East Neuk Festival project shortlisted for top award

volunteers gathered together to begin preparations for their performance at  East Neuk Festival. Picture by Peter Adamson.
volunteers gathered together to begin preparations for their performance at East Neuk Festival. Picture by Peter Adamson.

The East Neuk Festival’s 2018 Big Project Lost at Sea has been shortlisted in the 2019 Scottish Awards for New Music’s Community/Education Project category.

Working in partnership with Waid Academy, the Scottish Fisheries Museum and Pittenweem Fishermen’s Memorial Association, ENF’s 2018 Big Project Lost at Sea brought together school pupils from the local area and renowned composer/sound artist Scanner to create a memorial for men of the East Neuk fishing industry who lost their lives at sea.

Drawing on field recordings, marine hymns, and oral histories, the pupils worked closely with Scanner over a period of six weeks, contributing their own recordings and ideas to the piece which was given its world premiere in Waid Academy.

All proceeds went to the Pittenweem Fishermen’s Memorial Association fund to help create a memorial in honour of the men of the East Neuk fishing industry.

ENF’S award-winning Big Project series presents annual commissions by major artists who bring together professional and community musicians to reflect on themes of local importance, inspired by the distinctive heritage and beauty of the East Neuk.

The theme in 2016 commemorated the men from the East Neuk who fell in World War I while 2017 was dedicated to Fife miners.

As part of the 15th East Neuk Festival which takes place from June 26 to 30, the project will team the world-renowned Scottish percussionist Colin Currie and his Quartet with participants of the East Neuk to perform a set of sea-inspired interludes created by Graeme Leak.

An open call-out is being made for at least 100 performers of any age (7+) or ability: Graeme Leak will teach everyone all they need to know in workshops, and will lead the world premiere at Waid Academy on June 29 as part of a concert.

No musical experience or training is required to take part in the 2019 ENF Big Project and all instruments will be provided. Rehearsal sessions will take place between 26-29 June in venues in and around Anstruther ahead of the performance Founded in 2004, the East Neuk Festival invites audiences on a musical adventure in beautiful and intimate locations across the fishing villages and towns of the East Neuk of Fife’s picturesque coastline.

ENF takes place this year from June 26 – June 30.