The Scottish International Storytelling Festival (SISF) is inviting audiences in the Outer Hebrides to join them round the hearth of storytelling this autumn, as it launches its 2022 festival theme - Keep It Lit, a symbolic fire where experiences and memories are shared, and the torch of oral storytelling is passed on.
In celebration of Scotland’s Year of Stories, the 2022 festival programme is the largest to date; inviting everyone to the ceilidh - locally, nationally and globally, from Friday 14 to Monday 31 October.
Events will take places on the Isle of Lewis and Isle of North Uist, celebrating the rich history of oral storytelling in the Outer Hebrides. The Fèill Seanchais ann an Sgìre Ùig | Uig Storytelling Festival (Fri 7 & Sat 8 Oct) will feature events in Gaelic and English, performances by storytellers Ian Stephen, Magaidh Smith and Dolina Maclennan, special guests, film screenings and storytelling ceilidhs, in Uig
Catch a mesmerising glimpse into the landscapes, folktales and songs that inspired one of Scotland’s great early collectors of Traditional Arts with Journey to the Isles: Marjory Kennedy-Fraser (Sat 15 Oct). Storyteller Marion Kenny and musician Mairi Campbell weave together words, music and song to evoke the sounds and landscapes captured by the films of this key figure of Scotland’s Celtic Revival.
And enjoy an evening of multimedia storytelling where a world of local Scottish stories unfolds through the live voices of traditional storytellers and film with Map of Stories Film Ceilidh: Outer Hebrides (Sat 15 Oct). Hosted by Hebridean storyteller Ian Stephen, with music from Kenneth Linklater (Lewis).
As events take place across Scotland, SISF also invites audiences from further afield to join them at the fireside with its Global Platform, a series of digital storytelling and development sessions. Hosted by Festival Director, Donald Smith, the Global Platform will cover the Art of the Storyteller(Mon 17 - Fri 21 Oct), as well as guide discussion around the history of oral storytelling and its contemporary renaissance worldwide through its Global Labs (Mon 24 - Fri 28 Oct), held in association with The Earth Stories Collection and Earth Charter International.
Plus, from the start of the festival until Wednesday 30 November, SISF invites communities to take part in The Stone Soup Collective. Based on a European folk story, in which strangers share a small amount of food in order to make a larger meal for everyone to enjoy; at the heart of it is a message of welcoming strangers, kindness, and support. Presented in partnership with Re-Act: Refugee Action Scotland, community Stone Soup events will bring a ceilidh of stories, song, and dance to the heart of Scotland’s communities.
Scottish International Storytelling Festival Director, Donald Smith said: “This is the biggest Storytelling Festival since it began in 1989. It is our widest reach culturally, socially and geographically, marking Scotland's Year of Stories. We are responding to the cost of living crisis with 145 free events, reducing ticket prices, offering a uniquely generous Festival Pass and keeping a specially commissioned digital programme to provide worldwide reach for those who cannot or choose not to travel. Everyone is welcome at our hearthside.”
The Scottish International Storytelling Festival will take place Friday 14 - Monday 31 October. This year, when people’s lives are under pressure on all sides, SISF is striving to make it affordable for everyone. Tickets to each event cost a maximum of £10, with family events costing £5 per ticket.
For those planning on attending multiple events, the Festival Pass offers discounted tickets to many live festival events, online and at the Scottish Storytelling Centre, as well as a discount at the Scottish Storytelling Centre’s bookshop and Haggis Box Café.
To purchase tickets and browse the full programme, visit sisf.org.uk
Performers Shona Cowie and Neil Sutcliffe with Daniel Abercrombie at the launch of the The 2022 Storytelling International Festival