Tuesday, 7 September 2010

BoS Fireworks 2010

On Sunday night A and I, rolled up the picnic blanket, put on our warm jumpers and sprinted down Lothian Rd to watch this years End of Festival Fireworks.

We were very kindly given free tickets to the event and managed to score a prime seat sitting under the flowers of the Ross Fountain at the West End of Princes Street Gardens. The Ross Fountain is an ornate iron fountain from the mid-19th century located at the west end of the gardens. Figures depicted on the fountain include mermaids and four females depicting science, the arts, poetry and industry. A final female figure stands at the apex of the fountain.After being cast in the Durenne Ironworks at Haute-Marne in the early 1860s, it was displayed at The Great Exhibition in London in 1862 where it was seen by philanthropist and gun-maker Daniel Ross, who bought it for the City of Edinburgh. Having been transported in 122 pieces, it arrived in Leith in 1869. Great deliberation followed as to the most appropriate location for the statue, with it finally being installed in Prince's Street Gardens in 1872. There was notable controversy at the time surrounding the fountain - in particular, Edward Bannerman Ramsay, Dean of the nearby St John's Episcopal Church, described it as "grossly indecent and disgusting".

The Bank of Scotland Fireworks Concert is the grand finale to the Edinburgh International Festival and a fitting climax to three weeks of cultural hedonism that is "The Edinburgh Festival".

The 2010 music programme focused on works by pioneering Hollywood film composers of the 1940s, 50s and 60s, three of whom fled to the US from Nazi Europe, poetically completing the migration strand of the International Festival's Journey of Discovery theme. The Scottish Chamber Orchestra in fine fettle played a sequence of pieces that captured mood rather than dynamic drama, with extracts from soundtracks by Erich Wolfgang Korngold for Kings Row, Leonard Bernstein for On the Waterfront and Bernard Hermann for Alfred Hitchcock's Marnie.

These were unusually romantic, tinged with disconcerting, sinister often mysterious moments. With the castle playing its usual role as key protagonist, Keith Webb of Pyrovision, working closely with conductor Clark Rundell, ensured that the musical narrative provided by the Scottish Chamber Orchestra was visually expressed to stunning effect.

The piece de resistance complete with the long awaited shimmering silver waterfall came with Franz Waxman's work for Taras Bulba, a grand adventure yarn that culminates in an army of 16th century Cossacks on horseback brilliantly depicted in exploding stars of all colours with rockets inside them releasing multiplying shimmering cascades. Lying on the grass with all that happening overhead as if the universe was being reborn is mind-blowing.


  1. Beautiful and sparkly fireworks. What fantastic end to a great festival this year!

  2. They were really great this year but what will happen now with the end of the BoS sponsorship?


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