New Scottish folk day will run in tandem with European event

BBC presenter Gary Innes and young piper Katie McEwan of Oban High School Pipe Band will be joining in celebrations for Scottish Folk Day on September 23
BBC presenter Gary Innes and young piper Katie McEwan of Oban High School Pipe Band will be joining in celebrations for Scottish Folk Day on September 23

A NEW Scottish folk day is to be held to celebrate Scotland’s vibrant and varied folk scene.

It will run in tandem with the first-ever European Folk Day and will offer a networking platform for musicians and artists at all levels to showcase their talents.

While the traditional arts are part of European cultural identity and diversity in which millions of people work, create and actively participate on a daily basis, they enjoy significantly less recognition than other art forms such as classical music, jazz or contemporary dance.

European Folk Day aims to change this by offering a collective voice to the pan-European community, highlighting the importance of folk traditions in the European cultural landscape.

“In Scotland, as in every European community, the traditional arts are essential foundations of cultural heritage and identity,” said Araceli Tzigane, Spanish board member of the European Folk Network.

“Participation in the European Folk Day will be a shared celebration, joining communities across Europe to increase recognition of traditional arts in all their diverse forms.”

The Europe-wide event is a major new project directly initiated by the 150 members of the European Folk Network from 30 European nations – including a significant number of leading Scottish organisations, such as the Traditional Music Forum (TMF), one of the five founding members of the network.

David Francis, TMF director, said: “Folk music is a huge part of Scotland’s culture and heritage, and is still prevalent in the lives of many Scots today. Scottish Folk Day is a means of celebrating that history and keeping the tradition alive by connecting people of all ages, abilities and backgrounds who share one common interest.

“All of us at TMF are thrilled to be running the event in Scotland on behalf of the European Folk Network, and can’t wait to see how individuals, groups or indeed entire musical communities come together to help us celebrate on Saturday, September 23.

“Whatever your ability, whatever your style, we want to hear from you.”

The European Folk Day pilot 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.

Organisers are calling for people of all backgrounds and abilities to stage live performances and workshops, giving folk fans across Scotland and Europe the opportunity to connect with a wider, like-minded community.

Anyone interested in folk music, from young learners to stalwart professionals, and from school classes to established bands, is encouraged to mark the new annual event.

Folk fans can use the hashtags #ScottishFolkDay and #EuropeanFolkDay to showcase the breadth of activity taking place across the continent.

For further information on how to get involved, visit: