Kenneth Gibson MSP and Patricia Gibson MP were delighted to attend the participants' concert at the conclusion of this year's Fèis Arainn at Arran High School.
Fèis Arainn is a week-long celebration of traditional music, culture, and language which gives Arran children the opportunity to learn how to play traditional musical instruments, as well as practicing singing, drama, art, and Gaelic language skills.
The theme this year was of emigration and the Highland Clearances.
The festival has an accessible and inclusive approach which welcomes children of all abilities, including beginners who have no previous knowledge of traditional music. The combination of new recruits and accomplished musicians reinforces the principal that traditional music is about the strong social connections fostered by making music together, regardless of ability.
Arran's MSP Kenneth Gibson commented:
"The energy and enthusiasm in the theatre hall was tangible when the 63 children who took part in this year’s workshops showed off the culmination of their efforts.
"From clarsachs, to fiddles, to ukuleles, to accordions, to bagpipes, to tin whistles, to guitars and even to bongo drums, clearly every child found an instrument that excited and inspired them. It was a real pleasure to see so many young people revelling in Scotland’s rich musical and cultural heritage, to which Arran made and continues to make an enormous contribution. I wish the dedicated organisers of Fèis Arainn every success with the future of the festival, which has gone from strength to strength since its inaugural event in 1993.”
For more information about Fèis Arainn, please visit: https://feisarainn.com/.