We are embarking on an upgrading of our web site, so a brief update since the last insertion on these pages might be appropriate.
Some of the highlights of the year to date:
LFW won an award!
LFW has been recognised by Carnegie UK Trust for championing the preservation of local heritage in Argyll. The workshop is one of five ‘Rural Sparks’ to be recognised by Carnegie UK Trust for extraordinary work within rural communities in the UK and Eire, and was selected from all the Scottish groups. The Rural Sparks awards recognise innovative projects that have most improved the lives of large numbers of people in rural areas. Full story can be read at: http://www.fiddleworkshop.co.uk/news_item.php?id=97
Our Gaelic arm, Fèis Cheann Loch Goibhle ran a Homecoming 2009 event - the St Columba Ceilidh Trail – taking young Irish and Argyll musicians on tour
The Hands Across The Seas concert series is fully underway, with musicians coming to Cowal and Argyll from USA, Ireland, Denmark, Netherlands, France and Scotland
supported by the Scottish Arts Council and Argyll and Islands LEADER project
We had a particularly constructive joint venture with Cowal Open Studios to put on a weekend of Arts Crafts and Music
Also, as we are changing the layout of our web ‘Home Page’, we thought we should record here what we have taken off the front page:
Lochgoilhead Fiddle Workshop, founded in November 2002, teaches traditional fiddle, and offers traditional music concerts, and arts, crafts and author events, not just to its own tiny Scottish west coast community, but also to residents and tourists across Cowal and Argyll. Our mission statement is:
“to advance education, in particular by promoting the performance, learning, and appreciation of Scottish traditional fiddle music and its contemporary development; the understanding of its links with other cultural and artistic traditions, particularly those of song and dance; and to act as a conduit for these traditions.”
More about our constitution and aims can be found at:
Big thanks must go to all the committee and board members, as well as occasional, but hard working volunteers, Claire France of Integral Solutions who puts in extra hours over and beyond the call of duty on web site development, and Derek Prescott PhotoGraphic who takes such great pictures for us.
Even with all these peoples support nothing much could be achieved without the financial support of public bodies and commercial companies. In particular in the last year we have had support from the Scottish Arts Council Performing Arts Fund, the SAC Organisation Fund, The Robertson Trust, LEADER, Argyll and Bute Council, Western Ferries, Fèisean nan Gàidheal, Comunn na Gàidhlig, Gannochy,Colmcille
More details are available at
Where are we now in April 2009?
Well..lots of positive news. We’re starting a terrific new concert series-“Hands Across the Seas”-see details in news section. This series will mix foreign and homegrown musicians, and, thanks to the generosity of the Scottish Arts Council, we’ll be able to programme bigger bands on occasion, so lots of excitement there. The schools programme, the adult classes and the Fèisean are going very well indeed. And we’ve just heard that we have attracted a lot of support from Scottish Arts Council, Fèisean Nan Gaidheal and the Argyll and the Islands Leader programme.. In a nutshell, they are enabling us to move all of our development plans forward, so there will be more announcements in the following year about an expanding programme on all fronts.
In “our” five schools, Sarah Naylor continues to inspire and chivvy a new generation (singlehandedly!) teaching close on 90 pupils.
After schools Sarah is teaching the adult classes in Strachur and Lochgoilhead, where noticeable progress is being made by everyone. The groupwork mixed instrument class on Tuesdays in Lochgoilhead is truly exciting, and we’ve been delighted to be joined this year on Wednesdays by fiddlers from Lochgilphead who are making the trek, attracted by Sarah’s blend of excitement and close attention to technique. No Beginners’ class this year, but there will definitely be a class in September, hopefully a big one, ..so watch this space!
Fèis Cheann Loch Goibhle, backed again by Fèisean Nan Gaidheal, kicked off with a terrific weekend in March at the Lochgoilhead Centre, where everyone got very wet in the outdoor pursuits (it seems to be turning into a tradition that it pours on this weekend of the year). Gentler indoor music got everyone warmed up again, and the tutors probably had as much fun as the young participants. A similar weekend for teenagers has been deferred, but it will happen…announcements via the website and in the Press.
The youth music programme is being expanded in September by a series of Sunday afternoon workshops for young people aged 8-18, taking place once every five weeks or so. The idea behind these is to draw together young fiddlers from widely differing locations-from Helensburgh and Dunoon, from Lochgilphead and Lochgoilhead, give them a chance to play traditional music with each other, teach them a new instrument (the mandolin) and generally see what happens! The location will be Strachur School. More details to follow-but tell everyone you know. There are thirty places available. If you want to secure your place, please contact us asap. Thanks to The Scottish Arts Council for their support on this.
A really innovative ceilidh trail, “In the Footsteps of Columba” is being programmed for July/ August. This will bring together young musicians from Scotland and Ireland who will put on a multi-media performance, (roughly) following the trail of the Saint. It’s in the tourist season, it’s different, it’s exciting, and it’s bound to be a major attraction for tourists and locals too. It is a collaborative project involving likeminded organizations in Scotland and Ireland. Fèis Cheann Loch Goibhle are pulling it all together, aided by Christine MacIntyre, the Development Worker for this region of Fèisean Nan Gaidheal. It is part of the Homecoming celebrations. Our thanks for the generous support from Argyll and Bute Council, Fèisean Nan Gaidheal, and The Columba Initiative.
In June 2008 we won the prestigious Community Action Group of the Year award, awarded by the Scottish Council for Voluntary Organisations, and the “prize” is now sitting on Liz’s shelf. It’s great to be appreciated…and we’ve just won the accolade of being the Scottish Rural Spark organization chosen by the Carnegie Foundation for 2009. More news about this soon.