Packed programme for Skye Festival
SKYE’S ‘awesomely beautiful’ and ‘percussively powerful’ Gaelic singer, Anne Martin, opened the 2017 Skye Festival – Fèis an Eilein – on Wednesday with the world premiere of her exciting musical collaboration entitled
Developed from Ceumannan, an inter- cultural song commission with Manchester-based sound artist Jason Singh, the project won a PRS Foundation award and was given a 15-minute showcase at the Hull International Festival before moving to Skye and then to London’s Southbank.
Anne returns to Sleat on August 2 to sing a collection of Gaelic songs from An Leabhar Liath, revealing the risqué references in Gaelic song that have been lost over time. She appears with Ian MacPherson, Peter Mackay and Ingrid Henderson.
Delivered to the Isle of Skye by Sleat- based performing arts promoters, SEALL (Skye Events for All), the Skye Festival – Fèis an Eilein – is a celebration of island culture and performing arts and runs until August 28 in venues around the south of Skye.
Traditionally, the fèis has had a strong focus on Scots trad music and 2017 is no exception with concerts taking place by some of the country’s most respected musicians, plus a few international stars.
This year the line-up includes a performance by Charlie McKerron, Marc Clement and ‘ friends’ (August 8); a cèilidh night with Fergie MacDonald (July 18); a mammoth fiddle night with Alastair Fraser (July 28); a concert featuring Donald Black and Martin Skene (July 30); an evening with singer Margaret Stewart and Ingrid Henderson (August 9); and a stunning concert featuring four of Scotland’s top trad musicians − fiddle player Adam Sutherland, singer Mairearad Green, Hamish Napier (flute and whistle) and Blazin’ Fiddles guitarist Anna Massie − will take place on August 22.
There is more traditional music with the Isle of Skye Piping Society with the Caimbeul Family on August 15 and a ‘Sophabulous’ step dance weekend of workshops with Sophie Stephenson.
Scotland’s foremost youth jazz ensemble, the NYOS Jazz Orchestra brings more than 30 musicians to Sabhal Mòr Ostaig on July 15 to perform Road Trip to the Americas – a wide range of big band repertoire.
For lovers of classical music, Skye and Lochalsh- based choir Inner Sound will perform Gilbert and Sullivan’s Patience on July 21, while students from Sabhal Mòr Ostaig join forces with the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland for a ‘Raasay Night’ on August 18 featuring the music of Eliza Ross.
There is more music from Latin guitarist Eduardo Niebla (July 31); new acoustic chamber-folk from Scotland and Australia, The String Contingent (Au- gust 14); and Scotland’s contemporary music ensemble, The Red Note Ensemble, will play out the festival on August 28.
The circus comes to town this weekend inside the Magpie Tent at Kyleakin Hall. Fun entertainment is guaranteed for all the family in Let’s Circus school and workshops, daily performances and a cèilidh to round it all off. Film showings and a poetry reading from celebrated Irish poet Michael Longley completes a packed programme of quality entertainment over the summer months on Skye.
As well as the fèis, there are many other events and exhibitions around the south of Skye during the months of July and August and the festival atmosphere continues with a number of lively fringe events. These include exhibitions of local arts and crafts, cèilidhs, house parties and concerts, charity cafès, as well as folk club and open music sessions.
For full details of times, venues, local information and to book tickets, pick up a programme from outlets across the island, or contact SEALL on 01471 844207, info@ seall.co.uk.