Music tells story of The Cranston Fiddle

Sheila Sapkota with the Cranston fiddle.

Sheila Sapkota with the Cranston fiddle.

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Riddell Fiddles are rehearsing in earnest for the start of their touring show, The Cranston Fiddle.

The show tells the story of a remarkable family through a remarkable string instrument.

The multimedia project, run by the community group, opens at Yarrow Feus Village Hall on Saturday, June 7, from 7.30-9.30pm.

With text and narration by Haddington-based author and historian Bob Mitchell, and featuring three musical pieces composed by Donald Knox, the true story of a Scottish Brothers in Arms and the sacrifices made during the First World War unfolds.

This story of loss is uniquely told from the perspective of the Cranston’s surviving fiddle, and the traditional music it played and continues to play. The Cranston story is related in terms of the music of the time and what they would have played, as well as the laments it must have been party to.

The project features fiddler, singers, guitarists, percussion, whistle and a small group of teenage musicians from Riddell Fiddles, with slides put together and presented by local photographer Ian Oliver.

The song, Calling down the Line, by Hawick singer-songwriter Alan Brydon, is delivered by Ron Hastings in an emotive rendering which summarises the awfulness of the euphemistically named Great War.

At the end there is the message of hope, with the younger musicians playing and the fiddle singing out over the tunes.

Supported by a grant from the First World War Heritage Lottery Fund, this event will tour the village halls of the Borders and South of Scotland, telling the real human story of a local family – illustrating it through music and with a fiddle that has continued to play through the years and sadness.

Entry to village hall performances will be by donation only, and there will be a small ticket charge to cover hire costs at the larger theatres.

All donations will go towards running costs, with any excess going towards the Riddell Fiddles junior ceilidh band.

Phone the dedicated phone to book a seat at 07719451444.

The organisers are particularly keen to allow all who wish to attend this event, and pre-booked, free transport from set locations may be available on a first come, first served basis.

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