The 16th Carrying Stream Festival celebrates the ideas and achievements of Hamish Henderson – folklorist, cultural activist and father of the modern Scottish folk renaissance.
Key features this year for the 16th celebration include a concert by Irish singer songwriter Tommy Sands, the annual Hamish Henderson Lecture, events commemorating the 10th anniversary of the death of Duncan Williamson, and an additional locally organised programme in Blairgowrie, Henderson’s childhood home.
Duncan Williamson was one of the most significant Scottish Traveller Tradition Bearers championed by Hamish Henderson.
A commemorative ceilidh, hosted at the Scottish Storytelling Centre on Friday 10 November at 7.30pm, will include storytellers from across the British Isles, including Taffy Thomas from Cumbria, Helen East from London and Hugh Lupton from Norfolk.
Workshops on the afternoon of Saturday 11 November will explore the continuing legacy of Duncan’s songs and storytelling, led by David Campbell and Linda Williamson. Then Tommy Sands will perform at The Pleasance Cabaret Bar from 8pm, and on Sunday 12November, at the same venue the line-up will include Margaret Bennet, Forgaitherin and Dave Gibb.
The 2017 Hamish Henderson Lecture will be delivered by Donald Smith, Director of TRACS (Traditional Arts and Culture Scotland) at 12.30pm at the Scottish Storytelling Centre. The theme is ‘Scotland in Europe; Europe in Scotland’ and the lecture is given in honour of the late Eberhard (Paddy) Bort, founder of ‘The Carrying Stream’ and prolific contributor to Edinburgh’s traditional scene.
In Perthshire, an alliance of local organisations is mounting events in Blairgowrie where Hamish Henderson was born on 11 November 1919. The recent documentary ‘Hamish: The Story of a Scottish Cultural Icon’, will be screened in Rattray Town Hall at 2pm on Saturday 11 November, and there will be a stellar line-up concert in Blairgowrie Town Hall at 7pm, with Iona Fyfe, Aileen Ogilvie, Perthshire Gaelic Choir, Mad Ferret, Calum Douglas and Hamish MacGregor.