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Scotland Calendar of Festivals 2008

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SUMMER FESTIVALS
Cultural and music festivals take place throughout Scotland during the summer months. They attract a global audience, and the city of Edinburgh even doubles its population in size during the month of August when the Edinburgh Festivals are in town.

Edinburgh International Film Festival: 19-28 June 2008

The Edinburgh International Film Festival features the best in international and British film making. A diverse programme includes everything from red carpet premiers to small low budget short films. Day and evening events.
Programme available online from 7 May 2008. Booking online from: 9 May 2008. www.edfilmfest.org.uk

Edinburgh International Jazz & Blues Festival: 25 July to 3 August 2008
The longest-running jazz festival in the UK features all styles of jazz from international artists in all sorts of venues large and small across the capital. Outdoor concerts also take the music out into the streets of the city. Supplemented by vocal workshops and a summer school for aspiring jazz musicians. Tel: +44 (0)131 467 5200 www.edinburghjazzfestival.co.uk

Edinburgh Military Tattoo: 1-23 August 2008

The Edinburgh Military Tattoo is an extravaganza with breathtaking displays of massed pipes and drums, military bands and dancers from around the world. Evening events. Packages including accommodation and tickets are available through various tour operators at www.cometoscotland.com  / www.cometoscotland.ca  The box office is open now and the full programme will be announced in July. Check the website for more information: www.edintattoo.co.uk

Edinburgh Festival Fringe: 3-25 August 2008
The Edinburgh Festival Fringe is the world’s largest arts festival and features the best in comedy, theatre, dance, children’s shows and music. 2007 saw 28,000 performances in 261 venues throughout Edinburgh. Day and evening events. Programmes available online early June 2008. Booking: Box office opens 9 June 2008 www.edfringe.com

Edinburgh International Festival: 8-31 August 2008
The Edinburgh International Festival showcases over 3 weeks of the best opera, theatre, dance and classical music from throughout the world. Day and evening events. Programmes are available online from 2 April 2008
Booking: Box office opens 12 April 2008 www.eif.co.uk

Edinburgh International Book Festival: 9-25 August 2008

The world’s largest literary festival features a varied programme of discussions, readings, lectures, debates, workshops and many opportunities to meet internationally renowned authors. Day and evening events.
Programme available online from June 2008. Booking from June 2008
www.edbookfest.co.uk

CONNECT MUSIC FESTIVAL, Inveraray: 29 August to 31 August 2008
Connect Music Festival is Scotland’s new three-day boutique event held in the stunning grounds of Inveraray Castle, situated on the banks of Loch Fyne in Argyll, one of Scotland’s most beautiful lochs. Acts in 2007 included The Beastie Boys, Amy Macdonald, The Jesus and Mary Chain, Teenage Fanclub, Sons and daughters, Primal Scream and Bjork.
Tickets On Sale Now! www.connectmusicfestival.com  

ST MAGNUS FESTIVAL, Orkney:20-25 June 2008
Orkney’s annual celebration of the arts has become one of Britain’s most highly regarded and adventurous arts events, featuring music, drama, dance, literature and the visual arts in a unique combination of world-class performance and community participation. Coupled with the magic of Orkney at midsummer, it’s no wonder audiences come from Britain and abroad. www.stmagnusfestival.com

T IN THE PARK, Balado, Perthshire:11-13 July 2008
Now in its second decade, T in the Park has become one of the most important and critically acclaimed music events on the UK and European festival circuit. Tickets for last year’s event sold out inside a record-breaking one hour for a hotly anticipated bill featuring a staggering number of top names, including Franz Ferdinand, the Strokes, the Red Hot Chilli Peppers, the Who, Arctic Monkeys and the Kaiser Chiefs. In Oct 2006, it won the prestigious title of ‘Best Major Festival’ at the UK Festival Awards for the second year running and has been short listed for several categories in the UK Festival Awards this year. www.tinthepark.com

THE WICKERMAN FESTIVAL, Dumfries & Galloway:25-26 July 2008
Scotland’s alternative music festival offers a unique and eclectic celebration of cult musical genres and cult cinema with a relaxed, laidback family-friendly atmosphere, aimed at the more discerning contemporary music fan. All the action climaxes with the burning of a giant traditional willow and straw effigy.
www.thewickermanfestival.co.uk

PIPING LIVE, Glasgow: 11-17 August 2008
Glasgow’s festival of piping returns with the best in Scottish and International piping talent to celebrate the finest current and emerging piping music. Some of the biggest names in piping will be performing in outdoor spaces and venues throughout Glasgow City Centre for this uniquely Scottish event.
www.pipingfestival.co.uk

WINTER FESTIVALS

Edinburgh’s Christmas: Late November to late December 2008
With a glittering choice of festive celebrations, chic shopping and fine dining set against the shimmering backdrop of this historic city – in December Edinburgh truly sparkles. www.edinburghschristmas.com

Edinburgh’s Hogmanay: Late December – 1 January 2009

Recognised the world over as the true home of Hogmanay, Edinburgh brings in the New Year in style. The city comes alive with processions, street theatre, live pop and classical concerts, indoor and outdoor ceilidhs – all combined with the warmest welcome you will find anywhere in the world. www.edinburghshogmanay.com

CELTIC CONNECTIONS, Glasgow: January 2009
Some of the leading names in folk and world music will perform in Glasgow at the 16th Celtic Connections festival in 2009. Taking place in venues across Glasgow, Celtic Connections is the UK’s premier Celtic music festival, with over 300 concerts, ceilidhs, talks, free events, late night sessions and workshops. www.celticconnections.com

Acts that appeared at the 2008 festival included Bert Jansch, Steve Earle, Lau, Flook, The Duhks, Paul Brady and Andy Irvine (performing their eponymous classic album), Shooglenifty, Capercaillie, Moving Hearts, Catherine Feeny, Cara Dillon, singer-songwriter K.D. Lang (whose
performance is one of just three European dates to showcase her new album, Watershed) and legendary Rolling Stones bassist Bill Wyman and his band, the Rhythm Kings.

KEY EVENTS DURING 2009

HOMECOMING SCOTLAND 2009

Homecoming Scotland takes place next year to celebrate the 250th anniversary of the birth of Scotland’s national poet, Robert Burns. Known the world over for works such as ‘Auld Lang Syne’ and ‘A red, red rose’, this year of celebration is an excellent time to visit Scotland to celebrate in our rich culture and heritage.

Focusing on five different pillars, the year-long celebration will include events which will encompass golf, whisky, ancestry, enlightenment and of course Burns’.

A full listing of the year-long programme of events will be announced at the start of June.

Go to www.homecomingscotland2009.com  to find out more.

The Gathering: 25-26 July 2009
As part of Homecoming Scotland 2009, Edinburgh will play host to one of the largest ever clan gatherings and Highland Games events to take place in Scotland in recent years. At the heart of this weekend-long event will be a grand clan parade, the like of which has not been seen on Scottish soil since Sir Walter Scott’s Royal pageant of 1822. Around 8,000 clanspeople are expected to parade from the Royal palace of Holyroodhouse, along Edinburgh’s historic Royal Mile, to take their seats on Edinburgh Castle’s esplanade – site of the world-famous tattoo. Here, beneath the Castle ramparts a spectacular clan pageant will unfold, with pipers, massed bands and Highland dancers tracing the history of the Scottish Clans through the ages.

For more information visit www.thegathering2009.com

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