Scots celebrities, artists and speakers including comedian Janey Godley gathered online to celebrate culture and language over a weekend, with an evening music concert on Friday 23rd October by the Iona Fyfe Trio, and a daytime Wee Gaitherin followed by the 2020 Scots Language Awards on Saturday 24th October.
The Awards, which kicked off online at 7.30pm, recognises the heroic efforts and work of the people and organisations who all champion Scots’ unique culture, music and words. Writer & Broadcaster Alistair Heather hosted the inspiring evening on organiser’s Hands Up For Trad’s Facebook & YouTube channels. Public voting on the nominees was open Monday 5th October to Sunday 18th October at www.scotslanguageawards.com, and the Scots Speaker o’ the Year Award went to comic Janey Godley for her ‘Frank Get The Door’ Nicola Sturgeon pandemic voiceovers, who made a surprise appearance joining the audience live at the online event.
Janey told the audience: “I am absolutely stunned and honoured to win an award for something that I was told to be ashamed of for so long, my ain Scots tongue.”
Event founder Simon Thoumire of organisers Hands Up For Trad said: “Janey’s voiceovers held the public health briefing messages whilst ensuring we could find laughter at the situation, it was such a joy to have her join the Scots Language Awards audience live on the night, and we were thrilled to receive a record number of public votes for her.”
Deputy First Minister John Swinney stated: “The Scottish Government is proud to be a sponsor of the Scots Language Awards again this year. We have seen a breadth of talent come to the fore in the past two years and this can only go from strength to strength while increasing the use of Scots in everyday life.
“My congratulations to all those who were nominated and I wish them well in the future.”
Viewers were treated to videos, live chats and interviews with the Winners of 12 Awards, plus performances from Gerda Stevenson, Jim Malcolm, Shona Donaldson and last year’s Scots Performer o the Year Winner Gary Robertson. Winners included the Lifelang Achievement Award, won by Jack Stuart, and the Janet Paisley Services to Scots Award sponsored by Creative Scotland, which this year went to James Robertson. See below for the full list of winners.
Karen Dick, Interim Head of Place, Partnerships & Communities at Creative Scotland said: “This second edition of the Scots Language Awards is a fantastic celebration of the vibrancy and diversity of Scots language and culture. This year, Creative Scotland is especially proud to sponsor the Janet Paisley Services to Scots Award. We’d also like to offer our many congratulations to James Robertson, recognising a lifetime of achievement as a writer, poet, editor and ambassador for the Scots language.”
Marylin MacLean Waters, Qualifications Manager of Languages in Scots, German, Urdu, Gaelic (Learners and Gàidhlig at the SQA Qualifications Directorate added: “Thank you to Hands Up For Trad for the chance to be involved in this year’s Scots Language Awards again. SQA developed and launched a wheen of new qualifications in Scots back in 2014 (https://www.sqa.org.uk/sqa/70056.html). Working closely with our networks of teachers and education professionals, it is fantastic to see how students of all ages have embraced wholeheartedly the opportunity to learn about the history and development of Scots, and to communicate in Scots in contemporary, creative and incredibly inspiring ways. Although things are looking very different this year, the power of Scots to bring creative and professional communities together continues to grow, as this excellent event demonstrates all too well. Good luck everyone!”
Building on the success of the ‘Blether wi’ Heather’ broadcasts Hands Up For Trad’s been doing during lockdown, presenter Alistair Heather spoke online with Itchy Coo during the week and hosted a live Wee Gaitherin’ between 11am and 5pm on the Saturday. The Wee Gaitherin’ included sessions with Shetland ForWirds, Faa-Fit an Fitwye (including Frieda Morrison, Director o Scots Radio, and Dawn Leslie from Aberdeen University, and Oor Vyce. At 3pm the Scots In Education session saw The Scots Language Centre’s Laura Green joined by writer/storyteller Susi Briggs and Scottish Language Dictionaries’ CEO Rhona Alcorn to talk about all that is new and exciting in Scots in education. Audiences learned about how Scots features in the curriculum at different stages, the impact that it has on children and the resources available to help children learn Scots.
Bruce Eunson of Education Scotland said: “Followin on fae the inaugural awards in 2019, it’s fantastic tae see sae mony inspirin projects, books an fowk gittin a chance tae share an celebrate thir wark. We at Education Scotland ir delighted tae be involved agayn, an wid lik tae gie a big thank you tae aa the schuils, teachers, wee weans an braw bairns wha hiv excelled in thir use o Scots language in classrooms aa across the country.”
The 12 Award Categories, Sponsors & Winners are:
1) Scots Writer o the Year
2) Scots Media Person o the Year
Paul McNichol and Ronny Costello, Dode Fox Podcast, (Dundee Utd. Podcast)
3) Scots Bairns Book o the Year, sponsored by Scottish Government
The Itchy Coo Book o Hans Christian Andersen by various (Itchy Coo)
4) Scots Speaker o the Year
5) Young Scots Writer sponsored by Education Scotland
6) Scots Teacher o the Year, sponsored by the Scottish Qualifications Authority
Claire Kerr, St Andrew’s Primary School
7) Scots Schuil o the Year, sponsored by Itchy Coo and Black & White Publishing
Banff Academy, Aberdeenshire
8) Scots Project o the Year
Wee Windaes – National Library of Scotland
9) Scots Business o the Year
The Wee Book Company
10) Scots Performer o the Year sponsored by Traditional Arts & Culture Scotland (TRACS)
11) The Lifelang Achievement Award
12) Janet Paisley Services to Scots sponsored by Creative Scotland
Simon Thoumire of organisers Hands Up For Trad finished saying: “I’m so thrilled at the calibre of this year’s incredible winners for 2020’s Scots Language Awards, which in all ways are reflective of the pivots taking place within culture due to Coronavirus and the lockdown.”
Organising body, Hands Up for Trad funded by The National Lottery through Creative Scotland, was formed in 2002 and exists to increase the profile and visibility of traditional Scottish music and culture through information, advocacy and education to artists, participants and audiences.
In 2019, The United Nations Year of Indigenous Language, Hands Up for Trad launched this new annual award ceremony for Scotland’s vibrant cultural calendar, celebrating the best in the Scots Language, in association with Creative Scotland. In a prestigious ceremony at Glasgow’s Mitchell Library Theatre, the Award’s many other sponsors including Education Scotland and Itchy Coo / Black & White Publishing gathered together for an evening of music and entertainment in the country’s national language spoken by over 30% of the population, particularly in the central and borders regions, rewarding excellence in schools, communities and arts.
In 2021 the Awards are booked to take place in Dundee’s beautiful Marryat Hall, within the city’s Caird Hall, but for 2020 it’s all about making things happen to keep going forward whilst also celebrating and recognising those who work with the Scots language, and the event will take place online.
Scots Language has long been used by authors, spoken in our top films, and is experiencing a contemporary year on year resurgence via social media as communities connect led by the public, influencers, and media alike.
Keep up to date on Twitter @handsupfortrad Instagram @handsupfortrad, watch on Facebook https://www.facebook.com/handsupfortrad and use hashtag
Press: For further information please contact Chris Hunt at Genuine via firstname.lastname@example.org
For more Janey Godley Images please visit https://janeygodley.com/download-graphics/
For logos and image of Awards Presenter Alistair Heather visit https://www.dropbox.com/sh/leuhc2uvr8u8qx5/AABMUTk_xmnG_JsXE9Ohnv3ia?dl=0
Notes to Editors:
Creative Scotland is the public body that supports the arts, screen and creative industries across all parts of Scotland on behalf of everyone who lives, works or visits here. They enable people and organisations to work in and experience the arts, screen and creative industries in Scotland by helping others to develop great ideas and bring them to life. They distribute funding provided by the Scottish Government and the National Lottery.
For further information about Creative Scotland please visit www.creativescotland.com. Follow them @creativescots and www.facebook.com/CreativeScotland
This post is also available in: Scots