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      Uist and Benbecula News

The iconic accordion tune Dark Island has been released as a classical music piece by English pianist Dmytro Morykit.

Commenting on his new release, available on Amazon, Morykit said: "This Scottish folk song works beautifully as a classical piano piece."

He is a composer of original music for film, theatre, dance and public performance. 

"Dark Island" was originally composed in 1963 by Iain MacLachlan, an accordion player from Creagorry in Benbecula. The tune was initially entitled "Dr. Mackay's Farewell to Creagorry," after a local physician.

However, the title evolved into "The Dark Island" after being used for a BBC thriller by the same name, filmed in Benbecula in 1963. Composer David Silver of Inverness set song lyrics to MacLachlan's air. 

The tune also has Gaelic lyrics and is known as "Eilean Dorcha." Today, "Dark Island" is regarded as one of Scotland's best-known songs.

However, Morykit's rendition of the tune as a classical piano release could be a first.

Morykit's father is Ukrainian, and his mother is Italian. They met after being displaced to the UK after World War II.

Morkykit was born in Northampton and began playing the piano at age five. He is an award-winning musician who made his home in Edinburgh in 1988 after visiting Richard Demarco, the Scottish artist and impresario.

Morykit has an extensive track record of collaborations with dance and theatre companies. In 1989, he accompanied Demarco and other artists on a cultural expedition to communist Poland.

He was commissioned by Angus Calder and Amnesty International (Scotland) in 1996 for a performance of 12 poems with music for the Commonwealth Head of State's' visit to Edinburgh at the Queen's Hall, Edinburgh.

In 2007, the Scottish Consul General of Ukraine commissioned him to write a piece commemorating the 75th anniversary of Stalin’s Holodomor famine. The resulting collaboration with choreographer Steinvor Palsson was a dance film, Portrait of Evil.

He has composed work for several short films and, in 2010, with Brian May's permission, arranged Queen's Bohemian Rhapsody for piano to accompany the protest video; Donald Trump does Bohemian Rhapsody.

He has also composed scores for silent movies, the classic science fiction Metropolis and Nosferatu.