HEBCELT TAKES CENTRE STAGE AT EDINBURGH NEW YEAR PARTY

News release
Hebridean Celtic Festival
Year of Homecoming 2014

• HebCelt to feature at Edinburgh’s Hogmanay celebrations
• January 1 capital gig for island festival
• Main stage artists to perform in closing ceilidh at Scot:Lands

Musicians from the multi award-winning Hebridean Celtic Festival will be among Edinburgh’s first foot guests during the capital’s Hogmanay celebrations.

Artists representing the internationally-renowned HebCelt in the island of Lewis will perform at a special ceilidh being held as part of a series of free live gigs ‘hidden’ in 11 buildings and outdoor spaces in the city’s Old Town on 1 January.

The festival, which will mark its 20th anniversary in 2015 and was voted Best Event or Festival in the Highlands and Islands Tourism Awards this month, was chosen to be featured in the Scot:Lands activities promoting the very best of Scottish arts, music, theatre, film and dance.

The HebCelt: Land event will mark its two decades of showcasing Celtic music and the Gaelic culture by recreating the atmosphere of the island event with performances by singer-songwriters Iain Morrison and Lori Watson and folk band Rura, winners of a prestigious Danny Kyle Award at Celtic Connections and Up and Coming Artist of the Year honour at MG Alba Scots Trad Music Awards in 2011 and a Radio 2 Folk Awards Horizon Award nominee last year.

Gaelic singer Catriona Watt, from Lewis, Gold Medal winner at the 2011 Royal National Mod and the 2007 BBC Young Traditional Musician of the Year, will also be on stage alongside Jane Hepburn (fiddle), Craig Muirhead (keyboards), Cameron Drummond (pipes), Alasdair Maclean (accordion), and DC Macmillan (percussion), in their new band Malin.

HebCelt director Caroline Maclennan said: “Being invited to be part of Edinburgh’s Hogmanay activities is a great honour and a wonderful opportunity to promote our unique event and our exciting traditional music.

“We are looking forward to giving the Edinburgh audience a flavour of our distinctive and atmospheric festival at the beginning of what is a milestone year for us.”

Pete Irvine, Director of Edinburgh’s Hogmanay, added: “On New Year’s Day, Edinburgh’s Hogmanay presents Scot:Lands; the very best in music, art and theatre created and curated by Scotland’s most innovative artists, arts organisations and musicians: a festival in itself – all free.

“We are very excited that the HebCelt festival will be joining us to recreate, in Edinburgh for one afternoon, one of the most atmospheric festivals on the planet.”

The 2014 HebCelt staged its biggest ever programme of 40 acts, headlined by Big Country, Levellers and Donnie Munro. A huge influx of music fans from overseas made up half the estimated 14,000-strong audience which provided a major economic boost for the islands.

The figure was close to last year’s record-breaking attendance and almost 17 per cent up on 2012.

Earlier this year HebCelt was selected as one of the top 10 UK summer festivals for the fourth year in succession by influential publication Songlines.

NOTES TO EDITORS

In 2013 HebCelt was hailed as one of the greenest festivals in the world after being the only Scottish event to receive an Outstanding award from environmental campaign group A Greener Festival. In addition, it was shortlisted in the Greener Festival category in the UK Festival Awards and in the Best Independent Festival category in the AIM Independent Music Awards.

In 2011 it was ranked Best Large Festival at the industry-sponsored Scottish Event Awards and it won Best Event of the Year award at the MG Alba Scots Trad Music Awards in 2004 and 2009.

Scot:Lands – part of the three-day Edinburgh’s Hogmanay Festival - will take place from 12.30pm on Thursday 1 January 2015 in 11 atmospheric venues across Edinburgh – all free of charge.  Audiences are asked to pre-register at www.edinburghshogmanay.com  from 1 December 2014 to be allocated a boarding time at Home:Land at the National Museum of Scotland, from where they will start their mysterious and magical tour of the very best of Scotland’s music, art and theatre.

For more information contact

John Ross
Lucid PR
01463 724593; 07730 099617
johnross@lucidmessages.com

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About Us

The 19th HebCelt will be held between 16-19 July, 2014 and will have two main stages on the Castle Green in front of the Lews Castle in Stornoway, as well as performances in An Lanntair and throughout the rural community. The 2013 HebCelt was the most successful in its history with ticket sales up by more than 30%. Just over half the 16,000 festival-goers came from outside the Hebrides and the huge influx of visitors from across Europe, the US, Australia and New Zealand, helped generate around £1 million for the local economy. Last year HebCelt was hailed as one of the greenest festivals in the world and was the only Scottish festival to receive an outstanding award from environmental campaign group A Greener Festival. It was also shortlisted in the Greener Festival Category in the UK Festival Awards. In addition to this, it was selected for the third year in succession as one of the top ten UK summer festivals by music magazine Songlines and was shortlisted in the Best Independent Festival category in the AIM Independent Music Awards.

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Artists representing HebCelt will perform at a special ceilidh being held as part of a series of free live gigs in Edinburgh's Old Town on 1 January.
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We are very excited that the HebCelt festival will be joining us to recreate, in Edinburgh for one afternoon, one of the most atmospheric festivals on the planet.
Pete Irvine, Director of Edinburgh’s Hogmanay