Where did that year go!

Well sorry for the lack of communication but the last 12 months just seem to have skidded by with a severe lack of info to my website, must try harder!

It’s obviously been a busy year with trips around the UK and abroad , meeting old friends and making new ones. A few highlights were teaching with the lovely Susan Enochsson in  Kristianstad in February  in southern Sweden, performing Tom Pow`s prose cycle Nine Nests with cellist Alex McQuiston at the Edinburgh Harp Festival in April, getting Chris Wood to the Moniaive Folk Festival and playing in the Macmath Collective  at Dumfries and Galloway Arts Festival,  both in May.

June was the silly amount of flying, something I need to watch I know, but all wonderful trips – to Bavaria to play at the annual Pfingsten meeting in Marktwald,  to Iceland for the fantastic Vaka Festival http://www.thjodlist.is/vakaen/vaka-2015 organised by Chris Foster and Bara Grimsdottir, then to northern Germany for midsummer music and finally to the USA through to mid July. Ohio Scottish Arts School felt great to be back, such a hoot meeting old friends and such enthusiasm from the students then I finally taught at Common Ground on the Hill in Maryland,  a ground breaking festival that explores so much more than music and where I met and shared special time with such luminaries as Guy Davies, Professor Louie, Bruce Molsky and members of the Veteran`s Initiative. All this thanks to great friends Sue Richards, Jen Narkevicius , Jo and Wayne Morrison – I love you all!

Calmer waters were much needed after all that and I re-girded the musical loins (!) for my annual foray to Brancepeth Castle in County Durham for the great course run by Jen, Steven and Louise  very closely followed by our annual harp build course at Wallaceton Hall with Christoph and Eva of Klangwerkstatt. Another 12 Bohemian harps made and much wine a food consumed.

I finished the month by leading a singing walk – Songlines – as part of the second Environmental Arts Festival of Scotland,  based at Morton Castle just near to us. A very special weekend full of amazing images that will stay with me for a long time. Indeed, only this last weekend , I felt a similar sense of wonder at the unique bond of people experiencing life enriching moments together when I stayed the night at Sanctuary – a 24 festival of light and dark in the Galloway Forest Park. sanctuary2015.org  It surely is a grand rich place to live round here………….

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