Conductor, Neil Mantle, was presented with the Elgar Medal, the Society’s highest award, at a concert given in St Cuthbert’s Church, Edinburgh as part of the 2023 Festival Fringe. The concert given by the Scottish Sinfonia, was an all Elgar programme, conducted by Neil.
In presenting the award Chairman Stuart Freed spoke of Neil’s continued support of Elgar’s music in Scotland, citing the extensive catalogue of works he has performed with the orchestra over many years. Stuart went on to say that in addition, Neil has been a great supporter of the Society’s Scottish branch, having been its patron since its inception and of the Society, serving for two years as its Chairman.
Replying, Neil spoke of his introduction to Elgar and how he was captivated by Ken Russell’s Monitor film and how he founded the Scottish Sinfonia as a result, copying out orchestral parts by hand in the early days and performing to very small audiences.
The concert was followed by a small reception, at which branch Chairman, Ian Lawson, presented Neil with an engraved Quaich Bowl in recognition of his service to the Scottish branch.