A leading traditional arts organisation will stage an online music festival after two of its popular annual events fell victim to the Covid-19 pandemic.
Feis Rois has had to cancel its 30th anniversary celebration, as well as its week-long junior feis for Primary 4 – S1 pupils.
Instead, the Dingwall-based organisation has lined up a host of major musicians and singers for the first Virtual Feis Rois from May 1-3, via Facebook Live.
Three days of music workshops will feature whistle player and BBC Radio Scotland Traditional Musician of the Year 2020 Ali Levack, fiddlers Duncan Chisholm and Lauren MacColl, award-winning Scots singer Siobhan Miller, keyboard player James Ross and Gaelic singer Eilidh Mackenzie.
The first night will showcase acclaimed singer songwriter duo, Brian O hEadhra and Fiona Mackenzie, who will perform songs on their new album, Tuath.
On the Saturday night, Lauren MacColl and Ewan Macpherson will play Highland fiddle melodies, while Lauren has also written a tune that people can bid on to name.
The final night will involve a host of musicians and singers including Capercaillie’s Karen Matheson and Donald Shaw, fiddlers Adam Sutherland and Emma Tomlinson and former Fèis Rois Cèilidh Trail participants Mischa Macpherson and Kim Carnie, Siobhan Miller and Euan Burton.
Also on the bill are Glenfinnan fiddle and clarsach pairing Ingrid Henderson and Iain MacFarlane, and singer-songwriter Findlay Napier, with fiddler and singer, Gillian Frame.
The festival’s chief executive Fiona Dalgetty said: “Feis Rois is in the business of bringing people together.
“We are about building community and friendships, as well as passing on tradition and teaching music skills to people of all ages and abilities and we didn’t want the current situation to stop that from happening this year.
“Using the technology we have at our fingertips, this is a way that we can still achieve these things in the virtual world, allowing even more people to get involved.”
Fiddler Lauren MacColl, who is also a festival tutor, added: “Gatherings such as Feis Rois, whatever the age group, are such amazing social occasions and they celebrate everything that is positive about community.
“Many of my best friends are those I met through the Feis over the years.
“It’s brilliant to be involved in this virtual weekend, to be able to connect with people at this time, and hopefully bring some cheer and a little bit of Feis spirit into folk’s living rooms.”