Two special evenings of Gaelic music, stories and song at this year’s Blas Festival will celebrate the contributions of noted tradition bearers Rona Lightfoot and Jonathan MacDonald.
A ‘Ho-ro Gheallaidh’ is in store on the opening night of the festival, Friday 2th September, when Blas will celebrate the 80th birthday of singer, piper, storyteller, teacher and all-round tradition bearer, Rona Lightfoot (pictured), with a special concert at St Andrew’s Cathedral in Inverness. A stellar cast will join Rona in her birthday celebrations including Mairi MacInnes, Margaret Stewart, Paul McCallum, Allan and Iain MacDonald, Allan Henderson and Iain MacFarlane.
Jonathan MacDonald (pictured above), or ‘Eòin’ as he is better known in his native Kilmuir on the Isle of Skye, has maintained a life-long interest in the history and Gaelic culture of the island and has published on many topics relating to local history, place-names and historical figures and events of interest. He is widely recognised as a fine Gaelic singer and psalm precentor and has collected a vast amount of songs and stories from the north of Skye. On Thursday 8th September a community cèilidh will be held in Kilmuir Village Hall featuring a host of local artists including Anne Martin, and Arthur Cormack.
The Blas Festival takes place between 2nd and 10th September 2016. The full festival programme is now available at www.blas-festival.com where full details of all events and how to buy tickets can be found.