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TradFest Opening Concert Celebrates Piping Renaissance

The very best of Scotland’s piping talent will open the fifth TradFest Edinburgh Dùn Èideann at The Queen’s Hall, Edinburgh on Wednesday 26 April 2017, celebrating cultural heritage with a contemporary showcase.

Hamish Henderson is often credited for kick starting the Folk Revival when he and Alan Lomax organized the People’s Festival Ceilidh at Oddfellow’s Hall in August 1951. Henderson also importantly included John D. Burgess, a brilliant young competitive piper, in the lineup and thus brought piping into the fold.

Curated by Hamish Moore’s organisation, The Fellowship of Pipers (Càirdeas nam Pìobairean), Bagpipes Gu Leòr will truly represent the renaissance which has been gathering pace for more than 30 years, reclaiming many strands of our piping culture which were lost when competitive and military piping became the norm, displacing the once commonplace rich variety of instruments and styles.

Hamish Moore’s knowledge and passion for the pipes ensures that the rich variety will be brought to life on this special evening, gathering together a plethora of talent to showcase every strand of today’s piping culture from the Borders to Uist.

Angus MacKenzie and Fin Moore will be playing highland pipes in concert A, copies of “The Black Set of Kintail”, and highland music informed by the rhythms of the old Gaelic hard shoe percussive step dance.

2016 Radio Two Young Traditional Musician of the Year, Brighde Chaimbeul, showcases Scottish smallpipes and her first language of Gaelic is never very far from her music, while Callum Armstrong on border pipes and George Pasca on cello are two brilliant young virtuosic musicians who will explore the border repertoire and tap into the time-honoured tradition of improvising variations on a theme.

Allan MacDonald and Seonaidh MacIntyre, both with South Uist roots and playing Scottish smallpipes in C, accompany their own singing and explore the relationship between pibroch and Gaelic song, plus Director of The Piping Centre in Glasgow, Roddy MacLeod, will display why he is probably the most successful competitive piper of his generation.

Angus MacKenzie on reelpipes and Gabe McVarish on fiddle will close the concert with their superb blending of two instruments and interpretations of Gaelic tunes old and new.

A one-off gathering of talent that is not to be missed.

TradFest Edinburgh Dùn Èideann takes place from 26 April to 7 May 2017, showcasing 131 events across 34 venues and locations in Scotland’s Capital. TradFest is a signature event for Scotland’s Year of History, Heritage and Archaeology, connecting creativity with heritage and giving ownership to all Scotland’s citizens in an inclusive approach, celebrating cultural diversity in a feast of traditional art events.

Bagpipes Gu Leòr, Wed 26 Apr, The Queen's Hall, 7.30pm (3hrs), Full Price £20

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