It is hard to believe that the Eyemouth International Storytelling Festival is over for yet another year! It is such a happy event and I am just so grateful to the team of very talented storytellers and musicians who support us!
First of all we have Donald Nelson who has been with us since 2012 when we started in Gunsgreen House and long before we moved to the primary school. Donald now lives in Balloch and volunteers with Lambhill Stables which is a local community resource. Way, way in the distant past, he travelled and lived in Israel, was a lobster fisherman off the West coast of Scotland then worked in social work. He has also been a plumber, a library assistant and a stagehand. Donald tells stories and plays several instruments – and is very, very funny!
Ruth Kirpatrick has also worked in social work – and still does. She is originally from the North – East, the land of the Doric and her mentor was the late, great Stanley Robertson. I hope I am right in saying, traveller Sheila Stewart of Blairgowrie, gave her the confidence to sing. Sheila once told me I sang with the cooniach (no idea of the spelling, I am afraid) which was a great compliment. Ruth has worked with arts therapists and prison warders and her book is called “Stories All Ways”.
Robert Howat has been a tour guide in Edinburgh, an actor, a historical re-enactor and he is now a film maker with several of his films short listed for awards. He is also one of the Walking Theatre Company. He is also a great favourite with the Eyemouth children, delivering all his stories with loads of gusto and with a variety of funny voices. He is currently learning swordsman ship for a new film which is a cross between “A Game of Thrones” and “Lord of the Rings”.
Then we have Margaret Christison who has also been with us from the beginning. She is a weel-kent face as she lives in Innerwick and, believe it or not, Margaret went to Eyemouth High School. She lectures at the Jewel and Eskimo College but she is also an artist, cartoonist, singer/songwriter/, guitarist/fiddle player and a storyteller. She performs a lot locally and entertains wee ones, which I can’t do.
Lastly we have Macastory, Ron Fairweather and Fergus McNicol. Recently, they reminded me that I gave them one of their first bookings, way back in 2004 when they started out and zaibatsu was teaching in Gleniffer High School. Their themed shows are full of “madness, mayhem and great humour”. In his time, Ron has been a deep-sea fisherman and, wait for it, a chef on Crete. Fergus is from Cumbernauld and Jedburgh. He has taught in the U.S.A. and here in Scotland. What is surprising, Fergus is dead keen on Zumba and is a fully qualified Zumba instructor. Way to go, Fergus!
Now I can get back to my precious as I haven’t lifted a book for a fortnight. Where do I start?
Happy Reading and all things connected!