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MUSIC BOOKS ART E THEATR FILM COMEDY FAMILY FOOD DRINK R OUTDOO RE! AND MO

THE GUIDE TO

SCOTTISH FESTIVALS 2011

IN ASSOCIATION WITH


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THE GUIDE TO

SCOTTISH FESTIVALS 2011

8 10 12 14 16 48

FESTIVAL ESSENTIALS From throw-away loos to welly boots

LITERARY FESTIVALS Novelist Denise Mina picks her favourites

GREEN FESTIVALS How Scotland is getting the eco-message

MUSIC FESTIVALS Fence Collective’s Johnny Lynch on what works for him

FESTIVAL TRAVEL Trains, planes and automobiles

EDINBURGH FESTIVALS The greatest show on earth 53 ......... SEPTEMBER

LISTINGS

61 ......... OCTOBER

19 ......... JANUARY

27 ......... MAY

20 ......... FEBRUARY

35 ......... JUNE

66 ......... NOVEMBER

21 ......... MARCH

40 ......... JULY

68 ......... DECEMBER

24 ......... APRIL

46 ......... AUGUST

68 ......... JANUARY ‘12

70 INDEX An ABC of Scottish festivals

78 MAPS Find your way around the festival trail


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PHOTO: KURT PARIS

FOREWORD

World-class poetry plus music, visual art and film. Features Ciaran Carson, Selima Hill, Paul Farley, Julia Donaldson and Yang Lian. 16–20 Mar, St Andrews, www.stanzapoetry.org

PHOTO: RAYDALE DOWER

From small celebrations with big ambition to major cultural events on the international calendar, Scotland loves its festivals, explains Creative Scotland CEO Andrew Dixon

StAnza

S

cotland is a festival nation. Throughout the year and across the country, there are over 280 festivals, from niche local events to Edinburgh in August, when the city bustles with performers from across the world. If ‘festival’ means a celebration, Scotland is celebrating culture 52 weeks a year. Scotland’s festivals are unique: from Orkney’s glorious St Magnus Festival, set around Kirkwall’s 11th century cathedral, by way of Glasgow’s Celtic Connections, a showcase of traditional music from across the globe, to Imaginate, the largest performing arts festival for children in the UK. These are worldclass festivals contributing to our national identity. Book lovers can indulge their passions at more than 40 festivals, from the international poetry festival StAnza on the Fife coast at St Andrews in March to Ullapool’s Book Festival, on the shore of Loch Broom, and Aberdeen’s Word Festival, set among the mediaeval and Renaissance architecture of the city’s university. Film lovers will find two of the UK’s most significant film festivals in Glasgow and Edinburgh, while in Dundee in October, Discovery, Scotland’s leading youth film festival, screens international cinema to an audience of almost 8000 young people. Quirky and distinctive festivals have grown up across Scotland - like Pittenweem in Fife where people open up their homes as galleries, or East Lothian’s 3 Harbours Festival, or the Shetland Fiddle Frenzy, one of Lonely Planet’s top ten recommendations of places to visit in the world. Scotland is the place to immerse yourself in culture and this guide showcases some of the highlights of our festival calendar. 4 The List Scottish Festivals 2011

Glasgow International Festival of Visual Art (GI) A two-week biennial combining the best in international and local contemporary visual art. Apr 2012, www.glasgowinternational.org

New Territories An international festival of live art featuring commissioned work and British premieres in Glasgow, Edinburgh and Aberdeen. 4 Feb–26 Mar, www.newmoves.co.uk


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PHOTO: LEILA ANGUS@BRIGHTERSTILL

PHOTO: MICHAEL MARTEN

Africa in Motion (AiM)

Hebridean Celtic Festival

A film festival celebrating the very best of African cinema in Edinburgh. Also includes African poetry, fashion and music. 27 Oct– 6 Nov, www.africa-in-motion.org.uk

A four-day mix of music in the stunning beauty of the Hebridean islands with a family-friendly atmosphere, intimate concerts, workshops and free events. 13–16 Jul, www.hebceltfest.com

Edinburgh International Film Festival

Discovery Film Festival

A major showcase of new talent, with a commitment to audience education and pleasure. 15–26 Jun, www.edfilmfest.org.uk

An international festival for young audiences at Dundee’s DCA with screenings and workshops in scriptwriting, animation and movie make-up. Oct, www.discoveryfilmfestival.org.uk

Bookfestival Scotland

St Magnus Festival

A partnership of over 40 book, storytelling and poetry festivals, from the world's largest at Edinburgh to bijou events in Shetland and Wigtown. www.bookfestivalscotland.com

Orkney’s celebration of music – plus dance, drama, books and art – is a unique mix of world-class concerts and local partipation. 17–22 Jun, www.stmagnusfestival.com The List Scottish Festivals 2011 5


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Project editor Jonny Ensall Production manager Simon Armin Editor Mark Fisher Research manager Laura Ennor Designer Lucy Munro Contributors Siân Bevan, Niki Boyle, Paul Dale, Brian Donaldson, Mark Fisher, Siân Hickson, Kenny Mathieson, Mary Murray Brown, David Pollock, Claire Ritchie, Natalya Wells Advertising Suzanne Watt, Juliet Tweedie, Jude Moir Digital director Simon Dessain Publisher Robin Hodge This guide was produced in conjunction with Creative Scotland, the national agency for the arts, screen & creative industries. The Project Manager within Creative Scotland was Bernie Regan. DISCLAIMER The List has made extensive efforts to ensure information published in this guide is correct. Line-ups, times and dates can change at short notice, however, so please check with the festival before travelling. The publishers cannot accept responsibility for any errors the guide may contain. For up-to-date listings information go to: www.list.co.uk

Published by The List Ltd HEAD OFFICE 14 High Street, Edinburgh EH1 1TE Tel: 0131 550 3050 Fax: 0131 557 8500 Email: festivals@list.co.uk www.list.co.uk © 2011 The List Ltd All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced, stored in a retrieval system or transmitted in any form or by any means, electronic, mechanical, photocopying, recording or otherwise, without the prior permission in writing of The List Ltd.

This edition published February 2011 Printed by Acorn Web Offset Ltd.

INTRODUCING THIS GUIDE We all like to let our hair down from time to time, but if you are a dedicated Scottish festival-goer, your hair need never be up. Week by week, the country offers jamboree after jamboree, knees-up after knees-up, celebration after celebration. There are getting on for 300 festivals, bringing together lovers of art, books, comedy, film, food, music, science and theatre to revel in their shared passion. To celebrate this fest feast, The List, Scotland’s leading arts and entertainment guide, has rounded up the whole lot. We hope you enjoy them as much as we do.

HOW TO USE THIS GUIDE Festivals are listed in date order. In cases where the exact date has not been confirmed at the time of going to press, they are listed alphabetically at the end of each month. Each entry includes an address, box-office phone number (where available) and website. Unless otherwise specified, all dates are for 2011.

MORE FESTIVALS While this guide aims to be comprehensive, some other festivals have not been confirmed at the time of going to press. See list.co.uk for updates. Festival organisers can get in touch at festivals@list.co.uk


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ITALY IN SCOTLAND The Italian Cultural Institute in Edinburgh is the official office of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs for the promotion of Italian language and culture in Scotland and Northern Ireland

The Italian Cultural Institute offers: • Book launches, lectures, exhibitions, concerts and film screenings. • Italian Language courses at all levels (CEFR) taught by qualified Italian teachers. • Grants to attend language courses in Italy. • Library: a collection of over 7000 books, magazines, newspapers and a Video & DVD selection of over 1700 films and documentaries.

THE ITALIAN FILM FESTIVAL IN SCOTLAND APRIL 1–15 The eagerly-awaited annual celebration of Italian cinema returns to Scotland this April. The programme will include a selection of acclaimed new Italian films, archive screenings, unique events and guests. Full programme details will be available in March from the Italian Film Festival's website www.italianfilmfestival.org.uk

ITALIAN CULTURAL INSTITUTE, EDINBURGH

82 NICOLSON STREET, EDINBURGH, EH8 9EW WWW.IICEDIMBURGO.ESTERI.IT

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FESTIVAL PONCHOS Yes, they look ridiculous but with the vast majority of festivals being held at least in some part outside, substance has to trump style every time. For industrial strength check out xamax.co.uk, from £13.95.

DISPOSABLE TOILETS Portable festival toilets are seldom remembered for their magnificent odour and top-notch levels of cleanliness, so don’t go empty handed, whether you opt for the aptly named Travel John or BoginaBag. Prices start at as little as £4.99 on eBay.

DON'T FORGET YOUR . . .

CAMPING BOUTIQUE PODS Not for nothing have some of the festivals been offering visitors a more boutique mode of accommodation. It doesn’t have to be all rain-soaked ancient old tents, after all. See RockNess website for up-to-date price: rockness.co.uk

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HEALTHY T Forget the burger van. Where literary and family festivals have led the way, music festivals have followed, with T in the Park and RockNess particularly opting for healthier food stands whether it's smoothies, porridge stalls or Loch Fyne’s finest.


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GLOW GLASSES So incredibly wrong but weirdly it just feels right. Glow in the dark with these uber-cheap festival fashion accessories. They arrive flat in the post, then you clip them together. See filthyfox.co.uk, from £1.49.

FESTIVAL CHAIRS There’s no shame at all in resting the old pins whether from a poetry reading, a day’s exploring or a music bonanza. Some are so barely there and lightweight, you’ll hardly know you’re carrying one. See onestopfestival.com; pack of two chairs for £18.

Whether you opt for a literary love-in, a raucous rock-out or a foodie festival, you can’t go wrong with a few of the festival essentials

OXFAM Do your bit for charity, as more and more of Scotland’s festivals set up charity stalls on site. Pick up some cool retro gear, pay the nice lady or gentleman your money, then get wearing it there and then. Oxfam is a regular at T in the Park.

WELLY BOOTS Scotland’s weather can be an unforgiving beast so come prepared, whether you come in standard green or decked out in floral. At the online Welly Shop, the choice ranges from funky to vintage. Check out thewellyshop.com

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BROUGHT TO

BOOKS Novelist Denise Mina, a veteran of many a book festival, describes what makes a perfect literary celebration

WIGTOWN BOOK FESTIVAL

WORD

‘It’s such a strange and brilliant place which takes a lot of effort to get to. But when you get there, the audiences are just so enthusiastic and really well read and it’s such a lovely part of the country that you feel as though you’re going on your holidays. It’s very well-organised and they have a nice green room and everyone sits around the table and talks about themselves and then you go off and do your event. But they’re so erudite there; you have people with four PhDs who are making rugs for cats. It’s like the Cornwall of Scotland. The last time I did it, I had just come back from the Gothenburg Book Festival where someone had asked me to sign their tights and someone had a bag made with my name on it and everyone looked like they were 22 and angry feminists. Then I went to Wigtown where I mentioned having wind and the audience gasped. It was a bit different.’

‘I was there with my kids so I didn’t see much of the other stuff that was on, but they put on A Drunk Woman Looks at the Thistle which is a rewriting of MacDiarmid’s poem and it was stowed. Full of drunk people who were really up for it and it wasn’t stuffy at all. And people were hanging around at the end for an argument, it was lovely. And they also had the 15minute operas and stuff like that and that felt very exciting to be at, really challenging stuff.’

■ 23 Sep–3 Oct, wigtownbookfestival.com 10 The List Scottish Festivals 2011

■ 13–15 May, abdn.ac.uk/word

OFF THE PAGE ‘The venue was lovely, that new arts centre place in town opposite the jail [the Tolbooth]. Again, it was full of local people who were very engaged and knew all the work. And it’s great to talk to Scottish audiences because whenever I go abroad I have to apologise for my work being quite depressing. You never need to do


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‘YOU HAVE PEOPLE WITH FOUR PHDS WHO ARE MAKING RUGS FOR CATS’ that in Scotland and when I mention that to audiences here, they always look a bit bemused.’ ■ 10–17 Sep, stirling.gov.uk/offthepage

AYE WRITE! ‘They do such a broad spectrum of events that different people would be interested in and they take comics seriously; you don’t feel that it’s a separate part (“and here’s comics!”), it’s integrated into it and you see the same people at the literary events and the comics events. And they’re not afraid to do subjects that are very dry and they do get audiences for those subjects.’ ■ 4–12 Mar, ayewrite.com

MY FANTASY BOOK FESTIVAL ‘I’ve just come back from San Francisco and what was

great about their festival was that the writer and audience didn’t feel separate so you didn’t feel viewed. It felt more like a conference and we were all there together. It’s nice to have a bit more mingling and I’d like to see more interactive events where members of the audience could do writing classes or authors talked about their favourite book rather than just talking about themselves. ‘I just think there are more interesting things for audiences than just us talking about ourselves and discussing where we get our ideas from: do I use a pen or a laptop? The book signing table where people come up and tell you their life stories is fascinating and I think to have a webcam at a book signing table would be great.’ Denise Mina’s next novel, The End of the Wasp Season, is published by Orion on 12 May. The List Scottish Festivals 2011 11


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ANY COLOUR AS LONG AS IT'S

GREEN Festivals large and small are getting the eco message – and audiences are doing their bit too. If the food boxes aren’t biodegradable, time to ask why

F

or the green activist, festivals can sound like a recipe for environmental catastrophe. Think of the planes that fly the artists, the cars that drive the audiences, the generators that power the sound systems, the temporary structures that get trashed, the disposable cups and plates . . . it’s hard to conceive of a festivalrelated activity that doesn’t threaten the planet. But all is not lost. Festival organisers have been focusing on the problem for some time and, in many cases, are setting a benchmark for the green revolution. As long ago as 2006, T in the Park was named the world’s largest carbon neutral festival – at the time, the

12 The List Scottish Festivals 2011

only one in Europe – largely because it offset its emissions through the Carrifran Wildwood in the Scottish Borders. It still holds the title today, despite the demands of catering to 85,000 people. With the motto ‘redeem, reduce and recycle’, it has its own environmental policy – Green T – and is one of the first to have signed up to the Industry Green framework for music festivals drawn up by the eco-advice company Julie’s Bicycle. It insists that its vendors use only biodegradable food containers and gets the campers – whose way is lit by low-energy festoon lights – to separate their rubbish


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into different bags. It uses the ‘grey’ water from the You’d expect no less from a dedicated eco-festival, but showers for priming the toilets and gets the staff to it is clear the green message has gone mainstream. travel around the site by bike. Audiences are encouraged Acknowledging that 80% of harmful emissions to come by bus or shared cars, to use phosphate-free associated with festivals comes from car travel, soap and to recycle their cups after paying a 10p RockNess has, for example, offered a ‘go green’ earlydeposit. If they want to recharge their phones, they head bird ticket for this year’s event which gives music fans to the Eco Charge Pedal Power free coach travel from all major Tent. ‘There’s a responsibility on cities in the UK. producers to give their audiences Meanwhile in the biggest arts the opportunity to get more event of them all, Festivals involved,’ says festival director Edinburgh, an umbrella body for Geoff Ellis. ‘The fans have made the capital’s 12 major festivals, a big difference to where we are has its own environmental group today and will continue to do so which, among other things, is in the future.’ championing a green venue For its efforts, T in the Park initiative on the Edinburgh was highly commended at the Fringe. A handful of venues have UK-wide 2010 Greener Festival been monitoring energy use, Awards. Doing even better than waste, water and staff travel, and that was the Big Tent, an the festivals themselves are environmental festival, which going through a similar exercise. made it into the outstanding The scheme will get bigger this category. This ‘festival of year. ‘We’re talking to stewardship’, which takes place companies about doing a joint on the Falkland Estate in Fife deal across all the festivals – the and plays to 11,000 people, is Mela, the Fringe, EIF, all the T in the Park gets back to nature taking a year out in 2011, but outdoor sites that use disposable in its dedicated Eco Village will be back in July 2012 with a food packaging,’ says Amy two-stage music line-up and extensive programme of Saunders, special projects manager of Festivals eco-related discussions, workshops and films in a solarEdinburgh. ‘In 2011, the Edinburgh International Book powered cinema – as well as new compost toilets and Festival will allow nothing on site to go to landfill. It solar showers. ‘We aren’t perfect,’ they say with typical will be a completely regenerative site. We’re trying to modesty, ‘and we’ll get some of this wrong, so if you’ve get the other venues across the city to use the practices any tips or advice then please pass them our way.’ of something like the Book Festival.’

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FENCE'S

SENSIBILITY The key to a good festival, says Fence Collective's Johnny Lynch, is a beautiful setting and a philosophy that puts music first. He runs his own festivals and admires many more

A

s one of the key members of Fife’s Fence Collective, Johnny Lynch is the organiser of the annual HomeGame festival in Anstruther and was also the powerhouse behind the first AwayGame festival on the Isle of Eigg in September 2010. As a former backing band member of Fence-mate King Creosote, half of dance duo Silver Columns and the man behind the Pictish Trail alias, he has also played T in the Park, Belladrum, Loopallu, the Big Tent and the now-dormant Outsider, Connect and Live at Loch Lomond festivals. We asked him what makes a good festival tick: ‘HomeGame and AwayGame aside for bias reasons, I have to say Loopallu is one of the best festivals I’ve played in Scotland. It’s cold because it’s a little later in the year, but there’s a real feeling that people are braving the elements together. There’s also a late-night pub aspect in the village once the festival’s over, so you get a good mix of people and ages involved. I reckon the people up there are either starved of entertainment or they’re used to making their own every week, because they really do go for it. ‘I think for a lot of these smaller Scottish festivals, like Loopallu and the Big Tent in Falkland, much of the appeal is going to some place new and different, and discovering other parts of Scotland. It might be down to the fact that a lot of the smaller festivals up here don’t seem concerned with doing something that’s boutique and extremely trendy. I don’t know if the people involved in them would take that as a criticism, but if you look at some of the boutique festivals down south like End of the Road and 14 The List Scottish Festivals 2011

the Green Man, they still trade very much on London kudos and having the most-hyped new bands from the indie press. Whereas a lot of Scottish festivals don’t chase that indie market, they run a lot more on trust and the music is almost second place in many ways. Festivals up here don’t feel the need to chase that same kudos. I think that’s a positive thing. ‘Of course, T in the Park is always going to sell out. For a lot of people it’s their big gig of the year, where they go to see all their favourite chart bands in one place, but it’s also good for new bands and up-and-coming Scottish artists because of things like the BBC Introducing stage. It’s not the kind of thing I’d normally go to because it’s a bit too big, but it’s still a pretty good festival – Scotland’s Glastonbury, basically. ‘It was quite rainy when I played there last, although it doesn’t seem to put people off. The ones having the best time seem to be the ones covered in mud. ‘If I could set up any festival I wanted in Scotland, it would be our own version of All Tomorrow’s Parties [indie festival held in an offseason Butlin’s in Somerset]. It would be curated by an individual artist and set in an old holiday or caravan park somewhere in Scotland. Then we could all get to our beds after the bands, without having to worry about pitching a tent.’ HomeGame, 6–8 May, fencerecords.com; T in the Park, 8–10 Jul, tinthepark.com; Big Tent, 28–29 Jul 2012, bigtentfestival.co.uk; Loopallu, 16–17 Sep, loopallu.co.uk


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‘MUCH OF THE APPEAL IS GOING TO SOME PLACE NEW AND DIFFERENT, AND DISCOVERING OTHER PARTS OF SCOTLAND’

The List Scottish Festivals 2011 15


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FESTIVAL TRAVEL Getting to festivals is a breeze thanks to Scotland's well integrated transport network PLANES Various airlines fly direct to and from Glasgow and Edinburgh, Scotland’s main airport hubs, as well as other Scottish airports including Aberdeen, Inverness and Dundee; these include British Airways, bmi, Ryanair, EasyJet and KLM UK. The recently renovated Edinburgh Airport sits just seven miles from the city centre with an excellent, very reasonable airport bus service that runs every 10–15 minutes. A taxi from the airport to the city centre, depending on your location, is likely to cost you around £20. Glasgow Airport is equally handy, and located just eight miles from the city centre. A coach service can take you to a nearby train station, or else the airport bus runs every 20 minutes into the city centre. Outside Glasgow in Ayr is Prestwick Airport, home to

many of the budget airlines. Trains run from nearby every 30 minutes to Glasgow city centre, and taxis are also available. Inverness, Aberdeen and Dundee airports all similarly offer coach services into the centre. There are also flight connections to the islands of Barra, Benbecula, Islay, Lewis, Orkney and Shetland for festivals further afield, with many of the flights operated by FlyBe.

Airport, as well as routes to the Borders and the south of England. A short ten-minute walk away is Glasgow’s Queen Street Station, with local and longer services to the north-east of the city and up to the west coast of Scotland. COACH All Scotland’s major cities have main bus stations with many of the smaller towns and villages also boasting very good and often very reasonably priced services. Scottish Citylink is the main operator for most travellers; National Express often brings visitors to the cities from England and Wales. Music fans going to festivals such as RockNess (outside Inverness) and T in the Park (outside Perth) are often encouraged to opt for special bus services to and from the festival, with many new routes being put on especially from

some of the country’s more remote spots. Edinburgh’s bus depot can be found just off St Andrew Square, while Glasgow’s Buchanan Street is similarly close to the city centre. Inverness, Stirling, Aberdeen, Perth and Dundee also have excellent direct routes to many of Scotland’s festival hubs. They may take a little longer than their big coach counterparts but local buses are also great value for money.

TRAINS Scotland’s major rail stations are in Glasgow and Edinburgh with regular services throughout Scotland to and from other major cities including Aberdeen, Inverness, Dundee and Stirling, as well as the country’s more suburban locations. Edinburgh’s Waverley and Haymarket stations carry routes with East Coast, Scotrail and Virgin. There’s an excellent local bus service that runs outside each station as well as taxi ranks. In Glasgow, Central Station offers journeys to and from the south of the River Clyde, including Lanarkshire, Ayrshire and Prestwick 16 The List Scottish Festivals 2011

FERRIES Those indulging in a Highlands and islands festival are likely to find themselves on the Caledonian MacBrayne ferry service, which travels to over 21 islands. If you are taking in more than one island, you should ask about reduced-fare Island Hopscotch tickets. Other carriers include NorthLink Ferries, which goes to Orkney and Shetland from Aberdeen, and Pentland and Orkney Ferry services. During Shetland’s festival season look out on the council website for information on its inter-island ferries.


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$//,121(3/$&( 3COTLAND IS HOME TO OVER  UNIQUE AND VIBRANT BOOK STORYTELLING AND POETRY FESTIVALS FROM THE WORLDS LARGEST IN %DINBURGH TO THE MANY SMALLER BUT PERFECTLY FORMED EVENTS THAT CAN BE FOUND IN SOME OF THE NATIONS MOST BEAUTIFUL PLACES 7HATEVER YOUR AGE WHATEVER YOUR PASSION JOIN US FOR A YEAR ROUND PROGRAMME OF WONDERFUL WORDS AND MAGICAL MOMENTS WITH SOME OF TODAYS BEST AND BRIGHTEST WRITERS &/24(%,!4%34).&/2-!4)/.6)3)4/527%"3)4%WWWBOOKFESTIVALSCOTLANDCOM


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25 March – 16 April Edinburgh’s annual grassroots celebration of traditional arts happens in venues across the city, from pubs and clubs to halls and theatres. Join us for a selection of uplifting, energetic and thought provoking events, from dances and jigs to readings and gigs! www.ceilidhculture.co.uk

9[b[XhWj_d](+o[Whie\

GLASGOW INTERNATIONAL JAZZ FESTIVAL 29 JUNE - 3 JULY MILES DAVIS | RAY CHARLES

DIZZY GILLESPIE | OSCAR PETERSON

STAN GETZ | HERBIE HANCOCK

CHICK COREA | HORACE SILVER

AL GREEN | GEORGE BENSON Brochure & booking available from late February 2011. 0131 228 1155 • www.usherhall.co.uk

18 The List Scottish Festivals 2011

MAX ROACH | ELVIN JONES SARAH VAUGHAN | PAT METHENY WWW.JAZZFEST.CO.UK


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JANUARY 2011 13–30 JANUARY

CELTIC CONNECTIONS MUSIC Various venues, Glasgow, 0141 353 8000, celticconnections.com

See panel. 25 JANUARY

UP HELLY AA HERITAGE Town centre, Lerwick, Shetland, uphellyaa.org

Europe’s largest fire festival has been a Shetland tradition since the 1880s. For one day, the ‘Jarl’ squad, in their Viking-like apparel, march through Lerwick town for the proclamation of ‘the bill’. The series of parades past schools, hospitals and the town hall culminates in the burning of a full-sized galley, before partying through the night. 28 JANUARY–6 FEBRUARY

WINTER WORDS LITERATURE/FAMILY Pitlochry Festival Theatre, Portna-Craig, Pitlochry, Perthshire, 01796 484626, pitlochry.org.uk

Get together with great minds such as Dick Strawbridge from Celebrity Masterchef, mountaineer Stephen Venables, politician Dennis Canavan, journalist Sally Magnusson and rubber-faced comedian Phil Cool for a week of events in celebration of words. 28 JANUARY–6 FEBRUARY

EDINBURGH IRANIAN FESTIVAL MULTI-ARTS Various venues, Edinburgh, ediranfest.co.uk

The volunteer-run cultural festival, which celebrates the arts, foods

Details correct at time of going to press but are subject to change or cancellation. Please check with festival organiser before travelling. Updated information will also be available at list.co.uk

CELTIC CONNECTIONS Boundary-busting line-up setting January alight The phenomenon that is Celtic Connections now dominates the Scottish music scene in January. It is hard to remember the time when that month was regarded as a no-go area for events – the received wisdom was that no one had any money left, everyone was partied-out after New Year and nobody would stir out into the cold for a gig. The creation of a mammoth festival out of nowhere back in 1994 blew that theory out of the water and gave birth to the monster that now fills out a considerable slab of the month with a roster of international stars and up-and-coming young talents. If the festival’s roots lie in folk and Celtic music, it has been wideranging in interpreting that remit from the outset. Having any kind of actual Celtic connection was quickly beside the point – being invited to the festival was credentials enough. Folk, world music, jazz, pop, rock, electronica (or Celtronika), symphony orchestras – you name it, Celtic Connections has it tucked away somewhere in its massive multi-venue programme. Capercaillie’s Donald Shaw took over the artistic direction of the event from Colin Hynd back in 2007 and has presided over a further broadening of its boundaries. It is almost pointless to list names – the 2011 event had over 1,500 artists from all around the globe. Everyone who is anyone in the roots music scene has been here, most of them many times over. The festival also has its own roster of ambitious self-generated projects, from opening night spectacles to the admirable New Voices series of Sunday lunchtime commissions. Various venues, Glasgow, 13–30 Jan 2011; 19 Jan–15 Feb 2012, 0141 353 8000, celticconnections.com The List Scottish Festivals 2011 19


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and traditions of Iran, returns after a successful first outing in 2009. Performances and interactive sessions are geared towards adults and children alike. 31 JANUARY–5 FEBRUARY

MANIPULATE VISUAL THEATRE FESTIVAL

SPOTLIGHT ON . . . GLASGOW FILM FESTIVAL Enterprising celebration of the big screen

In terms of ticket sales alone, the GFF is Scotland’s fastest growing film festival. It’s really not difficult to see how or why. Entering its seventh year, this young and plucky celebration of new and old cinema takes place in the bleakest of winter months, and yet still manages to bring hope. The 2011 programme is a chest of riches. There’s a small retrospective to mark the centenary of the birth of Ginger Rogers. Mark Millar comes on board for a strand about superheroes in Glasgow and it should be a particularly good year for documentaries. There are also two very brilliant strands to the festival: this year’s Glasgow Youth Film Festival will, amazingly, premiere Simon Pegg and Nick Frost’s new film Paul and the Music and Film Festival which this year boasts a near seminal programme. Other themes include fashion, horror and East Germany. Various venues, Glasgow, 17–27 Feb, 0141 332 6535, glasgowfilmfestival.org.uk

20 The List Scottish Festivals 2011

THEATRE & DANCE/FILM & TV Traverse Theatre, 10 Cambridge Street, Edinburgh, 0131 228 1404, manipulatefestival.org

Having started life in Dundee and now flourishing in Edinburgh, this enterprising festival promotes world-class animation and puppet theatre for adults. The 2011 event includes masterclasses with Compagnie Philippe Genty and the latest show by the acclaimed 1927 company. 31 JANUARY–13 FEBRUARY

FIFE FESTIVAL OF MUSIC MUSIC Various venues, Fife, ffom.org.uk

The Fife Festival of Music was founded in 1981 to support and develop music-making in the community. Performers range from primary school children to adults, in vocal and instrumental classes both competitive and non-competitive. All performances receive a review by a professional adjudicator.

FEBRUARY 1–28 FEBRUARY

LET’S GET LYRICAL MUSIC/LITERATURE/FAMILY Various venues, Edinburgh and Glasgow, letsgetlyrical.com

A one-off collaboration between the Unesco City of Literature (Edinburgh) and Unesco City of Music (Glasgow), exploring the forgotten poetry of song lyrics. On the busy programme are rhymetime sessions for toddlers, a lecture on disco lyrics that turns into a club night afterwards, sessions on playground rhymes and war songs, and much more.

3–6 FEBRUARY

KINGUSSIE FOOD ON FILM FESTIVAL FILM & TV/FOOD & DRINK Various venues, Kingussie, Highland, kingussiefoodonfilm.co.uk

Kingussie’s annual winter festival brings the big screen to the beautiful Highlands of Scotland to celebrate the world of food. Filmmakers and food producers gather to make films and food, and films about food, as well as a food hall showcasing Highland produce and an Oscar-style awards night. 4–6 FEBRUARY

FIFE JAZZ FESTIVAL MUSIC Various venues, Fife, 01592 611101, fifejazzfestival.com

A celebration of jazz and of Fife with music ranging from the traditional to the contemporary and including dances and big bands. Confirmed for 2011 are Courtney Pine, Mina Agossi, Zoe Rahman, Fife Jazz Orchestra playing Songs for Swinging Lovers, Main Street Blues, Red Stripe Band, The Big Dance and Havana Swing. 11–15 FEBRUARY

FORT WILLIAM MOUNTAIN FESTIVAL OUTDOOR Nevis Centre, Fort William, Highland, 01397 700001, mountainfestival.co.uk

A five-day programme of lectures, films, workshops, music, theatre and art celebrating mountain culture in the Highlands. Now incorporating screenings from the Banff Mountain Film Festival World Tour. 14 FEBRUARY–26 MARCH

NEW TERRITORIES FESTIVAL MULTI-ARTS Various venues, Glasgow, newmoves.co.uk/new-territories

The long-standing international festival of live art takes root at the CCA, Tramway, the Arches and even the Apple Store and, for the


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first time, it is extending its range to Aberdeen. The line-up includes performance collective Black Market International, dance companies O Vertigo, Sol Pico and Didier Théron, and Scottish choreographers Iona Kewney and Anna Krzystek. Richard Strange’s Cabaret Futura also makes an appearance and there’s a focus on Poland’s underground artists. 17–27 FEBRUARY

GLASGOW FILM FESTIVAL FILM & TV/FAMILY Various venues, Glasgow, 0141 332 6535, glasgowfilmfestival.org.uk

See panel. 28 FEBRUARY–13 MARCH

DUNDEE WOMEN’S FESTIVAL MULTI-ARTS Various venues, Dundee, d-v-a.org.uk/dundee-womensfestival

In celebration of International Women’s Day on 8 March, Dundee Voluntary Action organises a smorgasbord of film, music, dance, discussions, arts and outdoor activities across 24 venues.

MARCH 4–17 MARCH

MIDDLE EASTERN FESTIVAL OF SPIRITUALITY AND PEACE IN EDINBURGH MUSIC/LITERATURE/HERITAGE Various venues, Edinburgh, 0131 331 4469, mesp.org.uk

With spiritual retreats, workshops and conferences, the festival welcomes guests from across the UK and further afield to enrich the sense of cultural exchange. 4–12 MARCH

AYE WRITE! GLASGOW BOOK FESTIVAL LITERATURE/FAMILY Mitchell Library, North Street, Glasgow, 0844 847 1683, ayewrite.com

See panel, page 22.

MAGNERS GLASGOW INTERNATIONAL COMEDY FESTIVAL Funny business in bars, clubs and theatres Launched with a pilot event in 2003, the Glasgow International Comedy Festival has done that strength-to-strength thing and is now one of the key events in the British comedy calendar. After a record-busting 2010 extravaganza, there’s no reason to expect this year to be any less of a step forward with the usual bunch of cracking international names, top UK-wide mirth-makers and freshfaced local stand-up talent all seeking to make Glaswegians giggle in over 50 venues across the city. Those who like their comedy with a dollop of spice will be delighted to know of US rabble-rouser Doug Stanhope’s appearance at the King’s. Other names to frighten the horses with include Scott Capurro, Andrew Lawrence and Jerry Sadowitz while gentler treats are to be savoured in the company of Tim Vine, Stephen K Amos, Milton Jones and Jason Cook. The cream of Scotland’s circuit fraternity will be mucking round in the shape of Mark Nelson, Raymond Mearns, Susan Calman and Gary Little while rising stars such as Daniel Sloss, Imran Yusuf and sketch troupe How Do I Get Up There? will seize the chance to play with the big boys and girls. If you can’t stand comedy unless it says ‘award-winner’ on the poster, Russell Kane, Tim Key, Jenny Eclair and Sean Hughes are among those who have emerged from Edinburgh Fringes with the big gong in their mitts, while household names such as Frank Carson, John Bishop and Fred MacAulay will attract those who might not normally go in for a festival gig. The more curious will be intrigued by the appearances of rambling surrealist Paul Foot, telly medic Dr Phil Hammond and environmental pioneer George Monbiot. Various venues, Glasgow, 17 Mar–10 Apr, 0844 395 4005, glasgowcomedyfestival.com The List Scottish Festivals 2011 21


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5–17 MARCH

16–20 MARCH

INVERNESS MUSIC FESTIVAL

STANZA: SCOTLAND’S INTERNATIONAL POETRY FESTIVAL

MUSIC Various venues, Inverness, invernessmusicfestival.org

A competitive music festival open to all ages and abilities, offering prizes in a range of fields. 7–11 MARCH

SPOTLIGHT ON . . . AYE WRITE! Exercising the Gray matter, Glasgow style

Here comes the sixth annual celebration of books and creative literary endeavour in the splendid setting of Glasgow’s Mitchell Library with another mix of author talks, schools programme, family events and handson workshops plus, for those with an inner performer burning inside, a Scottish Poetry Slam. The festival likes to celebrate Glasgow writers, placing the best of the city’s authors alongside international names. Among the key focal points for the 2011 Aye Write! is the 30th anniversary of Alasdair Gray’s Lanark and to mark that special birthday will be several Gray-based events including a special exhibition based on the book in the library’s main hall. Scotland 2020 will also feature as a theme as the festival tries to imagine what the political and cultural landscape of the nation will look like in the near-future. Mitchell Library, North Street, Glasgow, 4–12 Mar, 0844 847 1683, ayewrite.com

22 The List Scottish Festivals 2011

GALLOWAY MUSIC FESTIVAL MUSIC/FAMILY Various venues, Stranraer and Newton Stewart, Galloway, 01671 404306, gallowaymusicfestival.org.uk

Music competition for adults and children of school age. There are a wide range of categories including piano, brass, woodwind, recorder, strings, ensemble, vocal, choral, jazz, recital, composition, speech and verse, and Scottish traditional.

LITERATURE Various venues, St Andrews, Fife, 01334 475000, stanzapoetry.org

The only established poetry festival in Scotland is an opportunity to hear world-class poets in atmospheric venues. Confirmed highlights of the 2011 event include Julia Donaldson, Douglas Dunn and Ciaran Carson. 17 MARCH–10 APRIL

MAGNERS GLASGOW INTERNATIONAL COMEDY FESTIVAL COMEDY Various venues, Glasgow, 0844 395 4005, glasgowcomedyfestival.com

See panel, page 21.

8 MARCH–8 APRIL

18–20 MARCH

EAST RENFREWSHIRE STORYTELLING FESTIVAL

NIEL GOW SCOTTISH FIDDLE FESTIVAL

MULTI-ARTS Various venues, East Renfrewshire, 0141 577 3500, eastrenfrewshire.gov.uk

MUSIC Various venues, Dunkeld and Birnam, Perthshire, 01350 728920, niel-gow.co.uk

In the past, this festival has included storytelling using song, dance and puppetry, short-story theatre, professional Scottish based storytellers, readings from visiting authors and concerts from the Edinburgh Quartet, as well as the annual Eileen Gilmour award for creative writing.

Niel Gow was a music prodigy and Perthshire’s best fiddler at the time of the Enlightenment. Since 2004, this festival has brought together Scottish fiddlers and other musicians to carry on his legacy.

9–13 MARCH

ABERDEEN JAZZ FESTIVAL MUSIC Various venues, Aberdeen, 0845 1110302, aberdeenjazzfestival.com

This annual showcase holds a range of gigs by saxophonists, pianists, bassists and other musicians from the UK and abroad, as well as local Aberdeenshire talent. Venues include the Blue Lamp, one of Scotland’s best jazz haunts. The Maceo Parker Group featuring Dennis Rollins is confirmed for 2011.

18–20 MARCH

THE HIPPODROME FESTIVAL OF SILENT CINEMA FILM & TV The Hippodrome Cinema, Bo’ness, 01324 506850, falkirk.gov.uk/silentcinemafest

A weekend of rare films with live accompaniment in Scotland’s oldest purpose-built picture house. Featuring musical performances, family events, local archive films, classic silent films (including a gala screening of It starring Clara Bow) and the big noise in silent cinema accompaniment, pianist Neil Brand.


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“THE MOST BEAUTIFUL SITE AND THE BUZZIEST FEELING OF ANY BOOK FESTIVAL.” John Carey

St Andrews 16-20 March performances • readings music • panel discussions exhibitions • installations workshops • slam • open mics 100 poets musicians artists 80+ events many events free tickets: 01334 475000 brochures: 01334 474610 www.stanzapoetry.org

13–29 AUGUST 2011 WWW.EDBOOKFEST.CO.UK

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21–25 MARCH

LORN DRAMA FESTIVAL THEATRE & DANCE Corran Halls, Corran Esplanade, Oban, Argyll, argyllcommunities.org /lorndramafestival

A feast of comedies, dramas and absurd pieces performed by a range of groups from all over Argyll across three separate evenings. 25 MARCH–16 APRIL

CEILIDH CULTURE MULTI-ARTS Various venues, Edinburgh, 0131 228 1155, ceilidhculture.co.uk

In its eighth year, Ceilidh Culture celebrates the thriving traditional arts in Scotland’s capital city; music, song, dance and storytelling are represented by over 30 organisations in a range of concerts, family-friendly workshops and late-night folk clubs. Ceilidhs include introductions for those unsure of their steps and there’s also a traditional street fair on Castle Street. 4-26 MARCH

BLEND EXTRA MUSIC Various venues, Stirling, 01786 274000, stirling.gov.uk

A celebration of roots and folk music with an eclectic line-up of old hands and newcomers performing ancient melodies, new commissions and everything in between. This year’s expanded programme includes concerts by artists such as Blazin’ Fiddles, James Grant and Karen Matheson, free lunchtime sessions, workshops and film screenings.

Details correct at time of going to press but are subject to change or cancellation. Please check with festival organiser before travelling. Updated information will also be available at list.co.uk 24 The List Scottish Festivals 2011

APRIL

8–13 APRIL

ITALIAN FILM FESTIVAL

EDINBURGH INTERNATIONAL HARP FESTIVAL

FILM & TV Filmhouse, Edinburgh; Glasgow Film Theatre; Dundee Contemporary Arts, italianfilmfestival.org.uk

MUSIC Merchiston Castle School, 294 Colinton Road, Edinburgh, 0131 554 0212, harpfestival.co.uk

In 2010, this celebration of Italian filmmaking included titles by world-class directors such as Giuseppe Tornatore, Michele Placido, Marco Bellocchio, Francesa Archibugi and Davide Ferrario, as well as exciting newcomer Federico Bondi. It also celebrated the 50th anniversary of La Dolce Vita by revisiting the 1960 Fellini classic.

The Clarsach Society’s 30th annual Harp Festival returns in April with courses for all abilities and styles – including jazz, pedal, Welsh, Breton and Scottish techniques – workshops, masterclasses, latenight sessions and concerts.

1–16 APRIL

4–10 APRIL

PUPPET ANIMATION FESTIVAL FAMILY/FILM & TV/THEATRE Various venues, Scotland-wide, puppetanimationfestival.org

A month-long festival taking place in venues all over Scotland, featuring events, performances and workshops for children. This feast of puppetry is the largest performing arts festival for children in the UK.

8–13 APRIL

GLENFARG FOLK FEAST MUSIC/FAMILY Various venues, Glenfarg, Perthshire, 01337 831403, glenfargfolkclub.com

A weekend of ceilidh dancing, workshops and music in the idyllic setting of Glenfarg in the Ochil Hills of Perthshire. There are workshops for mandolin, bodhran and songwriting, as well as a singaround, a song competition and concert for children and adults. 9–22 APRIL

6 APRIL

TARTAN DAY HERITAGE Various venues, Scotland-wide, tartandayscotland.com

Tartan Day is an annual celebration of all things Scottish and marks the signing of the Declaration of Arbroath at Arbroath Abbey in 1320. It is celebrated across the world (most famously in New York with its Tartan Day Parade) but of course Scotland is at the centre of the action. An exciting range of events – from haggis hurling to ceilidhs to fashion shows – runs 1–10 April, taking place across Angus and other parts of the country and highlighting Scotland’s history, heritage, legacy and future.

EDINBURGH INTERNATIONAL SCIENCE FESTIVAL FAMILY/SCIENCE Various venues, Edinburgh, 0131 553 0322, sciencefestival.co.uk

See panel. 13–15 APRIL

CELTIC MEDIA FESTIVAL FILM & TV/HERITAGE An Lanntair, Kenneth Street, Stornoway, Isle of Lewis, 0141 302 1737, celticmediafestival.co.uk

Promoting the languages and cultures of the Celtic countries, this three-day celebration of broadcasting, screen and film talent gives awards in categories including documentary, drama


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and animation. The main events are talks, interviews and discussion panels. 17–24 APRIL

ON THE ROCKS MULTI-ARTS Various venues, St Andrews, Fife, ontherocksfestival.com

A student-led arts festival spanning many genres in a variety of venues around St Andrews. Highlights include the Half Cut film section which showcases the variety of student-made films from around Scotland, with an elite judging panel casting its eye on the creators of tomorrow. Add to that a student loan-friendly maximum ticket price of £5 and you’ve got yourself a bargain. 22–24 APRIL

NORTHERN NASHVILLE COUNTRY MUSIC FESTIVAL MUSIC Indoor Riding Centre, Halkirk, Caithness, nncmc.co.uk

The Halkirk Riding Centre plays host to a weekend of American country crooners including Gail Davies, Gene Watson and footstomping band Highway 101, who all made the trek across the pond to join homegrown talent such as Slange Ava and The Chicken Pickers for a hoedown at the top of Scotland. 22–24 APRIL

ORKNEY JAZZ FESTIVAL MUSIC The Stromness Hotel, The Pierhead, Stromness, Orkney, stromnesshotel.com

Based at the Stromness Hotel, this is a weekend of mainly traditional jazz by visiting and local performers. It includes the now traditional Annual Jazz Festival Service of Praise at St Magnus Church led by Bill Salmond’s Louisiana Ragtime Band.

EDINBURGH INTERNATIONAL SCIENCE FESTIVAL Testing times for old and young If the world’s first festival of science and technology had a mascot, it would surely be Dr Bunhead. With his delight in big bangs, the TV boffin (aka Tom Pringle) and frequent visitor to Edinburgh is the epitome of a festival that treats science as the adventurous, exciting and revelatory subject it is. Taking place in the Easter holidays, the 22-year-old event – one of the largest in Europe – falls into two broad strands. The first involves hands-on activities for children in venues including the Royal Botanic Garden, the City Art Centre and Edinburgh Zoo. Typically, these include entertaining encounters with physics, chemistry and the natural world that seem more like playtime than a science lesson. The second strand is more sober, but no less fascinating: a crammed programme of talks for adults by leading scientists on subjects as diverse as astronomy, evolution and advances in medicine. One of the highlights of the 2011 programme is Atomise, an exhibition at the Royal Botanic Garden featuring experiments, gadgets and workshops for primary school pupils. Supported by the Scottish Government’s expo fund, it celebrates the international year of chemistry with first-hand encounters with magnetic ‘nanosludge’ that can ooze up the side of a jar, dancing custard and crystalline creations. It runs until 5 June, so even if you miss the festival, you still have a chance to give it a whirl. Meanwhile, look out for the Street Science team bringing the wonders of science to city shopping centres with their ‘tricycles of tricks’. They’re likely to get you up to speed on anything from the dangers of flatulent cows to the technicalities of carbon capture. Various venues, Edinburgh, 9–22 Apr, 0131 553 0322, sciencefestival.co.uk The List Scottish Festivals 2011 25


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SPOTLIGHT ON . . . BELTANE FIRE FESTIVAL Spring awakening

What started in 1988 as a word-of-mouth cult event, revelling in its subversive atmosphere and frowned upon by the authorities, has grown into a major festival that attracts 12,000 latenight revellers. A revival of an ancient Celtic pagan tradition, Beltane ushers in the spring with teams of seminaked drummers daubed in coloured paint, various dancing characters and the ritualistic lighting of a massive bonfire. With so many people on the hill – many choosing to stay up all night to greet the dawn – you might not appreciate all the subtleties of the story of the May Queen who journeys with her consort the Green Man and her entourage of handmaidens and White Women to the tranceinducing rhythm of the drums. What you will appreciate, however, is the wild carnival spirit and a heady sense of departing winter and the season of rebirth ahead. Calton Hill, Edinburgh, 30 Apr, beltane.org

26 The List Scottish Festivals 2011

28 APRIL–1 MAY

29-30 APRIL

SHETLAND FOLK FESTIVAL

KNOYDART FESTIVAL

MUSIC Various venues, Lerwick, Shetland, 01595 694757, shetlandfolkfestival.com

MUSIC/FAMILY Long Beach, Inverie, Knoydart, Mallaig, Highland, knoydartfestival.com

Now entering its 31st year, this internationally renowned festival – the most northerly folk festival in the UK – continues to host eclectic line-ups of folk, blues, jazz and swing. It’s famous for showcasing Shetland musicianship, especially the unique fiddle tradition. It was named event of the year after a public vote at the MG ALBA Scots Trad Music Awards in 2010. This year’s programme includes international stars The Wilders and Pokey LaFarge & the South City Three, and young Scots Breabach.

Only on its second outing, this remote seaside festival has pulled in some big names from the Scottish ska, world, and folk scene, including Bombskare, Orkestra del Sol and Moishe’s Bagel. Beyond the music, there’s food, sports, family fun, films, crafting and beach bonfires.

28 APRIL–1 MAY

HIGHLANDS AND ISLANDS MUSIC AND DANCE FESTIVAL MUSIC/DANCE Various venues, Oban, Argyll, obanfestival.org

From its modest beginnings in 1984, the Oban-based festival has become one of Scotland’s major showcases of young talent, with over 125 competition classes in music and dance disciplines. Prestigious national competitions including the Scottish Area Finals for Highland Dancing, the Accordion and Fiddle Masters, and the Scottish Choreography Challenge are all part of the programme and there’s a grand festival parade through the town on the opening Saturday.

29 APRIL–1 MAY

GIRVAN TRADITIONAL FOLK FESTIVAL MUSIC Various venues, Girvan, Ayrshire, girvanfolkfestival.co.uk

Now in its 37th year, Girvan’s longstanding traditional music festival celebrates Scottish folk heritage with a weekend of instrumental workshops, musical pub crawls, an open stage, storytelling and circus skills workshops for children. Camping available. 29 APRIL–1 MAY

STRATHSPEY IN MAY FESTIVAL MUSIC/FOOD & DRINK Various venues, Grantown-onSpey, Highland, strathspeyinmay.com

Grantown-on-Spey’s celebration of traditional music in the heart of Grampian whisky country takes place over the May Bank Holiday weekend and includes community events, a farmers’ market, pipe band performances and of course some of the finest in traditional music talent.

28 APRIL–2 MAY

SPIRIT OF SPEYSIDE WHISKY FESTIVAL

29 APRIL–7 MAY

FOOD & DRINK Various venues, Speyside, 07876 414046, spiritofspeyside.com

FILM & TV Various venues, Dumfries and Galloway, 01387 264808, rbcft.co.uk

Drams, music, food and fun in malt whisky country. A celebration of Speyside’s whisky heritage, including specialist distillery tours, tastings and dinners.

DUMFRIES FILM FESTIVAL

A film festival showcasing cinema from around the world, past and present, now in its fifth year, and with a special focus on films made


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in or by natives of Dumfriesshire. Special events include workshops, talks and competitions and each year is programmed with an overarching theme. 30 APRIL

BELTANE FIRE FESTIVAL HERITAGE Calton Hill, Edinburgh, beltane.org

See panel. TBC APRIL 2012

GI: GLASGOW INTERNATIONAL FESTIVAL OF VISUAL ART ART Various venues, Glasgow, glasgowinternational.org

Biannual festival of contemporary art commissioned from artists around the globe and including exhibitions in traditional gallery spaces, plus unique site-specific installations and live performance art. The 2010 festival included Glasgow-born artist Susan Philipsz’ Lowlands, an installation on the banks of the Clyde, which went on to win that year’s Turner Prize.

MAY 2–9 MAY

CAITHNESS AND SUTHERLAND WALKING FESTIVAL OUTDOOR Various locations, Caithness and Sutherland.

A week of guided walks in some of the wildest and most northerly reaches of Scotland, taking in the scenery and the local wildlife. The festival includes a jaunt to Dunnet Head, which is further north than Moscow.

Details correct at time of going to press but are subject to change or cancellation. Please check with festival organiser before travelling. Updated information will also be available at list.co.uk

BURNS AN’ A’ THAT Ayr time for the bard There is little ‘cowrin’ or indeed ‘timorous’ about the Burns an’ a’ That festival, which in 2011 celebrates its tenth year on the scene. A tribute to Scotland’s most iconic of poets, Robert Burns, this multiarts mash-up has boasted the crème de la crème of the Scottish arts scene over the years with its distinctive brand of cultural showcase. Set largely in Ayrshire but with special events often sprinkled around the country, the programme embraces everything from poetry, debate and dancing to music, readings and songs, not forgetting the obligatory dram or two, courtesy of the festival’s food and drink strand. Offering a platform for established and local upcoming talent, this annual Burns fest also welcomes poets, performers, actors and musicians from around the world, as they perform and discuss their own take on Scottish culture and the great man himself. Collaborations are very much to the fore and previous line-ups have included the mighty American singer-songwriter Lou Reed joining forces with the Orchestra of Scottish Opera, as well as oneoff solo gigs from the likes of Aztec Camera front man Roddy Frame. Meanwhile, some of Scotland’s finest – namely Eddi Reader, Phil Cunningham and Dougie McLean – regularly show their face. Taking an open-minded and wide-ranging approach to the poet’s influence, Burns an’ a’ That welcomes all forms from contemporary jazz and rock sounds to more traditional numbers. Look out in 2011 for the continuation of its relatively new initiative Ayrplay, which gives new bands the opportunity to battle it out for a spot on the festival stage. And don’t forget Ayrstrike, the largest coarse fishing competition in Scotland. Various venues, Ayrshire, May, dates tbc, 01292 616265, burnsfestival.com The List Scottish Festivals 2011 27


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5-8 MAY

DEAD BY DAWN FILM & TV Filmhouse, 88 Lothian Road, Edinburgh, deadbydawn.co.uk

Scotland’s international horror film festival screens around 50 films in four days, including many UK premières, cutting-edge experimental work and classics. It awards film directors and début films with three annual awards.

SPOTLIGHT ON . . . FENCE COLLECTIVE’S HOMEGAME DIY knees-up from favourite cult label

Micro-label Fence Records’ annual takeover of its East Neuk coastal home village of Anstruther has become a small but legendary event on the festival calendar. Fence heads Johnny Lynch (aka Pictish Trail and one half of Silver Columns) and Kenny Anderson (aka King Creosote) invite a selection of local and national acts to fill the popular tourist spot’s halls, bars and famous chip shops. Expect a line-up of favourite Fence acts plus an eclectic mix of invited guests from further afield at the 500-capacity event. It’s still uncertain whether last year’s exceptional AwayGame event on the Isle of Eigg will be repeated in September. Various venues, Anstruther & Cellardyke, 6–8 May, fencerecords.com

28 The List Scottish Festivals 2011

dramatic scenery of the Highlands, catering to the friendly group of walkers who had regularly come to Aviemore over the years. As opportunities to bag some Munros go, they don’t come much better. 9–15 MAY

BANK OF SCOTLAND IMAGINATE FESTIVAL FAMILY/THEATRE & DANCE Various venues, Edinburgh, 0131 228 1404, imaginate.org.uk

6-8 MAY

See panel, page 30.

FENCE COLLECTIVE’S HOMEGAME

9–20 MAY

MUSIC Various venues, Anstruther & Cellardyke, Fife, fencerecords.com

See panel. 6–8 MAY

ULLAPOOL BOOK FESTIVAL LITERATURE Village Hall, Market Street, Ullapool, Highland, ullapoolbookfestival.co.uk

Fiction, non-fiction and poetry read in English, Gaelic and Scots by great writers in a wonderful setting. Includes a day trip to the uninhabited wildlife haven of Isle Martin. 7–13 MAY

LOCH SHIEL SPRING FESTIVAL MUSIC Various venues, Glenfinnan, Highland, lochshielfestival.com

A week-long festival of chamber music in the Scottish Highlands featuring home-grown talents with international reputations. 8–13 MAY

AVIEMORE WALKING FESTIVAL OUTDOOR Various locations, Aviemore, Highland, nbremmer.f2s.com

Following the demise of an earlier incarnation of the festival, local enthusiasts Neil Bremner and Steve Salem have organised a varied programme of walks amid the

BOOKED LITERATURE/FAMILY Various venues, West Dunbartonshire, libraryonline.westdunbarton.gov.uk

This annual literature festival is run by the West Dunbartonshire Library Service and, by virtue of its modest size, allows more opportunities to meet and chat to writers than many larger festivals. The festival celebrated its tenth anniversary in 2010 and over the decade has seen many of Scotland’s foremost writers (including AL Kennedy, Louise Welsh and Julia Donaldson) giving talks and leading discussions. The programme offers a broad mix of events for adults and children. 13–15 MAY

FIFESING MUSIC/HERITAGE Fife Animal Park, Birnie Field, Collessie, Cupar, Fife, 01337 830773, springthyme.co.uk/fifesing

This celebration of the Scottish heritage of folk songs and ballads features evening concerts, workshops run by guest singers, singarounds, illustrated talks and archive films. It takes place in the scenic Fife Animal Park and guest singers include Jeff Warner, Jimmy Hutchison, Sheila Stewart, Jill Pidd, Terry Conway, Geordie Murison, Phyllis Martin, Jock Duncan and Doc Rowe.


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1 April - 10 April 2011 www.tartandayscotland.com

A week of celebrations

Tartan Day Scotland sponsored by

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13–15 MAY

19–29 MAY

FESTIVAL OF MUSEUMS

PERTH FESTIVAL OF THE ARTS

ART/HERITAGE/FAMILY Various venues, Scotland-wide, museumsgalleriesscotland.org.uk

SPOTLIGHT ON . . . BANK OF SCOTLAND IMAGINATE FESTIVAL Children’s theatre that adults can’t resist

Its core market ranges from babies to teenagers, but Imaginate reaches out to anyone with a taste for world-class theatre. Bringing together the best of Scottish work for young audiences and the most ground-breaking productions from abroad, the festival believes children deserve to be entertained as much as the rest of us. It means that instead of expecting heavy morals and laboured educational messages, you should look out for unbounded theatrical imagination. The line-up is likely to embrace the toddlercentred theatre of Scotland’s Starcatchers, performances by European dance companies, knockabout comedy for primary children and knotty dramas for secondary pupils. Pictured is White by Catherine Wheels (photo: Paul Watt). Various venues, Edinburgh, 9–15 May, 0131 228 1404, imaginate.org.uk

30 The List Scottish Festivals 2011

An annual festival of creativity in Scotland in which galleries and museums across the country open their doors both day and night for many exciting and unexpected events, this year based on the theme of ‘active’. 13–15 MAY

WORD LITERATURE/FAMILY King’s College Campus, University of Aberdeen, Aberdeen, 01224 641122, abdn.ac.uk/word

The decade-old festival hosts a packed weekend of readings, debates, music, exhibits, workshops, film screenings and creative workshops for adults and children, involving more than 100 authors, poets, musicians, actors, artists, thinkers and media personalities. It combines an international scope with a celebration of Scottish heritage.

MULTI-ARTS Various venues, Perth, 01738 621031, perthfestival.co.uk

The long-standing festival celebrates music, comedy, theatre and visual arts with performances confirmed for 2011 including Jools Holland and his Rhythm & Blues Orchestra, the Bolshoi Orchestra, Greg Davies, Joshua Bell, English Touring Opera, Tippett Quartet, Penguin Cafe, Loudon Wainwright III and even BBC Radio 4’s James Naughtie. 20–22 MAY

KELSO COUNTRY AND WESTERN FESTIVAL MUSIC Springwood Park, Kelso, Borders, kelso.countrymusic-festival.co.uk

Fourteen bands perform at this long weekend of country and western music. The showground provides ample space for camping, and on top of the musical programme there are other attractions over the weekend from line dance classes to fast-draw competitions.

14 MAY

BANCHORY FESTIVAL OF SCOTTISH MUSIC MUSIC Various venues, Banchory, banchoryfiddlers.co.uk

A celebration of Scottish traditional music hosted by the Banchory Strathspey and Reel Society, with the emphasis on fiddle music in all its forms. 14–15 MAY

LOCH FYNE FOOD FAIR FOOD & DRINK Loch Fyne Oyster Bar, Cairndow, Argyll, lochfyne.com

Held next to the oyster bar alongside its own stalls, past festivals have included sellers from Orkney to Ayrshire, with Fyne Ales supplying real ale, international wines and whiskies. Live music runs on both days, with a ceilidh and concert on Saturday evening.

20–21 MAY

HELENSBURGH AND LOMOND REAL ALE FESTIVAL FOOD & DRINK Helensburgh Sailing Club, Helensburgh, Argyll & Bute, helensburghalefestival.co.uk

A local ale festival in the picturesque Clydeside town of Helensburgh, featuring real ales from breweries around Scotland and beyond. Live acoustic music performances help the pints go down. 20–22 MAY

BOSWELL AUCHINLECK BOOK FESTIVAL LITERATURE Auchinleck House, Auchinleck, East Ayrshire.

A brand new book festival for Scotland, inspired by the former owner of its setting, 18th-century


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biographer James Boswell. In keeping with his interests, the focus is on journals, biography and travel writing, with a line-up of writers headed by Diana Athill and Selina Hastings. 20–29 MAY

DUMFRIES AND GALLOWAY ARTS FESTIVAL MULTI-ARTS/FAMILY Various venues, Dumfries and Galloway, 01387 253383, dgartsfestival.org.uk

See panel, page 32. 21–27 MAY

BALLATER ROYAL DEESIDE WALKING FESTIVAL OUTDOOR Various venues, Royal Deeside, Aberdeenshire, royaldeeside.org.uk/RDnews/ walkweek

A week of walking out and about in the Ballater countryside, getting to know the cultural and natural heritage of the area. Walks of varying degrees of difficulty are on offer each day, as well as evening entertainment. Pre-booking essential. 26–28 MAY

ISLE OF SKYE ACCORDION AND FIDDLE FESTIVAL MUSIC The Royal Hotel, Portree, Isle of Skye, skyemusic.co.uk/festival.asp

Three days of traditional fiddling joy based in beautiful Portree, with acts including the Susan MacFayden Scottish Dance Band and the Charlie Kirkpatrick Trio.

Details correct at time of going to press but are subject to change or cancellation. Please check with festival organiser before travelling. Updated information will also be available at list.co.uk

ORKNEY FOLK FESTIVAL A labour of love in Stromness and beyond The Orkney Folk Festival will slip smoothly into its 29th year in 2011 with the event’s typical mixture of visiting artists and local musicians. The former will be led by Session A9, Box Club, The Poozies and Four Men and a Dog, while the latter includes The Chair, Saltfishforty, the Stromness RBL Pipe Band, Stronsay’s Silver Darlings and the young musicians of the Orkney Traditional Music Project. Pictured are musicians playing at the festival finale in Stromness Academy. The local connection is not simply a part of the festival – it lies at the very heart of the enterprise. It is run – as it always has been – entirely by willing and seemingly tireless volunteers, some of them musicians in their own right, others simply eager to help out and get involved in the friendly spirit that characterises the event. The festival was devised by the Orkney Tourist Board and BBC Radio Orkney in 1983 as a way to increase dwindling visitor numbers in early summer, but quickly took on its own momentum. Stromness is very much the centre of the action for the four days of the festival, although some events do take place in Kirkwall and around the islands. The Town Hall, Stromness Academy’s Lecture Theatre and the Stromness Hotel are the principal venues, and the programme offers a mix of concerts, ceilidhs, informal sessions, workshops and talks. The music spans traditional acoustic folk songs to the latest crossover experiments, and if you are thinking of going, it is a very good idea to arrange your accommodation well in advance – Stromness fills up pretty quickly, although those ready to connect with nature should be able to find a corner in the council-run camp site there. Various venues, Orkney, 26–29 May, 01856 851331, orkneyfolkfestival.com The List Scottish Festivals 2011 31


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26–29 MAY

KNOCKENGORROCH WORLD CEILIDH MUSIC/FAMILY Knockengorroch Farm, Carsphairn, Dumfries, 01644 460662, knockengorroch.org.uk

SPOTLIGHT ON . . . DUMFRIES AND GALLOWAY ARTS FESTIVAL Arts outdoors and in

To say the Dumfries and Galloway Arts Festival ticks a few boxes would be an understatement. Established in 1979 with a view to bring world-class artists to a mainly rural area, it has grown in confidence and scale year on year. The nine-day, family-friendly multi-arts Borders-based festival boasts everything from theatre, dance and music to literature, film and art. Some of Scotland’s finest writers, artists, musicians and theatre troupes appear in venues large and small in towns and villages around the area. Keep your eye on the website for a full 2011 lineup as it is announced: acts revealed so far include Opera Wow, Dick Gaughan, and the Scottish Chamber Orchestra. Streets of Dumfries, an outdoor arts carnival featuring Skerryvore and Orkestra Del Sol, takes place on Sat 21 May. Various venues, Dumfries and Galloway, 20–29 May, 01387 253383, dgartsfestival.org.uk

32 The List Scottish Festivals 2011

A world of music in the hills, the festival features high-profile and emerging Scottish and international artists. It gives emphasis to world, folk and traditional music but includes experimental, urban and electronic music too. There’s also a dance tent, a Celtic long-house, cabaret, workshops, storytelling, healing area, global shopping, sessions, open mic, fire show, kids’ area, real ale, camping and more.

a weekend of live music. Its promotion of local talent won it the Pride of Angus award in 2008. Recent visitors have also included The Proclaimers and Ocean Colour Scene. The 2011 line-up is announced two weeks before the festival. 27–29 MAY

PEEBLES INTERNATIONAL JAZZ FESTIVAL MUSIC Various venues, Peebles, Borders, 01721 720726, peeblesjazzfestival.co.uk

A traditional/Dixieland music festival held annually in venues throughout the town. Features bands from all around the world.

26–29 MAY

ORKNEY FOLK FESTIVAL

27–29 MAY

MUSIC Various venues, Orkney, 01856 851331, orkneyfolkfestival.com

SKYE STORYTELLING FESTIVAL

See panel, page 31. 27–30 MAY

BURNS AN’ A’ THAT MULTI-ARTS Ayr Town Hall, Ayrshire, 01292 290300, burnsfestival.com

See panel, page 27. 27–29 MAY

COAST FESTIVAL OF THE VISUAL ARTS ART Various venues, Banff and Macduff, coastfestival.org.uk

Since 2008, Coast Festival of the Visual Arts has been enhancing the cultural life of this rugged coastal area with local and national artists exhibiting, participatory art workshops, public art installations and film screenings. 27–29 MAY

MONTROSE MUSIC FESTIVAL MUSIC Various venues, Montrose, Angus, montrosemusicfestival.co.uk

Montrose’s annual jamboree showcases nearly 50 musicians in

FAMILY Various venues, Isle of Skye, skye-storytelling-centre.co.uk

The theme of this year’s storytelling festival is ‘Celtic roots’, celebrating stories from European countries that were in the Celtic empire. Workshops are led by storytellers and there are evening ceilidhs over the weekend with music, dancing and story slots. Weather permitting, storywalks will also be in the programme. 27–29 MAY

KINTYRE SONGWRITERS FESTIVAL MUSIC White Hart Hotel, Campbeltown, Argyll, kintyresongwritersfestival.co.uk

A relaxed festival, with a folky feel but many more genres, aiming to showcase songwriting talents in the Kintyre region. Set up by Kenneth Gilchrist and Ross MacInness, it has been based at the White Hart Hotel since 2008 where performers such as The Wild Sarachs, Tales from Space and The Gilchristians (formed as a tribute to the late Gilchrist) have played.


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A festival in SW Scotland:

A world of music in the hills!

26th-29th MAY 2011

Horace Andy and Dub Asante DJ Yoda * Salsa Celtica * DJ Food

Adrian Edmondson and the Bad Shepherds The Demon Barber Roadshow * Russkaja * Lau Future Trad Collective feat. Michael McGoldrick * Aberfeldy * Found * Hidden Orchestra * Niteworks Plus workshops, dance tent, crafts, kids area, real ales, stalls, sessions, healing area, open mic, cabaret, camping, cinema, silent disco

More info and tickets: www.knockengorroch.org.uk 01644 460 662

AYRSHIRE & ARRAN Just be here

The List Scottish Festivals 2011 33


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27–29 MAY

LOCH NESS FILM FESTIVAL FILM & TV Craigmonie Centre, Drummadrochit and Abriachan Hall, Highland, lochnessfilmfestival.co.uk

A new independent film festival on the shores of Loch Ness that took place for the first time in 2010 and aims to screen short films by emerging talent from across the world. Also on the billing for the weekend are performances by local musicians and other entertainment.

SPOTLIGHT ON . . . WEST END FESTIVAL Go west young man

Edinburgh’s festival circuit may get maximum coverage but its Glasgow counterparts certainly know how to put on a show. A case in point is this, the largest of the city’s festival offerings. Relishing its independent credentials, the West End Festival was born of humble beginnings in 1996 and has grown into one of the area’s finest assets, celebrating both the city and the talented people who live and work there. In this jam-packed fortnight of fun, expect topnotch comedy, film, theatre, dance, music and much more. Annual highlights include Festival Sunday, which in 2010 boasted 33 bands across six stages at the city’s Kelvingrove Park. And you won’t be able to miss the lively midsummer street party. Various venues, Glasgow, 3–26 Jun, 0141 341 0844, westendfestival.co.uk

27 MAY–7 AUGUST

ABERDEEN INTERNATIONAL YOUTH FESTIVAL MULTI-ARTS/FAMILY Various venues, Aberdeen, 01224 215800, aiyf.org

One of the world’s biggest participatory festivals, this multiarts event brings together the best young theatre and dance companies, classical dance academies, youth orchestras, bands and music ensembles from around the world. 28–29 MAY

DUNDONALD MUSIC FESTIVAL MUSIC/FAMILY Various venues, Dundonald, Ayrshire, 07718 709914, dundonaldmusicfest.org.uk

A recent addition to the Scottish folk circuit, this lively, familyfriendly weekend of music includes concerts, dances, ceilidhs, competitions and pub jamming sessions in the pretty medieval town of Dundonald. Eight bands played in 2010. 28 MAY–5 JUNE

3 HARBOURS ARTS FESTIVAL FOOD & DRINK/OUTDOOR Various venues, East Lothian, 3harbours.co.uk

Ten days of art, music and 34 The List Scottish Festivals 2011

storytelling in Prestonpans, Port Seton and Cockenzie. Also incorporates its own seafood festival, a real ale tent, an art trail of displays in unusual locations around the three villages, and a kite display from Kite Scotland. TBC MAY

BORDER GAITHERIN MUSIC/FAMILY Various venues, Coldstream, Borders, 01573 224920, bordergaitherin.com

Traditional fiddle and flute music workshops and concerts in a stress-free, informal atmosphere, located on the banks of the river Tweed. A range of ability is welcomed, from young people to internationally renowned artists. Other events include regular open-stage nights, professional concerts, family ceilidh and Bodhran and Irish step dance classes. TBC MAY

DARVEL MUSIC FESTIVAL MUSIC Darvel Town Hall, West Main Street, Darvel, Ayrshire, 01560 321657, darvelmusicfestival.org

This annual event showcases top international, national and regional acts performing over the fortnight. Past performers include Hue & Cry, Capercaillie, Karine Polwart, Phil Cunningham and Aly Bain, and the Bluetones. TBC MAY

STAG AND DAGGER MUSIC Various venues, Glasgow, staganddagger.com

An unusual music festival split

Details correct at time of going to press but are subject to change or cancellation. Please check with festival organiser before travelling. Updated information will also be available at list.co.uk


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between London and Glasgow and featuring new live music acts, DJs and visual artists, in which one ticket gives access to several venues and over 100 performances. Unconfirmed at time of going to press. TBC MAY

STRICHEN FESTIVAL MULTI-ARTS Various venues, Strichen, Aberdeenshire, 01779 821301, buchanheritagesociety.co.uk

Showcasing music, song, verse, drama, storytelling and the Doric language, this festival celebrates the rich traditions still very much alive in the north east of Scotland. The three-day event features competitions and a prize winners’ concert, as well as dances and a ceilidh. TBC MAY

YELLOWS ON THE BROOM INTERNATIONAL MUSIC AND ARTS FESTIVAL MULTI-ARTS Sillyflatt farm, Inverbervie, Aberdeenshire, yellowsonthebroom.ifb.co.uk

A week of live music with magical and aerial surprise acts in venues around Angus. A local mill hosts music, arts and crafts workshops ranging from African drumming to willow weaving, choral singing and fairie lore.

JUNE 3–5 JUNE

CULROSS MUSIC AND ARTS FESTIVAL MULTI-ARTS Abbey House Estate, Culross, Fife, culrossfestival.com

From its roots as a folk festival in 1976, Culross festival has grown to encompass opera, blues, folk, comedy, drama and dance. The centrepiece for 2011’s festival is set to be an outdoor performance of Don Giovanni by a professional opera company.

EDINBURGH INTERNATIONAL FILM FESTIVAL The best of art house and crowd pleasers At 65 years old, the EIFF is the time-honoured jewel in the crown of Scotland’s film festivals, and arguably the most important film festival in the UK. With well over 100 new feature films, over twodozen of which are world premieres, the EIFF certainly sits at the big boys’ table. On top of that, the festival always boasts interesting, sometimes controversial retrospectives, short film programmes, panel discussions, live talks, educational and training sessions. The EIFF is also rare among UK film festivals in that, like the Cannes, Venice and Berlin film festivals, it is very much merit-led. After the departure of artistic director Hannah McGill last year, the EIFF has taken advice from critic Mark Cousins and actor Tilda Swinton and is switching direction. Moving the emphasis away from awards, it is taking on a team of guest curators to programme their own strands. In 2011, these will fall under the umbrella theme (and it’s a pretty broad umbrella) of ‘All that Heaven Allows’. Australian writer James Mullighan is this year’s producer. Having previously pitched itself as a ‘Festival of Discovery’, the EIFF built its reputation on juxtaposing the fresh and the new with guaranteed crowd pleasers. Last year, Toy Story 3 and Academy Award winner The Secret in their Eyes – plus a guest appearance by Patrick Stewart (pictured) – went head to head with Debra Granik’s remarkable Winter’s Bone and Werner Herzog’s bizarre My Son, My Son, What Have Ye Done? The new format should mean that for those with specific tastes, the festival will provide greater rewards than ever. In short the EIFF is a film lover’s paradise. Various venues, Edinburgh, 15–26 Jun, 0131 228 4051, edfilmfest.org.uk The List Scottish Festivals 2011 35


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2–5 JUNE

4 JUNE

ANGUS GLENS WALKING FESTIVAL

COLOURSFEST

OUTDOOR/FAMILY The Angus Glens and Kirriemuir Town Hall, Angus, angusahead.com/walking festival

SPOTLIGHT ON . . . GLASGOW INTERNATIONAL JAZZ FESTIVAL World stars and homegrown heroes

Conjured up from nothing in typical Glasgow style as a major international event in 1987, the festival has weathered more than a few storms, but has also hosted some of the biggest names in jazz, including Miles Davis and Sarah Vaughan. The Old Fruitmarket has become its core venue, featuring a mix of international stars and ambitious home-grown projects from the Scottish National Jazz Orchestra and the Ryan Quigley Big Band. Speaking of homegrown, the second weekend now features a festival-within-afestival of that name – Homegrown – a showcase for both established and emerging names on the Scottish jazz scene. It is a reminder that developing local talent has long been a part of its mission. The 25th anniversary will look back to past events as well as to the future. Various venues, Glasgow, 29 Jun–3 Jul, 0141 353 8000, jazzfest.co.uk

A four-day festival for ramblers large and small – take your pick from a list of walks ranging from ‘easy’ to ‘extremely strenuous’. You get views of the Angus Glens during the day and buffet suppers, live music and ceilidhs in the evenings. This year, it is introducing more moderate walks and walks suitable for families as well as the old favourites. 3–5 JUNE

MEADOWS FESTIVAL MUSIC/COMMUNITY The Meadows, Melville Drive, Edinburgh, meadowsfestival.org.uk

Since 1974, the Meadows has hosted a weekend of live music and fairs. Expect two live music stages, a kids’ tent with face painting and storytelling, stalls selling antiques, clothing, fair trade products and food, an art tent, funfair and a primary school football competition. 3–5 JUNE

NORTHERN ROOTS FESTIVAL MUSIC Bogbain Farm, Inverness, Highland, northernrootsfestival .wordpress.com

A festival of cross-genre roots music from folk to bluegrass to country run by Bruce MacGregor of Blazin’ Fiddles and taking place on a farm outside Inverness. 3–26 JUNE

WEST END FESTIVAL MULTI-ARTS Various venues, West End, Glasgow, 0141 341 0844, westendfestival.co.uk

See panel, page 34. 36 The List Scottish Festivals 2011

MUSIC Braehead Arena, King’s Inch Road, Glasgow, colours.co.uk

Scotland’s biggest clubbing event celebrates its tenth anniversary in typically huge fashion, with six arenas of pumping beats playing host to 10,000 clubbers and a roster of guest DJs headed by Eddie Halliwell. 4–11 JUNE

ORKNEY FINE WINE FESTIVAL FOOD & DRINK Various venues, Orkney, 01856 888792, thelongship.co.uk/winefestival.php

An informal celebration of good wine, food and the matching of the two. A number of local restaurants put on special wine dinners, featuring winemakers and other experts, while a wine fair in Kirkwall offers over 50 wines for tasting. 9–11 JUNE

GONORTH MUSIC Various venues, Inverness, gonorth.biz/home.php

A two-day energetic rock and indie festival showcasing brand new musical talent, including free gigs, seminars, workshops and opportunities to network with movers and shakers in the creative industries. 9–12 JUNE

EDEN FESTIVAL MUSIC/FAMILY Raehills Meadows, St Anns, Moffat, Dumfries, edenfestival.co.uk

A welcoming, atmospheric, familyfriendly music and arts festival located in the Galloway hills, it features a colourful carnival, a procession, circus skills workshops, games and treasure hunts. Previous headliners have included the likes of Gil Scott Heron and Roots Manuva, while plenty of stage time is always given over to up and coming Scottish acts.


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10–12 JUNE

LOANHEAD MUSIC FESTIVAL MUSIC/FAMILY Various venues, Loanhead, Midlothian, loanheadfest.webeden.co.uk

Now 11 years old, the festival still emphasises pub sessions and fun. There are also open mic sessions, a craft fair and competitions for songwriting and the best recycled instrument. Workshops in the miners’ club include accordion, songwriting, slide guitar, banjo, finger-style guitar and fiddle. 10–12 JUNE

ROCKNESS MUSIC Dores, Inverness, Highlands, rockness.co.uk

See panel. 10–12 JUNE

TMSA KEITH FESTIVAL MUSIC/FAMILY Various venues, Keith, Aberdeenshire, 01542 882638, keithfestival.btinternet.co.uk

ROCKNESS Be seen with the scenery Celebrating its sixth year in 2011, RockNess has grown quickly to become Scotland’s second largest music festival. Hosting a range of big international headliners across an outdoor main stage, two large tents and a couple of smaller spaces, it’s blessed with some of the finest scenery you’re likely to find at any festival in the world. The main stage lies at the bottom of a sloping natural amphitheatre and in front of a view stretching along the length of Loch Ness, one of Scotland’s most popular tourist spots. Yet people don’t just come to look at the countryside. The festival was quick to announce its headliners for this year, with Kasabian, The Chemical Brothers and recent Scots success story Paolo Nutini all booked to appear. Regular attendees can no doubt look forward to a few surprises coming up as well; last year’s event boasted one of only two 2010 comeback appearances in the British Isles by The Strokes, a rare festival set from Aphex Twin and many new and old hit acts including Pendulum, Fatboy Slim, Crystal Castles, Vampire Weekend and Ian Brown. It was a good enough bill to win the LineUp of the Year title at the UK Festival Awards. In addition to great bands and a beautiful location, RockNess proudly plays up its green credentials with a ‘Respect the Ness’ campaign, offering tickets that include coach travel from all major cities in the UK. Student tickets and cheap early-bird tickets are also available, although the latter have all gone for this year. Dores, near Inverness, 10–12 Jun, rockness.co.uk 38 The List Scottish Festivals 2011

Traditional Scottish music festival which includes ceilidhs, competitions, concerts and sessions. 10–19 JUNE

LEITH FESTIVAL MULTI-ARTS/FAMILY/COMMUNITY Various venues, Leith, Edinburgh, 0131 555 4104, leithfestival.com

A growing community arts festival in which most participants, artists and performers are Leith-based. All 150 events are hosted in 50 venues within a one-mile radius in Edinburgh’s port, including the Leith Festival Gala Day on Leith Links, as well as the Leith Short Film Festival and Film Live Saturdays. 11–13 JUNE

DOUNE THE RABBIT HOLE MUSIC Doune Castle, Stirlingshire, dounetherabbithole.co.uk/wp

Lewis Carrol-inspired weekend


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The Royal Highland Show is a highlight of the countryside calendar

traditional bands to revivalist-style New Orleans groups, ragtime, early swing, classic jazz, Dixieland, rhythm and blues, and country and western. 17–18 JUNE

CUMNOCK MUSIC FESTIVAL MUSIC Various venues, Cumnock, Ayrshire, createcumnockarts.webeden .co.uk

A music festival and carnival weekend providing a great opportunity to catch some great local bands at a reasonable price along with competitions and workshops and musical stylings ranging from folk to pop. 17–22 JUNE

ST MAGNUS FESTIVAL festival set in the countryside surrounding Doune Castle. Expect beautiful surroundings, psychedelia, poetry, philosophy, dressing up, face painting, stories, sing-alongs and food and drink stalls aplenty. 15–26 JUNE

EDINBURGH INTERNATIONAL FILM FESTIVAL FILM & TV Various venues, Edinburgh, 0131 228 4051, edfilmfest.org.uk

See panel, page 35. 16–18 JUNE

SCOTTISH REAL ALE FESTIVAL FOOD & DRINK Adam House, Chambers Street, Edinburgh, scottishbeerfestival.org.uk

CAMRA-organised beer festival showcasing well over 100 beers from over 30 Scottish breweries, most of them small, independent operations from places as diverse as Shetland, the Borders and the islands. Folk and jazz bands add to the lively atmosphere.

16–19 JUNE

BORDERS BOOK FESTIVAL LITERATURE/FAMILY Harmony House and Wynd Theatre, Melrose, Borders, 0844 357 1060, bordersbookfestival.org

Taking place in the National Trust’s Georgian Harmony Garden, the Borders Book Festival attracts world-class literary figures such as Michael Palin, Germaine Greer, Ian Rankin, Iain Banks, Kate Adie and William Dalrymple, and hosts the Walter Scott Prize for historical fiction. Family events have included speakers such as Michael Morpurgo and Vivian French, as well as book printing, writing competitions, and storytime and rhymetime events. 16–19 JUNE

KIRKCUDBRIGHT JAZZ FESTIVAL MUSIC Various venues, Kirkcudbright, Dumfries and Galloway, kirkcudbrightjazzfestival.co.uk

With music to please traditional tastes, the festival is set in this pretty ‘artists’ town’ in Dumfries and Galloway. Styles range from

MULTI-ARTS Various venues, Orkney, 01856 871445, stmagnusfestival.com

Orkney’s magical midsummer festival of music, drama, dance, literature and the visual arts is back with a new artistic director, composer Alisdair Nicolson. It includes performances from Huddersfield Choral Society, Colin Currie, Eric le Sage, Trio Mediaeval, Kathryn Tickell Band and many more. 23–26 JUNE

ROYAL HIGHLAND SHOW OUTDOOR/HERITAGE/FAMILY Royal Highland Showground, Ingliston, Edinburgh, 0131 335 6236, royalhighlandshow.org

Occupying a 300-acre site next to Edinburgh Airport, this annual agricultural jamboree is a highlight of Scotland’s countryside calendar. In addition to the traditional displays of animals, agricultural machinery, flowers and crafts, the show also boasts the country’s largest showcase of food and drink and an exciting programme of competitions, including show jumping, sheep shearing, heavy horses and farriery. The List Scottish Festivals 2011 39


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24–26 JUNE

ISLE OF GIGHA MUSIC FESTIVAL MUSIC/FAMILY Gigha Village Hall, Isle of Gigha, 01583 505160, gigha.org.uk

A bijou festival on the tiny Isle of Gigha in the southern Hebrides.

Events include a parade, ceilidh, Piper’s Picnic (including the fiercely contested sandcastle competition) and traditional music workshops. This year’s acts are still to be confirmed, but expect big names from the Celtic music world: last year Karen Matheson and Shooglenifty performed in Gigha’s tiny village hall. 29 JUNE–3 JULY

EAST NEUK FESTIVAL MUSIC Various venues, East Neuk of Fife, 0131 473 2000, eastneukfestival.com

SPOTLIGHT ON . . . MENDELSSOHN ON MULL Fast-track festivities

Many festivals like to underline their uniqueness, but this long-running island event has more claim than most to a distinctive identity. It was founded in 1988 by violinist Leonard Friedman to allow young musicians the chance to indulge in music-making in a highly conducive atmosphere. Although the festival has developed considerably in the ensuing decades, that principle has remained intact. These days, it invites a group of around 14 advanced (at least post-graduate) musicians from across the UK to join Levon Chilingirian and his group of experienced tutors on a fast-track bonding experience, and performing in eagerly attended concerts in such places as Iona Abbey and Glengorm and Duart Castles. Various venues, Mull, 2–9 Jul, 07792 785 438, mullfest.org.uk

40 The List Scottish Festivals 2011

A feast of classical music with the emphasis on world-class chamber music, featuring pieces from composers such as Bach, Beethoven and Schubert, with performances from the Elias String Quartet and Christian Zacharias. 29 JUNE–3 JULY

GLASGOW INTERNATIONAL JAZZ FESTIVAL MUSIC Various venues, Glasgow, 0141 353 8000, jazzfest.co.uk

See panel, page 36.

with music, food and fun for all the family. TBC JUNE

MORAY SPIRIT OF BRASS MUSIC Various venues, Moray, morayspiritofbrass.com

Now in its sixth year, this celebration of brass band music features a range of local players and bands alongside bigger ensembles and players from the RSAMD.

JULY 1–3 JULY

DUNDEE BLUES BONANZA MUSIC Various venues, Dundee, dundeebluesbonanza.co.uk

A free street-level music festival taking place across over 30 venues in the city centre and featuring over 100 local and international blues artists. It’s been going for 16 years and keeps on getting bigger, so they must be doing something right. 1–3 JULY

KELBURN GARDEN PARTY TBC JUNE

FALKLAND TRADITIONAL MUSIC FESTIVAL MUSIC/FAMILY Various venues, Falkland, Fife, 07743 183446, falklandfestival.co.uk

Supporting local talent and famous Scottish names, the Falkland Festival hosts informal concerts and competitions for fiddle, accordion and ceilidh band. There is fancy dress and footie for the children, a quiz and curry night, ceilidhs, an art exhibition and the popular street fair

Details correct at time of going to press but are subject to change or cancellation. Please check with festival organiser before travelling. Updated information will also be available at list.co.uk

MUSIC/FAMILY Kelburn Castle and Country Park, Largs, Ayrshire, kelburngardenparty.com

Set in the beautiful grounds of Kelburn Castle, known for its dynamic graffiti project, this threeday festival takes place over four stages, with workshops, cabaret, performance art and a whole heap of cross-genre music. Family camp zone available. 1–3 JULY

TASTE OF EDINBURGH FOOD & DRINK The Meadows, Melville Drive, Edinburgh, tasteofedinburgh.co.uk

An annual event celebrating the best that the capital has to offer, with stands representing everything from local organic farm produce to Michelin-starred restaurants. As well


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as chances to try and buy, there are talks and demonstrations from top celebrity chefs, kids’ cookery classes and live music. 1–8 JULY

EDINBURGH INTERNATIONAL MAGIC FESTIVAL MAGIC/FAMILY Various venues, Edinburgh, 0131 473 2000, magicfest.co.uk

This magical new player on the Edinburgh festival scene returns for a second year with an even bigger array of performances, live illusions, close-up magic, films and children’s shows. The festival is a not-for-profit venture also incorporating a grand trick-off contest, a gala show and speakers from the world of magical entertainment who might have a trick or two up their sleeves. 1–31 JULY

ABOYNE AND DEESIDE FESTIVAL MULTI-ARTS Various venues, Aboyne and Deeside, 01339 886222, aboyneanddeesidefestival.org.uk

A multi-genre community festival based in the 236-seater Aboyne and Deeside Community Theatre, covering theatre, music, art, dance, ‘sociable at-home gatherings’ and the odd celebrity talk from a roster of speakers which includes Jonathan Miller and Barry Norman and covers everything from nature to local history. This year the festival celebrates its 20th anniversary. 2–3 JULY

SCOTTISH TRADITIONAL BOAT FESTIVAL FAMILY/HERITAGE/FOOD Various venues, Portsoy, Aberdeenshire, scottishtraditionalboatfestival .org.uk

A family affair in the north-eastern town of Portsoy, with activities varying from rowing to running aimed at all ages. As in previous years, traditional boats from far and wide congregate in the historic

T IN THE PARK The festival that’s as big as a town From relatively humble beginnings in Strathclyde Country Park in 1994, when 17,000 people attended and Oasis, Blur and Rage Against the Machine appeared, T in the Park has become the acknowledged behemoth of the Scottish festival scene and one of the UK’s largest events. Now host to 85,000 people on an airfield on the edge of Fife, it’s beaten only by Glastonbury in size and roughly on a par with the V festivals. Over the course of the weekend, it also becomes the fifth largest town in Scotland. Inspired by a globally huge headliner on the main stage each day and a lengthy bill of established acts and new artists, fans usually snap up each round of tickets within hours of their going on sale. At the time of writing, only Foo Fighters and Blink 182 have been announced for 2011, but like Glastonbury, demand is for the event rather than individual artists. Last year’s biggest acts, to give an idea, were Muse, Eminem, Kasabian and Jay-Z, while four other stages featured dozens of acts including Madness, Calvin Harris, Mumford & Sons, The Drums and Yeasayer. For a dedicated few, however, the weekend is all about the Slam Tent, an under-canvas dance arena which has attained legendary status among Scotland’s clubbing crowd. Many only leave this sweat-filled, glowstick-lit tent to go to the portaloos or the Healthy T eating area, a diverse and high-quality alternative to the burger vans elsewhere on the site. Otherwise, they spend the entire weekend dancing to the likes of Carl Cox, Plastikman and Erol Alkan before retiring for a sleepless night in the sprawling campsite. Balado, near Kinross, 8–10 Jul, tinthepark.com The List Scottish Festivals 2011 41


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The Tarbert Seafood Festival celebrates the local catch

This festival is a great opportunity to join a variety of specialised wildlife tours in one of the UK’s most unique habitats, with rangerguided walks, photo sessions and expert talks. 3–8 JULY

CEOLAS MUSIC SUMMER SCHOOL AND FESTIVAL MUSIC Daliburgh, South Uist, Western Isles, ceolas.co.uk

A festival of Gaelic music, song and dance on South Uist, including concerts, ceilidhs and plenty of opportunities for visitors to practise these traditional arts for themselves with a range of expert tutors and workshop leaders. 4–9 JULY

CANTILENA FESTIVAL ON ISLAY MUSIC Various venues, Isle of Islay, cantilenafestival.co.uk

A celebration of classical music that has been going for over 30 years, this week of concerts aims to bring together audiences and artists of diverse backgrounds in a grand Hebridean setting to enjoy works by traditional composers. harbour, where there’s an emphasis on boat building, restoration and sailing. The 2011 programme also includes a food fair. 2–3 JULY

TARBERT SEAFOOD FESTIVAL FOOD & DRINK Various venues, Tarbert, Argyll, 01880 820132, seafoodfestival.co.uk

Set in one of Argyll’s few remaining fishing ports, Tarbert’s festival hosts

Details correct at time of going to press but are subject to change or cancellation. Please check with festival organiser before travelling. Updated information will also be available at list.co.uk 42 The List Scottish Festivals 2011

a market stretching along its harbourside. As well as promoting seafood and other local produce, there are fish cookery demonstrations, an open-air concert and a ceremony of the sea queen and princesses. 2–9 JULY

MENDELSSOHN ON MULL FESTIVAL MUSIC Various venues, Isle of Mull, mullfest.org.uk

4–11 JULY

ATLANTIC ISLANDS FESTIVAL MULTI-ARTS Isle of Luing, Argyll, atlanticislandsfestival.com

An all-encompassing festival that focuses on ‘geopoetics’, an idea concerning our connection with the natural environment. Includes discussions, poetry readings, nature walks, music and food showcases.

See panel, page 40. 7–10 JULY 2–10 JULY

SHETLAND NATURE FESTIVAL OUTDOOR/FAMILY Various venues, Shetland, 01595 694688, visit.shetland.org/naturefestival

STONEHAVEN FOLK FESTIVAL MUSIC Various venues, Stonehaven, Aberdeenshire, 07766 581596, stonehavenfolkfestival.co.uk

A weekend of music around the


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town with evening concerts, free afternoon performances, workshops, ceilidh, sessions, a blues night, a family show, a tradition bearers’ concert, and an acoustic youth stage as well as some less conventional events such as an aqua ceilidh and world paper-and-comb championships. 8–10 JULY

T IN THE PARK MUSIC Balado Airfield, Kinross, 0844 499 9990, tinthepark.com

See panel, page 41. 8–10 JULY

VUNK FEST MUSIC/ART Lerwick, Shetland, myspace.com/vunkventures

Shetland’s not-for-profit alternative music and arts festival includes performances from rock bands from all over Northern Europe and exhibitions of themed art and photography. 13–16 JULY

HEBRIDEAN CELTIC FESTIVAL MUSIC/FAMILY Various venues, Isle of Lewis, 01851 621234, hebceltfest.com

A mix of music set amid the stunning beauty of the Hebridean islands, this family-friendly festival features super-shows in the marquee at Lews Castle, intimate concerts, workshops and free events for all ages. Past performers have included Van Morrison, Runrig, Capercaillie, The Waterboys and Julie Fowlis. 15–17 JULY

LOSSIEMOUTH FOLK FESTIVAL MUSIC Lossie Folk Club, The Beach Bar, Lossiemouth, lossiefolkclub.co.uk

A free, grassroots festival for whoever wants to play, sing, tell stories, recite poetry and keep the tradition of music, song and story

alive. There are concerts, sessions, workshops, singarounds, entertainment for the kids and camping. 15–24 JULY

MUSIC AT PAXTON MUSIC Paxton House, Berwick-uponTweed, Borders, musicatpaxton.co.uk

Paxton House has attracted a high quality of chamber music to Berwick-upon-Tweed since the festival started in 2006. The 2010 programme included the Gould Piano Trio, Doric String Quartet, the Edinburgh Quartet and the Hebrides Ensemble, and ranged from recitals by international solo musicians to outdoor operas in the grounds. Pre-show suppers and tours of the picture gallery also available. 20-30 JULY

CRAIL FESTIVAL MUSIC/FAMILY Various venues, Crail, Fife, crailfestival.co.uk

Family fun with ten packed days of events and activities on offer, as well as live folk music from the likes of Dougie McLean and Isla St Clair. The 2010 event celebrated Crail’s 700th birthday as a Royal Burgh, a status conferred by King Robert the Bruce in 1310. 21–24 JULY

FLAVOUR OF SHETLAND FOOD & DRINK/HERITAGE Lerwick Harbour, Shetland, 01595 744944, flavourofshetland.com

A Flavour of Shetland is more than a food festival, although many stalls will be serving Shetland produce cooked traditionally and with modern twists. There are also renowned local storytellers bringing Shetland folklore to life, a local crafts market, live music and a children’s play area and craft activities, plus the chance to sample ale from Britain’s most northerly brewery.

SPOTLIGHT ON . . . TALL SHIPS RACES Sea and be seen

Ahoy there captain! A veritable shipfest, this Shetland-based hooly will transform the picturesque harbour port of Lerwick for four days of nautical fun as sailors, crews, locals and visitors soak up the very best of the island’s stunning scenery and culture. A continuation of the first Tall Ships race in 1956, the event now runs annually across Europe, as thousands of young people from over 30 countries race and cruise between ports. Entry is open to any monohull sailing vessel of more than 9.14m waterline length, as long as it has a young crew. Having last held the races in 1999, Shetland sets sail as proud host once again in 2011. Visitors are encouraged to come and watch as up to 100 vessels from over 15 countries, crewed by up to 6,000 young people are welcomed to the port. Check out the website to see pictures of the majestic craft in advance. Lerwick Harbour, Shetland, 21–24 Jul, 01595 744964, tallshipsraceslerwick.com The List Scottish Festivals 2011 43


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21–24 JULY

TALL SHIPS RACES OUTDOOR Lerwick, Shetland, 01595 744964, tallshipsraceslerwick.com

See panel, page 43. 22–23 JULY

WICKERMAN FESTIVAL MUSIC East Kirkcarswell, Dundrennan, Dumfries & Galloway, 0844 884 2920, thewickermanfestival.co.uk

See panel. 22–25 JULY

MERCHANT CITY FESTIVAL MULTI-ARTS Various venues, Merchant City, Glasgow, merchantcityfestival.com

WICKERMAN Hot music and a burning desire In preparation for its tenth anniversary this year, one of Scotland’s most distinct festivals is formulating special celebratory plans – although it’s hard to see how it can improve upon the traditional finale to the weekend, with the ceremonial burning of a huge wicker figure paying dramatic, tongue-in-cheek tribute to the cult film The Wicker Man, which was filmed in the area. Fortunately this wicker man goes up without a virginal policeman trapped inside. No announcements are due about the line-up until later in the year, but past years have featured headliners including Ocean Colour Scene, The Charlatans, KT Tunstall, The Human League, The Zutons and The Proclaimers, while the festival proudly points out that increasingly popular new acts such as Frightened Rabbit and I Blame Coco have performed early-career sets here. The bill is generally split between big-name headliners and support acts on the outdoor main stage, with a huge amount of hand-picked local bands from Glasgow and the north of England packing out the tents. The organisers also flag up the fringe activities, including over the years ‘grass sledging, fun fairs, dance lessons, headphone disco, movie screenings, wood carving and even ice skating’. Now hosting around ten times its initial 1500 capacity, Wickerman has grown to combine a bohemian air – techno and reggae blares from the food and craft stalls all weekend – with a commendable degree of child-friendliness, and free tickets are available for the under-12s. East Kirkcarswell, near Dundrennan, Dumfries & Galloway, 22–23 Jul, 0844 884 2920, thewickermanfestival.co.uk 44 The List Scottish Festivals 2011

A celebration of theatre, music, visual arts, comedy, dance, film, literature, shopping and fashion in Glasgow’s trading and cultural quarter. As well as events in venues such as the Tron Theatre and the Briggait artists’ space, there is a busy line-up of street theatre and al fresco music. 22–31 JULY

EDINBURGH INTERNATIONAL JAZZ AND BLUES FESTIVAL MUSIC Various venues, Edinburgh, 0131 473 2000, edinburghjazzfestival.com

Scotland’s biggest and longest running jazz festival is set to return with a programme as diverse as the 2010 line-up which featured a Mardi Gras parade, Clandemonium (a Scottish jazz flashmob event), spontaneous concerts in the Royal Botanic Gardens, more concerts and a jazz summer school. In 2011, concert venues range from the iconic Queen’s Hall to Rosslyn Chapel, Signet Library and the Hub. There will be funky jazz at the Voodoo Rooms, blues at the Jamhouse and trad at the Royal Overseas League. See Edinburgh festivals feature.


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22 JULY–2 AUGUST

Kevin Bridges is among the stars who have brought a smile to Funny in Falkirk

FUNNY IN FALKIRK COMEDY Various venues, Falkirk, 0131 558 9005, funnyinfalkirk.com

Central Scotland’s comedy festival launched in 2010 and it has bigger plans for 2011. The festival hosted over 40 shows in ten venues and performers included Kevin Bridges, Fred MacAulay, Des Mclean, Danny Bhoy, Tam Cowan, Stewart Lee, Russell Kane, Nina Conti and Arnold Brown. 29–31 JULY

UGIE FOLK FESTIVAL MUSIC Crichie Inn, Stuartfield, Peterhead, Aberdeenshire, ugiefolk.co.uk

Ugie Folk Club, based in the north east of Scotland, runs a weekend of concerts, pub folk nights and sessions. These events, starring club members and welcoming new performers, promise ‘guid music and craic’ for all. 29–31 JULY

ROLLING HILLS FOLK FESTIVAL MUSIC/FAMILY Corn Exchange, Market Square, Melrose, Borders, rollinghillsfolkclub.org.uk

Just one of a cluster of local folk festivals in the Scottish Borders, this one continues to grow. This year, Friday night is ceilidh night, while Saturday starts bright and early with a craft fair. Throughout both days of the weekend there are workshops in music and singing for kids and adults alike, many of which are led by Pete Coe, who also appears at both of the concerts. Joining him on the bill are Tommy Roseburgh, the Fisher Lassies, Tim Eday Collective and Alex Hodgson Band. 29–31 JULY

REWIND FESTIVAL MUSIC Scone Palace, Perthshire, www.rewindfestival.com

Leg warmers, shoulder pads and bad hairdos out for the northern leg

of this 80s nostalgia-fest, which features the biggest line-up of acts from the decade taste forgot ever to play together in Scotland. This year’s offerings include Rick Astley, Bananarama, T’Pau and the Human League. The more discerning festival-goer will be pleased to hear that there’s a dedicated ‘posh nosh’ area, plus ‘glamping’ options including readypitched tents and Persian-design cloudhouse yurts.

Various venues, Aberdour, 01383 860862, aberdour-festival.org This family-friendly festival hosts events for all ages in the picturesque seaside village of Aberdour; from baby massages, pet shows, sports days and craft workshops to sailing and shinty sessions, street-dance lessons and discos. There’s also a flower exhibition, a farmers’ market, ceilidh, village regatta, beach events and a moonlit concert and picnic at Aberdour Castle.

29 JULY–1 AUGUST

GUILDTOWN BLUEGRASS MUSIC FESTIVAL

TBC JULY

MUSIC Guildtown Village Hall, Hall Road, Guildtown, Perthshire, 01968 670038, scottishbluegrass.com

MULTI-ARTS Various venues, Isle of Harris, harrisarts.net/events.htm

A premier Scottish event featuring top US bluegrass bands such as Wayne Taylor and Apaloosa, European bands such as G-runs ‘n Roses, jamming sessions, workshops and an open stage. 29 JULY–7 AUGUST

ABERDOUR FESTIVAL MULTI-ARTS

HARRIS ARTS FESTIVAL

Evenings of stories and songs exploring the unique culture of the Outer Hebrides, featuring children’s tales and a wide range of classical, traditional and folk music performers. Closely linked with Harris Arts is Feis Eilean na Hearadh, a week-long children’s festival organised as part of a wider programme of Gaelic culture events. The List Scottish Festivals 2011 45


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TBC JULY

NEWCASTLETON TRADITIONAL MUSIC FESTIVAL MUSIC/FAMILY Various venues, Newcastleton, Borders, newcastleton.com

One of the longest continuously running music festivals in Scotland, Newcastleton runs a weekend of competitions interspersed with dances, organised ceilidhs and singarounds. The Saturday night Grand Winners’ Concert normally sells out, but the festival prides itself on welcome-to-all ad-hoc sessions springing up around the town. TBC JULY

SPEYFEST MUSIC Playing Fields and Fochabers Institute, Fochabers, Moray, speyfest.com

A festival of contemporary and traditional Celtic music, running for over 15 years now, with concerts, ceilidhs, craft fairs and a festival club. 28-29 JULY 2012

BIG TENT FESTIVAL MULTI-ARTS Falkland Estate, Glenrothes, Fife, bigtentfestival.co.uk

Scotland’s biggest environmental festival offers a vibrant and thoughtprovoking musical weekend. Performers have included King Creosote, Brazil! Brazil! and Aberfeldy. There’s also a craft market, country walks, visual art, local food, a craft and wood zone, a body and soul zone, and dancing from street to zumba. It’s familyoriented too, with workshops, singing, face-painting and parades. No event in 2011 – next one 2012.

Details correct at time of going to press but are subject to change or cancellation. Please check with festival organiser before travelling. Updated information will also be available at list.co.uk 46 The List Scottish Festivals 2011

AUGUST 4 AUGUST–4 SEPTEMBER

EDINBURGH ART FESTIVAL ART Various venues, Edinburgh, 07825 336782, edinburghartfestival.com

A celebration of visual art across the capital, with exhibitions, artist talks, special events, tours and live music. EAF encompasses the full spectrum of the visual arts world, from repurposed warehouses and historic masterpieces to the best cuttingedge work. Its programme of commissions shows Scottish art in unexpected places. See Edinburgh festivals feature. 5–25 AUGUST

EDINBURGH BOOK FRINGE LITERATURE Word Power Books, West Nicolson Street, Edinburgh, 0131 662 9112, wordpower.co.uk

Hosted by Word Power Books, this festival gives a platform to local publishers and writers, whether polemicists or comedians, during the capital’s festival month. The Word Power bookshop is an intimate venue where authors can engage with their audience.

glittering military entertainment. The 2011 programme includes the Massed Bands of Her Majesty’s Royal Marines, the Band of the Royal Regiment of Scotland, the Massed Pipes and Drums, Highland Dancing, the Dutch Mounted Bicycle Band and South Africa’s Navy Band. See Edinburgh festivals feature. 5–29 AUGUST

EDINBURGH FESTIVAL FRINGE MULTI-ARTS Various venues, Edinburgh, 0131 226 0000, edfringe.com

You’d say the biggest arts festival in the world was allencompassing if it weren’t just one of several festivals taking place in the captial this month. From big names in the world of comedy to unknown actors looking to build their careers, it offers a surfeit of theatre, comedy, dance, musicals, opera and all genres of music. See Edinburgh festivals feature. 5–31 AUGUST

EDGE FESTIVAL MUSIC Various venues, Edinburgh, theedgefestival.com

See panel.

Coinciding with the Edinburgh Festival Fringe, the Edge Festival (formerly T on the Fringe) has an eclectic spirit, bringing together current chart-toppers, established favourites, leftfield acts and onesto-watch. Dizzee Rascal headlined in 2010, with Eels, The Coral, Amy Macdonald, Mika and Tinchy Stryder also in the programme. See Edinburgh festivals feature.

5–27 AUGUST

6–14 AUGUST

ROYAL EDINBURGH MILITARY TATTOO

ROYAL BURGH OF PITTENWEEM ARTS FESTIVAL

5–6 AUGUST

BELLADRUM TARTAN HEART FESTIVAL MUSIC Phoineas, by Beauly, Invernessshire, 01463 741366, tartanheartfestival.co.uk

HERITAGE Castle Esplanade, Edinburgh, 0131 225 1188, edintattoo.co.uk

On the floodlit esplanade of Edinburgh Castle, the annual Tattoo puts on three weeks of

MULTI-ARTS/COMMUNITY Various venues, Pittenweem, Fife, 01333 313903, pittenweemartsfestival.co.uk

See panel, page 52.


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7–14 AUGUST

FIDDLE FRENZY MUSIC/HERITAGE/FAMILY Various venues, Shetland, 01595 745555, shetlandarts.org/events/fiddlefrenzy

See panel, page 55. 8–14 AUGUST

PIPING LIVE! MUSIC Various venues, Glasgow, 0141 353 0220, pipinglive.co.uk

A week-long celebration of piping including contemporary and traditional, solo and pipe bands and more. The World Pipe Band Championships take place on the second to last day at Glasgow Green, with free family displays in the George Square arena. 8–14 AUGUST

FRINGE BY THE SEA MULTI-ARTS Various venues, North Berwick, 01620 890666, fringebythesea.com

A wee taster of the Edinburgh Fringe spread over five venues in the beautiful setting of North Berwick. The same offerings of comedy, theatre, film, book events and a children’s programme but scaled down to less scary proportions and with great big gulps of fresh air thrown in for free. 10–13 AUGUST

INVERNESS BOOK FESTIVAL LITERATURE Eden Court Theatre, Bishop’s Road, Inverness, Highlands, 01463 234234, invernessbookfestival.co.uk

Local and nationally recognised authors return to Inverness for another scenic literary week. Last year, authors covered genres ranging across history, cookery, the environment, biography and fiction. There are also writing workshops and whisky tasting, all overlooking the River Ness and its islands.

BELLADRUM TARTAN HEART Big names on a small estate Another festival that takes an all-star cast to a remote Scottish location and combines it with a lot of local colour, the Belladrum Tartan Heart festival has grown in size and reputation since it was first held in 2004. Last year’s bill gives an indication of what to expect: alongside the headliners Amy Macdonald and Feeder, classic artists Badly Drawn Boy, The Wailers and Candi Staton appeared next to rising artists such as Stornoway and Eliza Doolittle, and distinctively Celtic artists such as The Vatersay Boys and Wolfstone. The odd surprise also emerges, for example KT Tunstall performing a small acoustic set at 2010’s event. There’s plenty going on besides the music, too. From Thursday night’s massive ceilidh onwards, Belladrum fosters a family-friendly atmosphere, with all children under 12 admitted for free and dressing up positively encouraged. Recurring themed areas also include the Co-Operative Verb Garden (a spoken-word area featuring debate, discussion, interviews, comedy and entertainment), street theatre and other curios in the arena and dance classes in various styles at Madame Fifi’s Dance Parlour. There will also be author readings in the Writer’s Cramp zone, as well as various music, craft and puppetry classes, workshops, theatre performances and storytelling sessions over various spaces. With around 13,000 fans attending at the small Belladrum Estate in Kiltarlity, near Beauly, a combination of the event’s relatively compact size and the diversity of these fringe events lend it a quirky and homely air. Belladrum Estate, near Inverness, 5–6 Aug, 01463 741366, tartanheartfestival.co.uk The List Scottish Festivals 2011 47


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I EXCESS ALL AREAS Edinburgh has more festivals than other cities have venues and, in August, it goes overboard

48 The List Scottish Festivals 2011

n 1961, a theatre director made a proposal. It was his opinion that the Edinburgh Festival Fringe was getting too big. It would be much better, he said, ‘if only ten halls were licensed’. Nobody listened. Had the director been able to travel forward in time 50 years to 2011, he would have found not only a Fringe that had grown exponentially (he’d see his ideal ten venues swollen to more than 250), but also a city that had caught the festival bug on a scale he would not comprehend. Forget ten venues: in 2011, Edinburgh has more than ten whole festivals. Officially, there are a dozen of them – and that’s not counting smaller programmes such as the Dead By Dawn horror film festival and community events such as the Old Town Festival. They take place throughout the


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year and are a major plank in the city’s drive to attract tourists. Locals can’t get enough of them either. What people tend to call the ‘Edinburgh festival’ is actually a combination of several festivals in August. Because of its scale, the Fringe is the most visible. Presenting over 2000 shows, it colonises church halls, lecture theatres and basement bars, and spills out onto the Royal Mile, where companies tout for trade and street entertainers busk for the attention of a city heaving with cultural tourists. The distinguishing characteristic of the Fringe is its open-access philosophy: anyone who can afford to rent a venue can put on a show. It is a principle that has led to the discovery of many of the great names in comedy, theatre and

music. This creates a tremendous excitement in audiences and performers alike. With so many shows, there are inevitably misses as well as hits, but even the disappointments are part of the fun. If the Fringe provides the energy, the Edinburgh International Festival offers the artistic backbone in a line-up of worldclass orchestras, opera singers, drama companies and dance ensembles in the city’s major concert halls and theatres. It began in 1947 in an altruistic mood of post-war reconciliation (the Fringe was started in the same year by a group of companies who hadn’t been invited) and has never lost its high-minded pursuit of excellence. Under artistic director Jonathan Mills, the programme has strong thematic links and, in 2011, will

focus on the cultures of Asia, with visits from the National Ballet of China, Shanghai Peking Opera Troupe and the Seoul Philharmonic Orchestra. Enormous though Festival and Fringe are, you could still fill days in August without going anywhere near them. Having warmed up with the Edinburgh Jazz and Blues Festival, a great showcase for Scottish acts, you could lose yourself in the city’s galleries in the Edinburgh Art Festival or go under canvas in Charlotte Square for an all-day line-up of famous authors in the Edinburgh International Book Festival. Come nightfall, you could join the throngs on the castle’s esplanade for the Royal Edinburgh Military Tattoo. See August listings for details The List Scottish Festivals 2011 49


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11–12 AUGUST

EDINBURGH INTERACTIVE TECHNOLOGY Radisson Blu Hotel, Royal Mile, Edinburgh, 01462 456780, edinburghinteractive.co.uk

An unusual festival now in its ninth year, celebrating the diversity and inventiveness of video games and other interactive media. As well as an industry conference with speakers and networking opportunities, there is the chance for the public to play brand new games and attend screenings and workshops. 11–14 AUGUST

MUGDOCK INTERNATIONAL MUSIC FESTIVAL MUSIC Mugdock Country Park, Craigallian Road, Milngavie, Glasgow, 0141 956 6100, mugdock-country-park.org.uk

A mixed-genre week of music performed by Scottish musicians with performances in the evenings and some matinees. Previous festivals have seen the bestowal of the Erne Parkin Award, which is named after the festival’s late director and recognises the best in new Scottish musical talent. 11–22 AUGUST

MARYMASS FESTIVAL COMMUNITY/MUSIC Various venues, Irvine, Ayrshire, irvineayrshire.org/marymass

Community festival with around 100 events and activities, many dating from as far back as the 17th century. Highlights include a torchlit procession, fireworks display, folk music festival and the ‘greasy pole’ competition where teams attempt to climb a slippery pole to reach a ham. 12 AUGUST–4 SEPTEMBER

EDINBURGH INTERNATIONAL FESTIVAL MULTI-ARTS Various venues, Edinburgh, 0131 473 2000, eif.co.uk

Bringing world-class arts to the 50 The List Scottish Festivals 2011

capital since 1947, the EIF sets the standard for classical concerts, opera, dance and theatre. Jonathan Mills’ 2011 line-up is focusing on the relatively unfamiliar cultures of China, India, Japan, Korea, Taiwan and Vietnam, giving western audiences the chance to engage with the traditions and philosophies of these cultures, both ancient and modern. See Edinburgh festivals feature.

13–14 AUGUST

ARBROATH SEA FEST FOOD & DRINK Arbroath Harbour, Arbroath, Angus, arbroathseafest.co.uk

12–13 AUGUST

The 15th annual Sea Fest promises boat trips, seaside fish markets, arts and crafts, cookery demonstrations and exhibitions, and most importantly, a chance to taste the local delicacy, Arbroath Smokies – haddock smoked over hardwood – among the 70-odd stalls on the harbour.

THE FAMOUS GROUSE FESTIVAL

13–29 AUGUST

FOOD & DRINK/MUSIC The Famous Grouse Experience, Crieff, Perthshire, 01764 656565, thefamousgrouse.com

The Famous Grouse distillery and visitor attraction in scenic Perthshire plays host to its first festival, with chances to sample exclusive whiskies, masterclasses in whisky-themed cocktail making and live music.

EDINBURGH INTERNATIONAL BOOK FESTIVAL LITERATURE/FAMILY Charlotte Square Gardens, Edinburgh, 0845 373 5888, edbookfest.co.uk

The festival for literature fans, who gather each August in the beautiful gardens of Charlotte Square in Edinburgh, the world’s The Edinburgh International Book Festival is an oasis of calm in a frantic city


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first UNESCO City of Literature. Expect events featuring writers of all genres, from debut novelists to old masters, from over 40 countries, including a contingent from Scotland and an extensive range of events, workshops, readings and activities for every age group from toddler up. See Edinburgh festivals feature. 18–21 AUGUST

MULL OF KINTYRE MUSIC FESTIVAL MUSIC/FAMILY Various Venues, Campbeltown, Argyll, mokfest.com

See panel. 19–21 AUGUST

INNERLEITHEN MUSIC FESTIVAL MUSIC Various venues, Innerleithen, Borders, 01721 729949, innerleithenmusicfestival.org

Now in its ninth year, the festival features Celtic music stars with international reputations alongside local performers in a friendly, small-town setting by the River Tweed, just 40 minutes from Edinburgh. It actively fosters the development of young musical talent.

26–27 AUGUST

WIZARD FESTIVAL MUSIC/FAMILY New Deer Showground, Aberdeenshire, wizardfestival.com

A family music festival that punches above its weight in terms of the artists it has succeeded in attracting, with previous headliners including James, Sandi Thom and The Happy Mondays. There are four stages, a dedicated children’s area, family camping, fairground rides, carefully selected food and craft stalls and a village shop. 27 AUGUST–4 SEPTEMBER

LARGS VIKING FESTIVAL HERITAGE/FAMILY Various venues, Largs, Ayrshire, 01475 672884, largsvikingfestival.com

An annual festival marking the Battle of Largs in 1263 – the last skirmish between the Scots and the Norse – features a Viking village and a re-enactment by the Swords of Dalriada showing how the Vikings lived in the 12th and 13th centuries. The week of events includes a continental and farmers’ market. It closes with a fire display and a ‘party at the pencil’, a reenactment of the Battle of Largs, organised by North Ayrshire Council.

20–21 AUGUST

BOOKS, BORDERS AND BIKES INTERNATIONAL FESTIVAL LITERATURE/OUTDOOR/ FAMILY Traquair House, Innerleithen, Borders, 01896 830323, traquair.co.uk

Hosted by Scottish Pen, this festival holds a distinctive mix of storytelling, bike-rides, literary hill walks, talks and debates. Join Scotland’s storytellers on a walk through the woods or relax in the writers’ retreat. Discussion topics go along political themes and speakers include leading historians and broadcasters as well as international cultural leaders.

29 AUGUST–4 SEPTEMBER

SCREENPLAY FILM & TV/FAMILY Various venues, Lerwick, Shetland, 01595 745555, shetlandarts.org/events/ screenplay

Shetland’s annual celebration of cinema is curated by movie experts Linda Ruth Williams and Mark Kermode. It features film screenings, lectures and panel discussions involving national and international film industry professionals and academics. It has a strong local flavour provided by the work of local filmmakers of all ages and an increased commitment to outreach work throughout the islands.

SPOTLIGHT ON . . . MULL OF KINTYRE MUSIC FESTIVAL Darkest of mountains with valleys of green

If the link between Mull of Kintyre and music kindles the sound of rather schmaltzy pipes in your head, then an immersion in this Campbeltown festival will broaden your perspective. It launched with Capercaillie as its star name in 1993, and subsequent headline acts have included Aly Bain and Phil Cunningham, Eddi Reader, Dougie MacLean, Cape Breton’s Jerry Holland, and Irish artists Altan, Davy Spillane, Dervish, and Four Men and A Dog, all major names on the international circuit. It finds ample room for ceilidh bands, pipe bands, Gaelic choirs and a bit of dancing, and coped with the loss of a major venue in 2010 to notch up another success. Various venues, Campbeltown, Argyll, 18–21 Aug, mokfest.com The List Scottish Festivals 2011 51


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30 AUGUST–4 SEPTEMBER

NAIRN BOOK & ARTS FESTIVAL MULTI-ARTS Various venues, Nairn, Highlands, 01667 451804, nairnfestival.co.uk

TBC AUGUST

Not only writer events, but also comedy, theatre, films, workshops and lectures, with parts of the programme dedicated to the Gaelic language. There is an open art competition, exhibitions and music.

MULTI-ARTS St John's Church, Princes Street, Edinburgh, 0131 221 2277, festivalofspirituality.org.uk

TBC AUGUST

ABERFELDY FESTIVAL

SPOTLIGHT ON . . . ROYAL BURGH OF PITTENWEEM ARTS FESTIVAL

MUSIC Various venues, Aberfeldy, Kinross, 01887 822997, aberfeldyfestival.co.uk

Live music and a traders’ market alongside family fun events such as face-painting, white-water rafting for kids and adults, street entertainment and a treasure hunt.

One to carry a torch for

TBC AUGUST Not for nothing does Pittenweem Arts Festival enjoy a reputation for having one of the most picturesque backdrops. Situated in a small village on the beautiful Fife coastline, the annual visual arts jamboree has persuaded visitors to flock to the East Neuk area for almost three decades. They come to admire paintings, sculptures, environmental art, textiles and much more from over 100 resident and visiting artists. The weeklong programme boasts exhibitions, workshops and talks, alongside an everpopular ceilidh on the harbour and evening torchlight procession. No space is left uninspired as garages, gardens and studios are used to showcase the work. Various venues, Pittenweem, Fife, 6–14 Aug, 01333 313 903, pittenweemartsfestival.co.uk

52 The List Scottish Festivals 2011

arts in debates and cultural events. Most are free apart from a reservation fee.

AOS DANA BOOK FESTIVAL LITERATURE/ART/FAMILY Various venues, Skye, bookfestivalscotland.com

A showcase of prose and poetry from Skye, and of Gaelic and English-language books relating to the Highland region. The festival celebrates Gaelic culture with visual arts and music as well as the written word. TBC AUGUST

FESTIVAL OF POLITICS POLITICS The Scottish Parliament, Horse Wynd, Edinburgh, 0131 348 5000, festivalofpolitics.org.uk

The only festival of its kind to be hosted in a UK Parliament, the Festival of Politics features famous names from politics, media and the

Details correct at time of going to press but are subject to change or cancellation. Please check with festival organiser before travelling. Updated information will also be available at list.co.uk

FESTIVAL OF SPIRITUALITY AND PEACE

Emerging from the Fringe as a festival in its own right, this multifaith series of events marries creativity and peace-making. TBC AUGUST

HAWICK SUMMER FESTIVAL FAMILY/COMMUNITY Various venues, Hawick, Borders, hawicksummerfestival.com

A nine-day festival now in its 27th year, including a wide range of events for all the family, from Junior Hawick’s Got Talent to writers’ workshops, a gala day with pipers and a fair, storytelling events and a quiz night. TBC AUGUST

MEARNS CONNECTIONS FESTIVAL MUSIC/LITERATURE Grassic Gibbon Centre, Arbuthnott, Aberdeenshire, 01561 361668, grassicgibbon.com

Celebrating the connection of the Mearns (the county of Kincardineshire in north-east Scotland) to Lewis Grassic Gibbon, Robert Burns and Joan Eardley, the festival has featured talks, concerts, a family ceilidh and art workshops. TBC AUGUST

NAIRN INTERNATIONAL JAZZ FESTIVAL MUSIC Various venues, Nairn, Highland, 01309 674221, nairnjazz.com

After a break in 2010, the little jazz festival that punches well above its weight in terms of guest performers is set to return in 2011 with seven days of live world-class jazz entertainment from a great line-up of players from home and abroad


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taking part in workshop events, and lunchtime and evening concerts.

Dundee Flower and Food Festival highlights Tayside’s finest

TBC AUGUST

PEEBLES ARTS FESTIVAL MULTI-ARTS Various venues, Peebles, Borders, peeblesartsfestival.co.uk

Annual multi-media festival, running since 1992 and featuring drama, music, crafting workshops, talks and exhibitions for all the family, celebrating the Borders town’s culture and community. TBC AUGUST

PENICUIK ARTS FESTIVAL MULTI-ARTS Various venues, Penicuik, 01968 678804, penicuikarts.org.uk

Two weeks of arts trails through open studios, poetry and storytelling, music, demonstrations and workshops, all organised by volunteers. Celebrating the town’s paper-making heritage, the focus is on arts and crafts, and the centrepiece is the presentation of the Penicuik Turner Prize at the Arts Centre.

reading groups and intimate open poetry evenings in venues around Aberdeenshire from the conventional (bookshops) to the outlandish (ice cream factory). 2–4 SEPTEMBER

SEPTEMBER

DUNDEE FLOWER AND FOOD FESTIVAL

1–7 SEPTEMBER

FOOD & DRINK/FAMILY Camperdown Country Park, Dundee, 01382 434940, dundeeflowerandfoodfestival.com

ORKNEY INTERNATIONAL SCIENCE FESTIVAL SCIENCE Various venues, Orkney, oisf.org

A week of debates, experiments, talks, concerts and demonstrations from astronomy to zoology with international experts in a festival that has been educating and entertaining for over 20 years. 1–30 SEPTEMBER

NEW WORDS LITERATURE Various venues, Aberdeen and Aberdeenshire, newwords.co.uk

Focusing on words in performance, the North East’s varied literary festival presents poets, fiction writers, dramatists, storytellers, actors, comedians, philosophers, interpreters and translators. There are talks, writing workshops,

A tented festival that is always hugely popular with locals of all ages. While stunning floral displays and prize-winning garden produce are the festival’s raison d’être, there are also crafts, live entertainment and plenty of children’s activities. Free cookery and gardening demonstrations feature local celebrities while the busy food and drink marquee highlights produce from Tayside and beyond. 2–4 SEPTEMBER

KIRRIEMUIR FESTIVAL OF MUSIC AND SONG MUSIC Old Parish Kirk Hall, Kirriemuir, Angus, kirriefestival.org

In the birthplace of JM Barrie, this

festival puts on ceilidhs, concerts, competitions, singarounds, street entertainment and sessions. It showcases a high calibre of Scottish talent; past performers have been award winners of ballad competitions and stars of events such as Celtic Connections and BBC’s Young Traditional Musician of the Year. 2–4 SEPTEMBER

PORTPATRICK FOLK FESTIVAL MUSIC Various venues, Portpatrick, Galloway, portpatrickfolkfestival.org.

A weekend festival in a picturesque seaside village with concerts at the village hall and sessions at all harbourside pubs from Friday through to Sunday. 2–4 SEPTEMBER

MILLPORT COUNTRY AND WESTERN FESTIVAL MUSIC Various venues, Millport, Isle of Cumbrae, millportcountryandwestern.org.uk

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several venues on the Isle of Cumbrae. Past acts on the billing have included Lazy Dog and Carson City. 2–4 SEPTEMBER

JAM FESTIVAL FILM & TV Blair Estate, North Ayrshire, 0871 224 9710, justaboutmovies.co.uk

A brand new festival, JAM (standing for Just About Movies) takes the model of a music festival – with camping and different tents and genres – and applies it to cinema. Attendees can watch a range of films, meet like-minded film buffs, join workshops on everything from stunt training to special effects make-up, and meet industry professionals. 2–10 SEPTEMBER

MCLELLAN ARTS FESTIVAL MUSIC/THEATRE & DANCE Various venues, Isle of Arran, mclellanartsfestival.co.uk

Arran’s theatrical and classical music festival was created in celebration of the life and work of Scots playwright and author Robert McLellan and includes poetry masterclasses and sung performances. It is the only festival to feature a play competition in the Scots language and this year there is a summer school in opera for undergraduate and postgraduate music students. 3 SEPTEMBER

WHISKY LIVE FOOD & DRINK Thistle Hotel, Cambridge Street, Glasgow, 0141 332 3311, whiskylive.com/scotland

A celebration of all things whisky, with samplings, tutored tastings, a chance to meet the producers and buy your favourite dram. Live music and great food complete the experience. 3–4 SEPTEMBER

ISLAY BOOK FESTIVAL LITERATURE/FAMILY Port Ellen Primary School, Isle of 54 The List Scottish Festivals 2011

Islay, islaybookfestival.org Two days of author talks, readings, sales and signings on the rugged island of Islay. This relatively new festival has attracted Tony Bonning, Margaret Elphinstone, Lari Don, David Donaldson, Julia Donaldson, Cathy MacPhail and Joseph Murphy as speakers.

cooking lessons in Italian and Chinese cuisine, family-friendly baking sessions, storytelling for children and ‘poem, pie and a pint’ sessions for the grown-ups. Run during Scottish Food Fortnight, it has a farmers’ market offering local produce, live music and whisky tasting sessions.

3–4 SEPTEMBER

3–11 SEPTEMBER

WORDPLAY

FIFE OUTDOOR ACCESS FESTIVAL

LITERATURE/FAMILY Various venues, Shetland, 01595 745555, shetlandarts.org/events/wordplay

Shetland’s annual book festival has been running since 2001. Welcoming writers of local, national and international renown, WordPlay features a mix of readings, writing workshops, children’s theatre events and book signings offering an opportunity for readers and writers to meet their favourite authors, hear them read their work and ask questions. 3–4 SEPTEMBER

SCOTLAND’S COUNTRYSIDE FESTIVAL FOOD & DRINK/HERITAGE Glamis Castle, Angus, 01250 875712, scotlandscountrysidefestival.co.u k

This weekend in celebration of traditional pursuits includes the Devil’s Horsemen stunt riding team, a continental market, two craft fairs, pigeon and ferret racing, vintage farm equipment, sausage making, cookery demonstrations, hatching chicks, falconry, dry-stone walling, dog show, 250 shops, craft demonstrations and music workshops with have-a-go clarsach, drum and bagpipe fun. 3–10 SEPTEMBER

EAST RENFREWSHIRE FOOD FESTIVAL FOOD & DRINK/FAMILY Various venues, East Renfrewshire, 0141 577 3001, eastrenfrewshire.gov.uk

This interactive festival holds

OUTDOOR Various venues, Fife, 0871 288 5670, fifeoutdooraccessfestival.co.uk

Celebrating Fife’s great outdoors, this one-week summer programme of outdoor events includes an access fair, cycling challenges and opportunities to get away from it all and up into the hills. 3–18 SEPTEMBER

SCOTTISH FOOD AND DRINK FORTNIGHT FOOD & DRINK Various venues, Scotland-wide, 0131 524 8621, scottishfoodfortnight.co.uk

An umbrella event promoting Scottish food, the fortnight links together a wide range of independently organised events around the country, from major local food festivals to themed campaigns in schools, shops, farmers’ markets and restaurants. 6–10 SEPTEMBER

MILNGAVIE BOOK AND ARTS FESTIVAL MULTI-ARTS Various venues, Milngavie, Glasgow, 0141 956 4252, milngaviefestival.org.uk

The fourth annual festival offers four days of musical, art and author-led events as well as school events attended by over 1,000 children. Past authors include Christopher Brookmyre, Janice Galloway, Sally Magnusson, Fergal Keane, John Cairney and Julia Donaldson. The last night will again feature the ‘Fish, Chip and Champagne Crime Night’.


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8–12 SEPTEMBER

LINLITHGOW FOLK FESTIVAL MUSIC Various venues, Linlithgow, West Lothian, 01506 433634, linlithgowfolk.com

Linlithgow’s folk festival emphasises interactive, collaborative music with an array of activities, from pub sessions and open stages to musical cruises along the canal. There’s also an outdoor ceilidh, a free afternoon festival showcase, workshops in fiddle, drumming and voice, a craft fair and a children’s matinee. The Saturday of the festival also coincides with Pedal for Scotland’s ride through Linlithgow, from Edinburgh to Glasgow. 9–11 SEPTEMBER

EATBUTE FOOD & DRINK Mount Stuart, Isle of Bute, 01700 503877, eatbute.com

EatBute celebrates fresh, seasonal and locally produced food from the island of Bute as well as neighbouring Argyll, Arran and Ayrshire. It takes place alongside the stylish visitors’ centre for Mount Stuart – a Victorian-Gothic house set in 300 acres of beautiful woodland and coastal gardens – and hosts a food and craft market, a separate traders’ market, cookery demonstrations, tours of the house and gardens, interactive lectures, a charity run, ceilidh and children’s programme. 9–17 SEPTEMBER

BLAS FESTIVAL MUSIC/FAMILY Various venues, Highland, 01463 783447, blas-festival.com

Attracting festival-goers because of its authenticity, the Blas festival celebrates the culture of traditional music and Gaelic in the Highlands of Scotland, with international, national and local performers in venues across the region. The festival, which includes a school and community programme,

FIDDLE FRENZY Knitting the islands together Shetland and music are inextricably linked, and the fiddle is in the very vanguard of the islands’ love affair with the art. While the likes of Aly Bain, Chris Stout and his cohorts in Fiddler’s Bid, Catriona MacDonald and Jenna Reid regularly light up the international touring circuit, Fiddle Frenzy aims to provide both a showcase for native talent and a summer school that offers an opportunity to hone your skills in Shetland music on the fiddle (or guitar – it offers that too, as befits the homeland of Peerie Willie Johnson), whatever level of player you might be. The festival week is a whirl of workshops, showcase concerts and informal sessions that run well into the wee hours, but it doesn’t stop at that. Recognising there is life beyond learning or playing the fiddle, Fiddle Frenzy offers a multi-disciplinary experience, taking in creative writing, storytelling, visual arts and knitting, a strand (no pun intended) related to a wider surge of interest in the tradition of Shetland knitting on the islands. The central aim of all this activity is to give visitors and locals alike an insight into the culture and environment of these islands, and to illustrate the many ways in which they continue to inspire the artists, writers and musicians living and working there. There are also opportunities to get out of the festival’s base in Lerwick on specially organised trips and sample what is going on around the islands. It is an important strand in Shetland’s multifaceted artistic mix, and all the more so with the opening of the new Mareel venue in Lerwick scheduled for this summer. Various venues, Shetland, 7–14 Aug, 01595 745 555, shetlandarts.org/events/fiddle-frenzy The List Scottish Festivals 2011 55


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delivers up to 80 events across the Highland region, while also giving opportunities for both young musicians and communities to experience live music.

9–26 SEPTEMBER

TECHFEST IN SEPTEMBER FAMILY/TECHNOLOGY Various venues, Aberdeen, 01224 274348, techfest.org.uk

A festival promoting science, engineering, maths and technology through a series of schools’ programmes and workshops, public lectures and family activities. 10–17 SEPTEMBER

OFF THE PAGE LITERATURE/FAMILY Various venues, Stirling, 01786 432383, stirling.gov.uk/offthepage

SPOTLIGHT ON . . . LOOPALLU The world turned upside down and inside out

With 2500 people attending per day, this autumn festival ensures the population of the scenic coastal town of Ullapool is more than doubled. Held in a tent on the shore adjoining the local caravan park, the festival hosts big names (to be announced for 2011’s seventh year, but Paolo Nutini, Franz Ferdinand and Echo and the Bunnymen have all appeared in the past), while smaller live and DJ sets fill just about every bar in the town until early morning. Try to throw in a visit to local music and dining hub the Ceilidh Place and some local sightseeing while you’re there. Broomfield Park, Ullapool, 16–17 Sep, 0871 2200260, loopallu.co.uk

56 The List Scottish Festivals 2011

Over the last six years, this festival has attracted names such as Ian Rankin, Christopher Brookmyre, Iain Banks, Louise Welsh, Denise Mina to its adult programme and Michelle Paver, Linda Newberry and Andy Briggs on the kids’ side. Run by library staff, it will introduce a ‘how to get published’ event for local aspiring talent in 2011.

workshops and concerts by country, folk and classical artists. A community festival in the truest sense, there is an age-old rule that all performers and participants must have some direct connection to the village. 16–19 SEPTEMBER

ISLE OF ARRAN MOUNTAIN FESTIVAL OUTDOOR Various venues, Arran, 01770 302244, arranmountainfestival.co.uk

A great opportunity to sample the natural beauty of Arran with walks led by experienced guides through some stunning scenery at this, the UK’s only island-based mountain walking festival. Although most are not for lightweights (strictly no jeans), there are easier coastal walks suitable for all levels. 16–17 SEPTEMBER

DOUGLAS FOLK FESTIVAL 11–17 SEPTEMBER

BATHGATE MUSIC FESTIVAL MUSIC/FAMILY Various venues, Bathgate, 01506 630085 (from 25 July 2011), bathgatemusicfestival.com

A week-long celebration of local music including late’n’live evening gigs, ‘live@lunch’ concerts in the community theatre and free live music across the parks. 16–17 SEPTEMBER

MUSIC Various venues, Douglas, South Lanarkshire, 01555 850092, spanglefish.com/ douglasdalefolkfestival

Two evenings of live music, sporting local talent as well as Scottish and English folk musicians. Only three years old, the 2010 festival showcased eight bands, including the Ayrshire-based Paul McKenna Band and folk singer Anna MacDonald.

LOOPALLU MUSIC Broomfield Holiday Park, West Lane, Ullapool, Ross-shire, 0871 220 0260, loopallu.co.uk

See panel. 16–18 SEPTEMBER

ST MONANS COMMUNITY ARTS FESTIVAL MULTI-ARTS/COMMUNITY Various venues, St Monans, Fife, stmonans.org.uk/artsfest

A truly diverse festival weekend in the pretty seaside village of St Monans, featuring open art exhibitions, poetry readings, dance

17 SEPTEMBER

SCOTFEST MUSIC/FOOD & DRINK/FAMILY Cochrane Park, Alva, Clackmannanshire, scotfest.co.uk

A one-day celebration of homeland food and drink, craft, design and live music. You can nibble your way around the food fair, with samples of regional produce from Galloway Fudge to Arbroath Smokies. The craft fair sells a range of products from handmade cards to woodcarvings, while Central FM puts on live music next to the beer garden throughout the day.


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17–19 SEPTEMBER

The Lagavulin Islay Jazz Festival gives you the scenery as well as the music

LAGAVULIN ISLAY JAZZ FESTIVAL MUSIC Various venues, Isle of Islay, 0845 1110302, lagavulinislayjazzfestival.co.uk

Top-class international jazz presented in unusual, atmospheric and inspirational venues across Islay, including some of the island’s famed distilleries. The programme usually includes an imaginative new commissioned work bringing together creative talents from Scotland and abroad. 21–24 SEPTEMBER

GET MORAY READING BOOK FESTIVAL LITERATURE/FAMILY Various libraries, Moray, 01343 562623 (from mid August), moray.gov.uk

Catering for all ages and tastes in reading, the festival has sessions for pre-school youngsters, schoolchildren, families and adults. Its programme ranges from sessions in book illustration to whisky tasting, crime-writing talks and good old readings. Sixteen of Scotland’s most celebrated writers, publishers and illustrators, including Allan Massie, Debi Gliori and Frank Rodgers, gave talks and workshops in 2010. 22 SEPTEMBER–1 OCTOBER

ARCHES LIVE! MULTI-ARTS The Arches, 253 Argyle Street, Glasgow, 0141 565 1000, thearches.co.uk

screens over 30 films, a dozen of them Scottish or UK premieres, followed by Q&A sessions with directors and screenwriters. There is also a section of the programme dedicated to climate campaigning, including a tree-planting event. 23–24 SEPTEMBER

FILM & TV/POLITICS Filmhouse, Edinburgh, 0131 228 2688 and Glasgow Film Theatre, Glasgow, 0141 332 6535, takeoneaction.org.uk

Focusing on international politics through film, lectures, live music and workshops, the festival

WIGTOWN BOOK FESTIVAL LITERATURE/FAMILY Various venues, Wigtown, Dumfries and Galloway, 01988 402036, wigtownbookfestival.com

See panel, page 60.

MUSIC/FAMILY Various venues, Glenelg, Highlands, dramsinthefield.com

25 SEPTEMBER

Aiming to be ‘good craic’, this is a weekend of folk, blues, ceilidh and pipe bands from around Scotland. Activities include whisky tasting, local food stalls, storytelling and workshops in dance, shinty, circus and music. Camping available.

MUSIC Various venues, Dunbar, East Lothian, dtmf.dunbar.org.uk

23–26 SEPTEMBER

TAKE ONE ACTION FILM FESTIVAL

23 SEPTEMBER–3 OCTOBER

GLENELG MUSIC FESTIVAL – DRAMS IN THE FIELD

See panel, page 59. 22 SEPTEMBER–2 OCTOBER

soft-shoe shenanigans. All levels of experience welcome.

BUTE LINEDANCE FESTIVAL DANCE Various venues, Rothesay, Isle of Bute, butelinedance.co.uk

Rejoicing in the title of Scotland’s premier linedancing festival, this popular event has featured participants such as Ellis County, Calico and Lemon Grass, along with a good amount of participatory

DUNBAR TRADITIONAL MUSIC FESTIVAL

Sponsored by Belhaven Best, the festival fills the bars of Dunbar with folk music in concerts and sessions late into the night. To add variety, there’s also some jazz and the local pipe band show, as well as an acoustic folk ceilidh and children’s workshops.

Details correct at time of going to press but are subject to change or cancellation. Please check with festival organiser before travelling. Updated information will also be available at list.co.uk The List Scottish Festivals 2011 57


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30 SEPTEMBER–16 OCTOBER

DORIC FESTIVAL MULTI-ARTS Various venues, Aberdeenshire, 01771 653320, thedoricfestival.com

A rich programme of events in Aberdeenshire, celebrating the north-east of Scotland’s traditions of singing, dancing and telling stories. All events are organised by local communities. 30 SEPTEMBER–2 OCTOBER

CALLANDER JAZZ AND BLUES FESTIVAL MUSIC Various venues, Callander, 01877 339399, callanderjazz.com

A varied jazz programme with the atmospheric backdrop of the Trossachs National Park. From début performers to those back by popular demand, from solo artists to 21-piece big bands, more or less every style of jazz, blues and soul is covered across various venues. Jazz cruises along Loch Katrine and openmic sessions are also programme highlights. 30 SEPTEMBER–2 OCTOBER

LOCKERBIE JAZZ FESTIVAL MUSIC Various venues, Lockerbie, Dumfries, 01387 253383, lockerbiejazz.com

International jazz stars with an emphasis on mainstream styles playing in attractive, welcoming and intimate venues all over Lockerbie. Last year’s headliners included singer Carol Kidd and saxophonist Alan Barnes. TBC SEPTEMBER

BOOTSTOCK MUSIC Resolis Memorial Hall, The Black Isle, Cromarty, Highland, bootstock.org

The Bootstock Association started this festival to fund 58 The List Scottish Festivals 2011

projects to help disadvantaged children in Nepal. As well as live music, there are a number of family activities including a raffle and other games. Arts and crafts from Nepal will be on sale.

TBC SEPTEMBER

TBC SEPTEMBER

This fun festival involves four days of country music, with a street fair, line-dancing, shoot-outs, children’s entertainment and fancy dress, all in the heart of Dumfries and Galloway.

BLACK ISLE WORDS FESTIVAL LITERATURE The Old Brewery, Cromarty Training Centre, Burnside Place, Cromarty, blackislewords.co.uk

Hosting informal and relaxed author talks, discussions and storytelling in the cosy setting of the Old Brewery, this festival places an emphasis on local writers, while inviting prominent British literary figures such as Sir John Lister-Kaye (2010), Jay Griffiths (2010) and James Robertson (2009). TBC SEPTEMBER

BUCHAN’S LARDER FOOD & DRINK Various venues, Peterhead, Aberdeenshire, buchanslarder.com

Held in the fishing town of Peterhead, Buchan’s Larder incorporates a fish festival with markets showing off lots of other produce from the region, as well as an art and photography competition and folk music evening at a local inn. TBC SEPTEMBER

CEÒL CHOLASA MUSIC Various venues, Isle of Colonsay, ceolcholasa.com

Festival-goers travel to the Hebridean island of Colonsay from as far afield as Germany, the USA, and Australia to enjoy an intimate music festival hosting internationally acclaimed musicians. As well as the gigs, there are informal live sessions running into the wee hours in the festival club (a local hotel).

CREETOWN COUNTRY MUSIC WEEKEND MUSIC/FAMILY Various venues, Creetown, Dumfries and Galloway, 01671 820281, creetown-countrymusicfestival.com

TBC SEPTEMBER–DECEMBER

DANCE LIVE FESTIVAL THEATRE & DANCE Various venues, Aberdeen and Aberdeenshire, 01224 611486, dancelive.org.uk

Celebrating Scotland’s contemporary dance scene, this line-up of hot moves brings together the likes of Scottish Dance Theatre and Scottish Ballet in a lineup of mixed-media dance, burlesque and cabaret, carnivals and musicals in theatres, galleries and studios in Aberdeen. There are also workshops and guest events by performing art groups. SEPTEMBER

DOORS OPEN DAY SCOTLAND HERITAGE Various venues, Scotland-wide, 0141 221 1466, doorsopendays.org.uk

Free entry to hundreds of unique, ancient or modern buildings normally closed to the public. Enjoy children’s activities, entertainment and tours. A great way to see another side of your city or town, or head off the tourist trail in an unfamiliar place. TBC SEPTEMBER

EDINBURGH MELA MULTI-ARTS Leith Links, Edinburgh, 0131 332 2888, edinburgh-mela.co.uk

Edinburgh’s cultural diversity fête hosts a varied programme on Leith Links. There are theatrical performances, live music shows, a


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fashion show, cricket match, family entertainment and, most famously, a market with food from all over the world, be that Lahore, Jaipur, Beijing, Uganda or up the road. See Edinburgh festivals feature. TBC SEPTEMBER

LAMMERMUIR FESTIVAL MUSIC Various venues, East Lothian, lammermuirfestival.co.uk

Featuring major music artists, orchestras and ensembles, the festival hosts concerts at intriguing venues across East Lothian, including historic buildings, churches and on board Concorde. The historic region of Lammermuir Hills, its cliffs and seascape, is a stunning backdrop for music such as Mozart’s string quartets, the Goldberg variations and JS Bach’s masterpieces. TBC SEPTEMBER

NORTHERN EDGE JAZZ FESTIVAL MUSIC Various venues, Aberdeen and Aberdeenshire, 01224 641122 boxofficeaberdeen.com

This comprehensive jazzfest has in the past brought some top names to play in the Granite City, including Courtney Pine, Curtis Stigers and Acker Bilk. You can fill your days and nights with jazz, right through from lunchtime concerts to afternoon chillout sessions to evening performances by stars of the scene. Funding is unconfirmed at the time of going to press. Call for details. TBC SEPTEMBER

PERTH MUSIC FESTIVAL MUSIC Various venues, Perth, perthmusicfestival.co.uk

The festival gathers an exciting line-up of Scotland’s most promising new bands for a series of gigs over four days in venues around Perth. Bands on past billings include Come On Gang, The Xcerts and Zoey van Goey.

ARCHES LIVE! An underground venue for underground art One reason Glasgow’s theatre scene is so vibrant is that the city has venues to suit all tastes. At the Citizens, you can see larger-scale classic drama; at the Tron, you can catch mid-scale plays; and here at the Arches, in the cavernous spaces beneath Central Station, you can see scratch-night try-outs, left-of-centre experiments and sitespecific adventures. All of this makes the venue the natural home for an annual festival of experimental work by local artists. On any given evening in the ten-day event, you’ll be able to catch two or three performances in the building’s warren of spaces and – as is the way with all the best festivals – fall into conversation with your fellow theatregoers about the themes and ideas that emerge. Keen to blur boundaries, artistic director Jackie Wylie brings in musicians and visual artists as well as theatremakers in a kind of artistic crucible. You are as likely to come across an audiovisual sound installation, a piece of durational live art or an improvisational rock band as you are a well-written play. Among the 20-odd events in the 2010 programme, there was even real-time theatre criticism, as reviewers responded in public to what they were seeing. By its nature, the work can be raw, but Arches Live! offers the thrill of discovery. This is where you might first have seen Kieran Hurley’s Hitch, a monologue about political protest that went on to acclaim on the Edinburgh Fringe; the brilliant Glas(s) Performance, a company that creates theatre from the experiences of ordinary people; and work in progress by Nic Green (pictured), whose feminist Trilogy went on to be a major talking point in Edinburgh, London and Dublin. Arches Theatre, Glasgow, 22 Sep–1 Oct, 0141 565 1000, thearches.co.uk The List Scottish Festivals 2011 59


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TBC SEPTEMBER–DECEMBER

PITLOCHRY AUTUMN FESTIVAL MUSIC/HERITAGE/FAMILY Various venues, Perthshire, pitlochryautumnfestival.co.uk

An umbrella for a range of events and attractions brightening up Highland Perthshire as the nights draw in, from the famous Enchanted Forest woodland light installation to food and beer festivals, firework displays, musical entertainment, children’s fun events and ghost tours. SEPTEMBER

SEPTEMBAYR MULTI-ARTS Various venues, Ayr, Ayrshire, septembayr.com

Ayrshire’s premier arts festival featuring four weeks of music, comedy and culture. TBC SEPTEMBER

WIGTOWN BOOK FESTIVAL

SHETLAND BLUES FESTIVAL

Right time, write place

MUSIC Various venues, Lerwick, Shetland, shetlandblues.info

To say that Wigtown is a mecca for book fans is a gross understatement. The Dumfries and Galloway town, with a population around the 1000 mark, stocks something in the region of 250,000 tomes in bookshops with excellent names such as At the Sign of the Dragon (SF and fantasy books and mags), ReadingLasses Bookshop (specialising in women’s studies), The Box of Frogs (second-hand books for kids) and the Creaking Shelves Bookshop (featuring esoteric/occult/religion tomes). And of course, it hosts one of the finest book bashes in the country, even being dubbed by The Telegraph as one of the ‘best autumn festivals in the world’. It’s early days regarding this year’s bill, but one quick glance across the names who attended last year will give you a taste of the diversity and quality you can expect to see in 2011: Iain M Banks, Martin Bell, John Byrne, Martin Creed, Barbara Dickson, Janice Galloway, Andrew Greig, Peter Hain, Jackie Kay, Irma Kurtz, Phyllida Law, Sally Magnusson, Val McDermid, Candia McWilliam, Margo MacDonald, Gervase Phinn, Ian Rankin, James Robertson, Mona Siddiqui, Rupert Thomson and Barbara Trapido. An extra element to the festival is the Wigtown Poetry Competition which launched at the 2010 event and has a deadline for entries in early May. The winning poem will bag its creator the tidy sum of £2500, while the runner-up gets £500. This year’s event will be the 13th book festival in Scotland’s National Book Town. Anyone who can make it to the Dumfries and Galloway this autumn will know that they are the lucky ones. Various venues, Wigtown, Dumfries & Galloway, 23 Sep–2 Oct, 01988 402036, wigtownbookfestival.com 60 The List Scottish Festivals 2011

Now in its eighth year, the most northerly blues festival in the UK includes a variety of concerts from local and visiting artists and bands spread all across the islands. TBC SEPTEMBER

SKYE JAZZ FESTIVAL MUSIC Various venues, Isle of Skye, 01471 844207, skyejazzfestival.com

A jazz festival showcasing new and established stars in the jazz world in various venues over the island. Performers will include Gina Rae, Peter Rowan, Kevin MacKenzie, Muldoon’s Ragtime Band, Red Shift and Nigel Hitchcock. TBC SEPTEMBER

TARBERT MUSIC FESTIVAL MUSIC Various venues, Tarbert, Loch Fyne, Argyll, tarbertmusicfestival.com

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the shores of Loch Fyne, Tarbert Music Festival prides itself on offering mainly free events. Previous performers have included fiery tradrockers Skerryvore, Alex Wayt and The Den Collective. Now in its 26th year, the programme includes a grand ceilidh and children’s events, as well as plenty of gigs taking place in venues around the village. TBC SEPTEMBER

THREE LOCHS BOOKS AND ART FESTIVAL

With a strong literary focus, this tiny festival in the remote village of Strontian on the shores of Loch Sunart has attracted more than its fair share of big names, with last year’s festival featuring Alexander McCall Smith, Mary Ann Kennedy and BBC Radio Scotland’s Tom Morton. Past festivals have also included a hotly contested creative writing competition, film screenings and the odd foodie event.

DAVID RAVANEL

LITERATURE/ART The Sunart Centre, Strontian, Acharacle, threelochs.blogspot.com

The Edinburgh Mountain Film Festival gives a taste of the high life

TBC SEPTEMBER

WORDS: NORTH LANARKSHIRE FESTIVAL OF BOOKS AND WRITING

OCTOBER

LITERATURE/FAMILY Various venues, North Lanarkshire, 01698 372325, northlanarkshire.gov.uk

GLASGOW AMERICANA FESTIVAL

The focus of literary activity in North Lanarkshire, Words presents a mix of high-profile and emerging authors. Storytellers visit rural Lanarkshire in mobile libraries, there’s a range of children’s events, a short-story writing competition and the Catalyst Book Award.

Details correct at time of going to press but are subject to change or cancellation. Please check with festival organiser before travelling. Updated information will also be available at list.co.uk

5–9 OCTOBER

MUSIC Various venues, Glasgow, glasgowamericana.com

Glasgow’s fifth annual celebration of Americana brings musicians from as far afield as Texas and Canada to perform roots music from blues to rockabilly. High calibre performers in past years have included Grammy nominees and the American Music Association’s Instrumentalist of the year, Gurf Morlix (2009). 6–9 OCTOBER

EDINBURGH MOUNTAIN FILM FESTIVAL FILM & TV George Square Lecture Theatre, Edinburgh University, Edinburgh,

emff.co.uk For outdoor enthusiasts, whether climbers, skiers, snowboarders, kayakers, BASE jumpers or explorers, this weekend of film screenings, lectures and photography exhibitions attracts over 2,000 people.

6–10 OCTOBER

SHETLAND ACCORDION AND FIDDLE FESTIVAL MUSIC Various venues, Lerwick, Shetland, shetlandaccordionandfiddle.com

The best of Gaelic and Celtic trad musicians gather annually for this five-day series of concerts, ceilidhs and collective music-making sessions in the far north. Performers in previous years have included Matthew MacLennan, the Charlie Kirkpatrick Trio and singing fillies The Henry Girls. The List Scottish Festivals 2011 61


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The Peatbog Faeries are among the bands to have rounded off the day at Cowalfest

7–9 OCTOBER

ULLAPOOL GUITAR FESTIVAL

concert from the likes of the Peatbog Faeries.

natural habitats of Highland wildlife. 8–18 OCTOBER

MUSIC McField Centre, Ullapool, Highland, 07740 423554, ullapoolguitarfestival.com

8–15 OCTOBER

CUPAR ARTS FESTIVAL

CRIEFF AND STRATHEARN DROVER’S TRYST WALKING FESTIVAL

MULTI-ARTS Various venues, Cupar, Fife, cupararts.org.uk

This bespoke festival for guitar experts features over 30 musicians at the late-night festival club. Guitar makers and equipment manufacturers set up discounted trade stands selling top brands such as Avalon, Fylde, Osborne, Taran, Powell, Peter Beer and Patrick Eggle.

OUTDOOR Crieff and Strathearn, Kinross, droverstryst.co.uk

The Cupar arts programme gives a platform to local arts and artists, with workshops, poetry slams, concerts and film screenings. There are also puppets, stilt-walking and storytelling for the children. In 2009 over 40 artists exhibited around the town in non-traditional exhibition spaces. The 2011 event brings Portobello-born artist and promoter Richard Demarco, one of the invited artists, to draw Cupar’s historic street closes.

7–16 OCTOBER

COWALFEST ART/MUSIC/OUTDOOR Various venues, Cowal Peninsula, Argyll, cowalfest.org

A ten-day programme of walks, arts, cultural and social events to celebrate the magnificent landscape of the Cowal Peninsula and traditional Scottish music. Join a guided walk with one of Cowalfest’s passionate and knowledgeable volunteers in the daytime, then in the evening take in a play or a 62 The List Scottish Festivals 2011

Annual popular festival marking the historical journey made by generations of Scots to bring their cattle to the great Michaelmas trading fair in Crieff. The cattle are absent nowadays – instead there are opportunities to scale the local Munros, a creepy crawly trail, plus social and arts events, exhibitions and the Hairy Coo mountain bike challenge.

14–22 OCTOBER 8–16 OCTOBER

ROYAL NATIONAL MOD

WILD CONNECTIONS

MULTI-ARTS/HERITAGE Various venues, Western Isles, 01463 709705, acgmod.org

OUTDOOR/FAMILY Various venues, Perthshire, 0871 288 3220, wildconnections.org.uk

A wildlife festival taking place right at the heart of Perthshire’s ‘big tree country’. A sociable and soulrestoring outdoors experience, it features a series of events exploring

Celebrating Scotland’s Gaelic linguistic and cultural heritage, the leading Gaelic festival is a competitive feast of music, song, Highland dancing, drama, sport and literature.


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20–30 OCTOBER

BIGGAR LITTLE FESTIVAL MULTI-ARTS Various venues, Biggar, 01555 772872, biggar-little-festival.com

A community-based festival allowing affordable access to all the arts, from comedy to classical, jazz and folk music, theatre, dance, exhibitions and workshops.

artform that is a rich part of Scotland’s cultural heritage. Performance, workshops, talks and children’s events follow this year’s theme of Scotland’s links to Europe and the Mediterranean. 21 OCTOBER–12 NOVEMBER

GLASGAY!

20 OCTOBER–13 NOVEMBER

MULTI-ARTS Various venues, Glasgow, 0141 552 5302, glasgay.com

SOUND

See panel, page 67.

MUSIC/FAMILY Various venues, Aberdeen and Aberdeenshire, 01330 826526, sound-scotland.co.uk

See panel, page 65. 21–23 OCTOBER

AYR JAZZ FESTIVAL MUSIC Various venues, Ayr, Ayrshire, 01292 443309, ayrjazzfestival.co.uk

Ayr’s jazz festival showcases the jazz flavours of New Orleans, Dixieland, ragtime, swing, hot club and the jumpin’ scenes of the 20s and 30s. Weekend, day and session tickets are all available. 21–23 OCTOBER

PEEBLES FOOD FESTIVAL FOOD & DRINK Eastgate Arts Centre and Theatre, Eastgate, Peebles, Borders, 01721 725777, peeblesfoodfestival.com

Peebles’ interactive food festival puts on a day of ‘Ready Steady Cook’ sessions for adults and children, master-chef demos, wine masterclasses, beer and whisky tasting, as well as an indoor produce market.

24 OCTOBER–4 NOVEMBER

INSPIRATION FESTIVAL MULTI-ARTS Various venues, Glasgow, 0141 287 5810, glasgowlife.org.uk/arts

This festival is unique in offering arts performances, creative workshops and artists’ residencies exclusively for children under 14, allowing the kids to kindle their creative skills in a dedicated environment. It is introducing more family and youth programmes, and ‘wee inspiration’ for the under 5s. 26–30 OCTOBER

EDINBURGH INDEPENDENT AND RADICAL BOOK FAIR LITERATURE Out of the Blue Drill Hall, Dalmeny Street, Edinburgh, 0131 662 9112, word-power.co.uk

The 15th Independent and Radical Book Fair will host another plethora of left-field stalls, as well as exhibitions, film screenings, workshops for schools, creative writing events and over a dozen author talks outwith the mainstream publishing circles.

21–30 OCTOBER

SCOTTISH INTERNATIONAL STORYTELLING FESTIVAL LITERATURE Scottish Storytelling Centre, High Street, Edinburgh, 0131 556 9579, scottishstorytellingcentre .co.uk

It is easy to overlook storytelling amid the clamour of higher-profile artforms. This festival seeks to redress the balance by treating storytelling as a contemporary

27–29 OCTOBER

FACLAN HEBRIDEAN BOOK FESTIVAL LITERATURE An Lanntair Arts Centre and Cinema, Kenneth Street, Stornoway, Isle of Lewis, 01851 703307, faclan.org

A variety of literary and musical events celebrating the Hebrides and beyond, featuring a number of world-class authors.

SPOTLIGHT ON . . . THE ENCHANTED FOREST If you go down to the woods tonight . . .

A lifetime away from Scotland’s traditional brand of arts festival, the Enchanted Forest, Perthshire’s mythical, trippy wonderland has built up a faithful following. A sound and light show, this part fairytale, part extraterrestrial nocturnal adventure attracts over 20,000 visitors annually to Faskally Wood outside Pitlochry for the threeweek run. Using the area’s stunning natural surroundings for its backdrop, the festival takes all ages on an outdoor journey in which the landscape is re-imagined through lights and sound. Meet at Pitlochry Main Street where a shuttle bus will take you into the forest. It is one of over a dozen events in and around Pitlochry as part of the Highland Perthshire Autumn Festival. Faskally Wood, Pitlochry, Perthshire, Oct (date tbc), enchantedforest.org.uk; Highland Perthshire Autumn Festival, Pitlochry, Perthshire, Oct (date tbc), www. pitlochryautumnfestival.co.uk The List Scottish Festivals 2011 63


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27-30 OCTOBER

DUNDEE LITERARY FESTIVAL LITERATURE/FAMILY Bonar Hall, Perth Road, Dundee, 01382 384413, literarydundee.co.uk

With the magnet of the Dundee International Book Prize, the largest UK award for an unpublished novel, the festival attracts internationally acclaimed writers, as well as local authors, and includes creative writing workshops, poetry readings and children’s events. John Gray and David Peace spoke, among others, in 2010. 28 OCTOBER–6 NOVEMBER

PERTHSHIRE AMBER – THE DOUGIE MACLEAN FESTIVAL MUSIC Various venues, Perthshire, 01350 724281, perthshireamber.com

Internationally renowned songwriter and composer Dougie MacLean has developed a distinctive festival that shares his inspiring music, celebrates the history and culture of Perthshire and showcases its beautiful scenery. The concerts are staged in venues from an iron age crannog (or loch-dwelling) to historic castles and the atmospheric Dunkeld Cathedral. Taking place on the last weekend of October it is, as festival director Jennifer MacLean says, ‘a perfect time to experience autumn’s rich amber colours’.

ceilidh dance, grand finale concert and a final night dance. 29–30 OCTOBER

DUNFERMLINE FOLK WEEKEND MUSIC Various venues, Dunfermline, Fife, 01383 725872, dunfermlinefolkclub.art .officelive.com

Attracting dozens of ceilidh bands, fiddle groups and solo artists from all over Scotland, this festival appeals to a mixture of folk club regulars and families. As well as sessions, ceilidhs, concerts and song-writing workshops, there are stories and songs for Halloween aimed at children. The 2011 event celebrates the 50th anniversary of the first Dunfermline Folk Club. 30 OCTOBER

SAMHUINN HERITAGE City Centre, Edinburgh, beltane.org

The Samhuinn Festival is the Celtic New Year, a night when the departed spirits from the previous year return for a last hurrah and the final party before winter sets in. After a costumed ritual procession down the Royal Mile to Parliament Square, the Beltane Fire Society parties the night away to live dubstep, drum’n’bass and Balkan music in one of Edinburgh’s nightclubs. TBC OCTOBER

29 OCTOBER

AFRICA IN MOTION

PERTH ALL SCOTLAND ACCORDION AND FIDDLE FESTIVAL

FILM & TV/FAMILY Filmhouse, Edinburgh, 0131 228 2688, africa-in-motion.org.uk

MUSIC Various venues, Perth, perthaccordionfestival.co.uk

The sixth anniversary of AiM will celebrate African film-making and

The official Scottish Accordion Championships for traditional music are set alongside fiddle competitions and sessions for traditional and classical accordion, bands and trios, covering a variety of musical styles. Further entertainment includes a welcome 64 The List Scottish Festivals 2011

Details correct at time of going to press but are subject to change or cancellation. Please check with festival organiser before travelling. Updated information will also be available at list.co.uk

culture. Last year’s event showed over 70 films from 28 African countries, covering themes such as Mandela, children, dance, North Africa, the environment, sport, music, design and beauty. There was also poetry events, a children’s animation workshop, a dance workshop and fashion extravaganza. TBC OCTOBER–NOVEMBER

DISCOVERY FILM & TV/FAMILY Dundee Contemporary Arts, 152 Nethergate, Dundee, discoveryfilmfestival.org.uk

Scotland’s international film festival for children and young people is typically enjoyed by over 8,000 people. In 2010, its programme of international films varied from Moomins and the Comet Chase in 3D to the powerful youth documentary Neukölln Unlimited. See the website for details of touring programmes across Scotland. TBC OCTOBER

DOCUMENT FILM & TV/POLITICS CCA, 350 Sauchiehall Street, Glasgow, 0141 352 4900, documentfilmfestival.org

This dedicated international human rights documentary film festival uses international film to raise the profile of human rights and social issues that are not exposed in mainstream media. It showcases a wide range of styles from reportage to cinematic essays, investigative journalism to left-field experiments. TBC OCTOBER

EDINBURGH WORLD JUSTICE FESTIVAL POLITICS Various venues, Edinburgh, ewjf.org.uk

A well-stocked programme of inspiring free events including talks, films, gigs and workshops linked by the themes of global justice. The big issues of our times will be creatively presented with a focus


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firmly on solutions and how ‘ordinary’ Scottish residents can do their bit to help create a fairer world, plus how seasoned campaigners can become more effective. TBC OCTOBER

ENCHANTED FOREST MULTI-ARTS Faskally Wood, Pitlochry, Perthshire, enchantedforest.org.uk

See panel, page 63. TBC OCTOBER

HIGHLAND ARCHAEOLOGY FESTIVAL HERITAGE Various venues, Highland, 01463 702250, highland.gov.uk/archaeology

A fortnight of investigations into Scotland’s ancient past, including walks, practical demonstrations, insights into recent research, historical talks, a weekend conference for experts and enthusiasts and plenty of chances for visitors to get their hands dirty.

halls across Scotland. Intending to challenge attitudes and raise awareness about mental health, the festival puts on an exhibition of people’s stories as well as a broadbased programme of comedy shows, live music nights, theatre premières, film screenings and talks with writers. TBC OCTOBER

TASTE OF THE CAIRNGORMS FOOD & DRINK Various venues, Aviemore, Carrbrige and surrounding area, tasteofthecairngorms.com

An autumn week of oat-andwhisky-themed foodie events centred around the Golden Spurtle World Porridge Making Championship. The menu of activities includes whisky tasting, brewery tours and live music, while a food and drink trail around the area points you in the direction of the best local restaurants and cafés. TBC OCTOBER

TBC OCTOBER

SCOTLAND LOVES ANIMATION FESTIVAL FILM & TV Filmhouse, Edinburgh and Glasgow Film Theatre, Glasgow, lovesanimation.com

Promoting worldwide animation with a programme of events in Glasgow and Edinburgh’s arthouse cinemas, the festival includes première screenings, exhibitions, workshops and international guests. It also offers an educational programme and a platform for recent graduates with its trade fair. TBC OCTOBER

SCOTTISH MENTAL HEALTH ARTS AND FILM FESTIVAL MULTI-ARTS Various venues, Scotland-wide, mhfestival.com

This young and steadily growing festival puts its name to nearly 200 events in galleries, cinemas, theatres, pubs, libraries and town

TROSSACHS MUSHROOM FESTIVAL FOOD & DRINK Various venues, Aberfoyle, Stirling, 01877 382276, mushroomfestival.co.uk

A festival of fungi, food, drink and music with a different theme each year. Expect fungi walks, cookery demonstrations, wine tasting, dance and more mushrooms than you can shake a stick at. TBC OCTOBER

TWEED VALLEY FOREST FESTIVAL OUTDOOR/HERITAGE/FAMILY Tweed Valley Forests, Borders, forest-festival.com

A celebration of the rich woodland culture and ancient Halloween rites of the Borders in a variety of locations around the beautiful Tweed Valley. Includes puppet shows, woodcrafting, heritage tree trails and most excitingly of all, the Scottish Conker Championships.

SPOTLIGHT ON . . . SOUND Making new music accessible

Not so much a single festival as an umbrella network for a large number of arts organisations in Aberdeen and the north of Scotland, Sound is a musical programme of events that lasts almost a month. Described by the BBC as ‘a festival with a refreshing lack of agenda’, it stages classical, folk, experimental and electronic shows in around two dozen buildings, including central Aberdeen gig venues, premises belonging to the city’s university, and churches and village halls across the north of Scotland. For 2011, we can expect an extensive link-up with Scandinavian artists and a vocal theme, including a collaboration between the groups Exaudi, a leading young contemporary music ensemble, and Endymion, the music-theatre specialists. Various venues, Aberdeen and the north of Scotland, 20 Oct13 Nov, info 01330 826526, bookings (from Aug 2011) 01224 641122, soundscotland.co.uk The List Scottish Festivals 2011 65


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TBC OCTOBER

VOICES IN PAISLEY MUSIC Various venues, Paisley, Renfrewshire, paisleyfestivalcompany.com

Voices in Paisley is a celebration of ‘Scotland’s Choir Town’ and choral singing in all its glorious forms: from classical to jazz. A variety of concerts are held around the town, with performances from guest stars and local talents.

NOVEMBER 3–12 NOVEMBER

DANCE: FILM FESTIVAL THEATRE & DANCE/FILM & TV Dance Base, Grassmarket and Filmhouse, 88 Lothian Road, Edinburgh, 0131 225 5525, dancefilmscotland.com

A collaboration between Dance Base and the Filmhouse brings a festival inspired to recreate the feelgood factor of dance films and to leave people with the sensation of ‘walking on air’. A week of feature films, documentaries, shorts programmes, lectures, special events and dance workshops promises to get toes tapping around the town. 4-6 NOVEMBER

LINLITHGOW BOOK FESTIVAL LITERATURE Masonic Hall, High Street, Linlithgow, West Lothian, linlithgowbookfestival.org

West Lothian’s book festival embraces literature of all genres – be that fiction, history or gardening. There’s also free open-mic entertainment and a poetry workshop run by a local poet.

Details correct at time of going to press but are subject to change or cancellation. Please check with festival organiser before travelling. Updated information will also be available at list.co.uk 66 The List Scottish Festivals 2011

Previous appearances have included Craig Russell, Alasdair Moffat, Stuart MacBride and Alasdair Gray in conversation with his biographer Rodge Glass.

10 NOVEMBER–1 DECEMBER

7–12 NOVEMBER

Promoting the French film industry, the festival ranges from previews (five in 2010) to classic, retro, panorama, tribute and short films as well as educational and family choices. Alongside screenings are vintage photography exhibitions, deals at local French restaurants and talks by filmmakers and actors.

IMPRINT LITERATURE/FAMILY Burns Monument Centre and Dick Institute, Kilmarnock, East Ayrshire, 01563 554300, imprintfestival.co.uk

In 2010, East Ayrshire’s literary week included a programme of bestselling authors and poets such as Tom Leonard, Roddy Martine, Stuart Brown, Jess Smith and Alex Gray, as well as actor and TV presenter Sandi Toksvig. This year’s line-up will feature storytelling and bookbug sessions for children, as well as workshops and author visits. 7-13 NOVEMBER

NEON TECHNOLOGY Various venues, Dundee, northeastofnorth.com

A seven-day international digital arts festival featuring moving image, performance, music and technology driven arts. A programme of conferences, workshops and social events aims to explore the links between visual art, information communication, media production and gaming to expand digital development. 9–13 NOVEMBER

INVERNESS FILM FESTIVAL

FRENCH FILM FESTIVAL FILM & TV Various venues, Scotland-wide, 0131 225 6191, frenchfilmfestival.org.uk

11–13 NOVEMBER

LENNOXLOVE BOOK FESTIVAL LITERATURE/FAMILY Lennoxlove House, Haddington, East Lothian, 0844 357 7611, lennoxlovebookfestival.com

The third festival plays host to authors of fiction, non-fiction and children’s books. Previous visitors include Ian Rankin, Alexander McCall Smith, Alastair Campbell, Kate Adie, Julia Donaldson, Iain Banks, Maggie O’Farrell, James Naughtie, Simon King, Tom Conti and Peter Snow. 25–26 NOVEMBER

DUNDEE MOUNTAIN FILM FESTIVAL FILM & TV Bonar Hall, Park Place and Dundee Contemporary Arts, Nethergate, Dundee, 01828 686764, dundeemountainfilm.org.uk

FILM & TV Eden Court Theatre, Bishop’s Road Inverness, Highlands, 01463 234234, invernessfilmfestival.com

See panel page 68.

The ninth festival plans to build on last year’s impressive programme, which included 15 Scottish and three UK premieres, Palme D’or entrants and films from Asia. It also ran a two-day workshop on film scheduling and budgeting, the challenges involved in making a film in a weekend and a chance to contribute to the longest handpainted film in Britain.

MUSIC/FOOD & DRINK/OUTDOOR Various venues, St Andrews, Fife, standrewsfestival.co.uk

25–27 NOVEMBER

ST ANDREWS FESTIVAL

Scotland’s premier St Andrew’s Day festival, with live music at ‘Undercover’ entertaining crowds of 6,000, a ‘Nae4 Wimps’ ceilidh, torchlight procession and fireworks. Last year Red Hot Chilli Pipers headlined, supported by upcoming folk singer Chloe


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Matharu. There are craft and art fairs during the day, as well as a schools’ musical programme. TBC NOVEMBER

DENHOLM FOLK FESTIVAL MUSIC Various venues, Denholm, Borders, 07706 661951, denholmfolkfest.co.uk

This picturesque town in the Scottish borders hosts a weekend of concerts and informal pub sessions. The music is eclectic, ranging from folk to rock, with last year’s highlights including exLindisfarne guitarist Billy Mitchell and Shooglenifty – a six-piece Celtic rock fusion band. The festival runs free traditional music workshops for ages 8–18. TBC NOVEMBER

DUNDEE JAZZ FESTIVAL MUSIC Various venues, Dundee, 0845 1110302, jazzdundee.co.uk

International jazz names rub shoulders with Dundonian talent on Tayside each November. The 2010 line-up included Mike Stern with Didier Lockwood, China Moses, Leroy Jones and Barbara Morrison. Representing the Dundee/Fife team were Gordon McNeil, Havana Swing and Angie King. Venues vary from the Apex Dundee City Quay for jazz lunches, Perth Concert Hall for evening headliners and the lively Old Post Office bar in Broughty Ferry. TBC NOVEMBER

EAST KILBRIDE FOLK FESTIVAL MUSIC Various venues, East Kilbride, South Lanarkshire, eastkilbridefolkfestival.webs.com

A long weekend of live folk music, children’s events and folkish glories in the historic village area of East Kilbride, including songwriting competitions and workshops in voice, Irish dancing and lots of free entertainment.

GLASGAY! Nowt so queer as folk You’d imagine a festival dedicated to ‘queer culture’ would be a minority event, tucked away out of mainstream view. One of the great things about Glasgay, however, is it’s so loud and proud that everyone – whatever their sexual persuasion – feels comfortable joining in. Cleverly, it does this without watering down the LGBT experience. What it does instead is to take a broad view of sexuality in a way that excludes no one. Certainly, within this multi-arts festival you will find work that is polemical and that challenges conventional views about behaviour and morality, but you will also find plenty of work that has no overt sexual agenda at all and just happens to have been created by gay artists. It is a brilliant strategy that means the festival merges seamlessly into the programmes of all kinds of theatres, clubs, cinemas and galleries, subtly getting the message across that otherness is normal. From its foundation in 1993, Glasgay has grown to such an extent that it now involves 20 venues and attracts audiences of over 35,000. It is defiantly mainstream. Directed by Steven Thomson, the festival is a mixture of established and specially commissioned comedy, music, film, theatre and visual art. There are also literature events, club nights and community arts projects. This year, we can expect a focus on Edwin Morgan, Glasgow’s first poet laureate and the first Scots makar (national poet), who died in 2010 at the age of 90. Although his early work sometimes explored his sexuality, it was not until 1990 that Morgan came out. Thereafter, he championed gay rights, campaigned against the repressive section 28 and wrote a poem for the opening of the Glasgow LGBT centre. It is fitting he should be celebrated here. Various venues, Glasgow, 21 Oct–12 Nov, 0141 552 5302, glasgay.co.uk The List Scottish Festivals 2011 67


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TBC NOVEMBER

30 DECEMBER–2 JANUARY

SCOTS FIDDLE FESTIVAL

EDINBURGH’S HOGMANAY

MUSIC Venue tbc, Edinburgh, 0131 555 7669, scotsfiddlefestival.com

MULTI-ARTS Various venues, Edinburgh, edinburghshogmanay.org

A weekend of workshops, recitals, talks by instrumental engineers, an open stage and a grand finale concert in the centre of the capital. Beginners to advanced players are catered for in the workshop programme, which includes youth workshops organised by Youth Gaitherin’.

Scotland’s capital city welcomes hundreds of thousands of New Year revellers from around the world to enjoy a four-day programme, including live concerts in the gardens, the world famous street party, fireworks launched from the castle, ceilidhs, a torchlight procession and, for the most brave or foolhardy, the Loony Dook, in which swimmers take to the water at South Queensferry. See panel.

DECEMBER

SPOTLIGHT ON . . . DUNDEE MOUNTAIN FILM FESTIVAL Movies with a head for heights

The combination of mountains and movies really shouldn’t work but in Dundee it does. Taking its lead from the International Alliance for Mountain Film, which stages similar events across Europe, this is a celebration of mountain films for those that celebrate the giddy heights within the great outdoors. With sponsors Tiso and the Scottish Mountaineering Trust very much on board, the agenda here is clear – watch and be inspired. In 2011, the audience chose documentary filmmaker Paul Diffley’s new vertigodefying film The Pinnacle as its favourite film, but who knows what valour and madness lie ahead? Bonar Hall and DCA, Dundee, 01828 686764, 25–26 Nov, www.dundeemountainfilm .org.uk

68 The List Scottish Festivals 2011

DECEMBER

EDINBURGH’S CHRISTMAS

31 DECEMBER–1 JANUARY 2012

FAMILY Various venues, Edinburgh, edinburghschristmas.com

GLASGOW’S HOGMANAY

While traditional German Christmas markets have become a widespread phenomenon in the UK, Edinburgh’s must surely be one of the most beautifully located and atmospheric. Enveloped in a delicious cloud of sausage and glühwein smells, the traditional wooden huts on Mound Square overlook the ice rink and funfair rides in Princes Street Gardens, while the twinkling lights in the trees all around add a festive fizz to the bitter winter air. DECEMBER

GLASGOW’S CHRISTMAS FAMILY Various venues, Glasgow, 0141 564 4220, glasgowloveschristmas.com

The centrepiece of Glasgow’s Christmas celebrations is its wonderful display of lights, which is at its brightest and most colourful in George Square where the popular switching-on ceremony takes place each year. Also laid on are late-night shopping events with live music, the open-air ice rink, the spectacle of the annual charity Santa Dash and, bookending the festive period, some of the country’s biggest ceilidhs and parties to celebrate St Andrew’s Day and Hogmanay.

MULTI-ARTS Various venues, Glasgow, glasgowloveschristmas.com

This festival celebrates a truly Scottish Hogmanay with one of Scotland’s biggest outdoor ceilidhs. Previous performers include celtic music legends Capercaillie and indie-folk DJ Dolphin Boy. The 2011 programme offers a family-friendly ceillidh format. See panel. TBC DECEMBER

CROMARTY FILM FESTIVAL FILM & TV Various venues, Cromarty, Highlands, cromartyfilmfestival.org

Cromarty calls itself the best little film festival in the north of Scotland, showing an eclectic mix of archive, contemporary and international films, as well as lectures and special guests. It takes place in a quaint, well-preserved 18th-century seaside town in the north of the Black Isle and has its hub in the Old Brewery.

JANUARY 2012 19 JANUARY–15 FEBRUARY

CELTIC CONNECTIONS MUSIC Various venues, Glasgow, 0141 353 8000, celticconnections.com

See January 2011 panel, page 19.


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24 JANUARY

UP HELLY AA HERITAGE Town centre, Lerwick, Shetland, uphellyaa.org

See January 2011 entry. 27–29 JANUARY

HIDDEN DOOR MUSIC/ART Venue tbc, Edinburgh, hiddendoor.org

Artists, bands, poets and filmmakers congregate for the Hidden Door interdisciplinary arts festival, which features dozens of cool if completely obscure musicians, bands, artists, poets and filmmakers under one roof, often working in new and exciting combinations. TBC JANUARY

FIFE FESTIVAL OF MUSIC MUSIC Various venues, Fife, ffom.org.uk

See January 2011 entry. TBC JANUARY

MANIPULATE VISUAL THEATRE FESTIVAL THEATRE & DANCE Traverse Theatre, 10 Cambridge Street, Edinburgh, 0131 228 1404, boxoffice@traverse.co.uk, manipulatefestival.org

See January 2011 entry. TBC JANUARY

WINTER WORDS LITERATURE/FAMILY Pitlochry Festival Theatre, Portna-Craig, Pitlochry, Perthshire, 01796 484626, pitlochry.org.uk

See January 2011 entry.

Details correct at time of going to press but are subject to change or cancellation. Please check with festival organiser before travelling. Updated information will also be available at list.co.uk

HOGMANAY Should auld acquaintance be forgot . . . Wherever you are in Scotland, you will be given an especially warm welcome at Hogmanay. The arrival of the new year has particular significance in the Scottish calendar because, for centuries, it was the only winter holiday people got. The Presbyterian church frowned upon Christmas, which it associated with Catholicism, and as a result, 25 December was a normal working day until as recently as 1958. Understandably, people were ready to make the most of the new year holiday when it came. For many years, this was a matter of people celebrating in their own homes or first-footing their neighbours, and in most parts of the country, this remains the case. But in the 1990s, the bigger cities came to realise they could make more of the phenomenon. Edinburgh was first off the mark in 1992, taking the rather dispiriting local tradition of gathering outside the Tron Kirk to hear the midnight bells and turning it into a festival lasting between three and five days (depending on budget). As well as a street party that takes over the city centre and features major bands on several stages, there is an atmospheric torchlight procession from the Royal Mile to Calton Hill, a candlelit concert in St Giles’ Cathedral and sporting activities such as a city-centre run and the Loony Dook – an icy plunge into the Firth of Forth. For Edinburgh, Hogmanay has become one of the cornerstones of its year-round festival programme. Although not on quite the same scale, Glasgow also makes a big splash on the night of 31 December, programming big-name bands to play in George Square. Look out also for fireworks in Aberdeen, a bonfire in Biggar, fireball swinging in Stonehaven and street parties in Dornoch, Inverness and Stirling. Edinburgh’s Hogmanay, 30 Dec–2 Jan, 0870 040 4000, edinburghshogmanay.org; Glasgow’s Hogmanay, 31 Dec–1 Jan, 0141 564 4220, glasgowloveschristmas.com The List Scottish Festivals 2011 69


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INDEX There are three indexes: the first lists festivals alphabetically, the second by category and the third by location.

ALPHABETICAL 3 Harbours Arts Festival Aberdeen Int. Youth Festival Aberdeen Jazz Festival Aberdour Festival Aberfeldy Festival Aboyne & Deeside Festival Africa in Motion Angus Glens Walking Festival AOS Dana Book Festival Arbroath Sea Fest Arches Live! Atlantic Islands Festival Aviemore Walking Festival Aye Write! Glasgow Book Festival Ayr Jazz Festival Ballater Royal Deeside Walking Festival Banchory Festival of Scottish Music Bank of Scotland Imaginate Festival Bathgate Music Festival Belladrum Tartan Heart Festival Beltane Fire Festival Big Tent Festival Biggar Little Festival Black Isle Words Festival Blas Festival Blend Extra Booked Books, Borders & Bikes Int. Festival Bootstock Border Gaitherin Borders Book Festival Boswell Auchinleck Book Festival Buchan’s Larder Burns An’ A’ That Bute Linedance Festival Caithness & Sutherland Walking Festival Callander Jazz & Blues Festival Cantilena Festival on Islay 70 The List Scottish Festivals 2011

34 34 22 45 52 41 64 36 52 50 57 42 28 21 63 31 30 28 56 46 27 46 63 58 55 24 28 51 58 34 39 30 58 32 57 27 58 42

Ceilidh Culture 24 Celtic Connections 19 Celtic Media Festival 24 Ceòl Cholasa 58 Ceolas Music Summer School & Festival 42 Coast Festival of the Visual Arts 32 Coloursfest 36 Cowalfest 62 Crail Festival 43 Creetown Country Music Weekend 58 Crieff & Strathearn Drover’s Tryst Walking Festival 62 Cromarty Film Festival 68 Culross Music & Arts Festival 35 Cumnock Music Festival 39 Cupar Arts Festival 62 Dance Live Festival 58 Dance: Film Festival 66 Darvel Music Festival 34 Dead by Dawn 28 Denholm Folk Festival 67 Discovery 64 Document: Int. Human Rights Documentary Film Festival 64 Doors Open Day Scotland 58 Doric Festival 58 Douglas Folk Festival 56 Doune the Rabbit Hole 38 Drams in the Field 57 Drover’s Tryst Walking Festival 62 Dumfries & Galloway Arts Festival 31 Dumfries Film Festival 26 Dunbar Traditional Music Festival 57 Dundee Blues Bonanza 40 Dundee Flower & Food Festival 53 Dundee Jazz Festival 67 Dundee Literary Festival 64 Dundee Mountain Film Festival 66 Dundee Women’s Festival 21 Dundonald Music Festival 34 Dunfermline Folk Weekend 64 East Ayrshire Book Festival 66 East Kilbride Folk Festival 67 East Neuk Festival 40 East Renfrewshire Food Festival 54 East Renfrewshire Storytelling Festival 22 EatBute 55

Eden Festival 36 Edge Festival 46 Edinburgh Art Festival 46 Edinburgh Book Fringe 46 Edinburgh Festival Fringe 46 Edinburgh Independent & Radical Book Fair 63 Edinburgh Int. Book Festival 50 Edinburgh Int. Festival 50 Edinburgh Int. Film Festival 39 Edinburgh Int. Harp Festival 24 Edinburgh Int. Jazz & Blues Festival 44 Edinburgh Int. Magic Festival 41 Edinburgh Int. Science Festival 24 Edinburgh Interactive 50 Edinburgh Iranian Festival 19 Edinburgh Mela 58 Edinburgh Mountain Film Festival 61 Edinburgh Tattoo 46 Edinburgh World Justice Festival 64 Edinburgh’s Christmas 68 Edinburgh’s Hogmanay 68 Enchanted Forest 65 Faclan Hebridean Book Festival 63 Falkland Traditional Music Festival 40 The Famous Grouse Festival 50 Fence Collective’s HomeGame 28 Festival of Museums 30 Festival of Politics 52 Festival of Peace and Sprituality 52 Fiddle Frenzy 47 Fife Festival of Music 20 Fife Jazz Festival 20 Fife Outdoor Access Festival 54 Fifesing 28 Flavour of Shetland 43 Fort William Mountain Festival 20 French Film Festival 66 Fringe by the Sea 47 Funny in Falkirk 45 Galloway Music Festival 22 Get Moray Reading Book Festival 57 GI: Glasgow Int. Festival of Visual Arts 27 Girvan Traditional Folk Festival 26 Glasgay! 63


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Glasgow Americana Festival Glasgow Book Festival Glasgow Film Festival Glasgow Int. Comedy Festival Glasgow Int. Jazz Festival Glasgow’s Christmas Glasgow’s Hogmanay Glenelg Music Festival Glenfarg Folk Feast GoNorth Guildtown Bluegrass Music Festival Harris Arts Festival Hawick Summer Festival Hebridean Book Festival Hebridean Celtic Festival Helensburgh & Lomond Real Ale Festival Hidden Door Highland Archaeology Festival Highlands & Islands Music & Dance Festival Hippodrome Festival of Silent Cinema Imaginate Imprint: East Ayrshire Book Festival Innerleithen Music Festival Inspiration Festival Inverness Book Festival Inverness Film Festival Inverness Music Festival Islay Book Festival Isle of Arran Mountain Festival Isle of Gigha Music Festival Isle of Skye Accordion & Fiddle Festival Italian Film Festival JAM Festival Keith Festival Kelburn Garden Party Kelso Country & Western Festival Kingussie Food on Film Festival Kintyre Songwriters Festival Kirkcudbright Jazz Festival Kirriemuir Festival of Music & Song Knockengorroch World Ceilidh Knoydart Festival Lagavulin Islay Jazz Festival Lammermuir Festival Largs Viking Festival

61 21 21 22 40 68 68 57 24 36 45 45 52 63 43 30 69 65 26 22 28 66 51 63 47 66 22 54 56 40 31 24 54 38 40 30 20 32 39 53 32 26 57 59 51

Leith Festival Lennoxlove Book Festival Let’s Get Lyrical Linlithgow Book Festival Linlithgow Folk Festival Loanhead Music Festival Loch Fyne Food Fair Loch Ness Film Festival Loch Shiel Spring Festival Lockerbie Jazz Festival Loopallu Lorn Drama Festival Lossiemouth Folk Festival Magners Glasgow Int. Comedy Festival Manipulate Visual Theatre Festival Marymass Festival McLellan Arts Festival Meadows Festival Mearns Connections Festival Mendelssohn on Mull Festival Merchant City Festival Middle Eastern Festival of Spirituality & Peace Millport Country & Western Festival Milngavie Book & Arts Festival Montrose Music Festival Moray Spirit of Brass Mugdock Int. Music Festival Mull of Kintyre Music Festival Music at Paxton Nairn Book & Arts Festival Nairn Int. Jazz Festival NEoN New Territories Festival New Words Newcastleton Traditional Music Festival Niel Gow Scottish Fiddle Festival Northern Edge Jazz Festival Northern Nashville Country Music Festival Northern Roots Festival Off the Page On the Rocks Orkney Fine Wine Festival Orkney Folk Festival Orkney Int. Science Festival Orkney Jazz Festival Peebles Arts Festival Peebles Food Festival Peebles Int. Jazz Festival Penicuik Arts Festival

38 66 20 66 55 38 30 34 28 58 56 24 43 22 20 50 54 36 52 42 44 21 53 54 32 40 50 51 43 52 52 66 20 53 46 22 59 25 36 56 25 36 32 53 25 53 63 32 53

Perth All Scotland Accordion & Fiddle Festival Perth Festival of the Arts Perth Music Festival Perthshire Amber Piping Live! Pitlochry Autumn Festival Pittenweem Arts Festival Portpatrick Folk Festival Puppet Animation Festival Rewind RockNess Rolling Hills Folk Festival Royal Burgh of Pittenweem Arts Festival Royal Deeside Walking Festival Royal Edinburgh Military Tattoo Royal Highland Show Royal National Mod Samhuinn Scotfest Scotland Loves Animation Festival Scotland’s Countryside Festival Scots Fiddle Festival Scottish Food & Drink Fortnight Scottish Int. Storytelling Festival Scottish Mental Health Arts & Film Festival Scottish Real Ale Festival Scottish Traditional Boat Festival ScreenPlay SeptembAYR Shetland Accordion & Fiddle Festival Shetland Blues Festival Shetland Folk Festival Shetland Nature Festival Skye Book Festival Skye Jazz Festival Skye Storytelling Festival sound Speyfest Spirit of Speyside St Andrews Festival St Magnus Festival St Monans Community Arts Festival Stag & Dagger StAnza Stonehaven Folk Festival

64 30 59 64 47 60 46 53 24 45 38 45 46 31 46 39 62 64 56 65 54 68 54 63 65 39 41 51 60 61 60 26 42 52 60 32 63 46 26 66 39 56 34 22 42

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Strathspey in May Strichen Festival T in the Park Take One Action Film Festival Tall Ships Races Tarbert Music Festival Tarbert Seafood Festival Tartan Day Taste of Edinburgh Taste of the Cairngorms Techfest in September 3 Harbours Arts Festival Three Lochs Books & Art Festival TMSA Keith Festival Trossachs Mushroom Festival Tweed Valley Forest Festival Ugie Folk Festival Ullapool Book Festival Ullapool Guitar Festival Up Helly Aa Voices in Paisley Vunk Fest West End Festival Whisky Live Wickerman Festival Wigtown Book Festival Wild Connections Winter Words Wizard Festival Word WordPlay Words: North Lanarkshire Festival of Books & Writing Yellows on the Broom Int. Music & Arts Festival

26 35 43 57 44 60 42 24 40 65 56 34 61 38 65 65 45 28 62 19 66 43 36 54 44 57 62 19 51 30 54 61 35

GENRE MUSIC Aberdeen Int. Youth Festival Aberdeen Jazz Festival Aberdour Festival Aberfeldy Festival Aboyne & Deeside Festival Atlantic Islands Festival Ayr Jazz Festival Banchory Festival of Scottish Music Bathgate Music Festival Belladrum Tartan Heart Festival Big Tent Festival Biggar Little Festival Blas Festival 72 The List Scottish Festivals 2011

34 22 45 52 41 42 63 30 56 46 46 63 55

Blend Extra 24 Bootstock 58 Border Gaitherin 34 Burns An’ A’ That 32 Callander Jazz & Blues Festival 58 Cantilena Festival on Islay 42 Ceilidh Culture 24 Celtic Connections 19 Ceòl Cholasa 58 Ceolas Music Summer School & Festival 42 Coloursfest 36 Crail Festival 43 Creetown Country Music Weekend 58 Culross Music & Arts Festival 35 Cumnock Music Festival 39 Cupar Arts Festival 62 Darvel Music Festival 34 Denholm Folk Festival 67 Doric Festival 58 Douglas Folk Festival 56 Doune the Rabbit Hole 38 Dumfries & Galloway Arts Festival 31 Dunbar Traditional Music Festival 57 Dundee Blues Bonanza 40 Dundee Jazz Festival 67 Dundonald Music Festival 34 Dunfermline Folk Weekend 64 East Kilbride Folk Festival 67 East Neuk Festival 40 Eden Festival 36 Edge Festival 46 Edinburgh Festival Fringe 46 Edinburgh Int. Festival 50 Edinburgh Int. Harp Festival 24 Edinburgh Int. Jazz & Blues Festival 44 Edinburgh Iranian Festival 19 Edinburgh Mela 58 Edinburgh’s Hogmanay 68 Falkland Traditional Music Festival 40 Fence Collective’s HomeGame 28 Fiddle Frenzy 47 Fife Festival of Music 20 Fife Jazz Festival 20 Fifesing 28 Fringe by the Sea 47 Galloway Music Festival 22 Girvan Traditional Folk Festival 26 Glasgay! 63

Glasgow Americana Festival Glasgow Int. Jazz Festival Glasgow’s Hogmanay Glenelg Music Festival — Drams in the Field Glenfarg Folk Feast GoNorth Guildtown Bluegrass Music Festival Harris Arts Festival Hebridean Celtic Festival Hidden Door Highlands & Islands Music & Dance Festival Innerleithen Music Festival Inverness Music Festival Isle of Gigha Music Festival Isle of Skye Accordion & Fiddle Festival Kelburn Garden Party Kelso Country & Western Festival Kintyre Songwriters Festival Kirkcudbright Jazz Festival Kirriemuir Festival of Music & Song Knockengorroch World Ceilidh Knoydart Festival Lagavulin Islay Jazz Festival Lammermuir Festival Leith Festival Let’s Get Lyrical Linlithgow Folk Festival Loanhead Music Festival Loch Shiel Spring Festival Lockerbie Jazz Festival Loopallu Lossiemouth Folk Festival McLellan Arts Festival Meadows Festival Mearns Connections Festival Mendelssohn on Mull Festival Merchant City Festival Middle Eastern Festival of Spirituality & Peace Millport Country & Western Festival Milngavie Book & Arts Festival Montrose Music Festival Moray Spirit of Brass Mugdock Int. Music Festival Mull of Kintyre Music Festival Music at Paxton Nairn Int. Jazz Festival

61 40 68 57 24 36 45 45 43 69 26 51 22 40 31 40 30 32 39 53 32 26 57 59 38 20 55 38 28 58 56 43 54 36 52 42 44 21 53 54 32 40 50 51 43 52


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Newcastleton Traditional Music Festival Niel Gow Scottish Fiddle Festival Northern Edge Jazz Festival Northern Nashville Country Music Festival Northern Roots Festival On the Rocks Orkney Folk Festival Orkney Jazz Festival Peebles Arts Festival Peebles Int. Jazz Festival Perth All Scotland Accordion & Fiddle Festival Perth Festival of the Arts Perth Music Festival Perthshire Amber Piping Live! Pitlochry Autumn Festival Portpatrick Folk Festival Rewind RockNess Rolling Hills Folk Festival Royal Burgh of Pittenweem Arts Festival Royal National Mod Scots Fiddle Festival Scottish Mental Health Arts & Film Festival SeptembAYR Shetland Accordion & Fiddle Festival Shetland Blues Festival Shetland Folk Festival Skye Jazz Festival sound Speyfest St Andrews Festival St Magnus Festival St Monans Community Arts Festival Stag & Dagger Stonehaven Folk Festival Strathspey in May Festival Strichen Festival T in the Park Tarbert Music Festival TMSA Keith Festival Ugie Folk Festival Ullapool Guitar Festival Voices in Paisley Vunk Fest West End Festival

46 22 59 25 36 25 32 25 53 32 64 30 59 64 47 60 53 45 38 45 46 62 68 65 60 61 60 26 60 63 46 66 39 56 34 42 26 35 43 60 38 45 62 66 43 36

Wickerman Festival Wizard Festival Yellows on the Broom Int. Music & Arts Festival

44 51 35

LITERATURE AOS Dana Book Festival 52 Atlantic Islands Festival 42 Aye Write! Glasgow Book Festival 21 Black Isle Words Festival 58 Booked 28 Books, Borders & Bikes Int. Festival 51 Borders Book Festival 39 Boswell Auchinleck Book Festival 30 Burns An’ A’ That 32 Cupar Arts Festival 62 Dumfries & Galloway Arts Festival 31 Dundee Literary Festival 64 East Neuk Festival 40 East Renfrewshire Storytelling Festival 22 Edinburgh Book Fringe 46 Edinburgh Independent & Radical Book Fair 63 Edinburgh Int. Book Festival 50 Faclan Hebridean Book Festival 63 Fringe by the Sea 47 Get Moray Reading Book Festival 57 Harris Arts Festival 45 Imprint: East Ayrshire Book Festival 66 Inspiration Festival 63 Inverness Book Festival 47 Islay Book Festival 54 Leith Festival 38 Lennoxlove Book Festival 66 Let’s Get Lyrical 20 Linlithgow Book Festival 66 Mearns Connections Festival 52 Middle Eastern Festival of Spirituality & Peace 21 Milngavie Book & Arts Festival 54 Nairn Book & Arts Festival 52 New Words 53 Off the Page 56 Royal National Mod 62 Scottish Int. Storytelling Festival 63 Scottish Mental Health Arts & Film Festival 65

Skye Storytelling Festival St Magnus Festival St Monans Community Arts Festival StAnza Strichen Festival Three Lochs Books & Art Festival Ullapool Book Festival Wigtown Book Festival Winter Words Word WordPlay Words: North Lanarkshire Festival of Books & Writing

32 39 56 22 35 61 28 57 19 30 54 61

ART Aberdour Festival Aboyne & Deeside Festival Arches Live! Biggar Little Festival Coast Festival of the Visual Arts Culross Music & Arts Festival Cupar Arts Festival Dumfries & Galloway Arts Festival Edinburgh Art Festival Edinburgh Festival Fringe Edinburgh Int. Festival Edinburgh Iranian Festival Festival of Museums GI: Glasgow Int. Festival of Visual Arts Glasgay! Hidden Door Leith Festival Merchant City Festival Nairn Book & Arts Festival NEoN On the Rocks Peebles Arts Festival Penicuik Arts Festival Perth Festival of the Arts Royal Burgh of Pittenweem Arts Festival Scottish Mental Health Arts & Film Festival St Monans Community Arts Festival Three Lochs Books & Art Festival Vunk Fest West End Festival

45 41 57 63 32 35 62 31 46 46 50 19 30 27 63 69 38 44 52 66 25 53 53 30 46 65 56 61 43 36

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THEATRE & DANCE Aberdeen Int. Youth Festival Aberdour Festival Aboyne & Deeside Festival Arches Live! Bank of Scotland Imaginate Festival Biggar Little Festival Burns An’ A’ That Bute Linedance Festival Ceilidh Culture Culross Music & Arts Festival Cupar Arts Festival Dance Live Festival Dance: Film Festival Doric Festival Dumfries & Galloway Arts Festival Dundee Women’s Festival Edinburgh Festival Fringe Edinburgh Int. Festival Edinburgh Int. Magic Festival Edinburgh Mela Fringe by the Sea Glasgay! Harris Arts Festival Highlands & Islands Music & Dance Festival Inspiration Festival Leith Festival Lorn Drama Festival Manipulate Visual Theatre Festival McLellan Arts Festival Merchant City Festival Nairn Book & Arts Festival On the Rocks Peebles Arts Festival Perth Festival of the Arts Pitlochry Autumn Festival Puppet Animation Festival Royal National Mod Scottish Mental Health Arts & Film Festival SeptembAYR St Magnus Festival St Monans Community Arts Festival Strichen Festival West End Festival

34 45 41 57 28 63 32 57 24 35 62 58 66 58 31 21 46 50 41 58 47 63 45 26 63 38 24 20 54 44 52 25 53 30 60 24 62 65 60 39 56 35 36

FILM & TV Africa in Motion Celtic Media Festival Cromarty Film Festival Cupar Arts Festival Dance: Film Festival 74 The List Scottish Festivals 2011

64 24 68 62 66

Dead by Dawn Discovery Document: Int. Human Rights Documentary Film Festival Dumfries Film Festival Dundee Mountain Film Festival Edinburgh Int. Film Festival Edinburgh Mountain Film Festival French Film Festival Glasgay! Glasgow Film Festival Hippodrome Festival of Silent Cinema Inverness Film Festival Italian Film Festival JAM Festival Kingussie Food on Film Festival Loch Ness Film Festival Manipulate Visual Theatre Festival On the Rocks Puppet Animation Festival Scotland Loves Animation Festival Scottish Mental Health Arts & Film Festival ScreenPlay Take One Action Film Festival West End Festival

28 64 64 26 66 39 61 66 63 21 22 66 24 54 20 34 20 25 24 65 65 51 57 36

COMEDY Biggar Little Festival Edinburgh Festival Fringe Edinburgh Iranian Festival Fringe by the Sea Funny in Falkirk Glasgay! Magners Glasgow Int. Comedy Festival Merchant City Festival On the Rocks Perth Festival of the Arts Scottish Mental Health Arts & Film Festival West End Festival

63 46 19 47 45 63 22 44 25 30 65 36

FOOD & DRINK 3 Harbours Arts Festival Aberdour Festival Arbroath Sea-Fest Buchan’s Larder Burns An’ A’ That Dundee Flower & Food Festival

34 45 50 58 32 53

East Renfrewshire Food Festival EatBute Edinburgh Iranian Festival Edinburgh Mela Edinburgh’s Christmas The Famous Grouse Festival Flavour of Shetland Glasgow’s Christmas Helensburgh & Lomond Real Ale Festival Kingussie Food on Film Festival Loch Fyne Food Fair Orkney Fine Wine Festival Peebles Food Festival Pitlochry Autumn Festival Scotfest Scotland’s Countryside Festival Scottish Food & Drink Fortnight Scottish Real Ale Festival Scottish Traditional Boats Festival Spirit of Speyside St Andrews Festival Strathspey in May Tarbert Seafood Festival Taste of Edinburgh Taste of the Cairngorms Trossachs Mushroom Festival Whisky Live

54 55 19 58 68 50 43 68 30 20 30 36 63 60 56 54 54 39 41 26 66 26 42 40 65 65 54

OUTDOOR 3 Harbours Arts Festival Aberdour Festival Angus Glens Walking Festival Atlantic Islands Festival Aviemore Walking Festival Ballater Royal Deeside Walking Festival Books, Borders & Bikes Int. Festival Caithness & Sutherland Walking Festival Cowalfest Crieff & Strathearn Drover’s Tryst Walking Festival Dundee Mountain Film Festival Enchanted Forest Fife Outdoor Access Festival Fort William Mountain Festival Isle of Arran Mountain

34 45 36 42 28 31 51 27 62 62 66 65 54 20


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Festival Royal Highland Show SeptembAYR Shetland Nature Festival Tall Ships Races Tweed Valley Forest Festival Wild Connections

56 39 60 42 44 65 62

SCIENCE & TECHNOLOGY Edinburgh Int. Science Festival Edinburgh Interactive NEoN Orkney Int. Science Festival Techfest in September

24 50 66 53 56

HERITAGE Beltane Fire Festival Ceilidh Culture Celtic Media Festival Doors Open Day Scotland Festival of Museums Fiddle Frenzy Fifesing Flavour of Shetland Highland Archaeology Festival Largs Viking Festival Middle Eastern Festival of Spirituality & Peace Pitlochry Autumn Festival Royal Edinburgh Military Tattoo Royal Highland Show Royal National Mod Samhuinn Scotland’s Countryside Festival Scottish Traditional Boats Festival Skye Storytelling Festival St Andrews Festival Strichen Festival Tartan Day Tweed Valley Forest Festival Up Helly Aa

27 24 24 58 30 47 28 43 65 51 21 60 46 39 62 64 54 41 32 66 35 24 65 19

COMMUNITY Hawick Summer Festival Leith Festival Marymass Festival Meadows Festival Pitlochry Autumn Festival Royal Burgh of Pittenweem Arts Festival St Monans Community Arts Festival

52 38 50 36 60 46 56

POLITICS Document: Int. Human Rights Documentary Film Festival Edinburgh World Justice Festival Festival of Politics Take One Action Film Festival

Aberdeen City and Shire 34 22 41 31 30 58 32 58 58 52 53 59 41 63 42 35 56 38 45 51 30 35

Angus Angus Glens Walking Festival Arbroath Sea Fest Kirriemuir Festival of Music & Song Montrose Music Festival Scotland’s Countryside Festival

36 50 53 32 54

Argyll 64 64 52 57

26 32 30 51 60 42

Ayrshire

LOCATION Aberdeen Int. Youth Festival Aberdeen Jazz Festival Aboyne & Deeside Festival Ballater Royal Deeside Walking Festival Banchory Festival of Scottish Music Buchan’s Larder Coast Festival of the Visual Arts Dance Live Festival Doric Festival Mearns Connections Festival New Words Northern Edge Jazz Festival Scottish Traditional Boats Festival sound Stonehaven Folk Festival Strichen Festival Techfest in September TMSA Keith Festival Ugie Folk Festival Wizard Festival Word Yellows on the Broom Int. Music & Arts Festival

Highlands & Islands Music & Dance Festival Kintyre Songwriters Festival Loch Fyne Food Fair Mull of Kintyre Music Festival Tarbert Music Festival Tarbert Seafood Festival

Lorn Drama Festival 24 Cowalfest 62 Helensburgh & Lomond Real Ale Festival 30

Ayr Jazz Festival Boswell Auchinleck Book Festival Burns An’ A’ That Cumnock Music Festival Darvel Music Festival Dundonald Music Festival Girvan Traditional Folk Festival Imprint: East Ayrshire Book Festival JAM Festival Kelburn Garden Party Largs Viking Festival Marymass Festival SeptembAYR

63 30 32 39 34 34 26 66 54 40 51 50 60

Dumfries & Galloway Creetown Country Music Weekend Dumfries & Galloway Arts Festival Dumfries Film Festival Eden Festival Galloway Music Festival Kirkcudbright Jazz Festival Knockengorroch World Ceilidh Lockerbie Jazz Festival Portpatrick Folk Festival Wickerman Festival Wigtown Book Festival

58 31 26 36 22 39 32 58 53 44 57

Dundee Discovery Dundee Blues Bonanza Dundee Flower & Food Festival Dundee Jazz Festival Dundee Literary Festival Dundee Mountain Film Festival Dundee Women’s Festival Italian Film Festival NEoN

64 40 53 67 64 66 21 24 66

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East Lothian 3 Harbours Arts Festival Dunbar Traditional Music Festival Fringe by the Sea Lammermuir Festival Lennoxlove Book Festival

34 57 47 59 66

Edinburgh Africa in Motion 64 Bank of Scotland Imaginate Festival 28 Beltane Fire Festival 27 Ceilidh Culture 24 Dance: Film Festival 66 Dead by Dawn 28 Edge Festival 46 Edinburgh Art Festival 46 Edinburgh Book Fringe 46 Edinburgh Festival Fringe 46 Edinburgh Independent & Radical Book Fair 63 Edinburgh Int. Book Festival 50 Edinburgh Int. Festival 50 Edinburgh Int. Film Festival 39 Edinburgh Int. Harp Festival 24 Edinburgh Int. Jazz & Blues Festival 44 Edinburgh Int. Magic Festival 41 Edinburgh Int. Science Festival 24 Edinburgh Interactive 50 Edinburgh Iranian Festival 19 Edinburgh Mela 58 Edinburgh Mountain Film Festival 61 Edinburgh World Justice Festival 64 Edinburgh’s Christmas 68 Edinburgh’s Hogmanay 68 Festival of Politics 52 Festival of Peace and Sprituality 52 Hidden Door 69 Italian Film Festival 24 Leith Festival 38 Let’s Get Lyrical 20 Manipulate Visual Theatre Festival 20 Meadows Festival 36 Middle Eastern Festival of Spirituality & Peace 21 Royal Edinburgh Military Tattoo 46 Royal Highland Show 39 Samhuinn 64 Scots Fiddle Festival 68 76 The List Scottish Festivals 2011

Scottish Int. Storytelling Festival Scottish Real Ale Festival Take One Action Film Festival Taste of Edinburgh

63 39 57 40

Fife Aberdour Festival Big Tent Festival Crail Festival Culross Music & Arts Festival Cupar Arts Festival Dunfermline Folk Weekend East Neuk Festival Falkland Traditional Music Festival Fence Collective’s HomeGame Fife Festival of Music Fife Jazz Festival Fife Outdoor Access Festival Fifesing On the Rocks Royal Burgh of Pittenweem Arts Festival St Andrews Festival St Monans Community Arts Festival StAnza

Scotland Loves Animation Festival Stag & Dagger West End Festival Whisky Live

65 34 36 54

Highland 45 46 43 35 62 64 40 40 28 20 20 54 28 25 46 66 56 22

Glasgow Arches Live! 57 Aye Write! Glasgow Book Festival 21 Booked 28 Celtic Connections 19 Coloursfest 36 Document: Int. Human Rights Documentary Film Festival 64 GI: Glasgow Int. Festival of Visual Arts 27 Glasgay! 63 Glasgow Americana Festival 61 Glasgow Film Festival 21 Glasgow Int. Jazz Festival 40 Glasgow’s Christmas 68 Glasgow’s Hogmanay 68 Inspiration Festival 63 Italian Film Festival 24 Let’s Get Lyrical 20 Magners Glasgow Int. Comedy Festival 22 Merchant City Festival 44 Milngavie Book & Arts Festival54 Mugdock Int. Music Festival 50 New Territories Festival 20 Piping Live! 47

Aviemore Walking Festival Belladrum Tartan Heart Festival Black Isle Words Festival Blas Festival Bootstock Caithness & Sutherland Walking Festival Cromarty Film Festival Fort William Mountain Festival Glenelg Music Festival — Drams in the Field GoNorth Highland Archaeology Festival Inverness Book Festival Inverness Film Festival Inverness Music Festival Kingussie Food on Film Festival Knoydart Festival Loch Ness Film Festival Loch Shiel Spring Festival Loopallu Nairn Book & Arts Festival Nairn Int. Jazz Festival Northern Nashville Country Music Festival Northern Roots Festival RockNess Taste of the Cairngorms Three Lochs Books & Art Festival Ullapool Book Festival Ullapool Guitar Festival

28 46 58 55 58 27 68 20 57 36 65 47 66 22 20 26 34 28 56 52 52 25 36 38 65 61 28 62

Isle of Arran Isle of Arran Mountain Festival McLellan Arts Festival

56 54

Isle of Bute Bute Linedance Festival EatBute

57 55

Isle of Colonsay Ceòl Cholasa

58


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2011 | THE GUIDE TO SCOTTISH FESTIVALS

Isle of Cumbrae Millport Country & Western Festival

St Magnus Festival 53

Isle of Gigha Isle of Gigha Music Festival

40

Isle of Harris Harris Arts Festival

45

Isle of Islay Cantilena Festival on Islay Islay Book Festival Lagavulin Islay Jazz Festival

42 54 57

Isle of Lewis Celtic Media Festival Faclan Hebridean Book Festival Hebridean Celtic Festival

24 63 43

Isle of Luing Atlantic Islands Festival

42

Aberfeldy Festival Crieff & Strathearn Drover’s Tryst Walking Festival Enchanted Forest The Famous Grouse Festival Glenfarg Folk Feast Guildtown Bluegrass Music Festival Niel Gow Scottish Fiddle Festival Perth All Scotland Accordion & Fiddle Festival Perth Festival of the Arts Perth Music Festival Perthshire Amber Pitlochry Autumn Festival Rewind T in the Park Wild Connections Winter Words

Isle of Mull

Renfrewshire

Mendelssohn on Mull Festival 42

Ceolas Music Summer School & Festival 42

East Renfrewshire Food Festival East Renfrewshire Storytelling Festival Voices in Paisley

Lanarkshire

Scotland-wide

Isle of South Uist

Biggar Little Festival Douglas Folk Festival East Kilbride Folk Festival Words: North Lanarkshire Festival of Books & Writing

63 56 67 61

Midlothian Loanhead Music Festival Penicuik Arts Festival

38 53

Doors Open Day Scotland Festival of Museums French Film Festival Puppet Animation Festival Scottish Food & Drink Fortnight Scottish Mental Health Arts & Film Festival Tartan Day

Moray

Scottish Borders

Get Moray Reading Book Festival Lossiemouth Folk Festival Moray Spirit of Brass Speyfest Spirit of Speyside Whisky Festival Strathspey in May Festival

Books, Borders & Bikes Int. Festival Border Gaitherin Borders Book Festival Denholm Folk Festival Hawick Summer Festival Innerleithen Music Festival Kelso Country & Western Festival Music at Paxton Newcastleton Traditional Music Festival Peebles Arts Festival Peebles Food Festival

57 43 40 46 26 26

Orkney Orkney Fine Wine Festival Orkney Folk Festival Orkney Int. Science Festival Orkney Jazz Festival

36 32 53 25

39

Perth & Kinross 52 62 65 50 24 45 22 64 30 59 64 60 45 43 62 19

Peebles Int. Jazz Festival Rolling Hills Folk Festival Tweed Valley Forest Festival

32 45 65

Shetland Fiddle Frenzy Flavour of Shetland ScreenPlay Shetland Accordion & Fiddle Festival Shetland Blues Festival Shetland Folk Festival Shetland Nature Festival Tall Ships Races Up Helly Aa Vunk Fest WordPlay

47 43 51 61 60 26 42 44 19 43 54

Skye AOS Dana Book Festival 52 Isle of Skye Accordion & Fiddle Festival 31 Skye Jazz Festival 60 Skye Storytelling Festival 32 Stirling & Falkirk

54 22 66

58 30 66 24 54 65 24

Blend Extra Callander Jazz & Blues Festival Doune the Rabbit Hole Funny in Falkirk Off the Page Scotfest Trossachs Mushroom Festival

24 58 38 45 56 56 65

West Lothian Bathgate Music Festival Hippodrome Festival of Silent Cinema Linlithgow Book Festival Linlithgow Folk Festival

56 22 66 55

Western Isles 51 34 39 67 52 51

Royal National Mod

62

30 43 46 53 63 The List Scottish Festivals 2011 77


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15

Angus Aberdeenshire Moray Highland Skye Western Isles Argyll and Bute Perth and Kinross Ayrshire Dumfries and Galloway Scottish Borders Orkney Shetland 23

14

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Inverclyde Renfrewshire Glasgow Lanarkshire Stirling & Falkirk West Lothian Edinburgh Midlothian East Lothian Fife Dundee

SCOTTISH REGIONS

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22

9

SEE LOCATION INDEX PAGE 75-77

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Creative Scotland is proud to support arts & cultural festivals throughout the year, and across the country.

www.creativescotland.com/festivals


The Guide to Scottish Festivals 2011