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  • 20 November 2014

    St Andrew’s Weekend at the Storytelling Centre

     

    St Andrew’s Weekend at the Storytelling Centre 
    Showcase & celebrate Scotland’s traditional arts and the characters that have enriched the traditional scene.  
    Following on from fantastic activities last year, a special weekend of events at the Scottish Storytelling Centre will mark Scotland’s national day. 
    Events marking St Andrew’s Day at the Centre are part of the Year of Homecoming and are supported through Scotland’s Winter Festivals – a programme of events funded by the Scottish Government and managed by EventScotland. 
    The events will celebrate Scotland’s unique heritage and distinctive culture through the Centre’s stellar line-up of storytelling, song, music, dance and food for all the family, ensuring residents and visitors to the Capital alike can enjoy genuine, top quality Scottish entertainment at an affordable price to fully enjoy St Andrew’s Day Weekend.
    Fiona Hyslop, Cabinet Secretary for Culture and External Affairs, said: 
    ‘St Andrew’s Day marks the start of Scotland’s Winter Festivals and is the perfect opportunity to celebrate all that is great about Scotland – including our thriving contemporary culture, our rich heritage and our world-renowned warm and friendly welcome. 
    ‘That’s why, once again, we are proudly encouraging Scots and Scots at heart from around the world to join us in celebrating our national day at one of hundreds of brilliant events and attractions taking place across Scotland– including at the Scottish Storytelling Centre in Edinburgh, where an exciting and imaginative line-up of activities is planned.’
    Scots and Scots-at-heart can be swept away on An Orkney Tapestry on Friday 28 November at 7.30pm as storyteller David Campbell and folk music duo The Wrigley Sisters celebrate poet George Mackay Brown, whose transcendent poetic visions transformed the familiar Orkney scene into something timeless and universal.  
    On Saturday 29 November, Mrs Mash the Storytelling Cook returns after a sell-out last year to showcase Scotland’s fantastic food. Showcasing Scotland’s natural larder with its wealth of local produce tales are served up along with the Queen’s own recipe for ‘Balmoral Drop Scones’. And while the kids are cooking up a treat, the Centre comes alive with two interactive workshops, as Rachel Newton and Grace Banks unwrap the mutual influence between tale and tune in Song and Story: Between the Worlds, while a host of traditional dancers and musicians come together for a demonstration day in the Traditions of Dance – A Scottish Story.
    Showcasing quadrilles, hornpipes, flings and introductory sessions to step dance for youngsters, this will be an action-packed day to become immersed in the magic of movement as Traditional Dance Forum of Scotland Coordinator, Michelle Kelly explains: 
    ‘With so many dance teachers coming from across Scotland this is going to be a lively day and a great opportunity to explore Scotland's dance traditions. 
    ‘We're looking forward to welcoming adults and young beginners as well as more experienced dancers. This really is a day for everyone to get involved.’
    Then we round off Saturday with an evening of storytelling special memories as Jess Smith celebrates the life, music and influence of Belle Stewart B.E.M in Jess Remembers Belle at 7.30pm.
    With special guest Sheila Stewart MBE (daughter and biographer of Belle) be taken on a journey of discovery as Belle’s life is celebrated from beginnings in Caputh through to an enormous influencing power in the travelling community, as Jess Smith explains:
    ‘Belle Stewart was one of Scotland's finest folk singers but to me she was much more. Every summer, the highlight of my life was the “berry picking” at Blairgowrie. This was a summer of saturated tales, songs and fun. My family were never away from Belle's house in Rattray, it was part of my “growing up.”
    ‘I gained so much from the atmosphere generated from Belle's home. Indirectly my writings were inspired by this grand lady and this is why I want to remember her “Traveller” style.’ 
    Fri 28 Nov | 7.30-9.30pm | £12 (£10) 
    An Orkney Tapestry: A Celebration of George Mackay Brown in Music, Story and Poem
    Sat 29 Nov | 10.30-11.30am | £5 per child | Age 4+
    Mrs Mash the Storytelling Cook
    Sat 29 Nov | 10.30am-4.30pm | £36 (£30 Network Members)
    Song and Story: Between the Worlds
    Sat 29 Nov | 10.30am-4.30pm | £15 (£12) | Age 8+
    Traditions of Dance – A Scottish Store 
    Sat 29 Nov | 7.30-9.30pm | £8 (£6)
    Jess Remembers Belle

    Following on from fantastic activities last year, a special weekend of events at the Scottish Storytelling Centre will mark Scotland’s national day. 

    Events marking St Andrew’s Day at the Centre are part of the Year of Homecoming and are supported through Scotland’s Winter Festivals – a programme of events funded by the Scottish Government and managed by EventScotland. 

    The events will celebrate Scotland’s unique heritage and distinctive culture through the Centre’s stellar line-up of storytelling, song, music, dance and food for all the family, ensuring residents and visitors to the Capital alike can enjoy genuine, top quality Scottish entertainment at an affordable price to fully enjoy St Andrew’s Day Weekend.

    Fiona Hyslop, Cabinet Secretary for Culture and External Affairs, said: ‘St Andrew’s Day marks the start of Scotland’s Winter Festivals and is the perfect opportunity to celebrate all that is great about Scotland – including our thriving contemporary culture, our rich heritage and our world-renowned warm and friendly welcome. 

    ‘That’s why, once again, we are proudly encouraging Scots and Scots at heart from around the world to join us in celebrating our national day at one of hundreds of brilliant events and attractions taking place across Scotland – including at the Scottish Storytelling Centre in Edinburgh, where an exciting and imaginative line-up of activities is planned.’

    Scots and Scots-at-heart can be swept away on An Orkney Tapestry on Friday 28 November at 7.30pm as storyteller David Campbell and folk music duo The Wrigley Sisters celebrate poet George Mackay Brown, whose transcendent poetic visions transformed the familiar Orkney scene into something timeless and universal.  

    On Saturday 29 November, Mrs Mash the Storytelling Cook returns after a sell-out last year to showcase Scotland’s fantastic food. Showcasing Scotland’s natural larder with its wealth of local produce tales are served up along with the Queen’s own recipe for ‘Balmoral Drop Scones’.

    And while the kids are cooking up a treat, the Centre comes alive with two interactive workshops, as Rachel Newton and Grace Banks unwrap the mutual influence between tale and tune in Song and Story: Between the Worlds, while a host of traditional dancers and musicians come together for a demonstration day in the Traditions of Dance – A Scottish Story. Showcasing quadrilles, hornpipes, flings and introductory sessions to step dance for youngsters, this will be an action-packed day to become immersed in the magic of movement as Traditional Dance Forum of Scotland Coordinator, Michelle Kelly explains: ‘With so many dance teachers coming from across Scotland this is going to be a lively day and a great opportunity to explore Scotland's dance traditions. 

    ‘We're looking forward to welcoming adults and young beginners as well as more experienced dancers. This really is a day for everyone to get involved.’

    Then we round off Saturday with an evening of storytelling special memories as Jess Smith celebrates the life, music and influence of Belle Stewart B.E.M in Jess Remembers Belle at 7.30pm.

    With special guest Sheila Stewart MBE (daughter and biographer of Belle) be taken on a journey of discovery as Belle’s life is celebrated from beginnings in Caputh through to an enormous influencing power in the travelling community, as Jess Smith explains: ‘Belle Stewart was one of Scotland's finest folk singers but to me she was much more. Every summer, the highlight of my life was the “berry picking” at Blairgowrie. This was a summer of saturated tales, songs and fun. My family were never away from Belle's house in Rattray, it was part of my “growing up.”
    ‘I gained so much from the atmosphere generated from Belle's home. Indirectly my writings were inspired by this grand lady and this is why I want to remember her “Traveller” style.’ 

    Fri 28 Nov | 7.30-9.30pm | £12 (£10) An Orkney Tapestry: A Celebration of George Mackay Brown in Music, Story and Poem

    Sat 29 Nov | 10.30-11.30am | £5 per child | Age 4+ Mrs Mash the Storytelling Cook

    Sat 29 Nov | 10.30am-4.30pm | £36 (£30 Network Members) Song and Story: Between the Worlds

    Sat 29 Nov | 10.30am-4.30pm | £15 (£12) | Age 8+ Traditions of Dance – A Scottish Store 

    Sat 29 Nov | 7.30-9.30pm | £8 (£6) Jess Remembers Belle

     

    Category: Winter Festivals News

  • 19 November 2014

    Nina Nesbitt and the Peatbog Faeries Complete Big Burns Supper Line-up

     

    Burlesque performers and Burns Night carnival characters launch nine-day Dumfries festival in Edinburgh
    Big Burns Supper headed to Leith to launch its full 2015 programme with the news that Scottish singer songwriter Nina Nesbitt and folk group the Peatbog Faeries will be part of the line-up.
    Burlesque dancers and colourfully costumed carnival characters launched the programme in front of the Burns statue in Leith’s Constitution Street  – the statue itself was specially decked in tartan for the event.
    The annual Dumfries event, which is expanding from three days to nine – 23-31 January – is a mix of famous names and emerging artists and includes rock, pop, folk, jazz and traditional music alongside cabaret, comedy, performance art and a huge street carnival.
    It is increasingly popular among visitors from Edinburgh and all across the Central Belt. It also attracts growing numbers from elsewhere in Scotland, the UK and overseas.
    Organisers offered a first glimpse of some of the beautiful costumes that are being created for the impressive Burns Night Carnival – which is expected to pull thousands of people onto the streets of the town on Sunday, 25 January.
    Graham Main, Festival Artistic Director, said: “Big Burns Supper 2015 will be Europe’s largest winter fringe festival. It’s becoming a major event in the Scottish calendar and we’re inviting even more people from across Scotland and beyond to join us for nine days of fabulous entertainment. 
    “The programme we’ve unveiled today is a rich mix of music and performance that combines popular and celebrated artists with some emerging talent from all over Scotland and the rest of the UK.
    “The festival will be a chance to see rising stars like Nina Nesbitt alongside acts like the Peatbog Faeries, plus others we have already announced like Hue and Cry and the Undertones. Our whole aim is to celebrate the best of Scottish and international culture with shows that will appeal to every taste and age, from the youngest of children upwards.
    “The carnival is also going to be even bigger and more spectacular than last year – a real centrepiece of the festival – huge amounts of work are going into creating the costumes and the floats. It’s excellent to be able to give people a sneak preview of what we’ve got in store.”
    Nina Nesbitt had a hit with Stay Out in 2013 and released her first album Peroxide was released this year. Nina said: “I’ve always admired Robert Burns, not just for his poetry but for his whole amazing passion for life. It’s going to be great to play at a festival that’s such a huge celebration of Scottish life and culture and is all about bringing people of every age group together to share a really great time.”
    Big Burns Supper 2015 is part of Scotland’s Winter Festivals (a programme of events managed by EventScotland on behalf of the Scottish Government).
    The lantern-lit carnival, with seven large interactive floats plus bands and dancers, will include hundreds of children and adults in a multitude of costumes including sea creatures such as porpoises and a giant octopus, through to angels, Tattie-bogles (scarecrows) and even giant vegetables. It is closely linked to the 2015 UNESCO Year of Light and the Scottish Year of Food and Drink. 
    Fiona Hyslop, Cabinet Secretary for Culture and External Affairs, said: “Once again, we are encouraging Scots, and Scots at heart, from around the world to join us in marking the life and works of our National Bard, Robert Burns, at one of the many Scotland’s Winter Festival events taking place across the country, including the Big Burns Supper in Dumfries.
    “It is fantastic to see the vibrant Big Burns Supper treble from three days to nine. Its great range and selection of performances and events, from renowned musicians to the lively street carnival, will light up Dumfries.”
    Once again BBS has teamed up with other local festivals and promoters to present eclectic club nights which include the Eden Opening Party.
    BBS has proven appeal to audiences of all tastes and ages – attracting visitors from across Scotland and increasingly from elsewhere in the UK and overseas. 
    The carnival is supported by Holywood Trust and Awards for All. Year of Food and Drink Scotland will build on the momentum generated by Homecoming Scotland 2014 with a series of exciting events and activities celebrating Scotland's outstanding natural larder.
    The festival is made possible by support from many organisations including Creative Scotland, 8020 and Dumfries and Galloway Council’s Beacon Event Programme and is part of Scotland's Winter Festivals, a programme of events managed by EventScotland on behalf of the Scottish Government.
    A sample from the full programme
    You can see the full Big Burns Supper 2015 programme at http://2014.bigburnssupper.com. It includes around 140 events at 17 venues, and which are a mix of paid or and free to view.
    Among what’s on offer is:
    Nina Nesbitt, in the Spiegeltent, Friday January 23 at 6.00pm  (£22.50). Best known for her 2013 hit single Stay Out, her first album Peroxide was released this year and she is now working on a second. Born in 1994, her music is often about the lessons she's learnt since she first picked up a guitar aged 15. Nina may be an experienced songwriter, a festival veteran and a regular on Radio 1, but she still writes from the point of view of a typical teenager. She has already spent two years putting out EPs, touring the country and steadily building her fan base - her video views stand at more than 20 million and over 130,000 follow her on Twitter.
    Peatbog Faeries, in the Spiegeltent, Friday January 30, at 9.30pm (£22.50). Based on the Isle of Skye, the Peatbog Faeries are one of Scotland’s best-known names in contemporary folk music. In 2012 they were nominated for "Best Live Act" at the BBC Radio 2 Folk Awards, having already twice won "Live Act of the Year" at the Scottish Traditional Music Awards. They've taken their own brand of Scottish tunes to audiences around the world, from European festivals, to Asia, Africa, America, Canada and Australia. The Peatbogs have recorded six studio albums, they made their first live release in April 2009 and their latest CD, "Dust", was released on the 8th of August of 2011.
    Hector Bizerk. This live show is something of a cultural phenomenon combining front-man Louie's razor sharp poetry with the incredible tribal rhythms of Audrey Tait and grooving funk bass lines of Fraser Sneddon to create a crescendo of thought-provoking music.
    Scottish Dance Theatre  (Scotland). Innocence. An exciting opportunity for 0-4 year olds (and their adults) to enter a realm of mystery, fun and adventure. Innocence is a unique performance playroom where the audience explore William Blake’s Songs of Innocence. Innocence invites children to dance on an interactive journey of theatre, story and live music. A beautiful, captivating dance experience.
    Hamish the Haggis’s Mini Burns Supper. Even children get to modernise Burns Suppers in their own special way at the Big Burns Supper with their own high energy foot-tapping show, Hamish the Haggis’s Mini Burns Supper, in one of the most interactive children’s theatre shows anywhere. 
    New York Brass Band. New Orleans inspired Brass Band. Hailing from the ancient streets of York, the band are part of a funky brass revolution that is sweeping the UK. Inspired by Rebirth Brass Band, Soul Rebels, Hot 8, Youngblood and Brassroots, NYBB pack a powerful punch of relentless drums, rumbling tuba and wailing horns… nothing kicks a party into gear like the sound of a smokin’ New Orleans Mardi Gras Jazz Band.
    Emerging talent
    Isabel Sharman (London). Performance Art. Explores the complicated relationship that women have with their bodies by looking at the way we talk about them - from body hair groups and anti-feminist tumblrs.
    Impulse Collective (East Midlands). Theatre. Canterbury Tales. Following their smash hit Exposed at the 2013 Edinburgh Festival, young East Midlands based company Impulse Collective present their anarchic new take on Chaucer’s Canterbury Tales.
    Fiona Soe Paing (Aberdeenshire). Performance Art. Alien Lullabies. A live multi-media hailstorm: off-world electronica, surreal animation and live vocals combine to create a unique and compelling fusion of cinema and a live gig. 
    Stoirm Òg (Edinburgh). Theatre. The Idiot at The Wall. September, 1919. A Hebridean island. Sorcha has returned to her family home, disturbing a prophecy which has long lain dormant.
    Caroline Smith (London). Performance art. Birdwatchers Wives. Features Rita Grebe, a seven foot woman who thinks she’s a bird: a Great Crest who wants to nest.
    Countermeasure (Toronto) and InChorus (Peebles). Music. Transatlantic Songbook. Double bill exclusively presented at Big Burns Supper Festival. Countermeasure is the new sound in vocal music, known for upbeat blend, sophisticated harmonies, and infectious energy. Led by award-winning composer/arranger Aaron Jensen, featuring 14 of Canada’s top young vocal talents. InChorus is a large contemporary community choir from Peebles. Founded in 2008, they have filled Edinburgh’s Usher Hall and Festival Theatre twice.
    All this plus traditional singer Robyn Stapleton, who is BBC Radio Scotland’s Young Traditional Musician of the Year, and The Gallovidians, a small local traditional music group consisting of mainly fiddles and accordions. 

    Burlesque performers and Burns Night carnival characters launch nine-day Dumfries festival in Edinburgh

    Big Burns Supper headed to Leith to launch its full 2015 programme with the news that Scottish singer songwriter Nina Nesbitt and folk group the Peatbog Faeries will be part of the line-up.

    Burlesque dancers and colourfully costumed carnival characters launched the programme in front of the Burns statue in Leith’s Constitution Street  – the statue itself was specially decked in tartan for the event.

    The annual Dumfries event, which is expanding from three days to nine – 23-31 January – is a mix of famous names and emerging artists and includes rock, pop, folk, jazz and traditional music alongside cabaret, comedy, performance art and a huge street carnival.

    It is increasingly popular among visitors from Edinburgh and all across the Central Belt. It also attracts growing numbers from elsewhere in Scotland, the UK and overseas.

    Organisers offered a first glimpse of some of the beautiful costumes that are being created for the impressive Burns Night Carnival – which is expected to pull thousands of people onto the streets of the town on Sunday, 25 January.

    Graham Main, Festival Artistic Director, said: “Big Burns Supper 2015 will be Europe’s largest winter fringe festival. It’s becoming a major event in the Scottish calendar and we’re inviting even more people from across Scotland and beyond to join us for nine days of fabulous entertainment. 

    “The programme we’ve unveiled today is a rich mix of music and performance that combines popular and celebrated artists with some emerging talent from all over Scotland and the rest of the UK.

    “The festival will be a chance to see rising stars like Nina Nesbitt alongside acts like the Peatbog Faeries, plus others we have already announced like Hue and Cry and the Undertones. Our whole aim is to celebrate the best of Scottish and international culture with shows that will appeal to every taste and age, from the youngest of children upwards.

    “The carnival is also going to be even bigger and more spectacular than last year – a real centrepiece of the festival – huge amounts of work are going into creating the costumes and the floats. It’s excellent to be able to give people a sneak preview of what we’ve got in store.”

    Nina Nesbitt had a hit with Stay Out in 2013 and released her first album Peroxide was released this year. Nina said: “I’ve always admired Robert Burns, not just for his poetry but for his whole amazing passion for life. It’s going to be great to play at a festival that’s such a huge celebration of Scottish life and culture and is all about bringing people of every age group together to share a really great time.”

    Big Burns Supper 2015 is part of Scotland’s Winter Festivals (a programme of events managed by EventScotland on behalf of the Scottish Government).

    The lantern-lit carnival, with seven large interactive floats plus bands and dancers, will include hundreds of children and adults in a multitude of costumes including sea creatures such as porpoises and a giant octopus, through to angels, Tattie-bogles (scarecrows) and even giant vegetables. It is closely linked to the 2015 UNESCO Year of Light and the Scottish Year of Food and Drink. 

    Fiona Hyslop, Cabinet Secretary for Culture and External Affairs, said: “Once again, we are encouraging Scots, and Scots at heart, from around the world to join us in marking the life and works of our National Bard, Robert Burns, at one of the many Scotland’s Winter Festival events taking place across the country, including the Big Burns Supper in Dumfries.

    “It is fantastic to see the vibrant Big Burns Supper treble from three days to nine. Its great range and selection of performances and events, from renowned musicians to the lively street carnival, will light up Dumfries.”

    Once again BBS has teamed up with other local festivals and promoters to present eclectic club nights which include the Eden Opening Party.

    BBS has proven appeal to audiences of all tastes and ages – attracting visitors from across Scotland and increasingly from elsewhere in the UK and overseas. 

    The carnival is supported by Holywood Trust and Awards for All. Year of Food and Drink Scotland will build on the momentum generated by Homecoming Scotland 2014 with a series of exciting events and activities celebrating Scotland's outstanding natural larder.

    The festival is made possible by support from many organisations including Creative Scotland, 8020 and Dumfries and Galloway Council’s Beacon Event Programme and is part of Scotland's Winter Festivals, a programme of events managed by EventScotland on behalf of the Scottish Government.
    A sample from the full programmeYou can see the full Big Burns Supper 2015 programme at http://2014.bigburnssupper.com. It includes around 140 events at 17 venues, which are a mix of paid and free to view.

    Category: Winter Festivals News

  • 19 November 2014

    Glasgow Film Festival: 2015 dates and new programming strands are announced

    Glasgow Film Festival organisers today announced their 2015 dates, as well as a slew of new programme strands for the upcoming festival. This year the festival stretches out over a wider geographic area than in previous years, making use of even more cinemas and venues across Glasgow, while paying special tribute to the city itself.

     Supported by Glasgow City Marketing Bureau, Creative Scotland, BFI and EventScotland, the festival, which in 2014 logged over 40,000 admissions, will return from 18 February to 1 March 2015 – a day longer than previous festivals. Glasgow Youth Film Festival has been rebranded as a sleeker, weekend-long festival focusing tightly on cinema for teenagers and young adults, from 6-8 February, and Glasgow Short Film Festival moves away from the others for the first time, standing by itself from 11-15 March.

     Amongst the new programme strands this year are Nerdvana, bringing together the festival’s previous ‘geek-friendly’ events with a focus on cult cinema, gaming and comic book culture; Pioneer, which consolidates the festival’s growing reputation as the place to have a first encounter with the great directors of the future; and CineMasters, offering a sneak peak at new work from internationally renowned auteurs. And Glasgow Youth Film Festival’s sharpened focus on teenagers allows GFF to welcome in children (and their parents) with the Modern Families strand. 

     The festival runs an annual strand focusing on new cinema from a particular country, as well as a retrospective looking back over the career of a particular era or star. Following Glasgow’s passing of the Commonwealth Games baton over to the Gold Coast, our new strand Strewth! showcases the best new (and classic) Australian cinema, while Here’s Looking At You, Kid pays homage to Ingrid Bergman’s life and work.

     These strands will run alongside and in conjunction with GFF’s signature pop-up cinema events, which make imaginative, unusual use of some of the city’s unique venues. However, this year the festival will take its celebration of the city a step further. Taking its name from the four-year local history project run by Glasgow Film, the Cinema City strand is about Glasgow’s love affair with the movies: screenings of classic Glasgow-set films will sit alongside an exhibition showcasing memorabilia and oral histories of cinema-going in the city. 

     Due to a major refurbishment at regular festival venue Cineworld on Renfrew Street, GFF will be using alternative venues across the city this year. While this will result in slightly fewer films in the programme, the festival's extension for an extra day immediately opens up new and exciting opportunities. More of the festival will be based out of the CCA, where new DCP equipment will be installed, and screenings will also take place in the West End at the Grosvenor Cinema for the first time since 2011. Additional venues across the south and east of the city will be announced closer to the launch date.

     Festival Co-Director Allison Gardner said: “We’re using this opportunity to take the festival out beyond the city centre and bring it to new audiences.  We have always been an audience-focused festival, and our new strands like Pioneer and Nerdvana are the result of listening to feedback and picking up on elements of the festival our audience responds to. We’re also excited to engage with younger cinema-going audiences; so our Modern Families strand will show some really extraordinary and imaginative films about childhood. And I’m delighted that the culmination of our Cinema City project will result in a real celebration of what the movies mean to Glasgow – it’s like a little extra gift to our audiences.”

    The full GFF programme will be announced on Wednesday 21 January 2015 and available to browse on www.glasgowfilm/festival from Thursday 22 January. 

     

    Category: International Events

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