Essie Stewart @ 80
Sultain / September 2022
Chan eil dòigh nas fheàrr ann Bliadhna nan Sgeul 2022 a chomharrachadh ach subhachas a dhèanamh air tè de na sgeulaichean as fheàrr a th' againn agus Essie Stiùbhart air aois 80 a ruighinn. Cuide rithe bidh Mairead Bennett, Donnchadh MacIllebhrath air a' phìob agus dithis òg a fhuair cuideachadh bho Essie len cuid seinn - Rona agus Donnchadh MacLeòid.
Airson crìoch a chur air a' chuirm shònraichte seo bidh pìos-ciùil ùr bho Chloë Bryce stèidhichte air na daoine bhon tàinig Essie agus a' dèanamh luaidh air an cuid sgilean agus an dìleab luachmhor a dh'fhàg iad dhuinn.
Born and brought up in Sutherland, in a Gaelic-speaking community, Essie Stewart loved to listen to the sgeulachdan of her grandfather, Ailidh Dall (Alec Stewart), a much-recorded Gaelic storyteller. Essie is one of the last of her generation who lived the life of the old travelling people and the stories she tells were picked up orally from her grandfather. Essie is a celebrated storyteller, one of Scotland’s last tellers of ancient, epic tales. As she celebrates her 80th birthday this year, the Blas Festival is delighted to have her as our guest at this special event.
The Gaelic singer and folklorist, Margaret Bennett, will join young singers/musicians, Duncan and Rona MacLeod, whom Essie helped in their young days as Gaelic singers. Duncan MacGillivray will play pipes and the evening will be rounded off with the 2022 Blas Commission, The Summer Walkers - a new piece by Highland musician, Chloë Bryce, centred on the lives and stories of the Gaelic-speaking travellers of Sutherland and Ross-shire. Newly-composed music will draw on old melodies and Gaelic songs and will feature extracts from archive recordings of prominent figures from the travellers’ community. Joining Chloë will be Brìghde Chaimbeul, Alistair Iain Paterson, Juliette Lemoine, Innes White & Gillie O’Flaherty.