A range of top musicians are set to perform as part of an online Tayside festival this weekend.
The annual Solas Festival was due to be held from Friday, June 19 until Sunday, June 21 at Errol Park, but after it was cancelled because of the coronavirus outbreak, organisers designed to move the ‘Makeshift Solas’ online instead.
Now Karine Polwart, Admiral Fallow, Tinderbox Orchestra and the Big Sing Choir have all confirmed they will be performing as part of Makeshift Solas, alongside a range of music, talks, children’s activities and yoga sessions.
Frank Strang, chair of Solas Festival, said: “It’s that Solas time of year – we might not be able to enjoy the usual chilled weekend in sunny Perthshire, but we’re still going to have fun.
“There’ll be songs to savour and sing, stories to captivate, debates to provoke and energise and much, much more.
“Makeshift Solas will be fond memories for the initiated and a lovely taster for the new and curious.”
The festival will open on Friday evening with poet Padraig O Tuama, who will share stories reflecting the current coronavirus lockdown.
On Saturday there will be yoga and children’s storytelling, following by a panel discussion on ‘not going back to normal’, looking at Scotland post-lockdown.
Saturday evening will focus on a Solas music hour with a range of musicians and bands performing over social media, YouTube and Zoom, including the Makeshift Solas Big Sing.mus
The big sing will see members of the Greater Glasgow and Clyde NHS Trust Community Choir singing Michael Marra’s ‘All Will Be Well’ with special guests Raghu Dixit, Karine Polwart, Same Lee and Stanley Odd’s Dave Hook, and audience members are also being encouraged to take part by sending in their own recordings via the Solas Festival website.
The weekend’s festivities will conclude on the Sunday with live portraits on Zoom and a live streamed singing and dancing session for children, followed by a session combining stories, poetry and music and a virtual ceilidh.
Gaelic musician Mary Ann Kennedy said: “Michael Marra’s ‘All Will Be Well’ sums up so much of what Makeshift Solas represents, working together and looking out for each other.
“We’re so happy that big Solas friends like Sam Lee, Karine Polwart, Raghu Dixit and Sorren MacLean are joining the Greater Glasgow and Clyde NHS choir in the big sing.
“And we hope the public will also add their voices to the mix.”