In 2020 the Tokoyo Metropolitan Symphony Orchestra will take part in the Edinburgh International Festival.

The Cabinet Secretary for Culture, Tourism & External Affairs Fiona Hyslop announced the news during her visit to Japan.

The country is hosting the 2020 Olympic Games and this debut appearance will promote the links between Scotland and Japan in the Olympic year. It is inspired by the 2020 Tokyo Olympics and the UK in Japan 2019-20 cultural season which is a joint initiative between the British Council and the British Embassy Tokyo.

Music Director Kazushi Ono will conduct the orchestra in a programme including Saint-Saëns Cello Concerto No.1 and Berlioz’s Symphonie Fantastique. Tickets go on sale in March along with the International Festival’s full 2020 programme.

International Festival Director Fergus Linehan said: “We are thrilled to welcome Kazushi Ono and the Tokyo Metropolitan Symphony Orchestra to the International Festival for the first time next August. Founded as part of the cultural celebration at the 1965 Olympics, the Tokyo Met is an enduring symbol of the power that culture and sport share in bringing people together, and we look forward to enjoying their performances with audiences from Scotland and all over the world.”

Cabinet Secretary for Culture, Tourism & External Affairs Fiona Hyslop said: “It’s a great pleasure to announce in Japan that the Tokyo Metropolitan Symphony Orchestra will be performing in Scotland at the Edinburgh International Festival during its 55th year.
“This is my fourth visit to Japan and I am pleased to see cultural relations flourishing, including the Scottish Ensemble and Anna Meredith opening the Yokohama Festival, highlights from Glasgow’s Burrell Collection currently touring Japan and the BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra playing at the inaugural BBC Proms Japan.”

Music Director Kazushi Ono said: “At a time when there is a sporting focus on Japan (the Rugby World Cup and the run up to the Tokyo Olympics) I am delighted that TMSO will fulfil its role as Music Ambassador for Tokyo by giving concerts in Europe and making its debut at the Edinburgh International Festival. I am also proud to share this wonderful orchestra with the audiences that have supported me over many years but who have not yet heard a Japanese orchestra.”

Cabinet Secretary Fiona Hyslop with Tokyo Metropolitan Symphony Orchestra President Seiichi Kondo