Arts

ASO Guest Conductor Donald Runnicles Highlights The Affinity Between Scotland And France

ASO guest conductor Donald Runnicles will be conducting this weekend's program, "Fabulous France."
ASO guest conductor Donald Runnicles will be conducting this weekend's program, "Fabulous France."
Credit Simon Pauly

Scotland has long and proud ties to France. The beloved Mary, Queen of Scots was born and raised in France.

Donald Runnicles is continuing to highlight the affinity with this weekend’s Atlanta Symphony concert. He will conduct the orchestra in a program of French works called, “Fabulous France.”   The program opens with 20th-century composer Darius Milhaud’s whimsical ballet Le boeuf sur le toit and includes Canteloube: Songs of Auvergne, folk songs written in Occitan, a melodious language spoken by a French minority in the Auvergne region.

British soprano Kim-Lillian Strebel solos. Also on the program: La Mer, Debussy’s evocative sea picture. The third movement of that work is called “Dialogue Of The Wind And The Sea,” which personifies an angry ocean crashing about, while the wind responds in a calm and effervescent voice. Runnicles sat down with City Lights’ host Lois Reitzes to talk about the program.

The concert will be conducted tomorrow evening by Runnicles at 8 p.m. at the Atlanta Symphony Hall.