Scotland welcomes the Olympic Torch with a Summer of Song (19/03/2012)
Scotland will burst into song as the Olympic Torch weaves its way across the country from 8th to 14th June 2012, before a final visit on 21 June.
Singing a mixture of local favourites, new commissions, anthems, pop songs or traditional music, each community will unite to celebrate in song the values of the Olympic Torch: peace, unity and friendship.
Community choirs and new or existing singing ensembles will welcome members young and old to perform at key points on the Torch’s route across Scotland. Singers will be recruited from professional or amateur backgrounds and each choir hopes that many new members will continue to enjoy singing collectively long after the Torch has left town.
Creative Scotland and local authorities are backing Summer of Song with investment of £200,000. Creative Scotland has also commissioned artist Roddy Buchanan to capture the Summer of Song on film to create a lasting chronicle of the people, landscapes and cities that the Torch Relay will be part of during June 2012.
Iain Munro, Director of Creative Development, Creative Scotland said: ‘Singing is uplifting, joyous and memorable. Many people sing daily, either as part of their creative lives, with their children, or just in the privacy of their car on their daily commute. Scotland has terrific singers and tremendous songs and Summer of Song is a fitting national celebration to unite communities through culture and welcome the Olympic Torch in this, the Year of Creative Scotland.’
Cabinet Secretary for Culture and External Affairs Fiona Hyslop said: ‘As the Olympic Torch travels through Scotland, the ‘Summer of Song’ will shine a light on the best of our creativity and musical talent. With this year being the Year of Creative Scotland, it is an ideal opportunity to showcase our nation’s creative strengths in the run up to London 2012 and to the Commonwealth Games in 2014.’
On behalf of SOLACE (Society of Local Authority Chief Executives & Senior Managers) Scotland, South Ayrshire Council Executive Director Harry Garland said: ‘Summer of Song is a fantastic way for people and communities to come together to celebrate the Olympic Torch Relay in Scotland and is sure to provide some of the most memorable moments during this wonderful occasion. Singing is such an important part of Scotland’s traditions, so it’s entirely appropriate for song to feature so prominently during the Torch Relay and I hope as many people as possible take the opportunity to join in.’
A taste of the plans for Scotland’s Summer of Song include:
- A specially-created Moray ‘High’ Choir will welcome the Torch at Tomintoul, the highest village in Scotland on the Torch route
- Musician Dougie MacLean will create a song that will feature in a singing relay across Perth and Kinross – and will feature on Radio Tay
- In Rutherglen, a massed choir will sing well known pop songs, including Katy Perry’s Firework as the Torch arrives in the town’s Main Street
- Schoolchildren in Shetland will perform a song written in Shetland dialect on the theme of ‘Light and Flame’
- Composer Kenneth Dempster will present Rising Wave which will bring together Aberdeen’s choirs in song that celebrates the regions people, culture, dialects and connections with the sea
For a full list of events taking place as the Olympic Torch travels through Scotland please see: london2012.com/olympic-torch-relay
At least 10 new songs will be created through the Summer of Song, as well as increasing the involvement of people with little or no singing experience. Young children aged between birth and five years will also take part through the Bookbug Rhyme and Singing sessions, which will see up to 7,000 babies, toddlers and young children take part through playgroups, schools and other events.
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