The Guide to Scotland's Festivals 2023

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THE GUIDE TO 2023

SCOTLAND’S FESTIVALS

MUSIC BOOKS ART THEATRE FILM COMEDY

FAMILY FOOD DRINK OUTDOOR & MORE

FOREWORD 4 HOW TO USE THIS GUIDE 6 SCOTLAND, THE PERFECT STAGE FOR EVENTS 10 An insightintotherangeofeventstakingplacearoundthecountryin2023 STORIES TO BE CONTINUED . . . 12 How thelegacyofScotland’sYearofStorieslivesonin 2023CELEBRATE THE POWER OF THE BIKE 16 AllScotlandabouttheUCI2023CyclingWorldChampionshipsin inAugust BRINGING STORIES ALIVE 18 Exploringthecharmandmagicoflivestorytelling EDINBURGH’S FESTIVALS 52 A quickguidetoallthat’sgoingoninScotland’scapitalin themonthofAugust INDEX 74 All thisyear’sfestivalsfromA–Z FEBRUARY 23 MARCH 26 APRIL 30 MAY 35 JUNE 43 JULY 48 AUGUST 57 SEPTEMBER 63 OCTOBER 67 NOVEMBER 70 DECEMBER 71 LOOKING FORWARD TO WINTER 2023 / 24 72
THE GUIDE TO 2023 SCOTLAND’S FESTIVALS
PHOTO: SCOTT MASTERTON PHOTO: PAUL CAMPBELL

FOREWORD

Festivals are something this country does well. They’re right up there among the compelling attractions of modern Scotland for both locals and visitors. You might know about the big outdoor music events featuring some of the biggest names in the business, or the world-beating cultural gathering of the Edinburgh festivals in August, but alongside these are hundreds of others covering themes across the arts, culture, science, sport, food and drink, outdoor activities and heritage. In this guide we aim to give you the most comprehensive round-up available of what’s on the festival front in 2023, to allow you to plan, share, discover, dream and, hopefully, get involved.

One of the landmark moments of the year comes from 3 to 13 August when the 2023 UCI Cycling World Championships, the world’s biggest cycling event, comes to Scotland. Spread across venues the length and breadth of the country, there will be lots to see, do and enjoy at the events, with multiple world championships in different disciplines from track and road to BMX all happening on our doorstep. 2023 is going to be a celebration of the ‘power of the bike’ – read more about what’s happening on page 16.

A powerful legacy of 2022 comes from Scotland’s Year of Stories, which may be over as an official Themed Year but, like any good tale, it lives on in 2023 with events continuing to entertain, educate and excite audiences in all parts of the country. Find out more about what’s planned for this year

on pages 12 and 13, while on pages 18 and 19 some of the country’s leading festival directors offer their insights into the ingredients that help make live storytelling events so engaging and enchanting. Our partners in bringing this guide together are EventScotland, their VisitScotland colleagues and Creative Scotland, each of which works closely together towards the common goal of nurturing, supporting and promoting so many of the great events and festivals found on these pages. From them comes the encouragement to see Scotland as The Perfect Stage for Events and to recognise the important role events play in our communities, enabling people to connect and share stories and memorable experiences. Add to that so many unique locations and the unrivalled atmosphere and buzz created by the passion and energy of organisers, participants and audiences, and you might agree that there’s really nowhere quite like Scotland if you enjoy events.

4 THE GUIDE TO SCOTLAND’S FESTIVALS 2023
PHOTO: FRINGE BY THE SEA, MR SMITH AERIAL

OUTWITH MUSIC & ARTS FESTIVAL

All-day event in Dunfermline with 40 bands, indie films at the Fire Station Creative and a new strand of comic book events, along with visual art, theatre and comedy. See page 63, outwithfestival.co.uk

EDINBURGH SCIENCE FESTIVAL

An extensive programme of events, hands-on activities, talks, performances and more, aimed at all ages. The theme for the 2023 festival is ‘Let’s Experiment!’. See page 30, sciencefestival.co.uk

WILDHOOD: A CHILDREN’S FESTIVAL

Outdoor children’s festival near Kinross that celebrates nature, games and traditional crafts, with live music, circus skills, stone carving and tree climbing. See page 45, wildhoodfestival.com

SEALL’S FESTIVAL OF SMALL HALLS

Sessions, concerts and workshops across Skye and Raasay from some of Scotland’s best traditional musicians, with a big ceilidh to wrap things up. See page 71, seall.co.uk

TAIWAN FILM FESTIVAL EDINBURGH

The fourth edition of this festival takes place in cinemas around the city with another inspiring range of titles and lesser-known Taiwanese cinematic gems. See page 67, taiwanfilmfestival.org.uk

BELLADRUM TARTAN HEART FESTIVAL

This family-friendly favourite returns with music, theatre and spoken-word events. The lineup for 2023 includes Travis, Bastille, Sigrid and Sam Ryder. See page 55, tartanheartfestival.co.uk

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PHOTO: TIFFANY LIN PHOTO: PAUL CAMPBELL PHOTO: DOMINIC IBBOTSON

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HOW TO USE THIS GUIDE

DATE

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27–29 JULY BELLADRUM TARTAN HEART FESTIVAL

FAMILY / MUSIC / THEATRE & DANCE

NAME OF FESTIVAL CATEGORY

Belladrum, Inverness, tartanheartfestival.co.uk This family-friendly favourite of the Scottish festival scene is back with music, theatre and spokenword events. The lineup for 2023 includes Travis, Bastille, Sigrid, Peat & Diesel, Sam Ryder, KT Tunstall, The Zutons, Alabama 3, Kiefer Sutherland and many more

COVER IMAGE:

The Gathering (Paul Campbell Photography), see page 42.

Published by List Publishing Ltd

2 Roxburgh Place, Edinburgh www.list.co.uk email festivals@list.co.uk

ISSN: 2054-8036

© 2023 List Publishing 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 List Publishing Ltd.

This edition published February 2023

Printed by Acorn Web Offset Ltd.

For updates, latest announcements and details of all events and festivals in Scotland in 2023, go to list.co.uk/ scotlands-festivals

FESTIVAL DESCRIPTION

DISCLAIMER : The List magazine has made every effort 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 attending. The publisher cannot accept responsibility for any errors the guide may contain. For up-to-date listings information go to list.co.uk. Festival organisers can get in touch at festivals@list.co.uk.

6 THE GUIDE
TO SCOTLAND’S FESTIVALS 2023
7 2022 THE GUIDE TO SCOTLAND’S FESTIVALS
8 17–29 OCTOBER 2023 Stories and songs are vital for human survival, they carry our emotions, memories and values, regardless of where we are in the world. Join us this autumn and see where the story takes you. sisf.org.uk @scotstoryfest
SCOTTISH INTERNATIONAL STORYTELLING FESTIVAL
9 www.pittenweemartsfestival.co.uk AUGUST 5 - 12
edinburghartfestival.com August 2023 / 19th edition
Mother and Daughter, from the series Jannah Lies at the Feet of Thy Mother by Haneem Christian © Haneem Christian. A Taylor Wessing Photographic Portrait Prize 2022 winner, displayed at the Scottish National Portrait Gallery, 17 June - 10 September 2023. Courtesy of the National Portrait Gallery, London.

SCOTLAND, THE PERFECT

2023 is buzzing with a diverse range of cultural and sporting events taking place right across our beautiful country. Here are just a few of the highlights

Scotland is renowned for its world-class events, atmospheric crowds and stunning backdrops offering both visitors and locals the chance to enjoy shared experiences and make new memories.

In Spring, you can raise a toast to Scotland as the perfect stage for events at the Clackmannanshire Whisky Festival (March; see page 30) or Spirit of Speyside Whisky Festival (April; see page 33). On the other side of the country in Dumfries and Galloway, visitors can indulge in the sea’s natural larder at the Stranraer Oyster Festival (see page 64) in September.

The range of local Melas are all about connecting communities with food, song and dance over the summer, offering welcome celebrations of a multicultural Scotland.

Talking of connecting with your culture, LGBTQ+ communities and beyond will have the chance to do just that with celebrations up and down the

country for Pride Month in June.

History and tradition are at the core of another fantastic week of piping in Glasgow this August with Piping Live! and culminating in the World Pipe Band Championships (see page 60).

As ever, there will also be a wealth of Highland Games across the country, over summer. Also in August, Scotland will host the inaugural 2023 UCI Cycling World Championships – the world’s biggest ever cycling event, and a chance for everyone to cheer on the action in Glasgow and across Scotland (see pages 16 & 57).

If music festivals are your thing why not enjoy a sing-a-long at Belladrum (July; see page 55), traditional music at HebCelt (July; see page 51) or The Gathering (May; see page 42) or take in lush classical sounds in stunning venues at Lammermuir Festival (September; see page 61) or the East Neuk Festival (June/July; see page 47).

CULTURAL & SPORTING EVENTS 2023 10
PICTURE: VISITSCOTLAND / LUIGI
DI PASQUALE

STAGE FOR EVENTS

And let’s not forget Scotland’s history as scientific pioneers with the Orkney International Science Festival (September; see page 63) and Stirling Science Festival (October; see page 69) educating and entertaining in equal measure. If your scientific interests are more ‘grounded’, the Scottish Geology Festival is sure to bring you back to earth (September, see page 63).

From the land to the sea, the power of wind and wave is harnessed in the Inner Hebrides for the Tiree Wave Classic (see page 69), welcoming

windsurfing talent from across the globe in October. Before that, Thurso hosts the Scottish National Surfing Championships in April and Lerwick welcomes the spectacle of the Tall Ships in July (see page 54). Back on dry land, Baxters Loch Ness Marathon (see page 68) will once again wind round Scotland’s most famous body of water in October – it’s breathtaking at every turn.

 To start planning your next unforgettable experience go to visitscotland.com/events

THE HOME OF GOLF

Of course, no calendar of events in Scotland would be complete without a reminder of the country’s reputation as the Home of Golf, a position cemented in November 2022 with Scotland being crowned ‘Best Golf Destination in the World’ at the World Golf Awards. There’s plenty of action this summer, headlined by East Lothian’s Renaissance Club hosting the Genesis Scottish Open and Dundonald Links staging the Trust Golf Women’s Scottish Open in July and August.

CULTURAL & SPORTING EVENTS 2023 11
Left: Barrowlands Right: Tiree Wave Classic
EventScotland, part of VisitScotland, is proud to support a range of exciting
and festivals taking place across Scotland. PICTURE:
events
RICHARD WHITSON 2022

There were tall tales about botany, legends of fierce women, film ceilidhs, book festivals, migrant stories, and songs charting the journey of a family pot hook from one continent to another. 2022 was Scotland’s Year of Stories, and throughout the country communities came together in force to celebrate and explore the versatile art of storytelling.

Over 350 funded and partner events took place nationwide in multiple languages including Gaelic, English, Scots and Doric. While some of the better-known regular annual festivals used the opportunity to launch extra storytelling threads – such as Wigtown Book Festival’s Into the Nicht immersive night sky tour, or Celtic Connections’ Sing Me a Story – one of the year’s biggest triumphs was the number of small events created by local communities to share new types of storytelling. Scottish and East European Roma communities compared oral tales with common origins in Tales of a Travelling Scotland; Pink Saltire highlighted untold stories from the LGBTQ+ community, in a new podcast series; poets and patients at Scottish healthcare venues created works inspired by landscape paintings; and Inverclyde celebrated its diversifying culture by bringing together New Scots families from Syria, Sudan and Afghanistan to share their traditional tales in Arabic alongside local legends in Scots and Gaelic.

The good news is that the story doesn’t stop there. The legacy of the Year of Stories is continuing in a 2023 line-up of the country’s favourite regular annual festivals that all have storytelling at their heart.

Celtic Connections is back to warm up the tail end of winter (January/February; see page 23) with its mixture of music, dance,

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With so much of Scottish culture firmly rooted in storytelling, it’s little wonder that 2022’s Year of Stories was a triumph. The narrative isn’t ending, with Lucy Ribchester looking forward to story-centred festivals and events in 2023
From top: David Campbell at the Scottish Storytelling Centre; Borders Book Festival; Edinburgh International Book Festival

STORIES TO BE CONTINUED . . .

eclectic collaborations and innovative approaches to old traditions. The 18-day festival, which takes place in venues across Glasgow, celebrates its 30th anniversary this year. You might be able to catch trailblazing Gaelic musicians such as Dàimh or Malian icon Rokia Koné, also known as the Rose of Bamako, who teams up with Irish-Californian legendary rock producer Jacknife Lee.

The regular book festivals will, as always, be sharing stories on the page, including the Edinburgh International Book Festival in its regular mid-August slot (see page 60), the Paisley Book Festival (February; see page 26) and annual spring poetry bonanza StAnza in St Andrews (March; see page 27). The latter has a cracking line-up planned, including Dr Craig Santos, an indigenous Chamoru poet from Guam who has authored five poetry collections; living legend and reggae poet Linton Kwesi Johnson; and feminist poet and spokenword artist Hollie McNish.

June sees the return of the Borders Book Festival (June; see page 46) in Harmony Gardens, Melrose. Set among acres of scented borders in full bloom it’s the perfect place to relax and sink into a story by one of your favourite authors, while the inspiring Wigtown Book Festival (September/October; see page 67) is celebrating its 25th anniversary in 2023 and is sure to be sprinkling some literary stardust.

The Scottish International Storytelling Festival will also be back in autumn (October; see page 70) to keep the flag of traditional oral storytelling flying. Perfectly timed to beckon you to the hearthside just as the cold sets in, it will once again host events both around the country, and in its home venue, the Scottish Storytelling Centre in Edinburgh. Also in the capital in the autumn is the third outing for the Push the Boat Out Poetry Festival (November; see page 70), which aims to find room not just for poetry and spoken word, but also live music, songwriting, film, gaming, visual art and concrete poetry.

Finally, one event in particular makes the case that stories don’t have to be told through words or even sound. Scotland’s only Silent Film Festival, known as HippFest (March; see page 30), is set to return to Scotland’s oldest cinema, The Hippodrome in Bo’ness. After a programme last year that took in portrayals of Mary Queen of Scots, gender rebellions and WWI heroine Edith Cavell on film, we can’t wait to see what’s on the bill in 2023. There will also be workshops, community events and a touring programme to get involved in.

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CELEBRATE THE POWER OF THE BIKE

The 2023 UCI Cycling World Championships will be a must-see event this year, with the world’s biggest ever cycling event coming to Glasgow and across Scotland and you’re all

The world’s greatest riders will come together to compete at the highest levels over 13 UCI World Championships in a first-of-its-kind event from 3 to 13 August 2023. Spread across 11 days, 8,000 elite and amateur athletes will compete for the coveted rainbow jersey, where over 200 world champions will be crowned.

Records will be broken, minds (and tyres) blown, medals won, national anthems belted out, and dreams will become reality.

Many will fall. Heroes will rise. Fewer still will wear the rainbow jersey. However, united, we ALL celebrate the power of the bike.

This is more than just an event. It will be an opportunity to inspire more people to ride and experience the joy of a bike with the chance to get out and take part in community-based cycling events taking place across the country thanks to the Community Cycling Fund being delivered by EventScotland and sportscotland.

n Find out how to purchase tickets and get more information on the event by visiting cyclingworldchamps.com

The 13 UCI World Championships will take place in venues across Scotland:

• BMX Freestyle Park (Glasgow Green)

• BMX Freestyle Flatland (Glasgow Green)

• BMX Racing (Glasgow BMX Centre)

• Gran Fondo (TBA)

• Indoor (Emirates Arena, Glasgow)

• Mountain Bike Cross Country (Glentress Forest, Tweed Valley)

• Mountain Bike Cross Country Marathon (Glentress Forest, Tweed Valley)

• Mountain Bike Downhill (Nevis Range Mountain Resort, Fort William)

• Para-cycling Road (Dumfries & Galloway)

• Para-cycling Track (Sir Chris Hoy Velodrome, Glasgow)

• Road (Road Race Start: Edinburgh and Loch Lomond. Road Race Finish: George Square, Glasgow. Time Trial: Stirling)

• Track (Sir Chris Hoy Velodrome, Glasgow)

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2023 UCI CYCLING WORLDS
Mountain Bike Downhill finish, Nevis Range Mountain Resort

We Shetlanders love a good spree. Will you join us?

In Shetland we love fun and festivities so much we even have a dialect word to describe them.

If you enjoy a spree and fancy living in a spectacular and bustling island community, there’s nowhere better than Shetland.

Start planning your move today.

shetland.org/life

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Bringing Stories ALIVE

PICTURE:
PICTURE:
Top and bottom right: events at the Scottish International Storytelling Festival; bottom left: HippFest Silent Film Festival
COLIN HATTERSLEY PICTURE: TOM DUFFIN, COURTESY OF FALKIRK COUNCIL
LUDOVIC FARINE

Scotland holds its storytelling and literary traditions dear, but they don’t just exist on the printed page. Lucy Ribchester speaks to three prominent festival organisers to find out why live events based on books and stories have a magical draw

‘There’s this element of in-themoment slight risk in proper live storytelling,’ says Donald Smith, Director of the annual Scottish International Storytelling Festival, which is based at Edinburgh’s Scottish Storytelling Centre, both of which took on special significance in 2022’s Year of Stories. For Smith, there are many forms of storytelling, but when it comes to the Scottish tradition of spinning yarns, the key that unlocks the magic is always the improvisational quality, which involves both teller and listener. ‘You recreate the story for that audience, for that situation. It’s a bit like having a loom and you’ve got all the threads set out, but you still actually have to weave the pattern.’

The Scottish International Storytelling Festival saw live storytelling events take place from Fife to the Outer Hebrides, many of them setting local lore, specific to a particular region, against the landscapes that inspired the stories. Traditional stories have always drawn on the natural world. For Smith, this cyclical path of bringing them back into their natural habitats (particularly in the festival’s outdoor performances), was something that could only be achieved through live events –and it created some of the festival’s most memorable moments.

‘We took a really old story form – stories about Robin Hood, which, incidentally, were very popular in Scotland,’ he says. Drama students from Edinburgh College reworked the tales to create an open-air storytelling event at Duddingston’s Dr Neil’s Garden, in the process bringing out the very current ecological and social

themes of the ancient stories: the freedom of the forest, the cost of living crisis, the wealth divide. ‘And as the story finished, the storytellers then led all the audience off into the woodland, wending their way through the trees. That story came out of the natural world, inspired by tradition. Sharing that experience and then drawing the audience – who are the participants – back into the woodland . . . you want to have seen the reaction,’ Smith says.

For HippFest Silent Film Festival Director Alison Strauss, it was also the after-effects of the live screenings that created some of what she calls ‘the magic alchemy.’ As part of the Year of Stories, the Silent Film Festival presented Journey to the Isles by Celtic revivalist and ballad collector Marjory Kennedy-Fraser, an archival documentary of Kennedy-Fraser’s travels around the Hebrides. After its initial screening in the festival’s home venue of the Hippodrome in Bo’ness, the film then toured to various parts of the country, including the Isle of Eigg and Dundee. ‘The fact that it was live was generating these

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Donald Smith Alison Strauss PICTURE: ALEX HEWITT, COURTESY OF FALKIRK COUNCIL PICTURE: PETE HEYWOOD

special, really meaningful conversations after the event, so the storytelling kind of went on,’ Strauss says. ‘People were very visibly moved. Memories were prompted and they were talking about their grandparents and what it meant to them, and that became part of the story as well.’

This sense of communal experience, and the scope for spontaneous post-show discussions, also allowed thorny issues to be confronted in a non-judgemental, face-to-face space, a rarity in today’s combative online culture. The decision to programme Kennedy-Fraser’s film was, says Strauss, ‘a little bit trepidatious because Kennedy-Fraser is a contentious figure in Gaelic history. She was a collector, and that’s a bit of a contentious area with accusations of cultural appropriation.’ However, the discussions that opened up following the film screenings, including explorations of the negative attention Kennedy-Fraser’s work had received in the past, saw people expand and shift their ideas. ‘It was quite miraculous,’ she says.

Wigtown Book Festival Director Adrian

Turpin agrees there is something special about making an event of storytelling. ‘You want people to feel that they could only have this experience, at this time. The best events always

feel like complete one-offs. At its simplest that might be a moment of intimacy or revelation during a talk. Or it might be something more complicated like a site-specific event.’

Books, more than oral storytelling or silent cinema, are a private form of imbibing stories, portable and intimate, able to be enjoyed anywhere, in theory. But as Turpin points out, it’s the sense of the journey itself to the festival, of making the effort to get there that becomes part of the event. ‘It makes a difference that most people have to make an effort to get to Wigtown. There’s a commitment and a sense of being immersed in a special place and distanced from everyday life. That’s true for the audience and the authors.’

No matter the format – books, films, oral tales, ballads or photo essays – there will always, for Turpin, be something special about coming together to experience storytelling. ‘I think there’s a little bit of caveman or cavewoman in all of us,’ he says. ‘That desire to sit round the fire and share an understanding of the world is universal, and, if anything, with our digital lives and the recent experience of Covid, the need to connect in this way is stronger than ever.’

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‘Into the Nicht’ at Wigtown Book Festival Adrian Turpin PICTURES: COLIN HATTERSLEY
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22 THE GUIDE TO SCOTLAND’S FESTIVALS 2023 PRESENTS jazzscotland.com 15 - 17 September 2023 16 - 26 marcH 2023 November 2023

FEBRUARY

19

JANUARY–5

FEBRUARY CELTIC CONNECTIONS 2023 MUSIC

Various venues, Glasgow, celticconnections.com

Glasgow’s annual folk, roots and world music festival celebrates its 30th anniversary with a wide range of concerts, workshops and sessions. The 2023 lineup includes a 30th anniversary concert, Mary Chapin Carpenter, Battle of the Folk Bands, Fergus McCreadie, Peat & Diesel, Callum Easter, Lucinda Williams, Kris Drever, and many more.

30 JANUARY–10 FEBRUARY FIFE FESTIVAL OF MUSIC MUSIC

Various venues, Fife, ffom.org.uk

Enjoy musical sessions, both competitive and non-competitive, at this community festival with performers ranging from primaryschool children to adults, in both vocal and instrumental classes. Concerts will take place in venues in Dunfermline, Kirkcaldy, Lochgelly and North East Fife.

2–5 FEBRUARY FOOD ON FILM

FILM & TV / FOOD & DRINK / FAMILY

Various venues, Kingussie, facebook.com/

KingussieFoodonFilm

After a five-year break, Kingussie Food on Film Festival is back for 2023. This interdisciplinary festival sees the culinary meet the audiovisual with a tasty menu of films, plus food, drink and demonstrations.

SPECTRA

In early February, the glittering granite of Aberdeen city centre is again the canvas for SPECTRA, Scotland’s boldest light and sound festival. Each year the multi-award winning festival invites visual artists from the UK and around the world to unleash their imaginations on the city with new commissions and exciting multidisciplinary collaborations.

Over four days a series of immersive installations, projections, sculptures and interactive events will transform public spaces across the city. One highlight of this year’s festival will be Fantastic Planet by Australian group Parer Studio who will place brightly lit humanoid figures around the city.

The locations and much of the programme is still a surprise, but heading out into the dark and discovering the art is all part of this bold festival’s appeal. Last year venues included Marischal College, Union Street, Broad Street, Upperkirkgate, Schoolhill, Marischal Square, Aberdeen Music Hall and Aberdeen Art Gallery. This year the festival will also return to the newly revamped Union Square Gardens after a five-year hiatus.

‘SPECTRA is a welcome celebration which gives fun to many through the dark nights,’ according to Councillor Martin Greig, Aberdeen City Council’s Culture spokesperson. ‘The festival brightens people’s lives with its range of imaginative displays.’ SPECTRA is produced by Curated Place in association with Aberdeen City Council; all the events are free and suitable for all ages. (Ailsa Sheldon)

n Various locations, Aberdeen, 9–12 February, spectrafestival.co.uk

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PHOTO: PARER STUDIO

2–12 FEBRUARY

MANIPULATE FESTIVAL

FILM & TV / FAMILY / THEATRE & DANCE

Various venues, Edinburgh, manipulatefestival.org

MANIPULATE Festival presents the very best of Scottish and international visual theatre, puppetry and animated film to adult audiences in Edinburgh and beyond. The Festival aims to engage and challenge audiences with high-quality visually-led work that pushes boundaries, plays with form and challenges perceptions.

6–19 FEBRUARY

DUNDEE SCIENCE FESTIVAL

FAMILY / SCIENCE

Various venues, Dundee, dundeesciencefestival.org

A range of exciting and stimulating events, talks, shows and hands-on exhibits demonstrating the wonderful world of science. Everything from fossils to forensics are covered, with fun for kids as well as social events for grown-ups.

8–12 FEBRUARY

SPECTRA: ABERDEEN’S FESTIVAL OF LIGHT

FAMILY / ART

Various venues, Aberdeen, spectrafestival.co.uk

See Panel, page 23.

9–12 FEBRUARY

WINTER WORDS FESTIVAL

LITERATURE

Pitlochry Festival Theatre, Pitlochry, pitlochryfestivaltheatre.com Back in person after two years

online, the Winter Words Festival returns with a week-long celebration of all things literary, including guest speakers, talks, events and film screenings.

11 & 13 FEBRUARY

BANFF MOUNTAIN FILM FESTIVAL

FILM & TV / OUTDOOR

Various venues, Scotland, banff-uk.com

The Banff Mountain Film Festival

UK & Ireland Tour features collections of the best films from the world’s most prestigious mountain film festival. The 2023 RED and BLUE film programmes will feature an all-new collection of films with screenings in February in Pitlochry and Stirling, followed by dates in September in Inverness, Aberdeen and Edinburgh.

11 &12 FEBRUARY

CAPITAL SCI-FI CON 2023

FILM & TV / LITERATURE

O2 Academy, Edinburgh, capitalscificon.co.uk

Edinburgh’s not-for-profit pop

culture, comic and movie convention is planning an amazing special guest lineup from film and TV for 2023. They will also have comic artists/writers, guest talks, cosplay competitions, music, traders of all types and much more.

16–19 FEBRUARY FORT WILLIAM MOUNTAIN FESTIVAL FILM & TV / OUTDOOR

Various venues, Fort William, mountainfestival.co.uk

A mix of films, talks, sessions, family events, ceilidhs, quizzes and guided outdoor activities – all celebrating mountaineering and the great outdoors. The 2023 lineup includes an international film night, Bike Night, guest events with Matt Heliker and Pete Whittaker, a talk by expedition manager Wendy Searle and an event remembering late climber Dr Tom Patey.

16–19 FEBRUARY PAISLEY BOOK FESTIVAL LITERATURE

Paisley Arts Centre, Paisley, paisleybookfest.com

See Spotlight, page 26.

24–26 FEBRUARY & 3–6 MARCH

INVERNESS MUSIC FESTIVAL MUSIC

Inverness Methodist Church, Inverness, invernessmusicfestival.org

Inverness Festival Association strives to find performance opportunities for all ages of performers, both competitive and non-competitive. Activities range from music, traditional, classical and contemporary, voice and instrumental, to dancing, poetry and drama.

24 THE GUIDE TO SCOTLAND’S FESTIVALS 2023
Manipulate Festival

Dine in style

25 REALMARYKINGSCLOSE.COM hidden history Step down into Edinburgh’s Herstory Tours Whisky Tours Pride History Tours Lantern Led Tours events for 2023 Discover seasonal menus, perfect wine pairings and views of the city. Book your table now +44 131 524 8350 |harveynichols.com St Andrew Square, Edinburgh, EH2 2AD

SPOTLIGHT ON . . .

PAISLEY BOOK FESTIVAL

With two new programmers at the helm (independent publisher Heather McDaid and artist/writer Sha Nazir), Paisley Book Festival returns with the theme ‘Remake & Rebel’, hosting 32 public events over four days, plus an extensive schools programme. Jackie Kay and poet Michael Pederson will talk about friendship, while Darren McGarvey discusses his new book with Kerry Hudson, the festival’s Writer in Residence and author of Lowborn: Growing Up, Getting Away and Returning to Britain’s Poorest Towns. Internet sensation Coinneach MacLeod aka ‘The Hebridean Baker’ talks about food in the social media age and crime queen Denise Mina chats with this year’s Bloody Scotland debut prize winner Tariq Ashkanani. The festival has added a pay what you can ticket option this year to support attendees impacted by the cost of living crisis.

 Paisley Arts Centre, Paisley, 16–19 February, paisleybookfest.com

MARCH

1–12 MARCH

GLASGOW FILM FESTIVAL FILM & TV

Various venues, Glasgow, glasgowfilm.org/glasgow-filmfestival

The 19th edition of this popular film festival has the theme ‘Viva el cine español!’ It features On The Fringe with Penélope Cruz and Luis Tosar, Prison 77 and Lullaby

A free retrospective, In The Driving Seat, features stories of women on journeys of self-discovery and adventure, with films including It Happened One Night, The Piano and Roman Holiday. The festival will also celebrate the documentary work of American actor/director Lee Grant.

2–5 MARCH

BRAEMAR MOUNTAIN FESTIVAL OUTDOOR

Various venues, Braemar, braemarmountainfestival.com

A celebration of the mountains in winter which includes workshops on ski touring and maintenance, winter skills and avalanche awareness, low-level walking, navigation and fell running. The evening programme features illustrated talks from esteemed mountaineers as well as a ceilidh, film night, music and food.

2–5 MARCH

EDINBURGH INTERNATIONAL IMPROV FESTIVAL COMEDY

Scottish Storytelling Centre, Edinburgh, edimprovfest.com

The 5th annual Edinburgh International Improv Festival

promises three days of workshops, shows and jams celebrating the best in improv from around the world. Headliners for 2023 are Shannon O’Neill, Ryan Haney, Achilles Stamatelaky and Sebastian Conelli from New York, and Sarah Claspell from Los Angeles.

4 MARCH FIFE WHISKY FESTIVAL

FOOD & DRINK

Cupar Corn Exchange, Cupar, fifewhiskyfestival.com

Fife’s only whisky festival, with over 35 distilleries and independent bottlers from all over Scotland showcasing their wares.

4 MARCH NAAFC ANNUAL ACCORDION & FIDDLE FESTIVAL MUSIC / HERITAGE

Grangemouth Town Hall, Grangemouth, naafcfestival.co.uk

A full day of accordion and fiddle competitions, followed by a closing dance.

6–18 MARCH

PERFORM IN PERTH MUSIC

Various venues, Perth, perthshire-music-festival.org.uk Over 2000 competitors from across Perthshire show off their talents in the fields of music, dance and speech at various venues in Perth.

4–19 MARCH

DUNDEE

WOMEN’S FESTIVAL

MULTI-ARTS / POLITICS

Various venues, Dundee, facebook.com/ dundeewomensfest

26 THE GUIDE TO SCOTLAND’S FESTIVALS 2023
PHOTO: STEVEN REYNOLDS

Two weeks of events, dramas, discussions and workshops, centred around International Women’s Day. The theme for 2023 is ‘Women Emerging Stronger’.

6–11

MARCH GALLOWAY MUSIC FESTIVAL MUSIC

Various venues, Stranraer, Newton Stewart & Castle Douglas, gallowaymusicfestival. org.uk

Competitive music festival for amateur musicians of all ages. The syllabus covers piano, brass, woodwind, recorder, strings, ensemble, vocal, choral, jazz, recital, composition, speech and Scottish traditional, with members of the public welcome to attend all competitions.

9–12

MARCH STANZA: SCOTLAND’S INTERNATIONAL POETRY FESTIVAL

LITERATURE / FAMILY

Byre Theatre, St Andrews, stanzapoetry.org

This year’s festival explores poetry focused on landscape and the environment. Involving over 100 poets and other artists from across Scotland, the UK and overseas, StAnza’s 2023 lineup includes Linton Kwesi Johnson, Elizabeth-Jane Burnett and Hollie McNish, and will once again be delivered in hybrid form.

HEBRIDEAN DARK SKIES FESTIVAL

Now in its fifth year, this festival has a stellar lineup for 2023. Not only does it draw on the natural environment (as festival director Andrew Eaton-Lewis explains, ‘The Isle of Lewis is an extraordinarily beautiful place to be in winter, with truly spectacular views of the night sky and the Northern Lights’) but organisers know that the weather might not always be on their side, so they have plenty of indoor events exploring astronomy, the night sky and our relationship with darkness through music, theatre, film, visual art, workshops and more.

9–21

MARCH HEBRIDEAN DARK SKIES FESTIVAL MULTI-ARTS / OUTDOOR / SCIENCE

An Lanntair, Stornoway, Isle of Lewis, lanntair.com

See Panel, this page.

One of the headline events this year is David Bowie in Space: The Concert, featuring new arrangements of Bowie’s space-themed songs performed by Hebridean musicians and special guests. Dynamic Earth will make a first trip to Lewis bringing indoor astronomy shows to both An Lanntair and schools and community centres across Lewis and Harris. Street theatre favourites Mischief La Bas will present a new show Lass O’Pairts featuring storytelling aliens with tales of female cosmology pioneers. Also worth catching are You Are Here, an interactive digital map of the stars above Lewis, and The Music of the Solar System, an exhibition of ‘interplanetary musicology’ by Dr Ray Sound. Stornoway’s An Lanntair is the festival hub with stargazing walks and other events also taking place at community centres across the island. (Ailsa Sheldon) n Various venues, Lewis and Harris, 9–21 March, lanntair.com/creative-programme/darkskies/

27 LIST.CO.UK/SCOTLANDS-FESTIVALS
PHOTO: WILL CHEUNG

Creative Scotland is proud to support the nation’s festivals as they bring together audiences and performers across the country.

We look forward to celebrating Scotland’s rich, diverse and world-renowned art and creativity, and the many ways that they enrich our lives. creativescotland.com @creativescots @creativescots /creativescotland

Photo: Michael Hunter — Skye Live Festival, Portree

10–12

MARCH C2C: COUNTRY TO COUNTRY MUSIC

The OVO Hydro, Glasgow, c2c-countrytocountry.com

Country music extravaganza featuring some of Nashville’s biggest stars. The 2023 lineup includes Zac Brown Band, Thomas Rhett and Lady A.

11 MARCH

WOMEN ON WHEELS CYCLING FESTIVAL OUTDOOR

Queen’s Park (Victoria Road entrance), Queen’s Drive, Glasgow, womenonwheels.org.uk

Cycling festival with cycle lessons taster sessions, confidencebuilding led rides, maintenance classes, tryouts of the bike loan library and more. All events are drop-in and free to all women.

11 & 12 MARCH

DORNOCH FIBRE FEST

ART

Various venues, Dornoch, fibrefest.org.uk

A festival of fibre and woollen crafts, opening with a talk on the history of Fair Isle knitting, followed by masterclasses and workshops in fabric dying, needle felting and more. Plus an exhibition and demonstration by renowned tapestry artist Joan Baxter.

15 MARCH–2 APRIL

GLASGOW INTERNATIONAL COMEDY FESTIVAL COMEDY

Various venues, Glasgow, glasgowcomedyfestival.com

Glasgow’s well-loved comedy festival returns in 2023, with

shows such as Stewart Lee’s Basic Lee, Susie McCabe’s Femme Fatality, The Duncan and Judy Murray Show and more.

16–26 MARCH

ABERDEEN JAZZ FESTIVAL

MUSIC

Various venues, Aberdeen, aberdeenjazzfestival.com

A host of musicians and performers descend on the Granite City for over a week of jazz and blues, with everything from jamming and workshops, to chilled-out gigs on the green and late-night sessions.

17–19 MARCH

BORDERS ART FAIR

FOOD & DRINK / FAMILY / ART

Borders Events Centre, Springwood Park, Kelso, bordersartfair.com

Taking place over three days, Borders Art Fair features an array of over 70 artists, galleries and makers from the Borders and all across Scotland and England.

17–19 MARCH

LOCHWINNOCH ARTS FESTIVAL

THEATRE & DANCE / FAMILY / MUSIC / ART

Various venues, Lochwinnoch, lochwinnochartsfestival.co.uk

Annual mini arts festival featuring music, drama, comedy and craft at the McKillop Institute and Lochwinnoch Golf Club.

17–19 MARCH

THE NIEL GOW FESTIVAL

MUSIC

Birnam Arts, Birnam, niel-gow.co.uk

Established in 2004 to celebrate

the life of Perthshire fiddle legend Niel Gow, this festival is now a breeding ground for traditional music talent, running a selection of workshops and performances, with events taking place across the villages of Dunkeld and Birnam.

17–26 MARCH

ON THE ROCKS FESTIVAL COMEDY / MULTI-ARTS

Various venues, St Andrews, ontherocksfestival.com

On The Rocks Festival is an entirely student-run arts festival incorporating art, photography, film, theatre, dance, fashion, music and comedy.

29 LIST.CO.UK/SCOTLANDS-FESTIVALS
Stewart Lee, as part of Glasgow International Comedy Festival PHOTO: TRISTRAM KENTON

SPOTLIGHT ON . .

HIPPFEST

This transportative cinema experience has earned its place on Scotland’s cultural calendar. Now in its 13th year, the five-day event returns to Bo’ness where it takes over Scotland’s oldest cinema to show a selection of the silent era’s most glamorous faces. The programme includes special commissions, screenings, workshops and community gala events hosted both in person and online, and while the films themselves may not contain audio, live musical accompaniment performed by a range of international musicians ensures a sprinkling of multi-sensory magic.

Last year’s event included a screening of Murnau’s City Girl (1930) with live accompaniment by the Dodge Brothers and a live narration of L’Herbier’s L’Homme Du Large (1920) by actor Paul McGann. This year’s programme will be available from 7 February.

(Megan Merino)

 The Hippodrome, Bo’ness, 22–26 March, hippodromecinema.co.uk/ silent-film-festival

22–26 MARCH GLASGOW SHORT FILM FESTIVAL

FILM & TV

Various venues, Glasgow, glasgowshort.org

The largest competitive short film festival in Scotland, championing new talent with an annual showcase and meeting point for new and established Scottish and international filmmakers, industry delegates and local audiences.

22–26 MARCH HIPPFEST

FILM & TV / FAMILY

The Hippodrome, Bo’ness, hippodromecinema.co.uk/ silent-film-festival

See Spotlight, this page.

24–26 MARCH HAWICK REIVERS FESTIVAL HERITAGE

Various venues, Hawick, hawickreivers.com

A programme of music, drama and re-enactments depicting life in the mid-16th century, celebrating its 20th anniversary in 2023.

31 MARCH & 1 APRIL CLACKMANNANSHIRE’S WHISKY FESTIVAL FOOD & DRINK

Alloa Town Hall, Alloa, slanj. events/clackmannanshireswhisky-festival

The best whiskies from Scotland and the world, together with interactive coopering demonstrations, exhibits from Clackmannanshire’s whiskyproducing past, exclusive bottlings, special guests and meet the maker masterclasses.

31 MARCH & 1 APRIL LARBERT REAL ALE FESTIVAL

FOOD & DRINK

Dobbie Hall, Main Street, Larbert

A two-day festival in Larbert showcasing over 50 ales, ciders and perries.

31 MARCH–2 APRIL BIG DOG FESTIVAL LITERATURE / FAMILY

Various venues, Dumfries, wigtownbookfestival.com

Devised and organised by Wigtown Festival Company, Big DoG children’s book festival is named in honour of Nana, the big dog who looks after the Darling children in Peter Pan

APRIL

1 & 2 APRIL SPRINGFEST: THE SCOTTISH FOOD & DRINK FESTIVAL FOOD & DRINK

Loch Lomond Shores, Balloch, lochlomondshores.com

A springtime event to celebrate all things food and drink, from the people behind the ever-popular Loch Lomond Food & Drink Festival.

1–16 APRIL EDINBURGH SCIENCE

FESTIVAL

FAMILY / SCIENCE

Various venues, Edinburgh, sciencefestival.co.uk

An extensive programme of events, hands-on activities, talks, performances and more, aimed at all ages. The theme for the 2023 festival is ‘Let’s Experiment!’.

30 THE GUIDE TO SCOTLAND’S FESTIVALS 2023
. PHOTO: MAGDA PADUCH
31 Musíc MULTIVERSE - AT THE2ND & 3RD SEPTEMBER 2023 CRAWICK MULTIVERSE, NEAR SANQUHAR, DUMFRIES & GALLOWAY WWW.CRAWICKMULTIVERSE.CO.UK | INFO@CRAWICKMULTIVERSE.CO.UK @MUSICATTHEMULTIVERSE | # MUSICATTHEMULTIVERSE TRADITIONAL ASSOCIATION OF SCOTLAND MUSIC & SONG

2 APRIL SCOTTISH VEGAN FESTIVAL

FOOD & DRINK

The Corn Exchange, Edinburgh, scottishveganfestival.com

A wide selection of stalls selling food, drink, clothing and other vegan-friendly items, plus information, talks, cookery demonstrations and more.

6–9 APRIL COUNTERFLOWS

FILM & TV / MUSIC / ART

Various venues, Glasgow, counterflows.com

Four days of live music from some of the most interesting artists working on the fringes today, featuring an international programme of performances, new projects, collaborations and commissions, club nights, hangouts, discussions and more.

7–10 APRIL SCOTLAND’S DAFFODIL FESTIVAL

FAMILY / OUTDOOR

Backhouse Rossie Estate, Collessie, backhouserossie.co.uk

See the only National Scientific Collection of narcissus in the world, along with a woodland daffodil walk, stalls, children’s activities, festival café, displays of the finest daffodils and plant sales.

7–11 APRIL EDINBURGH INTERNATIONAL HARP FESTIVAL

FAMILY / MUSIC

George Watson’s College, Edinburgh, harpfestival.co.uk

Join the Clarsach Society for another celebration of all things harp at their annual flagship event.

Featuring performances, courses and workshops by musical talent from across the globe.

8 APRIL

SCOTLAND VEGAN FESTIVAL

FOOD & DRINK

Lagoon Leisure Centre, Paisley, veganeventsuk.co.uk/scotlandvegan-festival

Over 100 stalls including food caterers, dairy and meat alternatives, skincare and beauty, clothing, drinks, nutritional advice, free samples, demonstrations, talks and much more.

8 APRIL

TERMINAL V FESTIVAL MUSIC

Royal Highland Centre, Ingliston, Edinburgh, royalhighlandcentre.co.uk

Terminal V Festival is back for two days, featuring a huge lineup of the world’s biggest electronic acts including Amelie Lens, Big Miz, Ewan McVicar, Héctor Oaks, Jayda G, Sara Landry and more.

13–15 APRIL WIDE DAYS MUSIC

Assembly Rooms, Edinburgh, widedays.com

Scotland’s annual music convention, featuring live performances, workshops, panel discussions and networking opportunities.

14—16 APRIL

SANDS

INTERNATIONAL

FILM FESTIVAL FILM & TV

Byre Theatre, St Andrews, sands-iff.com

A three-day event presenting an exciting and diverse international

showcase of contemporary and classic cinema alongside a range of supporting events.

20–23 APRIL MULL

MUSIC FESTIVAL MUSIC

Various venues, Tobermory, Isle of Mull, facebook.com/ MullMusicFestival

A lively weekend of Scottish music, featuring folk-rock bands, fiddle, accordion, dance and ceilidh bands.

22 APRIL FIFE

BRASS BAND FESTIVAL MUSIC

Lochgelly Centre, Lochgelly, fifebbfestival.wixsite.com/fbbf

A brass band entertainment competition with participants from across Scotland and beyond. It is open to members of the public, who can enjoy a day of musicmaking with live performances from all bands.

22 APRIL GLENFARG

FOLK FEAST

FAMILY / MUSIC

Glenfarg Village Hall, Glenfarg, glenfargfolkclub.com

Run by Glenfarg Folk Club, this small and friendly festival programmes live music, storytelling and poetry, with the 2023 lineup featuring harmony singing trio Choras, former Scots Singer of the Year Shona Donaldson with fiddleplayer Paul Anderson, and singer/ guitarist Kenny Speirs.

22 APRIL

SCOTLAND CALLING MUSIC

O2 Academy Glasgow, Glasgow, o2academyglasgow.co.uk

One-day punk festival featuring

32 THE GUIDE TO SCOTLAND’S FESTIVALS 2023

The Exploited, Cockney Rejects, UK Subs, Anti-Nowhere League, Red London, GBH, 999, Bar Stool Preachers, Hung Like Hanratty, Fire Exit and The Red Eyes.

22 APRIL STIRLING OPEN STREETS FESTIVAL FAMILY / MULTI-ARTS

Various venues, Stirling, stirling.gov.uk

A unique, pedestrian-focused, environment for residents and visitors to experience music and arts performances and familyfriendly activities in the city centre.

24 APRIL–8 MAY COLONSAY FESTIVAL OF

SPRING

COMMUNITY / FAMILY / OUTDOOR

Various venues, Isle of Colonsay, colonsayspringfest.com

This popular festival returns for 2023 with a brand new theme of ‘the great outdoors’. Discover

wildflowers and birds, try your hand at dry stone walling, explore the island’s archaeological heritage and enjoy a range of walks, talks and activities.

26 APRIL–1 MAY SPIRIT OF SPEYSIDE WHISKY FESTIVAL

FOOD & DRINK / MUSIC

Various venues, Speyside, spiritofspeyside.com

The doors to Speyside’s worldfamous distilleries open, inviting visitors to meet the makers, taste the world’s finest whiskies and discover the passion behind them. Plus food, live music, talks, tastings, tours and more.

27–30 APRIL ALCHEMY FILM AND MOVING

FESTIVAL

FILM & TV / ART

IMAGE

Various venues, Hawick, alchemyfilmandarts.org.uk Now in its 13th year, Alchemy is the largest film festival of its kind

in Scotland, screening a diverse range of experimental films, plus discussions, communal meals and moving-image exhibitions in venues around Hawick.

27–30 APRIL DUNDEAD

FILM & TV

DCA, Dundee, dca.org.uk

Dundee’s dedicated horror film festival, featuring classics, previews, premieres and even a quiz night.

27–30 APRIL SHETLAND FOLK FESTIVAL MUSIC

Various venues, Shetland, shetlandfolkfestival.com

In its 41st year, Shetland Folk Festival welcomes visiting and local acts to the UK’s most northerly folk festival. Concerts are performed throughout the isles, featuring some of the best international, British and Shetland music the world has to offer.

33 LIST.CO.UK/SCOTLANDS-FESTIVALS
Wide Days PHOTO: JANNICA HONEY

28–30 APRIL

BONFEST MUSIC

Various venues, Kirriemuir, bonfest.com

A weekend of live music as fans from all over the world descend on the Angus town of Kirriemuir for a celebration of its most rock’n’roll son, AC/DC frontman Bon Scott. 2023 lineup includes The Treatment, Scarlet Rebels, Gun, Emerald Sunday and more.

28–30 APRIL

GIRVAN TRADITIONAL FOLK FESTIVAL MUSIC

Various venues, Girvan, girvantraditionalfolkfestival.org.uk

Now in its 48th year, this popular festival run by Girvan Folk Club features open sessions, concerts, workshops, a ceilidh, storytelling, talks, trails and children’s events.

28 APRIL–8 MAY EDINBURGH TRADFEST MUSIC / HERITAGE

Various venues, Edinburgh, edinburghtradfest.com

An annual celebration of traditional music from Scotland and around the world, Edinburgh TradFest features an extensive programme of concerts and workshops, performed and hosted by world-class musicians.

29 APRIL STEREOFUNK FESTIVAL MUSIC

Chatelherault Country Park, Hamilton, stereofunkfestival.com

This boutique music festival has firmly established itself in the Scottish clubbing calendar, set against the backdrop of an 18th-century lodge with

breathtaking views over the Central Belt.

29 & 30 APRIL

COLONSAY BOOK FESTIVAL

LITERATURE / FAMILY

Colonsay Village Hall, Scalasaig, Isle of Colonsay, colonsaybookfestival.org.uk

A book festival on the beautiful Inner Hebridean isle of Colonsay. As well as readings and performances, the emphasis is on meeting and chatting with the writers, plus debate and good craic in the pub.

29 & 30 APRIL MACMORAY

EASTER FESTIVAL

FAMILY / MUSIC

Cooper Park, Elgin, macmoray.com

Family-friendly festival with two large outdoor music stages, children’s activities, food and drink and a funfair. Confirmed

acts for 2023 include Bay City Rollers, Five, Buzzcocks, Big Country, Nazareth, Vengaboys, B*witched, Sweet and more.

29 & 30 APRIL TECTONICS GLASGOW MUSIC

City Halls & Old Fruitmarket, Glasgow, tectonicsfestival.com

Tectonics Glasgow celebrates its 10th anniversary in 2023, pushing boundaries and blurring musical genres as international and local artists gather in Glasgow to explore what music can be. Staged annually by the BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra and co-curated by its Principal Guest Conductor Ilan Volkov with Alasdair Campbell (Counterflows).

29 & 30 APRIL TWEEDLOVE BIKE FESTIVAL OUTDOOR

Tweed Green, Peebles,

34 THE GUIDE TO SCOTLAND’S FESTIVALS 2023
Beltane Fire Festival PHOTO: GORDON VEITCH

tweedlove.com

Ride the best trails the Valley has to offer, demo a new bike, find your favourite brands, have a beer with your mates or soak up the festival vibes.

29 APRIL–1 MAY OPEN

STUDIOS NORTH FIFE

HERITAGE / ART

Various venues, Fife, openstudiosfife.co.uk

Open Studios is an opportunity to speak to artists about their methods and sources of inspiration and perhaps buy or commission directly from them. Some artists run workshops and demonstrations during the event, and you also get to see inside the spaces in which they work.

30 APRIL

BELTANE FIRE FESTIVAL

OUTDOOR / HERITAGE

Calton Hill, Edinburgh, beltane.org

A modern interpretation of the ancient fertility festival of Beltane in the spectacular setting of Calton Hill. Beltane Fire Society performs the story of the death of winter and the birth of summer via dance, drumming, debauched acrobatics, giant puppetry and, of course, fire.

30 APRIL

DUNDEE DANCE EVENT MUSIC

Various venues, Dundee, dundeedanceevent.co.uk

An opportunity for the dance music community to come together and celebrate, taking place in over 25 venues, with almost 200 DJs and artists from across Scotland.

MAY

4–7 MAY

LOCH SHIEL FESTIVAL MUSIC

Various venues, Loch Shiel, lochshielfestival.com

A festival of classical music set alongside stunning views of Loch Shiel, with the theme for 2023 being ‘When We Listen’.

5 & 6 MAY

PERTH BEER FESTIVAL

FOOD & DRINK

North Inch Park, Perth, perthbeerfestival.co.uk

A weekend of entertainment, starting with comedy on Friday night, the Beer Festival on Saturday (including a new Gin Bar for 2023) and closing with live music at the ‘Big Bash Finale’ on Sunday. Plus the popular Kids Zone and BBQ.

5 & 6 MAY

ULLAPOOL BOOK FESTIVAL

LITERATURE / FAMILY

Various venues, Ullapool, ullapoolbookfestival.co.uk

The intimate literary festival on the shores of Loch Broom celebrates its 19th – and final – festival with a stellar lineup of authors, poets, journalists and dramatists including Alan Bissett, Kirstin Innes, Doug Johnstone, Michael Pedersen, Hamish Napier, Rajah Shehadah and more.

6–20 MAY

FALKIRK SCIENCE FESTIVAL

FAMILY / SCIENCE

Various venues, Falkirk, falkirkcommunitytrust.org Science festival with innovative activities, shows, talks and screenings suitable for all.

ORKNEY FOLK FESTIVAL

The festival celebrates its 40th anniversary in 2023, and its first under Craig Corse’s artistic direction. Alongside regular favourites and scores of Orkney-based musicians and singers, the lineup features acts from across the UK, Scandinavia and North America. Scottish headliners include the funk-trad-electronic fusion of Elephant Sessions, foot-stomping favourites Breabach and soulful Kinnaris Quintet. From North America, there will be appearances by Vermont cellist Eric Wright and Cape Breton fiddler Mairi Rankin, lyrical Canadian singersongwriter Mo Kenney, and a UK exclusive performance from Texan jazz and swing group Hot Club of Cowtown.

Based in Stromness, the festival also takes events to Birsay, Finstown, Harray, Kirkwall, Orphir, Sanday, Sandwick, St Andrews, St Margaret’s Hope and Stenness. (Ailsa Sheldon)

 Various venues, Orkney, 25–28 May, orkneyfolkfestival.com

35 LIST.CO.UK/SCOTLANDSFESTIVALS
SPOTLIGHT ON . . . PHOTO: SEAN PURSER

SPOTLIGHT ON . . .

HIDDEN DOOR FESTIVAL

‘Environments’ is the theme of this year’s Hidden Door music, visual arts and cultural festival in Edinburgh, with musicians, dancers, artists, poets and spoken word performers exploring issues which relate to climate change, as well as the spaces we create or inhabit. The festival prides itself on providing a platform for new and emerging Scottish creative talent, transforming disused spaces around Edinburgh to present an interdisciplinary showcase of creative art forms. In 2023, Hidden Door will take over the maze-like former Scottish Widows HQ, a six-acre site near the Royal Commonwealth Pool. Promising to be the most ‘immersive and atmospheric’ event that Hidden Door has organised to date, expect to experience performance, art, music and movement in a unique environment.

 The Complex (former Scottish Widows HQ), 15 Dalkeith Road, Edinburgh, 31 May–4 June, hiddendoorarts.org

10–13 MAY

LORN DRAMA FESTIVAL

FAMILY / THEATRE & DANCE

Corran Halls, Oban, facebook. com/LornDramaFestival

The Lorn Drama Festival features amateur drama and acting talent from across Argyll and Bute, showcasing around 10–15 plays by local drama groups.

11–13 MAY

SKYE LIVE 2023 MUSIC

The Lump, Portree, skyelive.co.uk

Three-day music festival on Skye offering a fusion of genres, with traditional music, bands, DJs and dance acts including Breabach, Peat & Diesel, Shooglenifty, Talisk, Stevie Cox, Linkwood and many more.

12–14 MAY

BOSWELL BOOK FESTIVAL

LITERATURE / FAMILY

Dumfries House, Cumnock, boswellbookfestival.co.uk

Inspired by the great Ayrshire biographer James Boswell, this is the world’s only festival of biography and memoir, attracting big-name authors each year.

12–14 MAY

THE

FISHERFOLK

FESTIVAL

HERITAGE / MUSIC

Seaboard Centre, Balintore, seaboardcentre.com

The Fisherfolk Festival is an

annual three-day celebration remembering the heritage, the people who came before us, and the fishing life our ancestors worked for many years. The theme for 2023 is ‘Community’.

12–15 MAY

ARRAN MOUNTAIN FESTIVAL OUTDOOR

Various venues, Arran, arranmountainfestival.co.uk From wildlife-watching coastal walks to scrambles on towering granite ridges, Arran Mountain Festival is an opportunity to discover a fascinating island with amazing landscapes, in the safe hands of experienced local leaders.

12–15 MAY

CRIEFF & STRATHEARN DROVERS’ TRYST WALKING FESTIVAL OUTDOOR

Various venues, Strathearn & Perthshire, droverstryst.com

A celebration of the life, work and traditions of the people who made Crieff the cattle-droving crossroads of Scotland in the 1700s. Enjoy a programme of guided walks in the stunning scenery of Strathearn and surrounding areas, enriched by wildlife, plants, trees and history.

12–18 MAY

NEWTON STEWART WALKING FESTIVAL OUTDOOR

Various venues, Newton Stewart, walkfestnewtonstewart.com

Walkfest offers around 30 routes over 7 days in wonderfully unspoiled landscapes, with transport and guides included as well as a programme of evening social events.

36
PHOTO: JAMES DUNCAN

Screen Scotland supports Scotland’s diverse film festivals to bring audiences together to discover great stories from around the world and showcase exciting new work from our vibrant film industry.

Screen Scotland is the national body that drives development of all aspects of Scotland’s film and TV industry, through funding and strategic support.

Screen Scotland is part of Creative Scotland and delivers these services and support with funding from Scottish Government and The National Lottery.

screen.scot | @screenscots | /screenscots | /screenscots
Photo Lesley Martin - Cinescapes: ReDrawing Edinburgh

DICK V DOM DJ BATTLE

CORTO. ALTO

SISTER SLEDGE

SIR ROBIN KNOX-JOHNSTON SPLASH TEST DUMMIES

PLUS MANY MORE TO BE ANNOUNCED...

Scotland’s freshest festival - 200+ music, comedy, literature, wellbeing and exploration events across 10 days in North Berwick.

FOR FULL LINE UP AND TICKETS GO TO

FRINGEBYTHESEA.COM

38

13 MAY

WOODLAND DANCE PROJECT

MUSIC

Vogrie Country Park, Gorebridge, woodlanddanceproject.co.uk

Set in the lush surroundings at Vogrie Country Park, Woodland Dance Project features performances from international DJs alongside local stars, across four stages.

14–21 MAY ORKNEY

NATURE

FESTIVAL FAMILY / OUTDOOR

Various venues, Orkney, orkneynaturefestival.org

Get familiar with Orkney’s wildlife through walks, talks, activities, demonstrations, concerts and more.

18–27 MAY

PERTH FESTIVAL OF THE ARTS MULTI-ART

Various venues, Perth, perthfestival.co.uk

Ten days of music, comedy, theatre, dance and visual arts, including Jools Holland, Estonian National Symphony Orchestra, Ukulele Orchestra of Great Britain and Scottish National Jazz Orchestra.

19 & 20 MAY STRICHEN

FESTIVAL FAMILY / MUSIC / HERITAGE

The Ritchie Hall, Strichen, Fraserburgh, buchanheritagesociety.co.uk

This friendly festival has been running since 1984 and offers a programme of music, song, verse, drama and dance, plus competitions and ceilidhs for adults and kids alike.

19–21 MAY

DRUMLANRIG OFFROAD MOTORSPORT FESTIVAL

FAMILY / OUTDOOR

Drumlanrig Castle, Thornhill, gallowaymcc.com

Family-friendly, three-day motorsport event, featuring races, trials and taster sessions, plus live music, food and drink and children’s activities.

19–21 MAY

SPRINGGRASS BLUEGRASS FESTIVAL MUSIC

The Vault Arts Centre, Newton Stewart, tradmusic.com

Enjoy fantastic bluegrass and Americana concerts and picking sessions in the new Festival Marquee.Confirmed so far for 2023: Good Guy Hank.

19–28 MAY

AYE WRITE! GLASGOW’S BOOK FESTIVAL LITERATURE / SCIENCE

Glasgow Royal Concert Hall, Glasgow, ayewrite.com

Aye Write! is Glasgow’s Book Festival, founded in 2005 and

each year celebrates the best in national, international and local writing, with big names and emerging talent across its programme.

19–28 MAY

DUMFRIES & GALLOWAY ARTS FESTIVAL MULTI-ARTS

Various venues, Dumfries & Galloway, dgartsfestival.org.uk

This ten-day festival features local and national artists delivering theatre, music, dance, comedy and children’s shows.

20–21 MAY

FLY OPEN AIR FESTIVAL MUSIC

Hopetoun House, South Queensferry, flyflyfly.co.uk/open-air

A showcase of some of the world’s best musicians and DJs taking place in unique locations around Scotland. For 2023 it heads to the spacious grounds of Hopetoun House, with confirmed DJs including Ben Hemsley, Chaos in the CBD, Eliza Rose, Hannah Laing, Hayley Zalassi, Interplanetary Criminal, Job Jobse, Prospa and many more.

25–27 MAY

MIDNIGHT SUN WEEKENDER MUSIC

Lews Castle, Stornoway, Isle of Lewis, skiddle.com/festivals/ midnight-sun-weekender

Three days of artfully curated music hosted in the grounds of Lews Castle. Confirmed acts so far include The Pretenders, Primal Scream, Ocean Colour Scene, Spiritualized, Edwyn Collins, Public Service Broadcasting, Honeyblood, with more to come.

39 LIST.CO.UK/SCOTLANDS-FESTIVALS
Dumfries & Galloway Arts Festival

SPOTLIGHT ON . .

RIVERSIDE FESTIVAL

Scotland’s premier electronic music festival, Glasgow’s Riverside Festival celebrates its tenth anniversary in 2023. It takes place next to the striking Riverside Museum building on the banks of the Clyde and always pulls in heavy hitters from the international electronic music scene while also shining a light on the freshest Scottish talent, along with some underground heroes. Already announced for 2023 are Newcastle star Patrick Topping, who brings his big-room house mixes to get the audience moving on Saturday 3 June, while Australia’s DJ Mall Grab’s omnivorous taste will no doubt delight. On Sunday, hometown heroes and co-curators of the festival, Slam, will go back to back with Frazi.er. They’ll be joined on the lineup by Hector Oaks, the Spanish vinyl aficionado, and the hard-hitting techno of Paula Temple. (Sean Greenhorn)

 3 & 4 June, Riverside Museum, Glasgow, riversidefestivalglasgow.com

25–27 MAY

OFF THE PAGE STIRLING BOOK FESTIVAL

LITERATURE / FAMILY

Various venues, Stirling Popular local book festival featuring a wide range of events, authors and speakers for adults and children of all ages.

25–28 MAY

KNOCKENGORROCH FESTIVAL

FAMILY / MUSIC

Knockengorroch Farm, Carsphairn, Castle Douglas, knockengorroch.org.uk

Celebrating its 25th year in 2023, Knockengorroch Festival will feature French dub bands Zenzile and High Tone, nine-piece Bristol band Cut Capers, Old Blind Dogs, Yiddish Twist Orchestra and more. Plus heritage workshops, dancing, comedy, theatre shows, arts and crafts and lots for the kids.

25–28 MAY

ORKNEY FOLK FESTIVAL

FAMILY / MUSIC

Various venues, Orkney, orkneyfolkfestival.com

See Spotlight, page 35.

25–28 MAY

PUNK ON THE PENINSULA

MUSIC

Coal Pier, Dunoon, punkonthepeninsula.rocks

With over 40 bands appearing across multiple stages, the weekend brings a mix of legendary names from the punk and alternative music world alongside up-and-coming bands that are making waves throughout the UK and beyond.

26 & 27 MAY

MIDSTOCK FESTIVAL 2023

MUSIC

Dalkeith Country Park, Dalkeith, midstockfestival.com

DJs provide a night of great tunes on the Friday (over 18s only), while Saturday brings a more eclectic mix of tributes knocking out classics. There’s also a corner of the park reserved for families.

26 MAY–3 JUNE

FÈIS ÌLE: ISLAY FESTIVAL OF MUSIC AND MALT

FOOD & DRINK / MUSIC

Various venues, Isle of Islay, feisile.co.uk

Nine days of music, song, dancing, chatting, meeting friends old and new and perhaps a wee bit of Islay whisky along the way.

26 MAY–4 JUNE LOCH

NESS FESTIVAL OUTDOOR

Various venues, Loch Ness, lochnessfestival.com

Ten days of activities for adventure-seekers, including trail running, hiking and mountain biking. 2023 will be the first year of the Loch Ness 100 Miler and 50 Miler having taken over from the 2022 Loch Ness Challenge.

27 MAY THE

GATHERING

FOOD & DRINK / MUSIC

Northern Meeting Park Arena, Inverness, thegatheringscotland.com

One-day festival celebrating the best music, culture, food and drink from the Highlands and Scotland. The 2023 lineup includes Tide Lines, Red Hot Chilli Pipers, Talisk, Torridon, Hò-rò,

42 THE GUIDE TO SCOTLAND’S FESTIVALS
2023
.

Hannah Rarity and Beinn Lee, plus many more.

27 & 28 MAY

EDINBURGH MARATHON FESTIVAL OUTDOOR

Various venues, Edinburgh, edinburghmarathon.com

Scotland’s largest running festival of its kind with seven races to choose from over two days including the marathon, team relay and junior races.

27–29 MAY

SPRING FLING

ART / FAMILY

Various venues, Dumfries & Galloway, spring-fling.co.uk

A vibrant visual art and craft open studios event during which around 90 artists and makers throw open the doors of their studios to allow visitors to watch demonstrations, hear artists explain their creative processes, and have the opportunity to buy art direct from the artist.

27 MAY–4 JUNE

EDINBURGH

INTERNATIONAL CHILDREN’S FESTIVAL

FAMILY / THEATRE & DANCE

Various venues, Edinburgh, imaginate.org.uk

Edinburgh’s acclaimed children’s festival delivers a programme of theatre, dance, storytelling and puppetry presented by top companies from around the world.

31 MAY–4 JUNE

HIDDEN DOOR FESTIVAL MULTI-ART

The Complex (former Scottish Widows HQ), 15 Dalkeith Road, Edinburgh, hiddendoorarts.org

See Spotlight, page 36.

JUNE

1–4 JUNE

FYNEFEST

FOOD & DRINK / FAMILY / MUSIC

Fyne Ales, Cairndow, fynefest.com

Beer is the star at FyneFest, with a wide variety of brews from the UK and beyond, plus children’s entertainment, walks, a chance to meet the brewers and live music, from chilled-out afternoon tunes to party-starting main stage acts.

1–11 JUNE

GLASGOW SCIENCE FESTIVAL: GLASGOW’S MAKING WAVES

FAMILY / SCIENCE

Various venues, Glasgow, glasgowsciencefestival.org.uk With the 2023 theme of ‘Glasgow’s Looking Forward’, the festival presents a packed programme of workshops, shows, films, discussions, exhibitions and art collaborations exploring what the future might look like.

2 & 3 JUNE

CURRIE BEER AND CURRY FESTIVAL

FOOD & DRINK

Currie Community Centre, Edinburgh, cbdrt.com/events/ beer-festival/2023

Organised by volunteers, the Currie Beer and Curry Festival offers people a chance to sample real ales, prosecco and wine, plus a range of curries and live music available over the weekend.

2–4 JUNE ANSTRUTHER

HARBOUR FESTIVAL

FOOD & DRINK / FAMILY

Anstruther Harbour, Anstruther,

anstrutherharbourfestival.org

The festival revives the burgh’s historic market ‘Anster Fair’ with food and craft stalls from local traders, live music and dance events, plus special entertainment for children.

2–4 JUNE

CYMERA: SCOTLAND’S FESTIVAL OF SCIENCE

FICTION, FANTASY AND HORROR WRITING

LITERATURE

The Pleasance, Edinburgh, cymerafestival.co.uk

A packed programme of events for lovers of sci-fi, fantasy and horror, including panels, dealers hall, writing workshops and gaming.

2–4 JUNE MASH UP FESTIVAL FOOD & DRINK

Holyrood Distillery, Edinburgh, holyrooddistillery.co.uk/themash-up-2023

In its second year, this threeday event hosts breweries such as Pilot, Newbarns and Cross Borders alongside distilleries including Kilchoman, Nc’nean, Glasgow Distillery and Isle of Raasay, aiming to introduce an innovative collection of new wave beers and whiskies.

2–4 JUNE STRATHYRE

MUSIC FESTIVAL

FAMILY / MUSIC

Various venues, Strathyre, facebook.com/strathyremusic Strathyre Music Festival is held over three days, with a wide and varied programme of music ranging from traditional and folk to jazz, blues and rock – plus fun workshops for all ages.

43 LIST.CO.UK/SCOTLANDS-FESTIVALS

with the FINEST MUSIC from the CELTIC DIASPORA & ACROSS THE GLOBE, deep in the GALLOWAY HILLS

EVERY YEAR IT’S A BRAND NEW ADVENTURE

100 Open Studios

6 routes / 3 days

   #SF2023 www.spring-fling.co.uk email: info@spring-fling.co.uk

ZENTONE (HighTone+Zenzile) / THE LANGAN BAND

DOWDELIN / SOLO BANTON / OLD BLIND DOGS / MARINA P SHEELANAGIG / MUNGO’S HI FI SOUNDSYSTEM

YIDDISH TWIST ORCHESTRA / THE DRYSTONES / ROKIA KONE / CUT CAPERS SUBHIRA QUINTET / AKRAMABDULFATTAH / AN DANNSA DUB & many more names still to be announced.

www.knockengorroch.org.uk/tickets

´

44

2–4 JUNE

WILDHOOD: A CHILDREN’S FESTIVAL FAMILY / MULTI-ARTS / OUTDOOR

Tullibole Castle, Crook of Devon, Kinross, wildhoodfestival.com

See Spotlight, this page.

3 JUNE

GLASGOW COMIC CON LITERATURE

Glasgow Club Bellahouston, Glasgow, glasgowcomiccon.com

Annual convention hosting local comic book and graphic novel writers, international guests, with films, workshops and more.

3 & 4 JUNE RIVERSIDE FESTIVAL MUSIC

Riverside Museum, Glasgow, riversidefestivalglasgow.com

See Spotlight, page 42.

3–9 JUNE

BALLATER WALKING FESTIVAL OUTDOOR

Various venues, Ballater, walkballater.com

Outdoor festival catering to walkers of all abilities. Making the most of the magnificent views on easy, medium and strenuous walks across seven active days, the events are led by knowledgeable local residents, full-time rangers and professional mountain guides.

3–9 JUNE

WEE WRITE!

LITERATURE / FAMILY

Mitchell Library, Glasgow, ayewrite.com

A jam-packed programme of activities and readings for children, families and school pupils of all ages.

4 JUNE

DUNDEE WESTFEST: BIG SUNDAY FAMILY / MUSIC Magdalen

Green, Dundee, dundeewestfest.org Family fun day with a range of attractions, arts and crafts, live music, displays, food stalls and carnival rides.

8–11 JUNE

THE EDEN FESTIVAL

FAMILY / MULTI-ARTS

Raehills Meadows, St Anns, Moffat, edenfestival.co.uk

Set in the stunning Raehills Meadows and hosting ten different stages, kids’ arena, circus tent, drive-in cinema, comedy, cabaret and workshops, as well as a feast of performers, artworks, games and much more.

8–11 JUNE

KIRKCUDBRIGHT JAZZ FESTIVAL MUSIC

Various venues, Kirkcudbright, kirkcudbrightjazzfestival.co.uk

A celebration of New Orleans, Dixieland and Swing Jazz in South West Scotland, now in its 24th year.

9–11 JUNE

ARRAN FOLK FESTIVAL MUSIC

Brodick, Isle of Arran, arranfolkfestival.co.uk

Folk festival offering a mix of concert performances, workshops, and afternoon and late-night sessions in venues across Brodick.

WILDHOOD

Lots of festivals have a kidszone. Wildhood, which takes place over a weekend in the grounds of 17th-century Tullibole Castle is all kidszone. In other words, it’s a festival wholly designed around and for children aged 12 and under. There’s plenty that you’d expect at a grown-up festival, from camping to food stalls to music and chances to try things out, but it’s all oriented to younger ones from toddlers to pre-teens. Scheduled over three days and two nights, it makes the most of its setting, with the backdrop of a fairytale castle and plenty of space to explore, including bushcraft and eco explorations in the ancient woodland, room for campfires, cooking zones and play areas in the extensive camping space. The central festival zone is filled with arts and craft, music and mythology, yoga and dance, spellbinding stories and magical creatures. (Donald Reid)

 Tullibole Castle, Crook of Devon, Kinross, 2–4 June, wildhoodfestival.com

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SPOTLIGHT ON . . .
LIST.CO.UK/SCOTLANDSFESTIVALS
PHOTO: DOMINIC IBBOTSON

9–11 JUNE

POTFEST SCOTLAND

ART

Scone Palace, Perth, potfest.co.uk

Meet the 90 studio ceramics artists taking part, wander Scone’s grounds and gardens, talk to the makers and discover what fuels their passion for clay and buy direct.

9–11 JUNE

KEITH TMSA FESTIVAL

FAMILY / MUSIC / HERITAGE

Various venues, Keith, keithfestival.com

A weekend of traditional music, song, poetry and dance, with guest artists, musicians and singers taking part in a range of sessions and competitions, plus a farewell concert and ceilidh.

10 JUNE

EDINBURGH WHISKY FESTIVAL

FOOD & DRINK

Assembly Rooms, Edinburgh, thewhiskylounge.com

A chance to sample the best home-grown whiskies from Scotland as well as distillers from India, Japan, the USA and England. Organisers deliberately set specific session times to avoid the festival getting too crowded.

10 & 11 JUNE

BALLANTRAE FESTIVAL OF FOOD & DRINK

FOOD & DRINK

Various venues, Ballantrae, ballantrae.org.uk/foodfestival

A food and drink festival in South Ayrshire celebrating local eating and drinking. Dedicated to promoting quality, well-sourced food, there are tastings, popup restaurants, producers and

traders to meet, organic food stalls and demonstrations.

14–18 JUNE

GLASGOW JAZZ FESTIVAL MUSIC

Various venues, Glasgow, jazzfest.co.uk

Hosting some of the biggest names in jazz, blues, soul, funk, R&B and world music across the years, with major concerts, a latenight jazz club, film screenings and talks, this is one of the biggest events in the Scottish and British jazz calendar.

15–17 JUNE

GLASGOW REAL ALE FESTIVAL

FOOD & DRINK

The Briggait, Glasgow, glasgowrealalefestival.co.uk

Over 150 real ales, ciders and foreign beers rub shoulders with a gin bar and wines, plus catering from local restaurants.

15–18 JUNE

BORDERS BOOK FESTIVAL

LITERATURE / FAMILY

Harmony Garden, Melrose, bordersbookfestival.org

The Borders Book Festival attracts world-class literary, sport and comedy figures to its base in the Harmony Garden.

15–18 JUNE

SHETLAND NOIR LITERATURE

Mareel, Lerwick, Shetland, shetlandarts.org

A packed programme of internationally known writer events, workshops, panel discussions and outings, with plans to include film, music, live

performance and other ‘noir’ related content.

16–18 JUNE

KILLIN MUSIC FESTIVAL MUSIC

McLaren Hall, Killin, killinmusicfest.com

A three-day festival of music featuring live bands and artists, as well as fringe events, bar sessions, kids’ activities and competitions.

16–18 JUNE

SOLAS FESTIVAL

MULTI-ARTS / MUSIC

Errol Park, Perthshire, solasfestival.co.uk

Set in the beautiful Perthshire countryside, Solas is a weekendlong celebration of music and the arts designed to entertain, inspire and challenge. The theme for 2023 is ‘Kindling Hope’.

16–23 JUNE

ST MAGNUS

INTERNATIONAL FESTIVAL

MUSIC / THEATRE & DANCE / ART

Various venues, Orkney, stmagnusfestival.com

A wide variety of cultural events including music, theatre, arts, dance, literature and cabaret, alongside community projects. Highlights for 2023 include Scottish Ballet’s acclaimed production of A Streetcar Named Desire

16–25 JUNE

REFUGEE FESTIVAL SCOTLAND

COMMUNITY / MULTI-ARTS

Various venues, Scotland, refugeefestivalscotland.co.uk

Coordinated by Scottish Refugee Council, and centred around World Refugee Day, this annual festival of

46 THE GUIDE TO SCOTLAND’S FESTIVALS 2023

arts and cultural events celebrates the broad contribution that refugees make to Scottish cultural life.

16–26 JUNE

MORAY WALKING & OUTDOOR FESTIVAL OUTDOOR

Various venues, Moray, moraywalkoutdoorfest.co.uk

Whether you’re strolling beside the River Spey, bird watching on Dava Moor, mountain biking in Glen Avon, exploring the Moray Firth coastline or taking part in a raft of other outdoor activities, the festival celebrates all this beautiful area has to offer.

17 JUNE

WOODZSTOCK MUSIC FESTIVAL

COMEDY / MUSIC / OUTDOOR

Wildwoodz Adventure Park, Littleburn, Munlochy, woodzstock.co.uk

The feelgood festival in a forest, with live music across two stages, bushcraft and circus skills, Lasertag and live comedy. The 2023 lineup features Tom McGuire & The Brassholes, McFleetwood, Pale Moon, The Black Isle Peas, Chancers and more.

18 JUNE

BVAC CLASSIC: FESTIVAL OF MOTORING OUTDOOR

Thirlestane Castle, Lauder, thirlestanecastle.co.uk/whats-on

One of the biggest car rallies in the UK, featuring more than 1200 vintage and classic cars, as well as entertainment, live music and a food village.

22–25 JUNE

BIG LIT: THE STEWARTRY BOOK

FESTIVAL LITERATURE

Various venues, Gatehouse of Fleet, biglit.org

An intimate book festival focusing on literature, politics, music, exhibitions, storytelling and performance.

22–25 JUNE

THE ROYAL HIGHLAND SHOW

FOOD & DRINK / FAMILY / OUTDOOR

Royal Highland Centre, Ingliston, Edinburgh, royalhighlandshow.org

Part agricultural show, part food festival, part family fun day out, with everything from showjumping and craft programmes to livestock shows and acres of tractors.

23–25 JUNE

WILDFIRE FESTIVAL MUSIC

Wanlockhead Inn, Wanlockhead, wildfirefestival.co.uk

A weekend of rock and metal music performed in Scotland’s highest village. The 2023 lineup includes Tailgunner, The Cruel Knives, A New Tomorrow, Dead Writers, Harsh and many more.

28–29 JUNE

TURING FEST SCIENCE

EICC, Edinburgh, turingfest.com

A coming together of tech startups, scale-ups, product teams, revenue teams, leaders, thinkers and innovators.

29 JUNE–2 JULY

EAST NEUK FESTIVAL

LITERATURE / MUSIC / ART

Various venues, East Fife, eastneukfestival.com

See Spotlight, this page.

EAST NEUK FESTIVAL

Held across the pretty East Fife coast each summer, this festival’s venues often surprise and have included churches, caves, stately homes and an ex-nuclear bunker. This year there will be concerts in Crail, Kilrenny, Anstruther and Elie, underpinned by a belief in the transformative potential of live music. Co-founder and director Svend McEwan-Brown says: ‘Friendships and special collaborations are the building blocks for the ENF 2023 programme, and as ever, we offer concerts that you will hear nowhere else.’ This year, there’s a special residence by the award-winning Belcea Quartet, returning with a ‘dream team’ of musicians to play solo, duo, quartet and sextet arrangements, including violinist Vilde Frang, pianist Bertrand Chamayou, cellist JeanGuihen Queyras and violist Diyang Mei.

 Various venues, East Fife, 29 June–2 July, eastneukfestival.com

47
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SPOTLIGHT ON . . .

30 JUNE–2 JULY

GWCT SCOTTISH GAME FAIR

OUTDOOR / FAMILY

Scone Palace, Perth, scottishfair.com

Three days of country sports, competitions and main ring events and entertainment at this family-friendly fair. You’ll find falconry displays, gun dogs, pipe bands, cookery demonstrations, foraging, shooting and a range of traders and stalls.

30 JUNE–2 JULY LEITHLATE

FILM & TV / MUSIC / ART

Various venues, Leith, Edinburgh, leithlate.co.uk

LeithLate is a multi-arts festival that takes place across multiple venues in Leith, showcasing the

very best in emerging artists, musicians, poets and filmmakers.

30 JUNE–2 JULY

SCOTTISH TRADITIONAL BOAT FESTIVAL

FOOD & DRINK / FAMILY / MUSIC / HERITAGE

Various venues, Portsoy, stbfportsoy.org

The festival celebrates its 30th anniversary with a weekend of heritage boats, storytelling, children’s activities, music and dance in the historic port of Portsoy, including opening act Skerryvore.

30 JUNE–4 JULY

KELBURN GARDEN PARTY

ART / FAMILY / MUSIC

Kelburn Castle, Largs, kelburngardenparty.com

A feast of music, visual art and adventure in a fairytale setting, with a programme of activitiesand entertainment for all ages spread throughout the ancient forest glen and gardens.

JULY

1 JULY

SMA’ SHOT DAY

FAMILY

Various venues, Paisley, paisley. is/featured_event/sma-shot-day This well-loved event in the Paisley calendar celebrates the historic victory of the weavers over their employers in the 19th century and has developed into an annual celebration of arts and culture.

1 & 2 JULY

LOCH LOMOND SHORES: SUMMERFEST

THEATRE & DANCE / FOOD &

DRINK / MUSIC

Loch Lomond Shores, Balloch, lochlomondfoodanddrinkfestival. co.uk

Featuring street food, live music and dance performances, shopping, stalls and funfair rides, SummerFest bursts into life at Loch Lomond Shores with something for everyone.

1 & 2 JULY

TARBERT SEAFOOD FESTIVAL

FOOD & DRINK / FAMILY

Tarbert Harbour, Tarbert, tarbertfestivals.co.uk

An opportunity to sample the internationally renowned seafood from the waters of Loch Fyne, as well as enjoy a parade, workshops, live music and stalls.

1–7 JULY

SEAFEST

FOOD & DRINK

Station Park, Lossiemouth, seafestlossie.org.uk

Annual celebration of Lossiemouth’s fishing heritage. Although there will be no marquee for 2023 (it will return in 2024), the festival will open with a Summer Fayre followed by events throughout the week.

1 JULY–27 AUGUST

UNDER CANVAS

MUSIC / FAMILY

Eden Court, Inverness, eden-court.co.uk

Returning for its fifth year in 2023, and running through July and August, the festival showcases Highland and Scottish traditional music, world music, local singersongwriters, family-friendly activities plus special events in an intimate and relaxed atmosphere on the banks of the River Ness.

48 THE GUIDE TO SCOTLAND’S FESTIVALS 2023
Under Canvas
49 LIST.CO.UK/SCOTLANDS-FESTIVALS 4–27 August Charity No SC004694 eif.co.uk #EdIntFest
50 FIRST SHOWS ON SALE SOON, SIGN UP TO OUR NEWSLETTER AT assemblyfestival.com Bringing the best entertainment on the Edinburgh Fringe for over 40 years 02 – 28 AUG Full programme announced soon –sign up to our newsletter to be the first to know at edfoodfest.com Edinburgh Food Festival returns JULY 2023! The Finest of Scottish produce in the heart of the Capital Edinburgh’s best free to enter food festival

7–9 JULY

NEWTON STEWART AND MINNIGAFF

TRADITIONAL MUSIC AND DANCE FESTIVAL

THEATRE & DANCE / MUSIC

Various venues, Newton Stewart, tradmusic.com

A weekend of traditional Scottish, Irish and world music and dance, with concerts, workshops and sessions. The 2023 lineup features Ciarán Ryan Band, Daniel Quayle, Elizabeth DavidsonBlythe, Flook, HEISK and more.

7–9 JULY

STONEHAVEN FOLK FESTIVAL

MUSIC / HERITAGE

Various venues, Stonehaven, stonehavenfolkfestival.co.uk

Some of the best traditional and contemporary folk music, concerts, ceilidh sessions, singarounds and workshops, plus the famous aqua ceilidh and world paper’n’comb championships.

7–9 JULY

TIREE MUSIC FESTIVAL

FAMILY / MUSIC

Crossapol Bay, Isle of Tiree, tireemusicfestival.co.uk

This family-friendly event arrived on the festival scene in 2010 and has sold out ever since. Overlooking the white sands of Crossapol Bay, TMF takes place in one of the most stunning and remote festival locations in the world, featuring a range of music styles over three stages.

7–9 JULY

TRNSMT FESTIVAL MUSIC

Glasgow Green, Glasgow, trnsmtfest.com

Music festival held in the heart

of Glasgow. The 2023 lineup includes Pulp, George Ezra, Niall Horan, Sam Fender, Kasabian, The 1975, Royal Blood plus many more to be announced.

8 & 9 JULY

GLASGOW ZINE FEST

LITERATURE

CCA, Glasgow, glasgowzinelibrary.com/ glasgow-zine-fest

Celebrating its 10th anniversary, Glasgow Zine Fest features talks and workshops, a zine fair with makers from throughout the UK, and an exhibition showcasing ephemera from zine fests across the world and historically.

9–14 JULY

CANTILENA FESTIVAL MUSIC

Various venues, Isle of Islay, cantilenafestival.co.uk

Every July, Islay plays host to Cantilena’s professional musicians and students of the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland

who together bring their unique chamber music to residents and visitors, with many concerts held in the island’s famous malt whisky distilleries.

12–15 JULY

HEBCELT FESTIVAL MUSIC / FAMILY

Lews Castle Green, Stornoway, Isle of Lewis, hebceltfest.com

HebCelt mixes the best local talent with leading Scottish, UK and world artists to provide a feast of music to appeal to all ages. Confirmed acts for 2023 include Fara, DLU, Talisk, Hannah Rarity, The Paul McKenna Band, The Proclaimers, The Trials of Cato and many more.

14 & 15 JULY

GLASGOW CRAFT BEER FESTIVAL

FOOD & DRINK

SWG3, Glasgow, glasgowcraftbeerfestival.co.uk

Try hundreds of beers from 40-plus world-class breweries (beer included in cost of the ticket). As well as great brews, there’ll be delicious dishes from the finest restaurants and chefs, plus cracking tunes for those festival vibes.

14–16 JULY

RUN THE BLADES OUTDOOR

Whitelee Windfarm Visitor Centre, Eaglesham, breakingstrain.co.uk/run-theblades

A 10km, half marathon and 50km ultra marathon, taking place on the UK’s largest wind farm. New for 2023 is a free kids’ race, yoga tent, pump track sessions and paddle boarding as well as music and food vendors.

51 LIST.CO.UK/SCOTLANDS-FESTIVALS
Sam Fender, as part of TRNSMT Festival

BEST IN SHOW

From art exhibitions to jazz concerts, cookery demonstrations to free comedy, there’s a festival for everyone in Scotland’s capital this summer, says Lucy Ribchester

August festivals in Edinburgh are like crisps; one just isn’t enough. As summer reaches its peak, us greedy capital-dwellers are spoilt for cultural choice, with a smorgasbord of art, food, books, music and theatre festivals all brimming with events to choose from. And while we know a true Edinburgher is supposed to scowl, grumble about road diversions and scoff at the presence of a certain upturned purple cow loitering around George Square, the truth behind the omertà is that in fact we can’t get enough of it (but shhhhh, don’t tell, or our reputation will be spoiled).

Although technically they take place in July, the Edinburgh Jazz & Blues Festival (14–23 July) and the Edinburgh Food Festival (21–30 July) help herald the start of festival time. The jazz festival spans around 130 concerts and prides itself on taking in the whole spectrum of the genre, from ragtime to modern jazz, Chicago blues and swing. Last year, international

musicians such as Francesco Zampini and trio De Beren Gieren were programmed alongside Scottish talents Anoushka Nanguy and Martin Kershaw. The Food Festival acts as a laid-back prelude to Assembly’s Fringe programme in its sylvan George Square Gardens setting, with an impressive range of food stalls and pop-up bars along with events for kids and adults.

The Edinburgh International Festival (4–27 August) is the original festival that started it all off, back in 1947 when, following the tragedy of the Second World War, the idea was born to reunite the world through art. Astonishingly however, in 75 years there has never been a woman or a Scottish person as festival director: until now. Last year, world-renowned violinist Nicola Benedetti was announced as the new director, and has already stated that her vision includes providing the ‘greatest level of art to the broadest possible audience’ and making sure the festival is relatable to people from all walks of life. While we wait on tenterhooks for the first lineup announcements, you can get stuck in to last autumn’s At Home programme online.

The largest city-wide festival, Edinburgh Festival Fringe (4–28 August), starts on the same day and, after bouncing back with a bang last year, is sure to be bursting with shows in every genre, from headline standups to underground surreal comics, late-night

52

contemporary dance pieces, queer cabarets and new playwriting. The Fringe took flak last year for the rising costs for artists coming to perform, not least with regard to accommodation, and has responded by providing regular updates on their talks with the Scottish Government and Edinburgh Council over legislation on short-term lets. The first batch of shows will be revealed on 16 February so keep an eye on their website.

The Free Festival (3–27 August) was set up in 2004 to combat the high overheads and ticket prices to performers and punters alike. Now running at over 30 venues and mainly known for its comedy, it’s a place where you can take a genuine punt late at night (or on a lazy afternoon) and you just might find a gem. Last year, the Free Festival also provided 12 BSL-signed performances every day, and mental health support sessions for performers across the Fringe and Free Festival, setting gold standards for how festivals should be run.

If you’d rather pick from an actual smorgasbord than a metaphorical one, the Foodies Festival (4–6 August) is here for you. Sprawling across Inverleith Park and taking in music, baking demonstrations, kids cookery and street food, there’s a groaning quantity of tents and stages to choose from.

For lovers of literature, the annual Edinburgh International Book Festival (12–28 August)

returns for its third year in its current home at Edinburgh College of Art. With a relaxed vibe, it’s always a great place to catch a breather and browse the festival bookshop, as well as grabbing tickets to hear from your favourite authors. Previous lineups have included former Children’s Laureate Malorie Blackman and the late, brilliant Hilary Mantel, though this year’s programme is still to be announced.

Even if you never set foot on the castle battlements in August, you can’t fail to be aware of the famous Royal Edinburgh Military Tattoo (4–26 August), with its fireworks displays as the sun goes down every festival night. A mixture of military pageant, piping and drumming, and contemporary music, with invited military musicians from all over the world, it’s a spectacle that has taken on iconic status. This year’s show is titled Stories and promises a ‘twist on tradition’.

Last but not least, it’s the 19th year of Edinburgh Art Festival (late July–late August), also celebrating a new director in Kim McAleese, who comes with an impressive background as curator, lecturer and arts facilitator. Highlights of the festival announced so far include Platform, the festival’s Early Career Artist Award, create dangerously by Venice-selected artist Alberta Whittle, and the largest exhibition of Grayson Perry’s work to date.

53
From left: Nicola Benedetti, Malorie Blackman, Platform PHOTO: PAUL AKINRINLOLA PHOTO: CRAIG GIBSON PHOTO: COURTESY OF THE ARTIST AND FINN RABBIT DOVE

TALL SHIPS RACE

A biennial event first organised in the late 1950s, the Tall Ships Race allows some of the most impressive traditional sailing ships in Europe to gather together as an ocean-going fleet, creating memorable adventures for their crews and dramatic sights for spectators at destination and departure ports. The tall ships are primarily sailtraining vessels, giving youngsters between 15 and 25 an experience of working together as a crew in testing conditions but also showing off the full glory of the square-rigged barques, brigs and schooners that make up the assembled fleet. This year’s event sees the race criss-crossing the North Sea from Holland to Hartlepool in the north of England, then across to Fredrikstad in Norway. From there, the ships head north-west, bound for Shetland, aiming to arrive on or soon after 26 July. As with previous Tall Ships Race visits to Lerwick in 1999 and 2011, the harbourside and town will be a buzz of activity and sights with various events and entertainment organised shoreside, as well as opportunities to see some of the craft up close. Around 50 ships and hundreds of trainees and crews from Poland, Belgium, Denmark, Germany, Norway, Latvia, Netherlands and the UK are expected, among them Shetland’s own, much-treasured sail-training ship The Swan, a restored, gaff-rigged 1900 Fifie herring drifter. The climax of the visit is a parade of sail scheduled for Saturday 29th July, after which the tall ships will disappear over the horizon bound for Kristiansand at the mouth of the Baltic Sea. (Donald Reid) n Lerwick Harbour, Shetland, 26–29 July, tallshipslerwick.com

14–23 JULY

EDINBURGH JAZZ AND

BLUES

FESTIVAL FAMILY / MUSIC

Various venues, Edinburgh, edinburghjazzfestival.com

Scotland’s largest jazz festival presents a wide range of concerts over ten days across the capital, in parks, churches, clubs and concert halls. With a programme featuring all genre styles from early jazz to the avantgarde, plus home-grown talent and international stars.

16 JULY SCOTTISH FESTIVAL OF MOTORING FAMILY / HERITAGE

Royal Highland Centre, Ingliston, Edinburgh, festivalofmotoring.co.uk

A family-friendly motor and car show with stunts, displays and fun activities for kids.

21 & 22 JULY DOONHAME FESTIVAL MUSIC

The Crichton, Dumfries, doonhamefestival.co.uk

Dumfries and Galloway’s newest music festival, featuring live bands, DJs, children’s activities and food and drink stalls.

21–23 JULY

DOUNE

THE

RABBIT HOLE

MUSIC/ FAMILY Cardross Estate, Port of Menteith, dounetherabbithole.co.uk

A boutique music festival that produces a strong lineup of music, theatre, comedy and spoken-word performances. Keep an eye on the website for 2023 announcements.

THE GUIDE TO SCOTLAND’S FESTIVALS 2023 54
PICTURE: JOHN COUTTS

21–23 JULY REWIND SCOTLAND MUSIC

Scone Palace, Scone, scotland.rewindfestival.com

Pop stars from the 1980s return to the stage for a weekend of top tunes, plus a silent disco, funfair rides, kids’ zone, shops and stalls. Check the website for 2023 lineup.

21–23 JULY SPEYFEST

FAMILY / MUSIC

Playing Fields, Fochabers, speyfest.com

The best in traditional and contemporary Celtic music in the form of concerts, ceilidhs and workshops, plus a bustling craft fair and Speyfest Family Sunday.

21–30 JULY

EDINBURGH FOOD FESTIVAL

FOOD & DRINK

George Square, Edinburgh,edfoodfest.com

Edinburgh and Scotland’s finest street food, plus chef demonstrations, kids’ cooking workshops and a great garden setting for drinks and hanging out.

22 JULY

725TH ANNIVERSARY OF THE BATTLE OF FALKIRK HERITAGE

Falkirk Steeple, Falkirk

On 22 July 1298, the armies of Scotland under Sir William Wallace fought the army of King Edward I of England. This anniversary event has re-enactments, a medieval market, kids’ events and music.

22 & 23 JULY

FILM & COMIC CON GLASGOW

FILM & TV / LITERATURE

Braehead Arena, Glasgow, filmandcomicconglasgow.com

Film & Comic Con Glasgow returns for a fun weekend where pop culture fans can enjoy trader stalls, track down hard-to-find items or geek out and enjoy the cosplay.

22–29 JULY

MUSSELBURGH

FESTIVAL

FAMILY / HERITAGE

Various venues, Musselburgh, musselburghfestival.org

An annual festival celebrating the history and traditions of the town including family cycles, races and the Common Riding.

26–29 JULY

THE TALL SHIPS RACES

HERITAGE / OUTDOOR

Lerwick Harbour, Shetland, tallshipslerwick.com See Panel, page 54.

26 JULY–12 AUGUST SUMMER NIGHTS AT THE BANDSTAND MUSIC

Kelvingrove Park, Glasgow, regularmusic.com

A series of open-air gigs by popular artists. Among the performers last year were Suzanne Vega, Rufus Wainwright and Van Morrison.

27–29 JULY

BELLADRUM TARTAN

HEART FESTIVAL

FAMILY / MUSIC / THEATRE & DANCE

Belladrum, Inverness, tartanheartfestival.co.uk

This family-friendly favourite is back with music, theatre and spoken-word events. The lineup for 2023 includes Travis, Bastille, Sigrid, Peat & Diesel, Sam Ryder,

KT Tunstall, The Zutons, Alabama 3, Kiefer Sutherland and more.

27–29 JULY EILEAN DORCHA FESTIVAL MUSIC

Liniclate Machair, Isle Of Benbecula, edf.scot

A family-friendly festival in the Outer Hebrides with a wide range of music, kicking off with a new Thursday DJ dance night.

28–30 JULY BUTEFEST

FAMILY / MUSIC

Ettrick Bay, Isle of Bute, butefest.co.uk

A non-stop weekend of live music, family fun, food and drink at beautiful Ettrick Bay on Bute.

28 JULY–6 AUGUST ABERDOUR FESTIVAL

FOOD & DRINK / FAMILY / MUSIC

Various venues, Aberdour, aberdourfestival.org.uk

An action-packed, family-friendly festival with something for all ages and tastes, from a beach day and fun run, to a food market and picnic day, as well as sports, magic shows, children’s activities and live music.

LATE JULY–AUGUST (DATES TBC) EDINBURGH ART FESTIVAL

ART / FAMILY

Various venues, Edinburgh, edinburghartfestival.com

Scotland’s largest annual celebration of visual art offers work by the best contemporary Scottish artists as well as exhibitions of the most important international artists and movements, both modern and historical.

55 LIST.CO.UK/SCOTLANDS-FESTIVALS
56

AUGUST

1–6 AUGUST / 7–12 AUGUST SINGLE

PARENT FESTIVAL

FAMILY

Douglaswood, Kirkbuddo, singleparentcampingholidays.com

A chance for single parents and their kids to join together for a week-long festival in the countryside. Each week is packed full of activities and entertainment for children and adults.

3–13 AUGUST

2023

UCI CYCLING

WORLD CHAMPIONSHIPS

FAMILY / OUTDOOR

Various venues, Glasgow and across Scotland, cyclingworldchamps.com

For the first time ever, 13 UCI World Championships will be brought together, meaning the world’s greatest riders will compete across a variety of different disciplines

including Road, Track, MTB, Trials, BMX and Indoor Cycling. For more info, see page 16.

4 & 5 AUGUST

PERTH SHOW

FAMILY / OUTDOOR

South Inch, Perth, perthshow.co.uk

Run by Perthshire Agricultural Society, this two-day event features livestock judging, local artisan crafts, trade stands, dog show, children’s activities, a food hall with celebrity chefs and more.

4–6 AUGUST

FOODIES FESTIVAL

FOOD & DRINK / FAMILY / MUSIC

Inverleith Park, Edinburgh, foodiesfestival.com

Watch MasterChef champions, Michelin-starred and top local chefs cooking their signature summer recipes, learn how to make show-stopping cakes with expert bakers including Great British Bake Off stars, sample new wines, champagnes and cocktails, eat delicious street food from around the world, take part in chilli eating competitions and food challenges, and enjoy some great live music. Plus fun for children in the Kids Cookery Theatre.

4–7 AUGUST

MUGSTOCK FESTIVAL

FAMILY / MUSIC / SCIENCE

Strathallan Castle, Auchterarder, mugstock.org

After four years at Mugdock Country Park, the Mugstock festival of ‘music and merriment’ is re-born in 2023 in a new venue. But you can expect the usual mix of high-quality music and family activities, with over 150 acts already confirmed.

4–13 AUGUST

FRINGE BY THE SEA

FAMILY / MULTI-ARTS

Various venues, North Berwick, fringebythesea.com

A 10-day multi-arts festival set in the beautiful seaside town of North Berwick. Confirmed acts for 2023 include Sister Sledge (11 August), sailor Sir Robin Knox-Johnston (13 August) who was the first person to sail singlehanded and non-stop around the world, TV stars Dick & Dom (5 August) and nu-jazz collective corto.alto (6 August), with more acts to be announced.

4–26 AUGUST

THE ROYAL EDINBURGH MILITARY TATTOO MUSIC / HERITAGE

Edinburgh Castle, Edinburgh, edintattoo.co.uk

This unique event draws crowds and performers from all over the world, with massed pipes and drums, military bands, display teams, dancers and the haunting lament of the Lone Piper set against the magnificent backcloth of Edinburgh Castle.

4–27 AUGUST

EDINBURGH INTERNATIONAL FESTIVAL MULTI-ARTS

Various venues, Edinburgh, eif.co.uk

Bringing world-class arts to the capital since 1947, the EIF sets the standard for classical concerts, opera, dance and theatre, while it has recently also added an excellent contemporary music strand. 2023 marks the first Edinburgh International Festival under the leadership of new director, Nicola Benedetti.

57 LIST.CO.UK/SCOTLANDS-FESTIVALS
Sister Sledge, as part of Fringe By The Sea PHOTO: PARER STUDIO

4–28 AUGUST

EDINBURGH FESTIVAL FRINGE

FAMILY / MULTI-ARTS

Various venues, Edinburgh, edfringe.com

Thousands of performers from around the world fill venues across the city with theatre, comedy, circus, cabaret, dance, music, family shows, spoken word and more. From big names to emerging artists, this is the largest fringe festival in the world.

5 AUGUST

COLOURSFEST

MUSIC

Braehead Arena, Glasgow, colours.co.uk

The long-running hard dance and trance festival boasts a whopping five stages, soundtracked by international, genre-defining acts alongside the scene’s most promising talent.

5 & 6 AUGUST TRUCKFEST SCOTLAND

FAMILY

Royal Highland Centre, Ingliston, Edinburgh, truckfest. co.uk/truckfest-scotland

With monster trucks, arena stunt shows, exhilarating rides, children’s characters and a chance to meet celebrities, Truckfest Scotland has something for all ages.

5–12 AUGUST PITTENWEEM ARTS

FESTIVAL

FAMILY / ART

Various venues, Pittenweem, pittenweemartsfestival.co.uk

A celebration of visual arts, taking place in galleries, homes, studios and venues throughout the East Neuk village of Pittenweem.

6–11 AUGUST

SHETLAND FOLK FRENZY

MUSIC

Mareel, Lerwick, Shetland, shetlandarts.org

A week of workshops, concerts, sessions and masterclasses, Folk Frenzy 2023 will be curated by renowned fiddler Kevin Henderson, drawing on the rich fiddle tradition of his native Shetland.

9–13 AUGUST

MULL OF

KINTYRE

MUSIC AND ARTS FESTIVAL

FAMILY / MUSIC / HERITAGE

Various venues, Mull of Kintyre, mokfest.com

Celebrating its 30th anniversary in 2023, this festival features traditional and popular music concerts (both indoor and openair), heritage walks, a parade and much more.

11–13 AUGUST FOODIES FESTIVAL

FOOD & DRINK / FAMILY / MUSIC

Rouken Glen Park, Giffnock,

foodiesfestival.com

The well-established series of food and drink events heads to Glasgow. See page 57.

11–13 AUGUST

FRESH AYR FOLK FEST

MUSIC

Rozelle Park, Ayr, freshayrfolkfest.com

A brand-new, three-day folk festival for 2023, showcasing an array of live entertainment, familyfriendly activities, food and drink and camping facilities. Confirmed acts include Mànran, Blazin’ Fiddles, Talisk, Siobhan Miller and the Kinnaris Quintet.

11–13 AUGUST

OTHERLANDS

MUSIC

& ARTS FESTIVAL MUSIC

Scone Palace, Perth, otherlandsfestival.com

See Panel, page 60.

12 & 13 AUGUST

GALLOWAY COUNTRY FAIR

FAMILY

Drumlanrig Castle, Thornhill, gallowaycountryfair.co.uk

A weekend of country pursuits and family events with stalls selling local food, drink and crafts, and various activities from clay pigeon shooting and archery to cookery demonstrations and a sheep show.

12 & 13 AUGUST

PARTY AT THE PALACE

MUSIC

Linlithgow Palace, Linlithgow, partyatthepalace.co.uk

A mix of well-known musical acts and top-quality local performers combine at this family-friendly music festival set across the loch from Linlithgow’s beautiful palace.

58 THE GUIDE TO SCOTLAND’S FESTIVALS 2023
Coloursfest
LIST.CO.UK/SCOTLANDSFESTIVALS THE BIGGEST CYCLING EVENT IN THE WORLD 3-13 AUGUST 8,000 CYCLISTS 120+ COUNTRIES 13 UCI WORLD CHAMPIONSHIPS 11 AMAZING DAYS cyclingworldchamps.com REGISTER NOW FOR TICKETS #GlasgowScotland2023 #PowerOfTheBike

OTHERLANDS MUSIC & ARTS FESTIVAL

A relative newcomer to the Scottish festival landscape, Otherlands takes place at Scone Palace in Perthshire. Its inaugural edition in 2022 was advertised as ‘more than a music festival’ and boasted art installations, talks on everything from mental health to sexuality, comedy acts and a beginners DJ workshop. Otherlands is presented by established promoters FLY (whose FLY Open Air festival has been a fixture in the Scottish calendar for years) and leans towards the electronic side of the musical spectrum. Scone Palace is a category-A listed historic building, lending the festival a picturesque and distinctive backdrop.

The acts for 2023 include a live set from Overmono, Skin On Skin, Hudson Mohawke, Haai, Floorplan, Bemz, Nimmo and Glitch 41 with more to be announced. In 2022, the festival had a lineup of top-tier electronic music talent such as Bicep, Jamie XX, Tom Misch and Honey Dijon. Among six stages in total in 2022, the Sonare Stage hosted an inclusive club night born out of the desire to create safer spaces for women and LGBTQ+ people, while the BBC Introducing stage featured the best of new talent. The event also featured a ‘Wellness Sanctuary’ that allowed festival goers the chance to take a dip in wood-fired hot tubs, take a hot shower, take a yoga lesson or even get a massage. A street-food market on site promises cuisines from burgers to Sri Lankan dishes until 3am.

n Scone Palace, Perth, 11–13 August, otherlandsfestival.com

12–20 AUGUST

PIPING LIVE!

FAMILY / MUSIC

Various venues, Glasgow, pipinglive.co.uk

A week-long celebration of piping, including contemporary and traditional, solo and pipe bands. Culminates in the World Pipe Band Championships (see below).

12–28 AUGUST

EDINBURGH INTERNATIONAL BOOK FESTIVAL

LITERATURE / FAMILY

Edinburgh College of Art, Edinburgh, edbookfest.co.uk

The world’s largest public celebration of the written word, featuring guest appearances by a terrific lineup of leading Scottish and international authors, politicians, historians, journalists and children’s writers.

18 & 19 AUGUST

THE GIN & RUM

FESTIVAL

FOOD & DRINK

The Briggait, Glasgow, ginandrumfestival.com

Discover new favourites with samples from over 120 of the best gins and rums on the market, plus themed bars, music from award-winning DJs and live entertainment.

18 & 19 AUGUST

WORLD PIPE BAND CHAMPIONSHIPS

FAMILY / MUSIC

Glasgow Green, Glasgow, theworlds.co.uk

The best pipe bands from all over the world, featuring 8000 pipers and drummers, compete for the most prestigious prizes and the coveted World Champion crown.

60 THE GUIDE TO SCOTLAND’S FESTIVALS 2023

19–27 AUGUST

RATTRAY ARTS FESTIVAL

FAMILY / ART

Blairgowrie Town Hall, Blairgowrie, rattrayartfestival.co.uk

Hundreds of original paintings plus selected three-dimensional designs by local sculptors, woodturners, jewellers, silversmiths, stained-glass artists, potters and weavers. Visitors can buy, order and commission new work, with all proceeds donated to Scotland’s Charity Air Ambulance.

24–27 AUGUST

LAND ROVER BLAIR CASTLE INTERNATIONAL HORSE TRIALS

OUTDOOR

Blair Castle & Gardens, Blair Atholl, blairhorsetrials.co.uk

This event plays host to national and international calibre eventing, NPS Scotland, British Showjumping, The Highland Pony Society, Hunter and Sunday Showing competitions as well as the Pony Club Games.

25–27 AUGUST

CONNECT

MUSIC

Royal Highland Centre, Ingliston, Edinburgh, connectmusicfestival.com

A great lineup of music, from global stars to local heroes, from grassroots to international, plus comedy, spoken word, debate, visual arts and food and drink from big-name Scottish chefs.

25 AUGUST–3 SEPTEMBER

MCLELLAN ARTS FESTIVAL

MULTI-ARTS

Various venues, Isle of Arran, arrantheatreandarts.co.uk/ mclellan-festival

A celebration of emerging Scottish writing talent across all genres, inspired by the late great playwright Robert McLellan. The 2023 festival will include a ceilidh with fiddler Gillian Frame, an evening celebrating the stories and poetry of Robert McLellan, poetry winners’ gig, a performance by Scottish Ensemble, a performance of Faure Requiem and a film night.

29 AUGUST–3 SEPTEMBER

SCREENPLAY

FILM & TV Mareel, Lerwick, shetlandarts.org/screenplay Shetland’s annual film festival is directed by Kathy Hubbard, alongside film critic Mark Kermode and Professor Linda Ruth Williams. Showcasing films from Shetland and across the world, the festival features all the well-known and loved Screenplay strands.

31 AUGUST–3 SEPTEMBER NAIRN BOOK AND

FESTIVAL MULTI-ARTS

Various venues, Nairn, nairnfestival.co.uk

SPOTLIGHT ON . . .

LAMMERMUIR FESTIVAL

ARTS

Celebrating its 20th anniversary in 2023, Nairn Book and Arts Festival is an annual celebration of literature, art, music, drama and film.

The Lammermuir Festival brings the finest classical music to East Lothian each September. Promising ‘beautiful music in beautiful places’, historic churches in particular are used as atmospheric venues, including St Mary’s in Haddington which is celebrating the 50th anniversary of its rebuild. The programme features performances by the festival’s patron, pianist Steven Osborne, as well as concerts by Roderick Williams, Maxwell String Quartet, Scottish Opera, Dunedin Consort and the all-star Kaleidoscope Chamber Cooperative. There’s a festival debut by soprano Nardus Williams and the 400th anniversary of the death of composer William Byrd is marked by Secret Byrd, a new ‘concert-theatre’ immersive performance by acclaimed vocal group Gesualdo 6 and instrumentalists Fretwork. (Ailsa Sheldon)

 Various venues, East Lothian, 7–18 September, lammermuirfestival.co.uk

61

SEPTEMBER

1 SEPTEMBER–6 OCTOBER SCOTTISH GEOLOGY FESTIVAL

SCIENCE

Various venues, Scotland, scottishgeologytrust.org/festival Telling the stories of Scotland’s rocks and landscapes that have been shaped by the elements over millennia, this programme of activities during September and October offers insights into over 3 billion years of Earth’s history.

1–30 SEPTEMBER

GREAT PERTHSHIRE FOOD & DRINK FESTIVAL

FOOD & DRINK

Various venues, Perthshire, greatperthshire.com/ festival-2023

Taking place across the region throughout September, the festival features quality, local ingredients, award-winning pies, Rosette star chefs, cosy pubs and good old-fashioned baking.

2 & 3 SEPTEMBER

CLYDEBUILT FESTIVAL MUSIC / HERITAGE / OUTDOOR

Riverside Museum, Glasgow, clydebuiltfestival.com

Rowers take part in Scotland’s biggest open water rowing race, plus there’s arts and crafts activities and boat building, live music and much more.

2 & 3 SEPTEMBER

LOCH LOMOND FOOD & DRINK FESTIVAL

FOOD & DRINK / FAMILY

Loch Lomond Shores, Balloch, lochlomondfoodanddrinkfestival. co.uk

Enjoy a weekend of fine food and drink with fresh produce stalls, a marketplace, tastings, demos, music and entertainment.

2 & 3 SEPTEMBER MUSIC

AT THE MULTIVERSE

MUSIC

Crawick Multiverse, near Sanquhar, crawickmultiverse.co.uk

Well-known Scottish bands, DJs and local talent from Dumfries and Galloway play live over two days at Charles Jencks’ amazing landform installation.

2 & 3 SEPTEMBER VIBRATION FESTIVAL

FAMILY / MUSIC

Callendar Park, Falkirk, vibrationfestival.com

Two-day family-friendly music festival in Callendar Park, with three stages and big-name headliners.

2–9 SEPTEMBER HEBRIDEAN WHISKY FESTIVAL

FOOD & DRINK

Various venues, Isle of Skye, Isle of Raasay & Outer Hebrides, hebrideanwhisky.com

The Hebridean Whisky Festival is a week-long festival celebrating the whisky distilleries along the Hebridean Whisky Trail. Participating distilleries have activities in the days leading up to the grand finale. The festival culminates with the distilleries coming together for joint activities on the Isle of Skye.

2–10 SEPTEMBER LARGS VIKING FESTIVAL

FAMILY / MUSIC / HERITAGE

Various venues, Largs, largsvikingfestival.co.uk

A week-long celebration of Viking heritage, including an opening parade and ceremony, live entertainment, fringe events, food and craft market, air displays, axe throwing, full Viking village and the ever-popular Festival of Fire. Plus the Viking skirmish, burning of the long boat and a firework display.

3–7 SEPTEMBER MENDELSSOHN ON MULL MUSIC

Various venues, Isle of Mull, soundwavesscio.org.uk/ mendelssohn-on-mull-festival

A classical music festival where young musicians are mentored by older professionals in the craft of chamber music-making, followed by concerts played in venues throughout the island.

6–10 SEPTEMBER OUTWITH MUSIC & ARTS FESTIVAL MULTI-ARTS / MUSIC

Various venues, Dumfermline, outwithfestival.co.uk

Includes an all-day music event with 40 bands, indie films at the Fire Station Creative and a new strand of comic book events, along with visual art, theatre and comedy

7–13 SEPTEMBER ORKNEY INTERNATIONAL SCIENCE FESTIVAL FAMILY / SCIENCE

Various venues, Orkney, oisf.org

A kaleidoscopic mix of sparkling ideas and lively activities with talks and outings, food and music, in an island setting where past and future meet.

63 LIST.CO.UK/SCOTLANDS-FESTIVALS

SPOTLIGHT ON . . .

STRANRAER OYSTER FESTIVAL

Whether you’re an oyster connoisseur or just bivalve curious, the Stranraer Oyster Festival makes for a brilliant foodie day out. Last year 7500 local Loch Ryan oysters were eaten over the three-day festival, with over 1000 people trying their first oyster. This year the shuckers hope to be even busier with a bigger, bolder events programme. Expect demonstrations from celebrity chefs who will be giving you guidance on oyster preparation and plenty of recipe inspiration. The bustling artisan market will bring together skilled food producers from across the region with plenty of delicious food and drink to try and buy. There’s free kids entertainment, live music, watersport activities and a fireworks display too. Don’t miss watching Scotland’s most skilled shuckers compete in the Scottish Oyster Shucking competition.

 Various venues, Stranraer, 15–17 September, stranraeroysterfestival.com

7–18 SEPTEMBER LAMMERMUIR FESTIVAL MUSIC

Various venues, East Lothian, lammermuirfestival. co.uk

See Spotlight, page 61.

9 SEPTEMBER

THE NATIONAL WHISKY FESTIVAL

FOOD & DRINK

Music Hall, Aberdeen, nationalwhiskyfestival.scot

Since being founded in 2015, the National Whisky Festival of Scotland has grown from a single tasting into a popular series of festivals across the country. Over 200 whiskies are available to sample, accompanied by an extensive programme of award-winning mixology, local food vendors, cutting-edge musicians and live artists.

9 SEPTEMBER GARNOCK VALLEY CARVES

ART / FAMILY / OUTDOOR

Manse Field, Beith, garnockvalleycarves.com

Chainsaw carving event featuring 14 international carvers who will transform logs into works of art. Also expect food and drink, face painting, storytelling, axethrowing and lots of children’s activities.

9 & 10 SEPTEMBER DUKES WEEKENDER

FAMILY / OUTDOOR

Various venues, Aberfoyle, dukesweekender.com

A weekend cycling festival in the heart of the Loch Lomond

and Trossachs National Park, featuring the Gravel Hillclimb with a carnival atmosphere, the Gravel Enduro weaving around 75km of stunning lochs and glens, and the Kids Enduro. Plus a host of events for all ages including talks, films and children’s activities.

9 & 10 SEPTEMBER

FIFE FEST

MUSIC

Silverburn Park, Leven, facebook.com/fifefestsilverburn Music festival featuring some of the best tribute bands around, with the 2023 lineup including Definitely Oasis, The Gerry Cinnamon Experience, The Freddie & Queen Experience, Laid (James tribute), Resurrection (Stone Roses tribute) and many more.

9 & 10 SEPTEMBER LINLITHGOW

FOLK FESTIVAL

MUSIC

Various venues, Linlithgow, linlithgowfolk.com

Annual folk festival covering the spectrum of folk music tastes. Previous events have included concerts from big names, a family ceilidh, ‘come and sing’ sessions and a children’s concert.

9 & 10

SEPTEMBER SCOTTISH YARN FESTIVAL HERITAGE

Dewars Centre, Perth, thescottishyarnfestival.com

The Scottish Yarn Festival (formerly Perth Festival of Yarn) brings together independent yarn dyers, producers of single-origin wool, inspirational tutors and lecturers, and all-fibre crafters for two days of crafting passion.

64 THE GUIDE TO SCOTLAND’S FESTIVALS 2023

AN EXPERIENCE LIKE NO OTHER BOOK NOw

IN A CITY LIKE NO OTHER

9—17 SEPTEMBER NORTH EAST OPEN STUDIOS

ART

Various venues, north-east Scotland, northeastopenstudios.co.uk

Gain insight into the creative process and see brand new artworks in a series of studio open days across the north-east of Scotland, with hundreds of artists participating.

11—16 SEPTEMBER BANFF MOUNTAIN FILM FESTIVAL WORLD TOUR FILM & TV

Various venues, Scotland, banff-uk.com

A selection of exhilarating sports and adventure films, featuring movies about climbers, skiers, mountain bikers, high-wire walkers and more, with screenings this month in Aberdeen, Inverness and Edinburgh.

14–17 SEPTEMBER CEÒL CHOLASA

MUSIC

Colonsay Village Hall, Isle of Colonsay, ceolcholasa.co.uk

A four-day feast of top-quality traditional music on the beautiful Inner Hebridean island of Colonsay.

15–17 SEPTEMBER BLOODY

SCOTLAND LITERATURE

Various venues, Stirling, bloodyscotland.com

A celebration of crime writing, bringing together leading Scottish and international authors, showcasing debut voices and encouraging new writers. As well as interviews and panels, there is a torchlight procession, criminal cabaret, crime writers’ football match, quiz and more.

15–17 SEPTEMBER LAGAVULIN

ISLAY JAZZ FESTIVAL

MUSIC

Various venues, Islay, islayjazzfestival.co.uk

Dozens of events in venues including whisky distilleries, bird sanctuaries and village halls.

15–17 SEPTEMBER STRANRAER

OYSTER FESTIVAL

FOOD & DRINK / FAMILY

Various venues, Stranraer, stranraeroysterfestival.com

See Panel, page 64.

15–17 SEPTEMBER TARBERT

MUSIC FESTIVAL

FAMILY / MUSIC

Various venues, Tarbert, tarbertfestivals.co.uk

Traditional music takes over the pubs and hotels of Tarbert with a series of concerts, workshops and demonstrations.

16 & 17 SEPTEMBER BURL IN THE BURGH MUSIC

Various venues, Linlithgow

A unique, boutique music, spoken word and well-being festival in the heart of Linlithgow, with early bird tickets available from February.

16 & 17 SEPTEMBER SCOTTISH WILD FOOD FESTIVAL

FOOD & DRINK / OUTDOOR

Tir Na Nog, Balfron Station, scottishwildfoodfestival.co.uk

The Scottish Wild Food Festival encourages people of all ages to step outdoors and learn about local wild food, with dining experiences, foraging walks, wild cocktail making, bushcraft,

talks and demos, workshops, live music and a marketplace.

22–24 SEPTEMBER GLASGOW YOUTH FILM FESTIVAL

FILM & TV / FAMILY

Glasgow Film Theatre, Glasgow, Glasgow, glasgowfilm.org

Innovative festival for young audiences featuring premieres, screenings, events and special guest speakers. GYFF enables 15 to 19-year-olds to co-create a vibrant and diverse festival.

22–24 SEPTEMBER MONIAIVE MICHAELMAS BLUEGRASS FESTIVAL MUSIC

Various venues, Moniaive, moniaivebluegrass.co.uk Bluegrass, old time and Americana music in Moniaive, the beautiful music village of southwest Scotland.

22–24 SEPTEMBER ORKNEY BLUES FESTIVAL MUSIC

Various venues, Stromness, orkneyblues.co.uk

The ‘smallest, friendliest blues festival in the UK’, this is a place to hear good tunes and meet others who share a passion for the blues. The 2023 lineup features Kyla Brox and Rob Tognoni.

22–24 SEPTEMBER THREE LOCHS BOOK AND ARTS FESTIVAL ART / LITERATURE

Sunart Centre, Strontian, threelochs.co.uk

A biennial celebration of arts and literature held in the picturesque West Highlands. The theme for 2023’s festival is ‘The Future’.

66 THE GUIDE TO SCOTLAND’S FESTIVALS 2023

22 SEPTEMBER–1 OCTOBER WIGTOWN BOOK FESTIVAL

LITERATURE / FAMILY

Various venues, Wigtown, wigtownbookfestival.com

An established and celebrated feature in the Scottish literary calendar attracting many big names. For ten days, Scotland’s National Book Town buzzes with book events as well as theatre, music and site-specific happenings in quirky venues.

28 SEPTEMBER–1 OCTOBER GLASGOW CATHEDRAL FESTIVAL

MULTI-ARTS / HERITAGE

Glasgow Cathedral, Glasgow, gcfestival.com

A week-long programme of music, tours, exhibitions, dance and film, bringing the city’s oldest building to life and finding fresh perspectives on Glasgow’s cultural heritage.

29 SEPTEMBER–1 OCTOBER CALLANDER JAZZ AND BLUES FESTIVAL

MUSIC

Various venues, Callander, callanderjazzandblues.com

The largest rural jazz and blues festival in Scotland with over 50 gigs across 11 venues, performing live jazz, blues, soul and boogie. From solo artists to big bands, over 120 musicians ensure a long weekend of great music in the autumn splendour of the Trossachs.

30 SEPTEMBER HORDES X MUSIC

Beat Generator Live, Dundee, facebook.com/hordesx

One-day festival of underground metal and hard rock.

30 SEPTEMBER–1 OCTOBER THRIVE BIKE

FAMILY / OUTDOOR

Various venues, Ballater, thriveballater.com/thrive-bike Thrive Bike features a range of activities, including new bike demos, guided rides and a chance to navigate the Dash ride or one of the road events. There will also be health and wellness coaches, kids’ activities and a host of local food suppliers.

SEPTEMBER/OCTOBER (DATES TBC)

TAIWAN FILM FESTIVAL EDINBURGH

FILM & TV

Various venues, Edinburgh, taiwanfilmfestival.org.uk

The fourth edition of Taiwan Film Festival Edinburgh will take place this autumn in cinemas around the city with another inspiring range of titles and lesser-known Taiwanese cinematic gems from the decades past. Follow @TaiwanFFE for latest updates and announcements.

OCTOBER

OCTOBER (DATES TBC) TAKE ME SOMWHERE

ART / THEATRE & DANCE

Various venues, Glasgow, takemesomewhere.co.uk Scotland’s festival of radical performance returns to live locations after a hugely successful digital festival in 2022. Featuring international main stage spectaculars, intimate oneon-one encounters, and new commissions from Scottish artists at Tramway, CCA, Platform, Mitchell Library and other spaces across the city.

SPOTLIGHT ON

ULLAPOOL GUITAR FESTIVAL

A community festival run by volunteers, Ullapool Guitar Festival sees visitors and musicians return year after year for three days dedicated to guitar music of all decades, countries and genres. World-class musicians rub shoulders with bright new talents and guitar music fans over an informal and fun long weekend. There are workshops from tutors including Hugh Burns, Will McNicol, Clive Carroll, Tristan Seume and John Goldie. Afternoon and evening concerts are followed by the lively Festival Club hosted by Adam Bulley, Chas Mackenzie and friends. Among the performers this year are Belgian classical guitarist Emma Wills, and acclaimed jazz and blues guitarist Remi Harris playing with virtuoso double bassist Tom Moore. Allan Neave, Professor of Guitar at the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland, will also introduce the talents of three of his most promising students.

 The Macphail Centre, Ullapool, 6–8 October, ullapoolguitarfestival.com

67 LIST.CO.UK/SCOTLANDSFESTIVALS
. . .

1 OCTOBER

BAXTERS LOCH NESS MARATHON AND FESTIVAL OF RUNNING

FAMILY / OUTDOOR

Bught Park, Inverness, and around Loch Ness area, lochnessmarathon.com

A family-friendly day based around all things running, with a choice of lengths for the fitness minded, from a full marathon to a cheeky 5k with a Wee Nessie option for under 5s. For those who’d rather not work up a sweat, there’s the Event Village at the finish line with a food and drink fair.

4–22 OCTOBER

SCOTTISH MENTAL HEALTH ARTS FESTIVAL

ART / FAMILY

Various venues, Scotland, mhfestival.com

A national programme of cultural events, inspired by the festival’s 2023 theme ‘Revolution’, chosen to reflect SMHAF’s desire to address the impact of economic barriers and social inequality on mental health.

5–8 OCTOBER

SHETLAND ACCORDION AND FIDDLE FESTIVAL

MUSIC / HERITAGE

Various venues, Shetland, shetlandaccordionandfiddle.com

Now in its 34th year, the festival welcomes over 200 musicians from home and abroad, including full Scottish dance bands, small groups and solo artists, performing throughout Shetland.

enchantedforest.org.uk

A stunning sound and light show that transforms Faskally Wood using dazzling visuals and innovative design, set against an original music score.

5–8 OCTOBER THE CUMNOCK TRYST MUSIC

Various venues, Cumnock, East Ayrshire, thecumnocktryst.com

Founded by renowned composer and musician Sir James MacMillan in the town where he grew up, the 2023 programme will include soprano Danielle de Niese performing new songs by James MacMillan, and the premiere of a major new community work, A Musical Celebration of the Coalfields.

6–8 OCTOBER LEITH COMEDY FESTIVAL COMEDY

Various venues, Leith, Edinburgh, leithcomedyfest.com

New comedy festival in Leith. Keep an eye on the website for lineup announcements.

6–8 OCTOBER ULLAPOOL GUITAR FESTIVAL MUSIC

The Macphail Centre, Ullapool, ullapoolguitarfestival.com See Panel, page 67.

6–10 OCTOBER

HADDO ARTS FESTIVAL FAMILY / MUSIC / THEATRE & DANCE

Haddo House, a magnificent 18th-century stately home.

6—15 OCTOBER EDINBURGH COCKTAIL WEEK FOOD & DRINK

Various venues, Edinburgh, edinburghcocktailweek.co.uk

Based around a Cocktail Village on Festival Square featuring 20 pop-up bars, live music, DJs, experiential spaces and tasty street food, along with a tenday programme of linked events happening across the city.

7 OCTOBER TENEMENT TRAIL MUSIC

Various venues, Glasgow, tenementtrail.com

A festival of musical discovery, with over 50 indie rock bands performing across multiple venues in Glasgow.

7 & 8 OCTOBER BOOKMARK BOOK FESTIVAL LITERATURE / FAMILY

Various venues, Blairgowrie, bookmarkblair.com

An engaging mix of household names and up-and-comers, Bookmark promises a first-class experience promoting the best of the world of books from Scotland and beyond.

7–21 OCTOBER COLONSAY FOOD AND DRINK FESTIVAL FOOD & DRINK

NOVEMBER THE ENCHANTED FOREST

5 OCTOBER–5

FAMILY / ART

Faskally Wood, Pitlochry,

Haddo House, Ellon, haddoarts.com

A festival of music, theatre, visual arts and workshops in the beautiful surroundings of

Various venues, Isle of Colonsay, colonsayfoodfest.co.uk

Autumn festival celebrating the season’s bounties, featuring workshops on foraging, cooking, preserving and chocolate making,

68 THE GUIDE TO SCOTLAND’S FESTIVALS 2023

wine and cheese tastings, kidfriendly activities, as well as guided walks of the island.

11–14 OCTOBER

STIRLING SCIENCE

FESTIVAL

FAMILY / SCIENCE

Various venues, Stirling, stirlingsciencefestival.org

Four days during the school holidays of science shows, fun workshops, hands-on experiments, talks and exhibitions.

13–21 OCTOBER

ROYAL NATIONAL MÒD

MULTI-ARTS / MUSIC

Various venues, Paisley, ancomunn.co.uk

Paisley is set to welcome Scotland’s annual celebration of Gaelic culture in 2023, hosting the Mòd’s weeklong programme of music, drama, Highland dance, literature and sport.

14 OCTOBER

THE GIN & RUM FESTIVAL

FOOD & DRINK

Assembly Rooms, Edinburgh, ginandrumfestival.com

See page 60

14 OCTOBER

GLASGOW VEGAN FESTIVAL

FOOD & DRINK

Glasgow City Lacrosse Club, Glasgow, veganeventsuk.co.uk/ glasgow-vegan-festival

Over 60 stalls selling meat and dairy alternatives, cruelty-free beauty products, clothes and more. Plus talks, information and cookery demonstrations.

14–20 OCTOBER

TIREE WAVE CLASSIC OUTDOOR

Various venues, Isle of Tiree,

tireewaveclassic.co.uk

A highlight on the UK windsurfing calendar, this week-long event guarantees plenty of adrenalinefuelled action as some of the world’s top competitors tackle freestyle, wave jumping and supercross disciplines. Plus a host of daytime and evening activities.

16–20 OCTOBER

BLAZIN’ IN BEAULY MUSIC

Phipps Hall, Beauly, blazininbeauly.com

This five-day festival immerses visitors in the music of the Highlands and Islands through concerts, sessions, talks and workshops. Special guest tutor for 2023 is Capercaillie’s Charlie McKerron, with Ruairidh Gollan and Hannah Rarity returning to teach the gentle paced and song classes respectively.

69

17–29 OCTOBER SCOTTISH INTERNATIONAL STORYTELLING FESTIVAL

LITERATURE / FAMILY / HERITAGE

Scottish Storytelling Centre, Edinburgh, sisf.org.uk

A celebration of live storytelling and imagination uniting Scottish and international storytellers as well as musicians. Featuring performances, workshops, talks and children’s events.

20–22 OCTOBER AUTUMN TRAD FESTIVAL MUSIC

The Vault Arts Centre, Newton Stewart, tradmusic.com

Concerts and sessions throughout the weekend, featuring established and up-and-coming traditional bands and solo artists.

21 OCTOBER–5 NOVEMBER DISCOVERY FILM FESTIVAL

FILM & TV

Dundee Contemporary Arts, Dundee, discoveryfilmfestival.org.uk

Scotland’s international film festival for young audiences celebrates its 20th anniversary in 2023, combining the best youth cinema from around the world with a series of creative workshops and events.

26–31 OCTOBER EDINBURGH HORROR FESTIVAL

COMEDY / FILM & TV / THEATRE & DANCE

The Banshee Labyrinth, Edinburgh, edhorrorfest.co.uk

One of the most popular

Halloween events in Edinburgh, incorporating theatre, comedy, magic, spoken word, movies, games, improv, workshops, interactive events and more.

27–29 OCTOBER BUTE MANOUCHE: SCOTLAND’S GYPSY JAZZ FESTIVAL

MUSIC

292 Club, Rothesay, Isle of Bute, butejazz.com

A range of music sessions and concerts celebrating gypsy jazz, with special guests to be announced.

28 OCTOBER PERTH ALL-SCOTLAND ACCORDION & FIDDLE FESTIVAL

MUSIC

Various venues, Perth, perthaccordionfestival.co.uk

Now in its 74th year, this festival features competitions, concerts and ceilidhs and opens with a welcome dance.

NOVEMBER

EARLY NOVEMBER (DATES TBC) PUSH THE BOAT OUT POETRY FESTIVAL

LITERATURE / MULTI-ARTS

Summerhall, Edinburgh, pushtheboatout.org

Created in homage to Edwin Morgan, a celebration of poetry as well as spoken word, live music, hip hop, songwriting, film, sound, gaming and visual art.

NOVEMBER (DATES TBC)

AFRICA IN MOTION FILM FESTIVAL

FILM & TV

Various venues, Glasgow,

africa-in-motion.org.uk

Annual film festival bringing the best of African cinema to Scotland, engaging with stories and industry professionals from the continent.

NOVEMBER (DATES TBC) DUNDEE JAZZ FESTIVAL MUSIC

Various venues, Dundee, dundeejazzfestival.com

Jazz, blues, soul, funk and a bit of what’s in between, from big bands to exciting newcomers.

2–5 NOVEMBER WOFF: WORLD OF FILM INTERNATIONAL FESTIVAL GLASGOW

FILM & TV / THEATRE & DANCE

Film City Glasgow, Glasgow, woffglasgow.com

The 10th anniversary edition of WOFF aspires to bring more audiences, filmmakers and industry professionals together, creating a platform to exchange ideas and showcase work, plus discuss new trends in the industry, women filmmakers of today and independent film production in Europe, the US and beyond.

10 & 11 NOVEMBER ALLOA REAL ALE AND CIDER FESTIVAL FOOD & DRINK

Alloa Town Hall, Alloa, forthvalley.camra.org.uk

Over 40 beers from across Scotland including local brews, plus live music, hot food and soft drinks.

11 NOVEMBER THE GREAT WESTERN MUSIC

Various venues, Glasgow, tgwfest.com

A festival of music, exploration and

70 THE GUIDE TO SCOTLAND’S FESTIVALS 2023

discovery showcasing a range of local and international talent across venues in Glasgow’s West End.

17–25 NOVEMBER

SEALL’S FESTIVAL OF SMALL HALLS

MUSIC

Various venues, Skye and Raasay, seall.co.uk

Sessions, concerts and workshops from some of Scotland’s best traditional musicians held in community venues in places such as Glendale, Kyleakin, Skeabost, Waternish, Breakish and Minginish, with a big ceilidh to wrap things up.

23–26 NOVEMBER WINTERSTORM

MUSIC

Troon Concert Hall, Troon, winterstorm.co.uk

A weekend of heavy rock, metal, blues and melodic rock music taking place over three stages.

DECEMBER

1–23 DECEMBER BEECRAIGS FESTIVE FOREST

FAMILY / OUTDOOR

Beecraigs Country

Park, Linlithgow, beecraigsfestiveforest.com

Powerful laser shows and beautiful lighting effects create an atmospheric 1.8km walk for all the family. Along with illuminated trails there are rides, street food and drinks and Christmas attractions.

2 & 3 DECEMBER

LOCH LOMOND SHORES

CHRISTMAS FESTIVAL

FOOD & DRINK / FAMILY

Loch Lomond Shores, Balloch, lochlomondfoodanddrink festival.co.uk

Loch Lomond Shores rounds off its year of lively food and entertainment festivals with a host of food and drink, entertainment, rides and more for all the family.

24–31 DECEMBER EDINBURGH

INTERNATIONAL MAGIC FESTIVAL

FAMILY / THEATRE & DANCE

Various venues, Edinburgh, magicfest.co.uk

An exciting programme of shows, cabarets, site-specific events and workshops designed for all ages to experience and enjoy the wonder of magic and illusion.

30 DECEMBER–1 JANUARY EDINBURGH’S HOGMANAY

MUSIC / FAMIILY

Various venues, Edinburgh, edinburghshogmanay.com

Beecraigs Festive Forest

Edinburgh’s world-famous New Year celebrations, comprising three days of events, five stages of bands and DJs and thousands of revellers on Princes Street for the big night, as well as a stunning fireworks display above Edinburgh Castle and the Concert in the Gardens.

71 LIST.CO.UK/SCOTLANDS-FESTIVALS

LOOKING FORWARD TO WINTER 2023 / 24

With this guide going to press in early 2023, not many festivals and events planned for December and January have confirmed their details; though when they do, you’ll find them on the pages of The List magazine and online at list.co.uk

One landmark to look out for is the 30th anniversary of Edinburgh’s Hogmanay, a reminder that it is now a few decades since Scotland rediscovered that the dark days of winter were well worth making a song, dance and party about. As well as in the capital, anticipate various winter, Christmas and New Year events in Glasgow, Aberdeen, Dundee, Paisley, Perth and Stirling. Elsewhere, of course, some fire festivals and midwinter celebrations have clocked up hundreds of years of tradition, among them Stonehaven’s Fireballs on New Year’s Eve, the Burning of the Clavie in Burghead in January, and the most spectacular

of all, Up Helly Aa in Shetland later that month. Modern light shows are also becoming a feature of this time of year, in city settings like the Botanic Gardens in both Glasgow and Edinburgh, as well as more rural spots such as the Festive Forest illuminations and attractions at Beecraigs Country Park near Linlithgow.

Making things appear (and disappear) is the Edinburgh International Magic Festival in late December, while any illusion that January is for staying in is normally dispelled by a glance at the programme of folk, roots and world music at Celtic Connections, another festival of over 30 years standing. In that same period, Burns Night has developed various ways to offer contemporary expressions of the Bard’s legacy, with celebrations such as Burns & Beyond leading the way with its programme of compelling music and other events around Edinburgh in late January.

72 THE GUIDE TO SCOTLAND’S FESTIVALS 2023
PHOTO: ROBIN MAIR
7 IN 10 SCOTTISH ADULTS CONSIDER THEMSELVES TO BE A CREATIVE PERSON WHILE
OVER TWO-THIRDS OF ADULTS AGREE THAT ARTS AND CULTURE ARE AN IMPORTANT PART OF THEIR LIFE
Insight,
www.ourcreativevoice.scot @ourcreativevoice | @ourcreativevoice /ourcreativevoice | #OurCreativeVoice
(56 Degrees
November 2022)
Our Creative Voice sets out to highlight the crucial role of creativity to our health, communities and economy. Follow Our Creative Voice as we tell stories about why art and creativity matter to us all.

INDEXES

The full main index begins on page 76

On pages 74–76, events are also listed alphabetically within various popular categories

FAMILY

74 THE GUIDE TO SCOTLAND’S FESTIVALS 2023
Aberdour Festival 55 Anstruther Harbour Festival 43 Baxters Loch Ness Marathon and Festival of Running 68 Beecraigs Festive Forest 71, 72 Belladrum Tartan Heart Festival 55 Big DoG Festival 30 Bookmark Book Festival 68 Borders Art Fair 29 Borders Book Festival 13, 46 Boswell Book Festival 36 Colonsay Book Festival 34 Colonsay Festival of Spring 33 Discovery Film Festival 70 Drumlanrig Off-Road Motorsport Festival 39 Dukes Weekender 64 Dumfries & Galloway Arts Festival 39 Dundee Science Festival 24 Dundee Westfest: Big Sunday 45 The Eden Festival 45 Edinburgh Art Festival 53, 55 Edinburgh Festival Fringe 52, 58 Edinburgh International Book Festival 13, 53, 60 Edinburgh International Children’s Festival 43 Edinburgh International Festival 52, 57 Edinburgh International Harp Festival 32 Edinburgh International Magic Festival 71, 72 Edinburgh Jazz and Blues Festival 52, 54 Edinburgh Science Festival 30 The Enchanted Forest 68 Falkirk Science Festival 35 Foodies Festival (Edinburgh) 57 Foodies Festival (Glasgow) 58 Fringe by the Sea 57 FyneFest 43 Galloway Country Fair 58 Garnock Valley Carves 64 Glasgow Science Festival: Glasgow’s Making Waves 43 Glasgow Youth Film Festival 66 Glenfarg Folk Feast 32 GWCT Scottish Game Fair 48 Haddo Arts Festival 68 Hippodrome Silent Film Festival (HippFest) 13, 19, 30 Keith TMSA Festival 46 Food on Film 23 Knockengorroch Festival 42 Largs Viking Festival 63 Linlithgow Folk Festival 64 Loch Lomond Food & Drink Festival 63 Loch Lomond Shores: Christmas Festival 71 Lochwinnoch Arts Festival 29 Lorn Drama Festival 36 MacMoray Easter Festival 34 Manipulate Festival 24 McLellan Arts Festival 61 Mugstock Festival 57 Mull of Kintyre Music and Arts Festival 58 Musselburgh Festival 55 Nairn Book and Arts Festival 61 Off the Page Stirling Book Festival 42 On the Rocks Festival 29 Orkney Folk Festival 35 Orkney International Science Festival 63 Orkney Nature Festival 39 Perth Festival of the Arts 39 Perth Show 57 Piping Live! Glasgow International Piping Festival 60 Pittenweem Arts Festival 58 Rattray Arts Festival 61 Refugee Festival Scotland 46 The Royal Highland Show 47 Royal National Mòd 69 Scotland’s Daffodil Festival 32 Scottish Festival of Motoring 54 Scottish Geology Festival 63 Scottish International Storytelling Festival 13, 19, 70 Scottish Mental Health Arts Festival 68 Scottish Traditional Boat Festival 48 Single Parent Festival 57 Sma’ Shot Day 48 Solas Festival 2023 46 SPECTRA: Aberdeen’s Festival of Light 23 Spring Fling 43 StAnza: Scotland’s Poetry Festival 13, 27 Stirling Open Streets Festival 33 Stranraer Oyster Festival 64 Strathyre Music Festival 43 Strichen Festival 39 Tarbert Music Festival 66 Tarbert Seafood Festival 48 Thrive Bike 67 Tiree Music Festival 51 Truckfest Scotland 58 UCI Cycling World Championships 16, 57 Ullapool Book Festival 35 Under Canvas 48 Vibration Festival 2022 63 Wee Write! 45 Wigtown Book Festival 13, 20, 67 Wildhood: A Children’s Festival 45 World Pipe Band Championships 60 LITERATURE Aye Write! Glasgow’s Book Festival 39 Big DoG Festival 30 BIG LIT: The Stewartry Book Festival 47 Bloody Scotland 66 Bookmark Book Festival 68 Borders Book Festival 13, 46 Boswell Book Festival 36 Capital Sci-Fi Con 2023 24 Colonsay Book Festival 34 CYMERA: Scotland’s Festival of Science Fiction 43 East Neuk Festival 47 Edinburgh International Book Festival 13, 53, 60 Film & Comic Con Glasgow 55 Fringe by the Sea 57 Glasgow Comic Con 45 Glasgow Zine Fest 51 McLellan Arts Festival 61 Nairn Book and Arts Festival 61 Off the Page Stirling Book Festival 42 Outwith Festival 63 Paisley Book Festival 13, 26 Push the Boat Out Poetry Festival 13, 70 Royal National Mòd 69 Scottish International Storytelling Festival 13, 19, 70 Shetland Noir 46 Solas Festival 2023 46 StAnza: Scotland’s Poetry Festival 13, 27 Three Lochs Book And Arts Festival 66 Ullapool Book Festival 35 Wee Write! 45 Wigtown Book Festival 13, 20, 67 Winter Words Festival 24 MUSIC Aberdeen Jazz Festival 29 Aberdour Festival 55 Arran Folk Festival 45 Autumn Trad Festival 70 Belladrum Tartan Heart Festival 55 Blazin’ in Beauly 69 Bonfest 34 Burl in the Burgh 66 Burns&Beyond 72 Bute Manouche: Scotland’s Gypsy Jazz Festival 70 ButeFest 55 C2C: Country to Country 29 Callander Jazz and Blues Festival 67 Cantilena Festival on Islay 51 Celtic Connections 12, 23, 72 Ceòl Cholasa 66 Clydebuilt Festival 63 Colonsay Festival of Spring 33 Coloursfest 2023 58 Connect Music Festival 61 Counterflows 32

OUTDOOR

FILM AND TV

75 LIST.CO.UK/SCOTLANDS-FESTIVALS The Cumnock Tryst 68 Doonhame Festival 54 Doune the Rabbit Hole 54 Dumfries & Galloway Arts Festival 39 Dundee Dance Event 35 Dundee Jazz Festival 70 Dundee Westfest: Big Sunday 45 East Neuk Festival 47 The Eden Festival 45 Edinburgh Festival Fringe 52, 58 Edinburgh International Festival 52, 57 Edinburgh International Harp Festival 32 Edinburgh Jazz and Blues Festival 52, 54 Edinburgh Tradfest 34 Edinburgh’s Hogmanay 71, 72 Eilean Dorcha Festival 55 Feis Ile – Islay Festival of Music and Malt 42 Fife Brass Band Festival 32 Fife Fest 64 Fife Festival of Music 23 The Fisherfolk Festival 36 FLY Open Air Festival 39 Foodies Festival (Edinburgh) 57 Foodies Festival (Glasgow) 58 Fresh Ayr Folk Fest 58 Fringe by the Sea 57 FyneFest 43 Galloway Music Festival 27 The Gathering 42 Girvan Traditional Folk Festival 34 Glasgow Cathedral Festival 67 Glasgow Jazz Festival 46 Glenfarg Folk Feast 32 The Great Western 70 Haddo Arts Festival 68 HebCelt Festival 51 Hebridean Dark Skies Festival 27 Hidden Door Festival 36 Hordes X 67 Inverness Music Festival 24 Keith TMSA Festival 46 Kelburn Garden Party 48 Killin Music Festival 46 Kirkcudbright Jazz Festival 45 Knockengorroch Festival 42 Lagavulin Islay Jazz Festival 66 Lammermuir Festival 61 Largs Viking Festival 63 LeithLate 48 Linlithgow Folk Festival 64 Loch Lomond Shores: Summerfest 48 Loch Shiel Festival 35 Lochwinnoch Arts Festival 29 MacMoray Easter Festival 34 McLellan Arts Festival 61 Mendelssohn on Mull 63 Midnight Sun Weekender Stornoway 39 Midstock Festival 42 Moniaive Michaelmas Bluegrass Festival 66 Mugstock Festival 57 Mull Music Festival 32 Mull of Kintyre Music and Arts Festival 58 Music at the Multiverse 63 NAAFC Annual Accordion & Fiddle Festival 26 Newton Stewart and Minnigaff Traditional Music and Dance Festival 51 Orkney Blues Festival 66 Orkney Folk Festival 35 Otherlands Music & Arts Festival 60 Outwith Festival 63 Party at the Palace 58 Perform in Perth 26 Perth All-Scotland Accordion & Fiddle Festival 70 Perth Festival of the Arts 39 Piping Live! Glasgow International Piping Festival 60 Punk on the Peninsula 42 Push the Boat Out Poetry Festival 13, 70 Refugee Festival Scotland 46 Rewind Festival 55 Riverside Festival 42 The Royal Edinburgh Military Tattoo 53, 57 The Royal Highland Show 47 Royal National Mòd 69 Scotland Calling 32 Scottish Traditional Boat Festival 48 SEALL’s Festival of Small Halls 71 Shetland Accordion and Fiddle Festival 68 Shetland Folk Festival 33 Shetland Folk Frenzy 58 Skye Live 2023 36 Solas Festival 2023 46 Speyfest 55 Spirit of Speyside Whisky Festival 33 Springgrass Bluegrass Festival 39 St Magnus International Festival 46 Stereofunk Festival 34 Stirling Open Streets Festival 33 Stonehaven Folk Festival 51 Strathyre Music Festival 43 Strichen Festival 39 Summer Nights at the Bandstand 55 Tarbert Music Festival 66 Tectonics Glasgow 34 Tenement Trail 68 Terminal V Festival 32 The Niel Gow Festival 29 Tiree Music Festival 51 TRNSMT Festival 51 Ullapool Guitar Festival 67 Under Canvas 48 Vibration Festival 2022 63 Wide Days 32 WildFire Festival 47 Wildhood: A Children’s Festival 45 WinterStorm 71 Woodland Dance Project 39 Woodzstock Music Festival 47 World Pipe Band Championships 60
Arran Mountain Festival 36 Ballater Walking Festival 45 Beecraigs Festive Forest 71, 72 Beltane Fire Festival 35 Braemar Mountain Festival 26 BVAC Classic: Festival of Motoring 47 Colonsay Festival of Spring 33 Crieff & Strathearn Drovers’ Tryst Walking Festival 36 Drumlanrig Off-Road Motorsport Festival 39 Dukes Weekender 64 Dundee Women’s Festival 26 Edinburgh Marathon Festival 43 Fort William Mountain Festival 24 GWCT Scottish Game Fair 48 Land Rover Blair Castle International Horse Trials 61 Loch Ness Festival 42 Moray Walking & Outdoor Festival 47 Newton Stewart Walking Festival 36 Run the Blades 51 Scotland’s Daffodil Festival 32 Scottish Festival of Motoring 54 Stirling Open Streets Festival 33 Thrive Bike 67 Tiree Wave Classic 69 Tweedlove Bike Festival 34 UCI Cycling World Championships 16, 57 Women on Wheels Cycling Festival 29
Africa in Motion Film Festival 70 Alchemy Film and Moving Image Festival 33 Banff Mountain Film Festival 24, 66 Counterflows 32 Discovery Film Festival 70 Dundead 33 Dundee Women’s Festival 26 Edinburgh Horror Festival 70 Film & Comic Con Glasgow 55 Fort William Mountain Festival 24 Glasgow Film Festival 26 Glasgow Short Film Festival 30 Glasgow Youth Film Festival 66 Hidden Door Festival 36 Hippodrome Silent Film Festival (HippFest) 13, 19, 30 Food on Film 23 LeithLate 48 Manipulate Festival 24 McLellan Arts Festival 61 Nairn Book and Arts Festival 61 Push the Boat Out Poetry Festival 13, 70 xxx

FOOD AND DRINK

MAIN INDEX

p Between pages 74–76, events are listed alphabetically within various popular categories

76
SCOTLAND’S
Sands International Film Festival 32 Scottish Mental Health Arts Festival 68 Screenplay 61 Taiwan Film Festival 67 WoFF: World of Film International Festival Glasgow 70
THE GUIDE TO
FESTIVALS 2023
Aberdour Festival 55 Alloa Real Ale and Cider Festival 70 Anstruther Harbour Festival 43 Ballantrae Festival of Food & Drink 46 Clackmannanshire’s Whisky Festival 30 Colonsay Food and Drink Festival 68 Currie Beer and Curry Festival 43 Edinburgh Cocktail Week 68 Edinburgh Food Festival 52, 55 Edinburgh Whisky Festival 46 Feis Ile – Islay Festival of Music and Malt 42 Fife Whisky Festival 26 Foodies Festival (Edinburgh) 57 Foodies Festival (Glasgow) 58 FyneFest 43 The Gin & Rum Festival 60, 69 Glasgow Craft Beer Festival 51 The Glasgow Real Ale Festival 46 Glasgow Vegan Festival 69 Great Perthshire Food & Drink Festival 63 Hebridean Whisky Festival 63 Food on Film 23 Larbert Real Ale Festival 30 Loch Lomond Food & Drink Festival 63 Loch Lomond Shores: Christmas Festival 71 Loch Lomond Shores: Summerfest 48 Mash Up Festival 43 The National Whisky Festival 64 Perth Beer Festival 35 Refugee Festival Scotland 46 The Royal Highland Show 47 Scotland Vegan Festival 32 Scottish Vegan Festival 32 Scottish Wild Food Festival 66 Seafest 48 Spirit of Speyside Whisky Festival 33 Springfest: The Scottish Food & Drink Festival 30 Stranraer Oyster Festival 64 Tarbert Seafood Festival 48 Wildhood: A Children’s Festival 45
Aberdeen Jazz Festival 29 Aberdour Festival 55 Africa in Motion Film Festival 70 Alchemy Film and Moving Image Festival 33 Alloa Real Ale and Cider Festival 70 Anstruther Harbour Festival 43 Arran Folk Festival 45 Arran Mountain Festival 36 Autumn Trad Festival 70 Aye Write! Glasgow’s Book Festival 39 Ballantrae Festival of Food & Drink 46 Ballater Walking Festival 45 Banff Mountain Film Festival 24, 66 Baxters Loch Ness Marathon and Festival of Running 68 Beecraigs Festive Forest 71, 72 Belladrum Tartan Heart Festival 55 Beltane Fire Festival 35 Big DoG Festival 30 BIG LIT: The Stewartry Book Festival 47 Blair Castle International Horse Trials 61 Blazin’ in Beauly 69 Bloody Scotland 66 Bonfest 34 Bookmark Book Festival 68 Borders Art Fair 29 Borders Book Festival 13, 46 Boswell Book Festival 36 Braemar Mountain Festival 26 Burl in the Burgh 66 Burning of the Clavie, Burghead 72 Burns&Beyond 72 Bute Manouche: Scotland’s Gypsy Jazz Festival 70 ButeFest 55 BVAC Classic: Festival of Motoring 47 C2C: Country to Country 29 Callander Jazz and Blues Festival 67 Cantilena Festival on Islay 51 Capital Sci-Fi Con 2023 24 Celtic Connections 12, 23, 72 Ceòl Cholasa 66 Clackmannanshire’s Whisky Festival 30 Clydebuilt Festival 63 Colonsay Book Festival 34 Colonsay Festival of Spring 33 Colonsay Food and Drink Festival 68 Coloursfest 2023 58 Connect Music Festival 61 Counterflows 32 Crieff & Strathearn Drovers’ Tryst Walking Festival 36 The Cumnock Tryst 68 Currie Beer and Curry Festival 43 Cycling World Championships 16, 57 CYMERA: Scotland’s Festival of Science Fiction 43 Discovery Film Festival 70 Doonhame Festival 54 Dornoch Fibre Fest 29 Doune the Rabbit Hole 54 Drumlanrig Off-Road Motorsport Festival 39 Dukes Weekender 64 Dumfries & Galloway Arts Festival 39 Dundead 33 Dundee Dance Event 35 Dundee Jazz Festival 70 Dundee Science Festival 24 Dundee Westfest: Big Sunday 45 Dundee Women’s Festival 26 East Neuk Festival 47 The Eden Festival 45 Edinburgh Art Festival 53, 55 Edinburgh Cocktail Week 68 Edinburgh Festival Fringe 52, 58 Edinburgh Food Festival 52, 55 Edinburgh Horror Festival 70 Edinburgh International Book Festival 13, 53, 60 Edinburgh International Children’s Festival 43 Edinburgh International Festival 52, 57
77 LIST.CO.UK/SCOTLANDS-FESTIVALS Edinburgh International Harp Festival 32 Edinburgh International Improv Festival 26 Edinburgh International Magic Festival 71, 72 Edinburgh Jazz and Blues Festival 52, 54 Edinburgh Marathon Festival 43 Edinburgh Military Tattoo 53, 57 Edinburgh Science Festival 30 Edinburgh Tradfest 34 Edinburgh Whisky Festival 46 Edinburgh’s Hogmanay 71, 72 Eilean Dorcha Festival 55 The Enchanted Forest 68 Falkirk Science Festival 35 Feis Ile – Islay Festival of Music and Malt 42 Festival of Small Halls 71 Fife Brass Band Festival 32 Fife Fest 64 Fife Festival of Music 23 Fife Whisky Festival 26 Film & Comic Con Glasgow 55 The Fisherfolk Festival 36 FLY Open Air Festival 39 Foodies Festival (Edinburgh) 57 Foodies Festival (Glasgow) 58 Fort William Mountain Festival 24 Free Festival 53 Fresh Ayr Folk Fest 58 Fringe by the Sea 57 FyneFest 43 Galloway Country Fair 58 Galloway Music Festival 27 Garnock Valley Carves 64 The Gathering 42 Genesis Scottish Open 11 The Gin & Rum Festival 60, 69 Girvan Traditional Folk Festival 34 Glasgow Cathedral Festival 67 Glasgow Comic Con 45 Glasgow Craft Beer Festival 51 Glasgow Film Festival 26 Glasgow International Comedy Festival 29 Glasgow International Piping Festival 60 Glasgow Jazz Festival 46 The Glasgow Real Ale Festival 46 Glasgow Science Festival: Glasgow’s Making Waves 43 Glasgow Short Film Festival 30 Glasgow Vegan Festival 69 Glasgow Youth Film Festival 66 Glasgow Zine Fest 51 Glenfarg Folk Feast 32 Great Perthshire Food & Drink Festival 63 The Great Western 70 GWCT Scottish Game Fair 48 Haddo Arts Festival 68 Hawick Reivers Festival 30 HebCelt Festival 51 Hebridean Dark Skies Festival 27 Hebridean Whisky Festival 63 Hidden Door Festival 36 Hippodrome Silent Film Festival (HippFest) 13, 19, 30 Hordes X 67 Inverness Music Festival 24 Islay Festival of Music and Malt 42 Keith TMSA Festival 46 Kelburn Garden Party 48 Killin Music Festival 46 Food on Film 23 Kirkcudbright Jazz Festival 45 Knockengorroch Festival 42 Lagavulin Islay Jazz Festival 66 Lammermuir Festival 61 Land Rover Blair Castle International Horse Trials 61 Larbert Real Ale Festival 30 Largs Viking Festival 63 Leith Comedy Festival 68 LeithLate 48 Linlithgow Folk Festival 64 Loch Lomond Food & Drink Festival 63 Loch Lomond Shores: Christmas Festival 71 Loch Lomond Shores: Summerfest 48 Loch Ness Festival 42 Loch Ness Marathon and Festival of Running 68 Loch Shiel Festival 35 Lochwinnoch Arts Festival 29 Lorn Drama Festival 36 MacMoray Easter Festival 34 Manipulate Festival 24 Mash Up Festival 43 McLellan Arts Festival 61 Mendelssohn on Mull 63 Midnight Sun Weekender Stornoway 39 Midstock Festival 42 Military Tattoo 53, 57 Mòd 69 Moniaive Michaelmas Bluegrass Festival 66 Moray Walking & Outdoor Festival 47 Mugstock Festival 57 Mull Music Festival 32 Mull of Kintyre Music and Arts Festival 58 Music at the Multiverse 63 Musselburgh Festival 55 NAAFC Annual Accordion & Fiddle Festival 26 Nairn Book and Arts Festival 61 National Mòd 69 The National Whisky Festival 64 Newton Stewart and Minnigaff Traditional Music and Dance Festival 51 Newton Stewart Walking Festival 36 North East Open Studios 66 Off the Page Stirling Book Festival 42 On the Rocks Festival 29 Open Studios North Fife 35 Orkney Blues Festival 66 Orkney Folk Festival 35 Orkney International Science Festival 63 Orkney Nature Festival 39 Otherlands Music & Arts Festival 60 Outwith Festival 63 Paisley Book Festival 13, 26 Party at the Palace 58 Perform in Perth 26 Perth All-Scotland Accordion & Fiddle Festival 70 Perth Beer Festival 35 Perth Festival of the Arts 39

THE GUIDE TO SCOTLAND’S FESTIVALS 2023

78
Perth Show 57 Piping Live! Glasgow International Piping Festival 60 Pittenweem Arts Festival 58 Potfest Scotland 46 Punk on the Peninsula 42 Push the Boat Out Poetry Festival 13, 70 Rattray Arts Festival 61 Refugee Festival Scotland 46 Rewind Festival 55 Riverside Festival 42 The Royal Edinburgh Military Tattoo 53, 57 The Royal Highland Show 47 Royal National Mòd 69 Run the Blades 51 Sands International Film Festival 32 Scotland Calling 32 Scotland Vegan Festival 32 Scotland’s Daffodil Festival 32 Scottish Festival of Motoring 54 Scottish Game Fair 48 Scottish Geology Festival 63 Scottish International Storytelling Festival 13, 19, 70 Scottish Mental Health Arts Festival 68 Scottish Traditional Boat Festival 48 Scottish Vegan Festival 32 Scottish Wild Food Festival 66 The Scottish Yarn Festival 64 Screenplay 61 Seafest 48 SEALL’s Festival of Small Halls 71 725th Anniversary of The Battle of Falkirk 1298 55 Shetland Accordion and Fiddle Festival 68 Shetland Folk Festival 33 Shetland Folk Frenzy 58 Shetland Noir 46 Single Parent Festival 57 Skye Live 2023 36 Sma’ Shot Day 48 Solas Festival 2023 46 SPECTRA: Aberdeen’s Festival of Light 23 Speyfest 55 Spirit of Speyside Whisky Festival 33 Spring Fling 43 Springfest: The Scottish Food & Drink Festival 30 Springgrass Bluegrass Festival 39 St Magnus International Festival 46 StAnza: Scotland’s Poetry Festival 13, 27 Stereofunk Festival 34 Stirling Open Streets Festival 33 Stirling Science Festival 69 Stonehaven Fireballs 72 Stonehaven Folk Festival 51 Stranraer Oyster Festival 64 Strathyre Music Festival 43 Strichen Festival 39 Summer Nights at the Bandstand 55 Taiwan Film Festival 67 Take Me Somewhere 67 The Tall Ships Races Lerwick 54 Tarbert Music Festival 66 Tarbert Seafood Festival 48 Tectonics Glasgow 34 Tenement Trail 68 Terminal V Festival 32 The Niel Gow Festival 29 The Stewartry Book Festival 47 Three Lochs Book And Arts Festival 66 Thrive Bike 67 Tiree Music Festival 51 Tiree Wave Classic 69 TRNSMT Festival 51 Truckfest Scotland 58 Trust Golf Women’s Scottish Open 11 Turing Fest 47 Tweedlove Bike Festival 34 UCI Cycling World Championships 16, 57 Ullapool Book Festival 35 Ullapool Guitar Festival 67 Under Canvas 48 Up Helly Aa 72 Vibration Festival 2022 63 Wee Write! 45 Wide Days 32 Wigtown Book Festival 13, 20, 67 WildFire Festival 47 Wildhood: A Children’s Festival 45 Winter Words Festival 24 WinterStorm 71 WoFF: World of Film International Festival Glasgow70 Women on Wheels Cycling Festival 29 Woodland Dance Project 39 Woodzstock Music Festival 47 World Pipe Band Championships 60 xxx For updates, latest announcements and details of all events and festivals in Scotland in 2023, go to list.co.uk/ scotlands-festivals
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