to the live orchestral score will light up the sky during the performance.


The Scottish Chamber Orchestra, conducted by Clark Rundell, and featuring vocalist Karen Matheson and bagpiper Robert Jordan will lead the two-part concert.

Part One opens with Arnold’s Scottish Dances: No 1 Pesante, No 2 Vivace, No 3 Allegretto, No 4 Con brio. Followed by Donald Shaw’s At the Heart of It All, then

Karen Matheson sings the traditional song Cha Teid Mor, arranged by Shaw, and Ae Fond Kiss, arranged by Kevin McCrae.

Part Two begins with MacMillan’s Stomp (with Fate and Elvira) followed by Tchaikovsky’s Sleeping Beauty Suite, op 66a; Introduction - The Lilac Fairy,

Pas d’action: Rose Adagio, Pas de caractère: Puss In Boots, Panorama (andantino),

Valse. Maxwell Davies’ An Orkney Wedding, with Sunrise closes the concert.


Head to Arthur’s Seat or Salisbury Crags for the highest views in the city, but bring a torch and be careful, it’s a big climb. Bruntsfield Links, meanwhile, is another option, in particular from the higher ground in front of Warrender Park Terrace.

Then there’s the old favourite, the Calton Hill, just a short, if steep, walk up to the top from Waterloo Place. Finally, Inverleith Park provides a perfectly framed ‘widescreen’ view of The Castle, along with an official family viewing area with extra entertainment.

Virgin Money Fireworks Concert, Princes St Gardens, Monday, 9pm, £15-£32.