Oran Bagraidh: New music residency in Galloway

Ten of the UK and Ireland’s finest traditional poets and musical artists including vocalists using five languages, medieval instruments: crwth and northern triplepipes as well as fiddle, harp, accordian and electronics will join together in a Knockengorroch music residency to re-invigorate and create new music inspired by past peoples and languages of Britain.

Award winning Scots/ Gaelic singer Josie Duncan, lauded Irish song archaelogist Lorcan Mac Mathuna, former Welsh poet laureate and singer Gwyneth Glyn (pictured), celebrated Irish Sean-Nós singer Doimnic Mac Giolla Bhríde, Belfast fiddler Conor Caldwell, ancient instrument virtuoso Barnaby Brown, poet, singer and performance artist MacGillivray, widely published poet Rody Gormanand medieval Welsh duo Bragod (pictured, top) will join together in a house in Galloway in South West Scotland for one week to explore their respective histories and languages through poetry and music.

Inspired by the mysterious Galloway Gaelic song Oran Bagraidh, artists will compose in the space between imagination and history.  Taking the theme of multiple identities, within ancient Galloway and indeed themselves, they will explore commonalities and differences between languages, regional histories and musical sensibilities, dipping into traditional, experimental and electronic.

Waves of peoples have passed through the islands of Britain and Ireland throughout time. Many of these Welsh, Irish, Gaelic, Norse, Scots and English speakers traversed and settled in South West Scotland – a major geographic, linguistic and cultural crossroads throughout history and still a significant land and sea border area today.

Oran Bagraidh ‘Song of Defiance’ is the only surviving example of Galloway Gaelic, widely spoken across the region from the 5thto 18thcentury, always alongside other British languages also spoken in the area.

The recorded work will be released in February 2019, produced by Ben Seal.  It will be followed by a tour in UK and Ireland.

The Oran Bagraidh residency is part of Knockengorroch’s Off Site programme.

The project is funded by Creative Scotland, Arts Council Ireland and PRS Foundation and supported by Barscobe Heritage Trust.

(Top image: Bragod. Bottom image: Gwyneth Glyn)

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