Ceòlas fes­ti­val that was sprin­kled with star­dust

The Oban Times - - LEISURE -

ON FRI­DAY (July 8) the fi­nal fling fol­low­ing a suc­cess­ful week of work­shops by Ceòlas on South Uist was hosted by Kirsteen Mac­Don­ald, who was sur­prised and im­pressed by the quan­tity and qual­ity of the tal­ent per­form­ing.

Rachel Walker, Chris­tine Prim­rose and Alas­dair C Whyte had taught song classes all week to great ac­claim by the stu­dents. Gri­o­gair Làbhruidh sang Pìobaireachd song as well as per­form­ing his trade­mark rap, to the de­light of the au­di­ence. Pip­ing was pro­vided by Fin Moore and An­gus Ni­col­son, who had been tu­tor­ing all week and was sup­ported by Seon­aidh MacIntyre, who had been play­ing for the dancers. Dance took cen­tre stage dur­ing the week with Frank McCon­nell, Mats Melin and Jayne Macleod mak­ing it all look easy, till you tried. Jamie Mac­Don­ald and Sarah Hoy pro­vided mu­sic for the dancers and our Cape Bre­ton guests Shelly Camp­bell also danced as well as played fid­dle. Calum MacKen- zie taught fid­dle al­though his great pi­ano skills were used to ac­com­pany Fin and Sarah Hoy’s set at the Ceilidh Mòr. He also ac­com­pa­nied his wife Alexis MacIsaac, who played a lively set on the fid­dle. Al­lan Hen­der­son, who had been teach­ing youth fid­dle all week, was called on sev­eral times to ac­com­pany the singers and fid­dlers. Patsy Reid wowed every­one with her fid­dle play­ing and Patsy Seddon’s clarsach play­ing was sublime.

The con­cert was streamed live on An Ra­dio and there were more than 500 peo­ple from across the globe lis­ten­ing in as well as the lo­cals who could not get a ticket for this sold-out event.

From regis­tra­tion on Sun­day through un­til every­one left the Ceilidh Mòr on Fri­day evening, the at­mos­phere was fan­tas­tic and peo­ple ex­pressed this through­out the week. One hour into the wel­come ceilidh on Sun­day evening a first­time par­tic­i­pant told Iain Mac­Don­ald that she was plan­ning on com­ing again next year.

On Mon­day, the singers con­cert was the high­light of the week for many lo­cals who love song. Lo­cal group Guthan an Iar showed their own tal­ent, as did Sandy Jones, who had launched her book, and Penny Burgess sang songs from her new CD.

Rachel Walker, Alas­dair C Whyte and Chris­tine Prim­rose all per­formed to the high­est stan­dard, Patsy Seddon of­fer­ing ac­com­pa­ni­ment for parts of the evening. Rona Light­foot was her usual en­ter­tain­ing self as bean-an-taighe (MC) for the con­cert. Tues­day’s walk in Eriskay led by D R Camp­bell was taken by 40 peo­ple who were in­tro­duced to the new po­etry trail re­cently set up. Tues­day night was house ceilidhs and the Ceòlas par­tic­i­pants ap­pre­ci­ated the wel­come given by our lo­cal hosts, D J and Pat Peter­anna, Fr Don­ald, Mairi Wil­mot, Eric and Jane Twelves, Penny Burgess and Ca­tri­ona Martin­dale.

Pipers’ ceilidh on Wednes­day night was won­der­ful with the first half be­ing led by our lo­cal young peo­ple: Sheena Peter­anna, Cailean Martin­dale, An­drew MacIsaac and Calum Craib warm­ing the au­di­ence for Seon­aidh MacIntyre, Gri­o­gair Labhruidh and An­gus Ni­col­son. Rona Light­foot was bean-an­taighe for this event also. Vis­i­tors were amazed at the qual­ity of per­for­mances and one Ce­o­las stu­dent asked: ‘Who has been sprin­kling star­dust at Ce­o­las this year?’

Thurs­day night dance at­tracted a crowd of al­most 200 and the fid­dlers were given their space to per­form while the dancers caught their breath.

A damp driz­zly evening was trans­formed into a glo­ri­ous fun event with the step dancers show­ing their skills as well as

sheer joie de vivre of the quadrilles.

Three book launches took place dur­ing the week. On Mon­day af­ter­noon Sandy Jones launched her new book

Cro­tal Ruadh, a col­lec­tion of po­ems. On Tues­day af­ter­noon, Mats Melin launched his book to Ceòlas One with the Mu­sic and on Sat­ur­day night a lo­cal book From small

lochs to great lakes, by Don­ald Mac­Don­ald, was launched at a full house in the meet­ing room at Kil­do­nan mu­seum.

Ceòlas is in­creas­ing its en­gage­ment with Gaelic and there were four teach­ers do­ing an im­mer­sion course in Gaelic along­side a much larger than usual group of peo­ple com­ing to do Gaelic in Uist ow­ing to the strength of the lan­guage in this com­mu­nity. Gaelic tu­tors Alex Bhal­tos Mac­Don­ald, Ca­tri­ona MacIntyre and Ca­tri­ona Black were in­stru­men­tal in fun gen­er­ated by the Gaelic stu­dents’ drama at the Cross­over con­cert on Fri­day af­ter­noon, an event that lo­cal fam­i­lies at­tend. Dur­ing the week var­i­ous speak­ers came in to talk about lo­cal skills, ac­tiv­i­ties and tra­di­tions. Lawrence MacEachen, Roddy John­ston, Rona Light­foot, Mairi MacInnes

Ceòlas is a fi­nal­ist the Na­tional Lot­tery Good Causes Awards Her­itage Sec­tor and if you have not voted yet, please do so be­fore July 20 at www.lot­tery­good­causes.org.uk/awards or ring 08448369676.

Thurs­day night dance in St Peter’s Hall, Dal­iburgh.

Al­lan Hen­der­son and the young fid­dlers.

Young pip­ing stu­dents.

Shelly Camp­bell’s Cape Bre­ton fid­dle class.

Fi­nale of fi­nal con­cert.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from UK

© PressReader. All rights reserved.