WE may not be the best of friends when Ireland take on Scotland at Celtic Park tomorrow night – but all will be forgotten later this month when Glenties hosts a weekend celebrating the cultural links between Donegal and western Scotaland.
The connections between Donegal and the western fringe of Scotland will be marked during a weekend of ‘Myth, magic and music in Colmcille country’, which is taking place in Glenties from Friday 21th November to Sunday 23rd.
Visitors from Scotland will include storytellers, singers and musicians. They’ll link up with some of Donegal’s best-known tale-tellers and players, including Vincent, Jimmy and Peter Campbell, Frank Galligan, Caoimhin MacAoidh and Martin McGinley.
The weekend will feature ghost stories told where they happened around Glenties, and story-telling and singing sessions in both Irish and Scots Gaelic. There will also be fiddle workshops, lots of music sessions, and a gala concert in the Highlands Hotel on the Saturday night.
Fiddler Denise Boyle, who has organised the weekend, said she’s delighted how it has come together.
“We’ve got a really top-class bunch coming from Scotland, mainly from the western seaboard, which basically continues where Donegal leaves off,” she said. “It’s extra special for my family because we have lots of relatives on the island of Uist in the Outer Hebrides.”
The weekend is being funded by Colmcille, a partnership programme between Foras na Gaeilge and Bòrd na Gàidhlig. Colmcille promotes the use of Irish Gaelic and Scottish Gaelic in Ireland and Scotland and between the two countries.
Those travelling in from Scotland include fiddlers Jamie McDonald, Robbie Grieg, Simon Bradley and Anna Wendy Stevenson, flute player and fiddle Rachel Harris and guitarist and singer Kaitlin Ross.
Uist-based Simon Bradley and his wife Anna Wendy are no strangers to Donegal, as Simon’s father Pearse lives in Buncrana. Simon’s tunes and his father’s poems were included in an acclaimed book, ‘Simon Bradley – Buncrana to Baleshare’.