The Bruce – Cathedral Opera



Libretto from John Barbour’s eponymous poem (c.1375)

Robert Bruce (tenor): Alfred MITCHELL
Reciter: Professor Alan RIACH
Narrators: Ensemble of singers from the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland
Pipe Organ: Rakhat-Bi ABDYSSAGIN (composer)
Conductors: Lucy CALLEN, Hiew TZEJIA

I am delighted to welcome you to this performance of The Bruce, based on the great medieval epic by John Barbour, composed by Rakhat-Bi Abdyssagin, and performed by his wonderful ensemble from the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland.
My forbear, the Good King Robert, while a warrior leader, was also a man of learning and culture. We know this because Barbour tells us so. He describes the King as “de bon air” and tells the reader how on the flight west aNer the baOle of Methven, the King calmed his followers by reading them extracts from the Romance of Fierabras, as they waited to be rowed to safety across Loch Lomond.
I am sure that you will enjoy tonight’s Opera, as it brings alive the great stories told about King Robert. This year marks the 750th anniversary of his birth, and the 100th anniversary of mine. A double reason to celebrate, with music, stories, and good company.
Each of the ciYes in which this opera is being performed has strong connecYons with King Robert and with my family. Wherever you are joining a performance, may it bring you joy.

Andrew Bruce, Earl of Elgin & Kincardine KT 37th Chief of the Name of Bruce