Singers to perform at annual traditional singing weekend

Singers to perform at annual traditional singing weekend

Singers to perform at annual traditional singing weekend

A festival to celebrate the singing traditions of Scotland, England, and Ireland will be held later this month (23-25 July). The annual Traditional Singing Weekend at Cullerlie, now in its fifth year, is a unique celebration, bringing together outstanding traditional singers.

The event is organised jointly by the University of Aberdeen's Elphinstone Institute and Anne Reid of Cullerlie Farm Park, and is in memory of her husband, Tam Reid (1929-2003), known as the 'Bothy Ballad King'.

The festival will be enjoyed by all who like to listen to and join in traditional singing. Essentially informal, friendly and non-competitive, it will be just the place to encourage the young and less experienced as well as the old hands.

Dr Ian Russell, Director of The Elphinstone Institute, said: "This continues to be a most fitting opportunity to salute Tam's memory and to hear some of the finest traditional singers from across the UK and Ireland.

"We have a wonderful line-up. There will be ceilidhs featuring guest singers, sing-arounds for everyone who wants to join in, talks, and workshops on crafts and song, in fact, something for everyone."

Guests this year include: Karine Polwart, voted Best Scots Singer in the Scots Traditional Music Awards last September. Other guests include from Donegal's Inishowen tradition - Jimmy McBride and Breda McKinney; from England, Jill Pidd from North Yorkshire and Eddie Upton from the South West; from Scotland, Joe Aitken, Geordie McIntyre, Alison McMorland, and Elizabeth Stewart; and from one of the UK's most remote communities, Anne Sinclair from Fair Isle, a fine singer, who will also be running craft workshops on Fair Isle knitting.

A talk by Jimmy McBride will explore the shared heritage of songs between Scotland and the north of Ireland.

Cullerlie Farm Park and Heritage Centre was set up by Tom ('Tam') and Anne Reid in 1993 and is now run by Anne Reid and her family. Tom was a legendary singer, having been crowned, in 1977, the Bothy Ballad King before a crowd of 10,000 at the Haughs in Turriff, a title that remained his until his death. Anne is also a fine singer and has promoted the traditions of the North East through singing and speaking workshops with schoolchildren and adults at local schools, and at the museum, as well as hosting regular Saturday-night ceilidhs.

Places are booking up fast but there is still availability for the Traditional Singing Weekend. Places can be booked by contacting the Cullerlie Farm Park direct on 01330 860549.

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