Congratulations to TIONAL – Virtual Gaelic Festival who have been nominated in Event of the Year in the MG ALBA Scots Trad Music Awards 2020. Vote here! Vote now!
We asked Joy Dunlop of TIONAL – Virtual Gaelic Festival the following questions.
Tell us about yourself
TIONAL, meaning a gathering / the act of gathering or collecting, was the first ever virtual Gaelic Music Festival weekend. Organised by Hands Up For Trad, with funding support from Bòrd na Gàidhlig’s COVID-19 Support Fund, the weekend united Gaelic speakers from across the globe, in a celebration of music, culture and heritage.
Curated and presented by Joy Dunlop, TIONAL encompassed a full weekend programme of concerts, cèilidhs and workshops; all broadcast live via Facebook and YouTube, featuring a host of Gaeldom’s finest traditional musicians. Undertaken fully through the medium of Gaelic, the festival reached Gaels throughout the globe; with viewers tuning in from more than 20 countries world-wide. Thanks to the innovative flexibility of online digital entertainment, both fluent Gaelic speakers and learners alike used their language skills to interact online with each other throughout the weekend, with thousands tuning in to celebrate their Gaelic heritage.
8pm – Kathleen MacInnes in concert
9pm – Hands Up For Trad Cèilidh House, featuring Norrie McIver, Ian Smith and Iain ‘Costello’ MacIver
12pm – Covid Choral Workshop with Joy Dunlop
1pm – Clàrsach workshop with Calum Macleod
2pm – Lunchtime concert with Marit & Rona
3pm – Scottish Pipes workshop with Alana MacInnes
4pm – Scottish Step dance workshop with Sophie Stephenson
5pm – Hands Up For Trad Cèilidh House, featuring James Graham, Christine Primrose, Pàdruig Moireasdan
7pm – Evening concert, featuring Mary Anne Kennedy, Brìghde Chaimbeul, Brian Oheadhra & Fionnghal NicChoinnich, Ciorstaidh Beaton and Seonaidh MacIntyre & John Alec Mackay
9pm – Fairich audio-visual showcase with Whyte
1pm – Lunchtime concert with Iain MacFarlane & Ingrid Henderson
2pm – Fiddle playing for dancing workshop with Shona Masson
3pm – An audience with Arthur Cormack
4pm – Gaelic song for Learners workshop with Maeve Mackinnon
5pm – Final Hands Up For Trad Cèilidh House, featuring Misha MacPherson, Robbie Greig and Raymond Bremner
Why are you involved in Scottish music?
Very simply – we love and value every aspect of our cultural heritage and will fight tooth and nail to protect, nurture and grow its every aspect.
Joy Dunlop was brought up steeped in the Gaelic tradition of Argyll and owes her performing career to the support and opportunities she was afforded over the years. She’s immensely proud of her language and culture and makes every effort to give back to her community. Joy was thrilled to be given the opportunity to present her heritage on a virtual, global stage – something that’s particularly important at this difficult time. .
Hands Up for Trad was formed in 2002 and exists to increase the profile and visibility of Scottish Traditional Music through Information, Education and Advocacy. Steered by Simon Thoumire, a recognised virtuoso musician in his own right, Hands Up for Trad’s primary aim is to promote excellence and support developing talent within Scottish traditional music.
Any particular career highlights?
Whilst the whole TIONAL weekend was a joy from start to finish, the fact that we managed to support the Scottish traditional music world by providing paid work to over 30 freelance professionals, was hugely important. The COVID-19 pandemic has robbed so many of their livelihood and it was huge important to us to support our Gaelic heritage, through the creation of online performances, so that artists could continue to develop professionally in their hard-earned field.
What are your plans for the future?
Planning TIONAL 2, of course! After the success of our inaugural virtual festival, Joy is already pestering Simon with ideas for making the next festival bigger than better, which is obviously a huge delight to poor Simon… 😉
Cùmaibh cluas ri claisneachd, a chàirdean!
Read more about TIONAL – Virtual Gaelic Festival
The MG ALBA Scots Trad Music Awards, Na Trads 2020, will be broadcast on BBC ALBA on 12th December 2020 at 9pm where the award winners will be announced along with specially recorded music performances. During the day on Saturday the 12th, you will be able to watch from 1pm til 9pm a day of live Scottish trad music including Kinnaris Quintet, Dallahan, Inyal, Paul McKenna Band, Ryan Young and Jenn Butterworth and many more here https://youtu.be/amByvVzxl5E. Keep up to date with all the latest information by joining the Hands Up for Trad newsletter at https://handsup.link/Newsletter or use the hashtags #natrads #HUFTonline.
If you would like to support Hands Up for Trad in their work with Scottish trad music and musicians please consider supporting our Patreon campaign. We have 3 tiers starting at $1 a month and everything helps support us in our work. Read more at www.patreon.com/handsupfortrad