Scottish Traditional Music Archive Directory – Call for Organisations

Organisations which hold collections of audio recordings of Scottish traditional music are invited to submit their details for inclusion in the Scottish Traditional Music Archive Directory.

Scottish Traditional Music Archive Directory

The Traditional Music Forum (TMF) is developing a Directory of organisations inside and outside of Scotland with collections of Scottish traditional music as part of our work towards a Scottish Traditional Music Archive.

The Directory will act as a signpost to help people interested in Scottish traditional music identify pertinent collections, contact collection holders, and make links between material.

We seek to include the broad range of traditional music found in and coming from Scotland, including traditional music made by people who have come to Scotland and by those who have moved away.

Listings for every collection holder will include a brief overview of organisational information, contact details, and relevant collections. The Directory will also be searchable by topics such as the region collections are from, the periods they were made in, and the instruments they contain. It will be free and publicly available via a website and downloadable file.

Call for Organisations 

Organisations which hold collections of Scottish traditional music recordings are invited to submit their details for inclusion in the Directory. Respondents may complete a downloadable table (available here) and return it via email to [email protected], or submit their details via an online form (available here).

While the Directory is not currently able to accept responses from private individuals, we hope to be able to include these in the near future. Further updates will be available on the TMF website.

Responses are requested by Friday 13 October to enable the Directory to launch later in the autumn.

For further information please contact the Archive Researcher via [email protected].

Traditional Music Forum

The TMF is a national network of traditional music organisations and individuals covering every aspect of traditional music in Scotland. The TMF aims to develop, sustain, support and maximise the potential of traditional music in Scotland. 

The TMF is one of the Forums brought together by Traditional Arts and Culture Scotland (TRACS), a co-operative network which champions our shared traditions of music, song, storytelling, dance, crafts, customs and local languages. TRACS empowers communities across Scotland to discover, develop and practise their unique traditional arts and heritage in the context of our daily lives.




Elegies is the first dance adaptation for the screen and stage of Hamish Henderson’s series of poems Elegies for the Dead in Cyrenaica, specifically curated to premiere at the Scottish Storytelling Centre on Saturday, 11 November 2023, 7.30pm.


The premiere of Elegies marks three anniversaries –  the 75th anniversary of the poems first publication (#Elegies75); the 75th anniversary of the United Nations Universal Declaration of Human Rights (#HumanRights75) and the author’s 104th birthday (#HamishMatters).

As one of the Scottish International Storytelling Festival 2023 new commissions, Elegies resonates with the festival theme Right To Be Human (#RightToBeHuman) and issues of social justice, peace movement and anti-militarism. It explores aspects of our common humanity through acts of art activism.


The Elegies for the Dead in Cyrenaica are considered by many as the finest poetic writings to come out of the Second World War. They highlight the tragic chaos and waste of life without losing sight of humanity and what we can do even now to save ourselves from ourselves.

“Our ambition is for this new adaptation of the Elegies for the Dead in Cyrenaica to become an innovative dance celebration of Hamish Henderson (1919-2002), the soldier-poet and scholar-folk revivalist, but also a dance poem of serious reflection – a lament for all lives lost in our challenging world of wars and pandemics, political and economic oppression, ecocide and inequality.”

Jim Mackintosh, Iliyana Nedkova and Wendy Timmons, Elegies co-curators/producers


This new dance theatre production is led by a duo of dancers and choreographers Helen Gould and George Adams who will embody and represent the characters from the ten elegies by interpreting swing and lindy hop – the popular social dance culture of the 1940s whilst creating a cultural bridge to the present day.

“We intend to explore various aspects of these social dance forms, including those that express the social conventions and traditions of the Home Front in the late 1930s and early 1940s, such as the rituals, leisure and mass forms of dance hall entertainment that boomed during this time. We will also reflect on the fact that social dance is a complex form of discipline and social control, yet also pleasure, intimacy and connection. The Elegies choreography and dance will thus convey the ubiquitous time and place of the social dance but also connect with deeper concerns of the social body, trauma, fragmentation and wholeness of the soldiers as depicted in Hamish Henderson’s first-hand accounts.”

Helen Gould and George Adams, Elegies dancers/choreographers


Through their movement directorship Gould and Adams will weave in the reading of the Elegies for the Dead in Cyrenaica by storytellers narrators and spoken word artists Morag Anderson and Stephen Watt.

The reading and the dance will be accompanied by specially composed and newly arranged trad music by the Elegies  musical director Cera Impala whose stage performance will be supported by other notable trad musicians yet to be announced.

Elegies will also be set against a backdrop of newly-commissioned audio-visuals by filmmaker Roddy Simpson. The visuals will utilise still and moving imagery reflecting the #RightToBeHuman festival theme. The costumes will be designed by upcycling artist guru Katie Duxbury.



Elegies is produced by Traditional Dance Forum of Scotland. Commisioned by the Scottish International Storytelling Festival through the Scottish Government Expo Fund. Additional funding provided by Creative Scotland. In-kind support by Moray House School of Education and Sport, the University of Edinburgh.

Further research and development enabled through Cultural Bridge’s Strictly Schottisch and Scottish project. Cultural Bridge is a celebration of bilateral artistic partnerships between the UK and Germany through the collaboration between Arts Council England, the Arts Council of Northern Ireland, British Council, Creative Scotland, Fonds Soziokultur, Goethe-Institut London and Wales Arts International / Arts Council of Wales.


Musicians across Scotland set to participate in inaugural Scottish Folk Day

Musicians and community groups across Scotland are set to participate in the first ever Scottish Folk Day on Saturday 23 September, helping to promote and celebrate the country’s vibrant and varied folk scene and traditions.

The exciting new project has called for musicians of all backgrounds and abilities across Scotland to stage live performances and workshops throughout the day, in what will be a country-wide celebration of folk music and culture.

Organised by Scotland’s Traditional Music Forum (TMF), Scottish Folk Day is running in tandem with European Folk Day, which has been conceived and coordinated by the European Folk Network. 

The initiative aims to offer a networking platform for musicians and artists at all levels to showcase their talents, while giving folk fans across Scotland and Europe the opportunity to connect with a wider, like-minded community.

Groups and individuals from South Lanarkshire to Stornoway have responded to the call and are set to put on everything from come-and-try workshops to sessions and performances to mark the inaugural cultural celebration.

Concerts across the country include vocalist and fiddle player Mairi McGillivray and guitarist and fiddle player Katie Allen performing a selection of traditional tunes including Gaelic and Scots favourites at Edinburgh’s Holy Cross Church.

Champions of Gaelic and West Highland Music – Dàimh – will play on Lochaber home turf to celebrate the first ever European and Scottish Folk Days. The concert is also the first in a winter series of events at Ardgour Memorial Hall, following on from last year’s successful return to live gigs through Scotland on Tour.

Award-winning Edinburgh roots duo Dowally will mark the day with a performance at the Scottish Storytelling Centre. Rachel Petyt and Dan Abrahams will host and collaborate with a showcase of incredible musicians from Scotland and across the continent, including virtuosic Hungarian violinist Janos Lang (Ando Glaso), Eastern European female vocal ensemble Davno, Flamenco vocal and guitar duo Ivan Martin and Tomas De la Rosa and Scottish accordionist Magnus Turpie.

Glasgow Royal Concert Hall will host contemporary-folk duo Juliette Lemoine and Nicky Murray for a dementia-friendly afternoon concert, delighting audiences with their fresh take on a mix of classics, country-folk and original songs.

In Ayrshire, Scotland-based Cultural Connections will perform their latest play, Connie meets Robert Burns, at the Ayrshire Food Hub near Kilmarnock. The light hearted play centres around a ‘gallus’ Glasgow woman trying to understand Robert Burns and his works. Meanwhile, Arran Folk will host a free evening ceilidh at Whiting Bay Village Hall for all to attend.

Award-winning singer, Hannah Rarity is set to put on a special show at the Traverse Theatre at 8pm on September 25th. Hannah has made a lasting impression since being warmly embraced by the folk world, winning BBC Young Traditional Musician of the Year 2018 and recording and touring with top acts Blazin’ Fiddles, Rura, Niteworks and Cherish the Ladies.

There are also plenty of opportunities for beginners and improvers to get involved in the day. The Edinburgh branch of The Clarsach Society are inviting clarsach players, friends and families to join them for an afternoon of music at St John’s Colinton Mains Church.

Down the road, Scots Music Group will host a come and play workshop featuring tunes from all over Europe at Greyfriars Charteris Centre. Sarah Northcott will take participants on a whistle-stop musical tour of mainland Europe from Brittany to Bulgaria and Sweden to Spain,  while the capital’s Waverley Bar will see Joss Cameron lead an inclusive afternoon of singing the ballads of beloved Scottish folk singer Jeannie Robertson from 5pm.

In Aberdeen, two leading North East folk music community organisations are teaming up with the Elphinstone Institute at University of Aberdeen to host an exciting day of workshops and performances. Some of Scotland’s leading folk musicians including Ron Jappy, Hayley Keenan, Jenn Butterworth and Eryn Rae will be holding court at the University of Aberdeen’s MacRobert Building.

Sessions will be storming bars and venues the length and breadth of the country, with MacGregor’s Bar hosting some of the best national and local folk musicians in Inverness and The Hopetoun Arms welcoming Stonehouse Folk House as they host the Leadhill Sessions on the afternoon of both Friday 22nd and Saturday 23rd September. The free-to-attend event is encouraging people to join in or just come and enjoy the music as they celebrate Scottish traditional music, Irish folk music and more.

On the afternoon of September 24th, Leith Depot will host an Edinburgh Scandi Session, with musicians coming together to play tunes from Denmark, Norway, Sweden and Finland. 

Fèis Rois will also feature a short film showcasing talents from their young musicians on their Facebook page at 10am to mark Scottish Folk Day.

David Francis, Director at Traditional Music Forum, said: “It has been brilliant to see such enthusiasm from artists, schools and communities across the country to get involved in the first ever Scottish Folk Day. The passion and eagerness of musicians, clubs and community groups to participate and network together is a testament to our love and appreciation of folk music as a country. All of us at TMF can’t wait to see what people put on on Saturday 23 September and we are so thankful for their support of the initiative.”

It’s not just musicians and clubs who are getting involved in the event, however. All folk fans are encouraged to record and share a musical performance online using the hashtags #ScottishFolkDay and #EuropeanFolkDay to showcase the breadth of activity taking place across the continent.   

The European Folk Day pilot project is open to traditions of music from any community within Europe, whether historically indigenous or newly-migrant. The event aims to highlight the importance of each and every European musical community, whilst supporting continued resilience through networking and digital communication.

The event has been coordinated by members of the European Folk Network with co-funding from the European Union via the MusicAIRE programme.

For further information on how to get involved, visit:

📷  Photo above: Dowally by Graham Coe


Scottish International Storytelling Festival 2023 – PROGRAMME ANNOUNCED

13 – 29 October 2023 – Right To Be Human

The 2023 programme for this year’s Scottish International Storytelling Festival (SISF) explores our Right To Be Human, and celebrates the 75th Anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. Just as Scotland’s consultation on a new Human Rights Bill draws to a close, storytellers, musicians and artists will join together in venues across the country to embrace this milestone with tales of human courage and creativity, spoken with powerful words. 

During this year’s festival (13-29 October) there will be stories told about the impacts of war, gender inequality, censorship; ethnic, cultural, linguistic and religious prejudices; and other threats and challenges on our human rights as a global nation. 

New this year is the Festival’s first podcast series Another Story six weekly episodes themed around our right to be human starting from 12 September; and Art of the Storytellerin-person, weekend workshops led by Festival Director Donald Smith with various professional storytellers, where budding storytellers can learn to improve their storytelling skills and better connect with their audience.

Opening this year’s Festival will be storyteller Gauri Raje with Tales of Exile and Sanctuary (Fri 13 Oct) sharing stories from Afghanistan, Iraq, Iran, India and the horn of Africa, woven together to question the beauty and horrors of exile from across the world. 

Other events exploring and celebrating our universal human rights include new commissions:

  • Wave Riders (Sat 14 Oct) with storyteller Jan Bee Brown and musician Renzo Spiteri sharing the sagas of Viking pioneers who forged better ways to live in peace.
  • Letters to Jackie (Sun 15 Oct) returns with agony aunts Bea Ferguson, Heather Yule and Maria Whatton on hand with old tales to answer the problems of today.
  • Joyfully Grimm: Reimagining a Queer Adolescence (Mon 16 Oct) with James Stedman who takes a heartfelt and slightly irreverent look at Section 28, and the joy with which LGBTQIA+ people have always existed in both stories and real life.
  • The Voice Shall Always Remain (Tue 17 Oct) told through the traditional ‘pardeh-khani’ technique (narration through curtains), Iranian storyteller Zahra Afsah and Syrian storyteller Khloud Ereksousi explore how Iranian women find their freedom in their own voices and talents.
  • Don Quixote Rides Again (Wed 18 Oct) a spellbinding comical experience with Spanish storyteller Inés Álvarez Villa and flamenco musician Danielo Olivera challenging prejudice, showing compassion, and embracing our true selves.
  • Stories of healing told through the Norse tales of Odin, Gullveig and Mimir in Odin’s Eye and The Art of Seeing with Alice Fernbank (Sat 21 Oct) followed by Shadow Walking covering dark tales of jealousy, destruction and vanity with Ruth Kirkpatrick and Peter Chand.
  • The story of Orpheus and Eurydice gets a Scottish twist in Orpheus | Orfeo (Sun 22 Oct) told by Daniel Serridge, Heather Cartwright and Neil Wood (harp).
  • Fire from the Woods (Thu 26 Oct) with storyteller Daiva Ivanauskaitė and musician Gaynor Barradell exploring the silence between generations, how sometimes fathers are silent while children grow up without stories and our right to know about our ancestors.
  •  The Town Mouse and The Country Mouse (Sat 14 Oct) – a multisensory adventure suitable for children with additional needs with illustrator Kate Leiper and storyteller Ailie Finlay.


Also appearing in this year’s programme are some of the nation’s favourite storytellers in our Collective Treasures strand which gathers memories, experiences and values together in tales to celebrate our common humanity.

Highlights include:

  • Scots Character (Thu 19 Oct) with James Spence which tours the range of Scots tale and tongue including some dour, thrawn, stoic, droll and outrageous personal memories.
  • Gillian Paterson and Nicola Wright take a whirlwind trip through women’s history in The Girl’s Own Survival Guide to History (Sat 21 Oct) with female pirates, raucous rebels and top tips on learning how to avoid being called a witch.
  • Shonaleigh Cumbers dips into her own Jewish and British storytelling traditions in A Garment for the Moon (Sun 22 Oct).
  • Berit Alette Mienna and musician Øistein Hanssen share the deep roots of the Sami culture and the threats it faces, in Northern Treasures (Wed 25 & Sat 28 Oct). 
  • Prolific writer and political activist Italo Calvino’s centenary is celebrated with a Scots-Italian garland of stories from Anne Hunter, Donald Smith and Simone Caffari (Mon 16 Oct).
  • Tradition bearer Allan MacDonald and musician Aidan O’Rourke present tales from the John Francis Campbell’s collection in Sgeul – Mighty and Magic ( Fri 20  & Wed 25 Oct). 
  • Dr Valentina Bold and storyteller Amanda Edmiston present excerpts from Mike Bolam’s film Up the Middle Road with live storytelling and a discussion around the stigma of mental health (Tue 17 Oct).


For younger audiences and families looking for some fantastic activities during their October school holidays there are craft and storytelling sessions, story walks in the Royal Botanic Garden Garden Edinburgh including Rewilding Cinderella: An Eco-Storytelling Concert (Sun 15 Oct) weaving together stories from all over the world about the ash-child told by the Storytelling Choir which includes storytellers Gauri Raje, Kestrel Morton, Laura Sampson, Wendy Shearer, Joanna Gilar and Fleur Hemmings. Poetry from Tunde Balogun, music from Heulwen Williams and artistic enchantments by Hannah Battershell; and stories about trees, animals and bugs in Once There Was A Bug (Sun 15 Oct). Walks through the cobbled streets of Edinburgh with Macastory (Sat 21 Oct) where the characters of Deacon Brodie and Aggie the Fish Wife come to life; the Egyptian tale of Isis and Osiris (Sat 14 Oct) is retold by Fergus McNicol with belly dancing from Moyra Banks; and a Kamishibai Workshop (Thu 19 Oct) with renowned storyteller, harpist and Urasenke Japanese Tea Master Mio Shudo

At the end of the day, as darkness begins to fall, audiences can gather at the Netherbow Theatre for a relaxed evening of stories and music in our Open Hearth sessions featuring storytellers and musicians from around the world (Fri 13, Wed 24 & Sun 29 Oct). 

Plus, there are special events including Anna Conomos-Wedlock’The Promise, where stories inspired by the oral testimonies of Asia Minor refugees, draw on the meaning of homeland, displacement, memory and friendship, with music and song by Rebecca Vučetić (Fri 27 Oct); The Displaced Heart (Mon 23 Oct) an exquisite storytelling and music performance, combining English, Punjabi, and Irish songs accompanied by guitar and sitar; and Songs & Stories of the Fianna (Fri 20 Oct) supported by Bòrd na Gàidhlig’s Colmcille fund; and two events presented by Deaf Action and originally performed at Edinburgh Deaf Festival earlier this year: Visual Fun With Sports (Sat 21 Oct) by Petre Dobre & Craig McCulloch and Red Aphrodite (Thu 19 Oct) by Amy Murray.

Our popular online workshop strand Global Lab returns this year and during Week One (16-19 Oct) the festival will look at our planet’s eco-system and how ecological passion drives twenty-first century storytelling. In association with Earth Charter International each day Festival Director Donald Smith will invite storytellers from all corners of our planet to perform stories of human messiness, healing, hope and connections with nature. In Week Two the workshop theme is Shared Lives (23-26 Oct) and our focus returns to the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and the importance of valuing dignity, respect, equality and compassion in our lives.

Go Local also returns this year, with new voices from more regions in Scotland including North and South Lanarkshire coming together to share stories and songs. From Shetland to Dumfries and Galloway, there will be tales of battles, adventure, love and friendship shared by the fireside through October and November, with many of the festival’s commissions also going on tour.

Alongside these events, this year’s Festival Exhibition hosted at the Scottish Storytelling Centre will be TALK – a series of portraits taken by Edinburgh-based photographer Graham Williams, exploring the subject of men’s mental health as part of the Scottish Mental Health Arts Festival.

The Scottish International Storytelling Festival will take place Friday 13 – Sunday 29 October. Tickets to each event cost a maximum of £10, with family events costing just £5 per ticket. For those planning on attending multiple events, the Festival Pass offers discounted tickets to many live festival events, online and at the Scottish Storytelling Centre, as well as a discount at the Scottish Storytelling Centre’s bookshop and Haggis Box Café.

To purchase tickets and browse the full programme, visit

Browse the 2023 Programme 

Book Tickets


Traditional Music Forum – Board Recruitment 2023

The Traditional Music Forum (TMF) is seeking new trustees to join the organisations Board of Directors. 

The main responsibilities of the Board include governance, advocacy, strategic direction, as well as ensuring the legal and ethical commitments and standards of the organisation are met. 

Meetings are held quarterly and are either online or in person. In person meetings are usually held in Perth, as it is suitable for all our current trustees’ domestic locations.

The role of trustee is voluntary and the TMF will refund any reasonable travel costs to attend Board meetings.

We are a welcoming and friendly organisation and information about the current trustees, staff and the work of the TMF can be found on our website.  

Who we are looking for

The TMF is looking for applicants who are passionate about traditional music in Scotland. Applications from those willing to learn about the sector are also welcome. 

To ensure we have a diverse range of knowledge represented on the board, we are particularly keen to hear from people with skills in any of the following areas:

  • Finance / accounting 
  • Human resources 
  • Policy planning
  • Economic development 
  • Scottish charity law
  • Local Government policy knowledge 
  • Social care

We would also welcome applications from those aged between 18-30 years old. 

How to apply

Please send an email stating your interest in being a TMF trustee and the skills and/or knowledge you feel you will bring to the Board to:

TMF Board Secretary, Laura Harrington
Email address: [email protected] 

The TMF is an equal opportunities organisation. If you wish to have an informal discussion, prior to submitting an email of interest, please contact:

TMF Board Chair, Lori Watson
Email address: [email protected]

For more information about the Traditional Music Forum, please check out our website and social media channels: 



Scots Language Awards 2023 nominee announcement

Oor wirk oan Lure o the Leid podcast haes bin nominatit fir Scots Project o the Year at the Scots Leid Awards! Sin votin haes noo stairtit we wid really appreciate yer support. Ye can vote here –

Our work on Lure o the Leid podcast has been nominated for Scots Project of the Year at the Scots Language Awards! Since voting has now started we would really appreciate your support. You can vote here –


The nominees have been announced for the Scots Language Awards 2023, with over 60 nominees in the running across 12 categories at the annual awards ceremony, which will showcase the very best of Scots language and culture.The awards, which were first started in 2019, celebrate the importance of Scots language within arts and culture but also within daily life, education, and business, and will take place at Johnstone Town Hall, in partnership with, on Saturday 16th September.Voting for this year’s Scots Language Awards will be open from Monday 28th August to Sunday 10th September 2023. Votes can be cast at for the Scots Language Awards are available here:

#ScotsLanguageAwards #ScotsLeidAwards


Traditional Arts Mentoring 2023/2024

TRACS is delighted to be assisting Creative Scotland and other partners in delivering a third cycle of Traditional Arts Mentoring during 2023-24. This programme supports the professional and personal development of Traditional Arts practitioners in Scotland. It also engages with the growing recognition of Intangible Cultural Heritage in Scotland, including local traditions, languages, and the contribution of New Scots from diverse cultures.

What is mentoring?

Mentoring is a process in which an experienced individual helps another person to develop goals and skills through a series of time-limited, confidential, one-to-one conversations. Mentors also benefit through sharing their own learning, evolving their thinking, developing new relationships, and deepening their mentoring skills.

Traditional Arts Mentoring will run from November 2023 to April 2024. Meetings are likely to be mostly online, but some in-person contact is strongly encouraged where possible. There will also be gatherings involving all participants, providing opportunities for peer learning. Successful applicants will have the opportunity to work one-to-one over 6 months with an experienced mentor. This will be a mutually supportive dialogue, responding to mentees’ individual priorities, and respecting different backgrounds and learning styles. Conversations may deal with topics such as creative approaches, professional challenges, confidence, and identifying training needs.

Two mentorship opportunities will be offered in each of the following artforms:

  • Traditional Music
  • Traditional Song
  • Traditional Dance
  • Traditional Storytelling
  • Gaelic or Scots language (this does not exclude Gaelic and Scots forming part of the other mentorships)


Mentors receive a professional fee, and mentees receive a bursary to cover expenses such as travel and materials.

The programme is led by Jo Miller, a qualified and experienced mentoring coordinator, who supports participants throughout the cycle.

How to apply

Applicants for mentorship should be early- or mid-career practitioners. Please submit a concise professional CV and a one-page statement as to why you would like to participate in the Traditional Arts Mentoring programme, and stating which artform strand you are applying under.

Send your application to Jo Miller [email protected] by the extended deadline of Monday 9th October 2023.


Trad Dance at Edinburgh Festivals

Traditional Dance Forum of Scotland supports the homegrown and international trad dance talent that helps make Edinburgh a vibrant cultural city for twelve months of the year, not just for August. Yet we are very proud to be highlighting the contribution of traditional dance artists in the programmes of Edinburgh’s summer festivals for a second year. Last year we hand-picked just over 10 shows with trad dance roots. This year we have selected 20 shows at Edinburgh Festival Fringe alone, including our own Fringe debut as producers with our own show Thistles and Sunflowers.


20 Shows with Trad Dance Roots at Edinburgh Festival Fringe

Selected by Traditional Dance Forum of Scotland

CeilidhKids Laughing Horse @ The Counting House (Venue 170)

3 – 27 Aug: 10:00 (1 hour)

Family workshop run by our trad dance artist-in-resident Caroline Brockbank. Suitable for children aged 3-7 years with parents or carers, but everyone welcome. We involve everyone: skip, clap and march together to traditional Scottish music. Enjoy discovering very simple (often simplified) dances that you might find at a ceilidh or Scottish country dance, celebrating the social aspects of dancing with a partner. CeilidhKids is all about fun for all generations. Hugely popular with local families, now it’s your turn. Bring mum or dad along to partner you under the chandeliers! One adult can dance with two children. Further details


Flamenco Fiesta Alba Flamenca (Venue 237)
4 – 27 Aug: 16:30, 19:00 (1 hour)
The Edinburgh Fringe flamenco show that transports you straight to Spain. Powerful, heartfelt, memorable, exciting and bursting with festive energy. The intimate venue adds a level of charm to the whole occasion making you feel part of it! Further details


Flamenco Fringe Yotel Edinburgh Imaginex (Venue 572)

5, 7-12, 14-18, 21-28 Aug: 19:00 (70 minues)

Award-winning Daniel Martinez Flamenco Company returns with the stunning flamenco music and dance they are known for. Accompanying the intricacy and beauty of Daniel Martinez‘s guitar and fantastic voices of singers Inma Montero and Danielo Olivera, will be flamenco dancers at the absolute top of their game. Each week, in an authentic tablao, a different world-class flamenco dancer from Andalucia joins these incredible musicians on stage, including Angel Reyes, Ray Benítez and Cristina Aguilera. Choose the option to add a tapas and wine/drink package to your ticket. Further details


Harvest Zoo Southside (Venue 82)

5-8, 10-15, 17-19 Aug: 18:30 (1 hour)

A dance performance exploring the working body across two seemingly distant sectors: agriculture and dance. How do humans shape and cultivate nature and how does a trade shape us? What is it to cultivate a body? In Harvest two Danish performers from different traditions, a contemporary dancer and a neo-flamenco dancer, embody these questions in a set incorporating soil and grass. With audience in-the-round, the musical composition, with a multitude of sounds from modern agriculture, resonates through a large reverberating floor, shaking the room and setting the soil, the dancers and the whole space in motion. Further details


2Flamenco Argyle Cellar Bar (Venue 293)
5 – 27 Aug (not 13, 20): 21:00 (55 minutes)
Uplifting, moving and highly entertaining trip into the essences of Flamenco. Guitar, singing and dance coordinate spontaneously with humour and complicity in a fresh twist without forgetting its pure roots. Produced by TuFlamenco. Guarantees you are in for treat. Further details


Ceilidhs Great Hall – 9 Queen Street (Venue 74)

5-18, 20-23, 25-28 Aug: 21:00 (2 hours)

With dance teacher and caller, Ken Gourlay, ceilidh band and bar. All dances walked through and called. Fringe groups welcome – you can promote your show. Good exercise, great fun. ‘It’s so joyful’ (Audience review). Further details 


Papillion Summerhall TechCube 0 (Venue 26)

5-6, 8-13, 15-19, 22-27 Aug: 19:20 (1 hour)

What can we expect from the unexpected? What can we recognize in a world governed by unpredictability? Street and contemporary dance collide as three dancers weave in and out of sync through a complex choreographic partition, supported by a live, hypnotic musical soundtrack that blends the sounds and rhythms of jazz, hip hop and drum’n’bass. Inspired by chaos theory and complex mathematical equations, Papillon is an emotional, engulfing reflection on order and disorder, singularity and similarity, metamorphosis, and the importance of human connection in trying times. A powerful performance that will have audiences dancing in their seats. Further details


Change Assembly @ Dance Base (Venue 22)

8-13 Aug 13:00 (1 hour)

Estonian horeographer Igor Lider‘s invites the viewer into the exciting world of street dance. Dedicated to hip-hop culture since childhood, four male dancers bring their years of experience to the stage. Their encounter with theatre and contemporary dance space creates a new and extraordinary change. Multi level, modern and eloquent. Further details


Betty Brown Bags Magical SpigelYurt (Venue 212)

8-12 Aug: 16:00 (30 minutes)

Inspired by a traditional folk play from Lancaster, Betty Brown Bags and her musical sidekick Billy celebrate the strength and resilience of Northern working-class culture. This interactive show is a physical theatre piece by contemporary trad dance artist Phoebe Ophelia with a pantomime flair, featuring live music, clog dancing, singing and even some sword fighting, something for all ages! Let Betty and Billy tell you their tale of the evil Sir George and how they need all of YOU to defeat him. Further details


Haggis Ceilidh Stockbridge Church (Venue 317)

9, 16, 23 Aug: 20:00 (2 hours)

Want to experience the very best Scottish ceilidh dancing with one of Scotland’s leading modern ceilidh bands? Haggis Ceilidhs will give you the opportunity to experience an interactive, fun, authentic and energetic ceilidh in Scotland’s capital city. There will be no better way to embrace Scotland’s party culture than to dance the night away to the Haggis Chasers Ceilidh Band. Get your tickets now and don’t miss out! Further details 


 Gallus Stooshie  Debating Hall – Gilded Balloon Teviot (Venue 14)

11 – 13 Aug: 14:30 (1 hour)

Gallus Stooshie is a modern Scottish dance troupe here to make ceilidhs cool again. Enjoy a sensational performance, then take part in the coolest ceilidh in town, all led by our gallus dancers. Expect fun, fancy footwork and floor-filling tunes in an interactive, family-friendly event you don’t want to miss! Gallus: bold, cheeky or flashy. Stooshie: a commotion or fuss. Gallus Stooshie: made in Scotland to make you dance! Further details





FailteGu BSL/Welcome to BSL Netherbow Theatre, Scottish Storytelling Centre (Venue 30)

13 Aug: 16:00 (50 minutes)

Evie Waddell presents a fun and accessible show which celebrates the relationship between Gaelic and BSL language, whilst exploring experiences of creative connection and isolation for diverse cultural Scots. Combining stories, dance and signing with the songs, this show explores opportunities for d/Deaf people to own their space within Scottish culture. Further details


Flamenco in Scotland St Andrew’s and St George’s West, George St (Venue 111)
13, 20 Aug: 16:30 (55 minutes)
Flamenco in Scotland is back, full of bravery, heart, spirit and plenty of home-grown performers. Whether you are a flamenco aficionado or not, the new repertoire will enchant all music and dance lovers. Dinnae miss oot! Ole! Further details


Fanti Acrobats International  The Space Triplex (Venue 38)

16 – 19, 21 – 26 Aug: Times vary

Come and watch the hottest and most unique African traditional acrobatics and cultural show from Ghana, west Africa. An award-winning acrobatics and cultural group in Africa. Great tradition! Great show! Further details


Sufiana Main house – C ARTS | C venues | C aurora (Venue 6)

16 – 20 Aug: 15:00 (45 minutes)

An abstract representation of the philosophy of Sufism in thrilling choreography. Seven professional Indian classic dancers from Delhi form intricate geometric patterns accompanied by a spectacular light show with music on the path of enlightenment, awakening, unconditional love and salvation. The dance is a stylised Kathak presentation with enchanting music specially recorded for the Fringe by Indian band Mrigya. Sufiana is influenced by great Sufi poets including Rumi, Kabeer, Bulleh Shah and Tagore. A visual treat. Further details


The Centrepiece Craigmillar Park Church (Venue 638)

19 Aug: 09:30, 14:00, 19:15 (3 hours 30 minutes)

Discover and enjoy traditional dance from around the world with our experienced teachers. Experience sacred, circle and traditional dances which bring communities together. Beginners welcome. Hosted by Brant Bambery (Scotland), Shakeh M Tchilingirian (Armenia), and guests Laura Shannon (Greece) and Peter Vallance (Scotland). Also features local groups, Circle Dance for All and Central Scotland Circle Dance. Further details


Thistles and Sunflowers Netherbow Theatre, Scottish Storytelling Centre (Venue 30)

22 Aug: 21:45 (1 hour)

Our own exclusive, one-off extravaganza featuring Celtic and Balkan traditional dance, music and stories. Marvel at the dissonant harmonies and vibrant ecstasy of the Bulgarian folk-song tradition in the vocals of Angela Rodel (winner of the International Booker Prize 2023 for translation) with the instrumentals of Blue Giant Orkestar. Discover how the three cultures shaped by the bagpipes resemble and diverge from each other. Also featuring trad dance duo Ariana Stoyanova and Alexis Street, who are joined by fellow Highland and Bulgarian folk dancers, and for the first time by Scottish and Irish step dancers, including Alison Carlyle. Further details


Beyond Boundaries Assembly @ Dance Base  (Venue 22)

22 – 27 Aug: 21:30 (1 hour)

Vibrant showcase of Scottish hip-hop dance which travels through the past, present and future as four performers portray explorations of culture, AI and our inner selves. Asili by Dorine Mugisha explores Dorine’s multicultural journey of self-discovery as she navigates systems, people and places. Broken Circuit by Max Evans delves into our connection with AI and questions its capacity to fulfil our emotional needs. Reflection by Nevil Jose and Ursula Manandhar expresses an internal conflict between the artists traditional culture and the freedom they desire. Further details


I’m Muslamic, Don’t Panik Assembly @ Dance Base  (Venue 22)

22 – 27 Aug: 17:05 (1 hour)

From Bristol to the Tehran marathon and back again, Bobak Champion invites us to join him on a journey to accept his own heritage, against a media culture which holds fast to the idea that the Middle East is a frightening and dangerous place. A joyful evening of dance theatre and hip-hop, it’s through meeting a series of weird and wonderful characters from across the world that Bobak is finally able to truly know himself. Further details


What Draupadi Said to Penelope LifeCare Centre (Venue 524)
24 – 27 Aug: 19:30 (1 hour)
Had Penelope ever met Draupadi, what would they say to each other? What stories or dreams might they weave? In this contemporary feminist reimagining, Indian classical dancers and musicians explore characters from the Mahabharata. Further details.


A School in the Meadow

Merlindale Meadow Explorers, with Amanda Edmiston (Botanica Fabula)

As an artist working with stories and plants as a starting point, the opportunity to take a whole school of children into one of the few remaining Scottish Southern upland wild meadows and then develop a multisensory way of sharing that experience is a real delight.
If that meadow also has a somewhat fairy-tale connection to a legendary folk figure, one said to have magical talents and is filled with wild plants, nearly all of which have ancient uses in herbal traditions, then even better!

Merlindale in the Scottish Borders is named after the Mage said to be buried here…and now hosts a diverse range of flora and fauna.

Over the course of several months herbal storyteller: Amanda Edmiston (Botanica Fabula) assisted by River Tweed Connected Threads animateur Emily Cropton worked with the staff and children of Broughton primary school to create a project which they hope will lead to a life-long sense of affection and connection to this special natural place and potentially encourage the children to develop a fascination with nature-diverse, ancient environments.

With intergenerational insights from the children and their families (many of whom have farmed the area for generations) Amanda created a story, in part informed by social history and insights the children had shared whilst exploring the meadow. Then adding in legends and plant lore connected to the place.

Throughout the project, the group talked about some of the legends and lore surrounding the meadow plants and tried out some connected traditional herbal remedies.

They also explored the stunningly beautiful, unique habitat, looking down low into the micro-world using magnifying glasses and upwards and outwards looking for things they might not normally notice. Discovering tunnels and trails left by voles, watching red squirrel scamper along the branches of the ancient oaks, tracking pathways created by mycelia under stones and leaf litter and on one memorable occasion accidentally startling a hare and watching it bound across the marshy side and into the bank of wild mint and yarrow on the far side.

They also took photographs and collected samples of soil, observing how the earth changed in different areas of the field.
These were taken these back to the school, observations were recorded and then pigments were co-created from ground up plant materials and soil samples to use in the children’s meadow informed artwork.

The younger class immediately used their natural paints to create a meadow treescape on a huge stretch of paper, there are leaf prints, carefully drawn charcoal squirrels and underground views of roots and fungi.
The older group gathered fungi for spore prints and herbal plants which were then used to make up traditional potions and infusions, conker hand soap, an aromatic room spray and Merlindale meadow herbal tea.

Finally the older group then collaborated on creating a huge map based on memory and historic maps from the National Library archive, which they then compared with a current aerial view. The map links the meadow to the school and then onto one family’s farm and is also created using soil samples from the meadow, natural clay and plant-based pigments and willow charcoal!

Amanda’s final story, of how a truly insightful mage and three children collaborate together to ensure the future of a very special environment and an overview of the project, are being released as a booklet by the ‘Connected Threads’ project and are being shared alongside an exhibition of the children’s beautiful work in Broughton, but we thought you might enjoy seeing some of it, in creation, shared below!

Amanda Edmiston will be sharing the story and more from the Merlindale Meadow Explorers project at the Merlindale Nature festival on the 19th August 2023.

Meanwhile you can find out more about Merlindale here:

For more about the work of Connecting Threads see their website:

And for more about Amanda’s work and other projects