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Diluain, 15/June/2015

Islay cat video

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As most people know the internet was invented to share cat pictures. And videos. Of course I've had Cat Content for the Islay Blog previously, but as you can never have enough kittens here's another one from Islay:

YouTube: Cute cat in Port Charlotte on Islay

That's all for tonight, I hope you enjoyed the short video.

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Didòmhnaich, 14/June/2015

Cantilena Festival July 2015 on Islay

Islay Events written in stencil

Not the usual post for a Sunday evening, but having to deal with some unexpected problems (all resolved now) stopped me from blogging this last night. ‘This’ is the Cantilena Festival in early July, where Jenny was so kind to send some information for publication:

Cantilena Festival on Islay

July is always the month when Islay welcomes the chamber group Cantilena to the island to perform a series of concerts under the banner of Cantilena Festival on Islay.

Professional players of this group include Scott Mitchell who is on the staff of Royal Conservatoire of Scotland and teaches piano and accompaniment. Scott also has a busy career as soloist, chamber music player and also accompanist. Angus Ramsay who leads the second violins in Scottish Opera Orchestra and also teaches in Royal Conservatoire of Scotland. Sarah Harrington plays cello in the Scottish Opera Orchestra, Stephen Shakeshaft enjoys a career as a freelance viola player and Paul Marrion who was principal bass player in London Symphony Orchestra and then BBC Symphony Orchestra but now enjoys retirement back in Scotland.

Angus and Scott are the Artistic Directors of Cantilena Festival on Islay which they founded in 2001 along with Adrian Shepherd.

The professional players will be joined by 5 senior or post graduate students of the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland. These students are not paid but are given their accommodation, food and subsistaqnce and the opportunity to rehearse and perform in an atmosphere quite different to the confines of a Conservatoire. This week long experience helps prepare them for their future as professional musicians.

Pre-Festival events

Although the Festival will run from Sunday 5 July – Friday 10 July Cantilena will be performing on Islay the week prior to the Festival.

This will include a private function aboard The Hebridean Princess which will be docked at Port Ellen.

A FIRST FOR CANTILENA AND PORTNAHAVEN

Cantilena for the first time will perform in an area of the island which has to date not been visited by the group. The players will present a concert in Rhinns Hall in Portnahaven on Thursday 2 July at 8pm. This will be a short concert of light classical music to suit everyone. Tickets for this concert are priced £7 and may be purchased at the door on the night.

On Friday 3 July, a few players of Cantilena will entertain visitors to Coal Ila distillery at the end of their afternoon tour. This again is an area of the island where the players have not visited.

Concerts for the 2015 Cantilena on Islay Festival - 5 – 10 July

Concerts for the Festival take place all over the island – mostly in distilleries = but the Festival opens with a piano recital given by Havilland Willshire in the Columba Centre in Bowmore. Come along and enjoy pieces by Schubert, Brahms, Ravel and Chopin.

The Festival continues on Monday 6th in Laphroaig distillery. This is a showcase concert for our students. Please come and support our young people as they present a mixed programme which will display their incredible talents. The concert will end with a Dvorak Serenade for strings played by the whole group. This is always a popular concert.

The Festival continues on Tuesday 7th with a concert in Lagavulin distillery featuring music by Vivaldi, Rossini, Mendelssohn.

On Wednesday 8th the players return to Columba Centre to present a programme of piano quartets and quintets this time featureing the string players and Scott Mitchell on piano.

Thursday 9th will be in Ardbeg distillery and will feature a programme of Italian music. Cantilena is happy to welcome for the first time to Islay, Allan Neave, a highly talented guitar players who is Head of Guitar and Harp Studies at Royal Conservatoire of Scotland. Allan is in demand all over the world as a soloist and the programme this evening will include a Vivaldi Guitar Concerto and also a Concerto by Boccherini.

The Festival closes on Friday 10th in Bruichladdich with a mixed programme including Mendelssohn and Dvorak and in the second half some Cantilena favourites in our “Classical Ceilidh”.

All concerts start at 8 pm and tickets may be purchased at Celtic House in Bowmore or at the door on the evening of the concert

Unfortunately I will just miss the main concerts as my holiday on Islay will just be over when it kicks off, I'm hoping to visit the pre-festival concert though. I'm sure the festival will be a great event again.

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Dihaoine, 12/June/2015

Friday Islay Picture #364 - Wave at the Wreck

Friday Islay Picture in stencil

Two weeks into summer (well, kind of, it's not really been much of a summer so far), a week to go until I leave for my next Islay visit. So I think I'll better post a last Friday Islay picture before I leave. Here's one of one my favourite photo subjects as I think it's quite photogenic when the tide is right:

Picture of a wreck on a beach with a wave rolling in

The wreck I'm told is believed to be an early steamship called Patti and wrecked in the 1840s. Quite impressive that so much of it has survived so long. With that, good night for now and have a great weekend!

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Diardaoin, 11/June/2015

Arctic Circle Whisky Club at the Islay Festival 2015

Islay on Video written in stencil

That didn't entirely go to plan. Last week I mentioned I was hoping to blog a bit more here again, but no blogging since Saturday. Well, on Sunday I went to the Brimpton Airfield Open Day and it got a bit late with editing the pictures. After that life in general got in the way in various guises. Anyway, managed to find a bit of time this evening and found a nice video from the Arctic Circle Whisky Club's visit from Norway to the Islay Festival 2015:

YouTube: Islay Tour 2015

I hope you've enjoyed the video, if all goes to plan this time there will be a Friday Islay picture tomorrow evening. Good night for now.

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Disathairne, 06/June/2015

Islay High School student asks What is Beauty?

Islay on Video written in stencil

Three weeks ago I posted about Fichead Bliadhna, a Gaelic short film by students at Islay High School. Yesterday (via the Facebook page of The Old Excise House) I came across another film, this time in English, so much easier to understand for many of us. Here Heather and her friends ask and answer ‘What is Beauty?’:

Beauty FINAL from Islay High School on Vimeo.

Very well done by Heather who wrote, directed and produced the film, with music by Amelia as well as Alasdair guiding us through the film. Heather is planning to attend the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland, with such good work I'm sure she'll be very successful.

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Dihaoine, 05/June/2015

Friday Islay Picture #363 - Meandering over the beach

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Yay, weekend after another busy week. And only two weeks to go until I'm on way to my next Islay visit. One of the place I will certainly visit several times is Machir Bay, where Allt Gleann na Ceardaich runs across the beach next to the path through the dunes:

Picture of a burn (river) meandering across a beach

I think I'll leave it at that, good night and have a great weekend!

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Diciadain, 03/June/2015

Islay Pipe Band British Champions 2015!

Islay Music in stencil

Sorry it's been quiet here for a while, had a very busy time in the day job. Hope to find a bit more time to blog here now until I leave for my summer (assuming summer actually arrives soon…) visit to Islay. Anyway, back to blogging here with some great news as the Islay Pipe Band just became British Champions 2015 in Grade 3A. Here's a video of their performance:

YouTube: Islay Pipe Band, British Championships 2015

The results for Grade 3A show a very convincing win:

Congratulations to this fantastic start to the season and fingers crossed for more silverware in the upcoming competitions! Talking about winning, earlier in May they also won at the Highland Games in Gourock, here's a rather windy bonus video of the stormy performance:

YouTube: Gourock 2015 - Isle of Islay Pipe Band

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Diardaoin, 14/May/2015

Islay High School: Fichead Bliadhna

Islay on Video written in stencil

OK, I admit I don't understand a word. But I think at least some of my readers will, so it's worth sharing. Not to forget that I've shared previous entries as well. Entries? Yes, because this was Islay High School's entry for FilmG the Gaelic short film competition 2015:

YouTube: Fichead Bliadhna

This year's theme was ‘Gealladh’ which means ‘promise’, ‘vow’ or ‘wager’. They tackled it as follows:

The pupils in Islay have big plans for the future and make a pact to meet again in 20 years, will everything have gone to plan?

Or more fittingly in Gaelic:

Tha planaichean mòra aig a’ chlas dhaibh fhèin san fhichead bliadhna a tha ri thighinn – saoil an tèid dhaibh a tha iad an dùil?

As I unfortunately can't understand what they are saying I have to resort to guessing: Did one of them become a Hollywood actress in LA? And another went into fishing (or some other seafaring profession)?

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Didòmhnaich, 10/May/2015

Islay Blogging Roundup #326

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That's a fairly productive weekend slowly coming to an end, got quite a few things done I had wanted to do for some time. Unfortunately didn't get to fly the new Phantom 3 yet, as while I was able to pick it up from BYOD on Saturday it unfortunately was too windy for a first flight this weekend. Hope I manage to get some good practice in before my next Islay visit. But enough of that, over to another quick Islay blogging roundup:

Becky writes about the Marathon of Marathons, which included a distillery marathon on Islay. Matt experienced some Wind swept adventures on Islay. Ron had A Stunning Walk up Beinn Bheigeir.

The Whisky Wash writes about Telling The Story Of Islay The Bob Simon Way and Tarnmoor writes about the Smoky Nectar of the Gods. The Alkoblog from Germany writes Exklusiv: Wiedereröffnung von Port Charlotte nicht 2016 (although I don't think that's a big surprise to anyone) and has Stürmische Stunden: Lagavulin 12 Cask Strength im Test. The Bruichladdich News blog announces this year's Essential Maintenance Period and is looking for donations/sponsorship for Team Bruichladdich To Ride The Etape Caledonia.

On the Islay Birds blog we find pictures of a Dotterel and a Corncrake before Ian returns from foreign lands. On the RSPB Islay blog the New bird on the block introduces herself and David posts more pictures of the Dotterel.

Mark Unsworth's Image of the week shows the Islay ferry MV Finlaggan. James Collett brings us the Kilchoman Bay Shipwreck and the very well spotted Dragon Fossils. Ron has some Loch Indaal Lighthouse pictures. From my own Islay Pictures photoblog I've picked Breaking waves over rocks in Saligo Bay, the Beach in Port An Eas and a Big wave splash in front of the Opera House Rocks, Isle of Islay.

That's all for this roundup, I hope you've found something interesting.

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Disathairne, 09/May/2015

Family holiday on Islay and Jura video

Islay on Video written in stencil

Tonight a new video from someone I've already shared two previous videos from. Last year I blogged Family visit to Islay's Saligo Bay (video) and Impressions of Port Charlotte, Islay. Now Sauli Puro from Finland (who also makes music) has composed and recorded some new music and combined it with some impressions from Islay and Jura:

YouTube: Drystone: Images Of Islay

I hope you've enjoyed Sauli's video, some nice views I think. Should wet your appetite for another Islay holiday…

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