Wester Ross brothers Eòin and Anndra Cumming enjoyed a successful Tuesday at the Royal National Mòd, with both of them landing major prizes for traditional solo singing.
Anndra, who is 13, won the coveted Traditional Silver Medal, and the Ann Kelly Macdonald memorial trophy for the highest aggregate marks on the day. He also won a gold medal in the morning’s bible reading competition.
Eòin, who is 16, lifted the Neil MacLaine Cameron trophy for winning the traditional solo competition for 16-18 year old fluent speakers.
The boys live in Laide and are pupils of Gairloch High School. They have been helped with singing tuition through Skype lessons with Mòd Gold medallist Calum Alex MacMillan, who is a cousin of their mother Maureen.
The boys also have family connections to Elgol on Skye.
The Nicolson Institute, conducted by Avril Allan, swept the boards to win all the major prizes in Tuesday’s secondary school choral competitions.
Rhianna Boyle, a 15-year-old fourth year pupil at Sgoil Ghàidlig Ghlaschu, landed the prized traditional silver medal for junior singing.
Despite no family background in the language Rhianna, from Yorkhill, has been educated through Gaelic since the age of five.
Proud mum Cylina said: “When the school opened in 1999 it seemed like a great opportunity. Sending my children there is the best decision I ever made.”
Rhianna’s sister Rebekah, who is 19 and studying at Sabhal Mòr Ostaig, is also taking part in adult competitions later in the week.
Inverness girl Eilidh MacPhee followed a family tradition in landing Mòd singing success.
The 16-year old Inverness Royal Academy pupil won the Iain Morrison memorial trophy for traditional singing, as well as the Charlie MacColl memorial trophy for highest aggregate marks in the 16-18 category.
Eilidh’s mum Catriona won the Traditional Gold Medal in Lochaber in 1999, while her grandmother Morag MacNeill triumphed in the same competition at the Sutherland Mòd in 1977.
Eilidh has family links to South Uist and Lewis, and her talent also extends to piping. On Saturday, she won the piobaireachd competition for under-19s.
For full Mod coverage and pictures, see the West Highland Free Press this Thursday