Announcing our new Chief Executive!

Gavin Reid to succeed Roy McEwan at the helm of the Scottish Chamber Orchestra

Gavin Reid - new CEO from August 2016

We are delighted to announce the appointment of Gavin Reid as our new Chief Executive from 29 August 2016. Roy McEwan announced his intention to retire last October after a remarkable 23 years as Chief Executive of the SCO.

The Orchestra has an impressive reputation of nurturing long-term creative relationships with internationally renowned artists, composers, and recording companies; sustaining the development of Creative Learning in Scotland’s communities, and growing Scotland’s international profile as a cultural ambassador. Everybody at the SCO enthusiastically welcomes Gavin Reid to follow through and build on these opportunities, as well as leading on the funding challenges that all arts organisations currently face.

Born and educated in Edinburgh, Gavin Reid is currently Director of the BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra where his significant achievements include the appointment of a world-class team of conductors currently led by Chief Conductor Donald Runnicles; the creation of a wide-ranging and multi-discipline partnership with the Royal Conservatoire Scotland (RCS); and the consolidation of the BBC SSO in its permanent new home in City Halls, Glasgow. He has also been responsible for a wide range of commercial activities with recording partners and music festivals as well as audience development through national and international touring. Gavin Reid is a Governor of the RCS with considerable knowledge of the education sector, having also been heavily involved in orchestral education and outreach programmes throughout his career.

Speaking about his appointment, Gavin Reid says, “I am enormously thrilled to take up this post with the SCO after 10 wonderful years at the BBC SSO. I am passionate about music and the arts and the extraordinary opportunities that they can offer to everyone. I am particularly excited by the crucial and influential role that the SCO plays within Scotland and I look forward to working closely with players, staff, artists and all of the SCO’s supporters to build on the fantastic achievements of recent years, as led by Roy McEwan.”

Roy McEwan will hand over to Gavin Reid during the summer before he fully retires at the end of August. On Gavin’s appointment, Roy comments, “I am delighted to be collaborating with Gavin over the summer to ensure a smooth handover from one Chief Executive to the next. I’ve no doubt that he will bring great experience, flair and devotion to the next stage of the SCO’s story. He is joining a wonderful orchestra full of talented and committed musicians and staff and I wish him well in taking them forward.”

Colin Buchan, Chairman of the SCO: “On behalf of the entire Orchestra I am delighted to welcome Gavin Reid. I am confident he shares our commitment to artistic excellence and he has already proved that he can lead confidently, influentially and effectively. We all wish Roy much happiness in his retirement and we can’t thank him enough for the creative journey on which he has taken the Orchestra.”

Roy McEwan’s final Season Concerts as Chief Executive of the Scottish Chamber Orchestra are performances of Beethoven’s ‘Eroica’ Symphony and Sibelius’ Violin Concerto conducted by Principal Guest Conductor Emmanuel Krivine in Perth, Edinburgh and Glasgow from 11 – 13 May 2016.

Gavin Reid will remain in post at the BBC SSO until Donald Runnicles performs his final concert as Principal Conductor – Schoenberg’s Gurrelieder, on Sunday 28 August at the Edinburgh International Festival. The Festival ends with the Virgin Money Fireworks Concert performed by the Scottish Chamber Orchestra on Monday 29 August, which now also symbolises the ‘changing of the guard’.

Gavin Reid was born and brought up in Edinburgh. After two years at Napier College, he went on to study the trumpet at the Royal Northern College of Music and Guildhall School of Music and Drama, during which time he was a member of the European Community Youth Orchestra. He pursued a successful and varied playing and teaching career based in the North West of England. Gavin was Principal Trumpet with Manchester Camerata from 1989-2001 and was also responsible for developing their extensive education and outreach programme between 1996 and 2001.

Gavin stopped playing the trumpet in 2001 to concentrate on management and in 2002 was appointed General Manager of Manchester Camerata. He was one of the first Fellows on the Clore Leadership Programme and in 2006 became Director of the BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra.

Roy McEwan was born in Dumfries and studied at the London School of Economics. He was House Manager at the St George’s Theatre in London and subsequently Manager of the Whitechapel Art Gallery. In 1979, he was appointed Administrator of the MacRobert Arts Centre at the University of Stirling and, from 1982 to 1991, was the Centre’s Director. He became Director of Arts Development for North West Arts Board, Manchester in 1991 and, in 1993, was appointed Chief Executive of the Scottish Chamber Orchestra.

Chairman of the Federation of Scottish Theatres from 1988 to 1991, he also served on the Scottish Arts Council Drama Committee in 1991 and from 1993-99 on the Combined Arts Committee. From 2003 to 2007 he was a Council member of the Scottish Arts Council.

From 1993 to 1998 he was also a member of the Board of the Scottish Music Information Centre, a member of the Board of the Association of British Orchestras from 1993 to 2003 and from 2014 to the present, and was Chairman of the ABO’s Scottish forum until 2007. From 2004 to 2010 he was Chairman of Glasgow Grows Audiences (now Culture Republic). He was also a Trustee of the Scottish Musicians’ Benevolent Fund from 2000 to 2002. He is currently a board member at the Traverse Theatre. He is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts and a member of the Royal Philharmonic Society and of the Royal Society of Great Britain.

Roy McEwan was awarded an OBE in The Queen’s Birthday Honours List 2011 for services to music.

Link to Press Release which announced Roy McEwan’s retirement