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This challenging musical explosion has resulted in creative and resilient responses. The sheer number of young people coming through the Fèis throughout the Highlands has resulted in entire communities holding workshops and ceilidhs. It is a very exciting time for traditional music.
Tom Bryan, The Living Tradition
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Junior Fèis Tutors for 2017


Angus Binnie Angus Binnie
Born and raised in Cromarty and now living and teaching Bagpipes in Fort William, Angus began piping through the Feis movement, and was later taught by legendary piper Rona Lightfoot. He then went on to study music at Strathclyde University and Lews Castle College, Benbecula. With a few Ceilidhs under his belt, Angus also brings a great passion for electronic music to the band.Under the dj partnership of “Binnie and Hogg”, Angus has been organizing and playing at club nights up and down the country for years, including a dj slot at Glasgow’s infamous night club The Arches.
Steve Fivey Steve Fivey
Steve is originally from Denny near Falkirk and started playing snare drum in The Denny & Dunipace Pipe Band aged 12. He went on to start playing drum kit at 16 and studied percussion at the esteemed Jewel & Esk Valley College in Edinburgh. Since then he has played throughout Scotland with various bands and for a number of famous folk – including Prince Charles and at Billy Connolly’s birthday party! He has developed a reputation as an excellent tutor and as well as teaching at previous Fèisean he has also taught at the Edinburgh Youth Gaitherin and at the Merlin Academy of Traditional Music.
Suzanne Fivey Suzanne Fivey
Suzanne is a Glasgow-based pianist, whistle player and singer. She graduated with a 1st class honours in Scottish Music from RSAMD in 2011, and previous to that attended the National Centre Of Excellence In Traditional Music at Plockton High School for 3 years.
Ali Levack Ali Levack
Ali specialises in piping and whistles and has been immersed in Scottish traditional music since the age of nine when a family friend started teaching him the pipes. At the age of 14 Ali moved to the Plockton National Centre of Excellence for Traditional Music where he spent the next four years under the guidance of the country's best tutors, developing his skills on the Highland bagpipes, various types of small pipes and also gained incredible proficiency on whistles. He then attended the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland and gained from the extraordinary tutelage there while maintaining close links with the best of the country's young musicians including through the Feis movement. Ali has used his skills recently accompanying a wide range of singers and musicians including Mischa MacPherson, Dougie Maclean and - he likes to drop this one in - Kylie Minogue! (He accompanied the final ensemble at the closing ceremony of the Commonwealth Games in Glasgow.)
Debbie MacKay Debbie MacKay
For the past 3 years Debbie has worked as a Gaelic Drama Worker at Eden Court Theatre, Inverness. She is based in Kyle and works in Skye, Lochalsh and Lochaber visiting primary schools, secondary schools, and some community groups, doing anything from drama workshops to plays and productions, as well as the odd film. Current projects with primary school children range from entering a local drama festival to making a Bollywood style film!
Maeve MacKinnon Maeve MacKinnon
Even amid the wealth of gifted musicians thronging today’s Scottish folk scene, singer Maeve Mackinnon stands out as an exceptional young talent. With a repertoire spanning Gaelic and English-language material, both traditional and contemporary, she’s won acclaim equally for the eloquent emotional connection she forges with every song, communicated in a bewitchingly honeyed, husky yet vibrantly earthy voice, and for her music’s dynamic interplay of boldness and sensitivity.
Barry Reid Barry Reid
A highly talented and experienced guitarist, both on electric and acoustic guitars, with years of gigging experience at festivals and venues all over the UK, Europe and the US. The list of bands include The ‘Treacherous Orchestra’, new electronic music band ‘Halcyon’, Lauren MacColl’s ‘The MacCollective’ and Scottish folk fusion group ‘Croft No. Five’. As well as his band performances, Barry works on his solo music career under the name of ‘Spad’ and mixes organic/electronic textures and beats with Scottish instruments and vocals, to create his own new musical style that is already becoming very popular. As well as being a performing musician, Barry also spends much of his time as a recording engineer and producer and has recorded many albums with the top musicians of the Scottish music scene.
Kim Richards Kim Richards
Kim Richards is a visual artist and musician from Ullapool. She was a pupil at the National Centre for Excellence in Traditional Music at Plockton and whilst there she immersed herself in music with tuition on whistles, piano and singing. After completing a BA in Visual Communication and her Educational Diploma in Glasgow, Kim worked as an art teacher in both secondary and primary schools in the central belt. Now, having returned to the Highlands, Kim delivers music education in a number of schools as part of the YMI programme and continues to teach art as well as producing her own beautiful illustrations. She hopes to release an EP of her songs next year.
Sally Simpson Sally Simpson
Sally Simpson, a fiddle player from Edinburgh, graduate of the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland, a past student of the National Centre for Excellence in Traditional Music and Sweden’s Royal Music College, Stockholm. She is passionate about playing and teaching Scottish folk music traditions, as well as developing her knowledge of Swedish folk music and has a number of interesting collaborative projects with various musicians and other art forms.
John Somerville John Somerville
Originally from the Highlands of Scotland, John is one of a new breed of exciting and dynamic accordion players to recently emerge from the vibrant Scottish music scene. He has constantly been refining his unique style of accordion playing, performing and writing for a whole host of bands and artists.He started off as a founding member of electro-folk pioneering group Croft No. Five, with whom he toured extensively throughout the UK and Europe. He can be heard with Treacherous Orchestra, Halcyon, Cask Strength Ceilidh Band, and Feis Rois (Voyage of the Hector).
Fraya Thomsen Fraya Thomsen
Fraya is recognized as one of Scotland’s most promising young clarsach players. Introduced to Scottish Gaelic music through Fèis Rois, Fraya went on to learn clarsach with Corrina Hewat at Balnain House. Fraya later gained an honours degree in Scottish Music at the RSAMD, where she formed a duo with Scots singer/cellist Fiona Hunter, performing at Celtic Connections, and performing/teaching at the Celtic Colours festival. She is now one half of The Duplets, with harpist/singer Gillian Fleetwood. Fraya also gains much enjoyment from the teaching element of her career, as she is passionate about encouraging people and sharing music. She teaches clarsach at Gordonstoun, and has taught in schools as part of the government's Youth Music Initiative. She is also gaining recognition as a composer.
Mike Vass Mike Vass
Mike hails from Nairn and is widely regarded as one of Scotland's finest young fiddlers. He won two gold medals at the Royal National Mod as well as playing with HRYO and the National Youth Orchestra of Scotland. He and his sister Ali were nominated as 'Best Up and Coming Act' in the 2007 Scots Trad Music Awards, and they both feature in the international ensemble Fiddle Rendezvous. Mike was a runner-up in the 2007 BBC Radio Scotland Young Traditional Musician of the Year competition, and in 2008 he won the International Neil Gow Fiddle Composition competition. He has led numerous workshops for the Fèis movement, and teaches at the Scots Music Group and Pilrig Fiddlers in Edinburgh, as well as the Get Reel traditional music project in Stirlingshire. He now leads the Midlothian Ceilidh Trail project.
Laura Wilkie Laura Wilkie
Laura is a fiddle player, writer and tutor from Easter Ross-shire. She has an individual sound and style of playing, drawing influence from her roots in Highland Scottish music as well as her love of other music traditions and styles from across the world. Laura graduated with BA (Hons) degree in Applied Music from Strathclyde University in Glasgow and since then has worked with, written and toured with many acts, such as; Fat-suit, Salsa Celtica, Siobhan Miller, Claire Hastings, Rachel Sermanni, Ian Carr, Ross Ainslie, Mikey Owers - "Questioio" Alana Henderson. Based in Glasgow, Laura plays with many other Glasgow-based musicians, function bands and ceilidh bands. Her love of teaching is exemplified in the work she does with "The Gordon Duncan Experience"; at many Feisean across Scotland, Workshops and string tuition in schools and one-to-one private teaching.
Aileen Wilson Aileen Wilson
A regular tutor at Fèis Rois Òigridh, Aileen started highland dancing at the age of 5 and has been teaching it since she was a teenager. She has danced locally and all over Europe, and currently runs highland dancing schools in Dingwall and Lochcarron.
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