Scotsman critic’s choice: Four must-see shows this week

Donald Runnicles, Chief Conductor of the BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra. Picture: BBC

Donald Runnicles, Chief Conductor of the BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra. Picture: BBC

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The Scotsman’s arts critics round up their must-see theatre, art and concerts for the next week

CLASSICAL: Gurrelieder

Rock band Fall Out Boy. Picture: Getty Images

Rock band Fall Out Boy. Picture: Getty Images

This is the final appearance of Donald Runnicles, above, with the BBC SSO, as chief conductor, and he’s chosen to go out in a manner true to his blockbuster style. The work is a lush and epic late-Romantic masterpiece, Schoenberg’s monumental Gurrelieder, which brings together the BBC SSO, Edinburgh Festival Chorus and soloists including Scots Karen Cargill and Iain Paterson. Ken Walton

• Usher Hall, Edinburgh, 28 August, 0131-473 2000, www.eif.co.uk

ART: Jenny Matthews

The work of Jenny Matthews at the Union Gallery shows, just as Elizabeth Blackadder’s does, that painting flowers need not be merely botany; that in the right hands inspiration and poetry are completely compatible with precise observation and understanding of the distinctive characters of flowers and plants. Duncan Macmillan

Union Gallery, Edinburgh, until 12 September, www.uniongallery.co.uk

THEATRE: The Cheviot, The Stag and the Black, Black Oil

When Jo Douglas’s fine, large-scale Dundee revival of John McGrath’s iconic 7:84 Scotland ceilidh-play first appeared last year, there were complaints that the production – unlike the legendary 1970s version – was not scheduled to tour. Now, though, McGrath’s great radical cabaret about land ownership and land use in Scotland is set to visit most of Scotland’s major theatres this autumn; see it, if only for the pleasure of debating what has changed since the 1970s, and what, amazingly, has remained exactly the same. Joyce McMillan

Dundee Rep, 31 August until 10 September; Royal Lyceum, Edinburgh 14-24 September; and on tour to Aberdeen, Inverness and Glasgow, until 22 October, www.dundeerep.co.uk

POP: Biffy Clyro/Fall Out Boy

Taps aff for the last big weekend of the summer, as Bellahouston Park braces itself for the bludgeoning barrage of shirtless power trio Biffy Clyro, the biggest noise in Scottish rock by some way. Frontman Simon Neil has described their latest chart-topping album Ellipsis as “pint-in-the-face rock” – let’s hope no one takes him at his word. Muscular support comes from US emo rock veterans Fall Out Boy, above, who could give Biffy a run for their money in the oblique song titles stakes and can whip up a moshpit with the best of them, while Wolf Alice and Cage the Elephant complete the mini-festival bill. Fiona Shepherd

• Bellahouston Park, Glasgow, tonight, 0844 844 0444

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