Isle of May to inspire musicians in competition celebrating Scotland's natural heritage

Guillemots on the Isle of May - one of the nature reserves to feature in the compeitionGuillemots on the Isle of May - one of the nature reserves to feature in the compeition
Guillemots on the Isle of May - one of the nature reserves to feature in the compeition | Copyrighted Images,Contact SNH on 01738 444177.
Nature reserves at centre of music contest

MUSICIANS of all genres - rock, rap, folk, classical or anything in between - are being invited to show their love of nature by writing music inspired by the coasts and waters of Scotland’s nature reserves.

The Isle of May national nature reserve in the Firth of Forth is one of ten reserves featured in a competition staged by Scottish Natural Heritage (SNH) and Highland arts organisation Feis Rois.

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The competition, called In Tune with Nature, will be judged by a panel of well-known faces from the Scottish music industry, including Julie Fowlis, Vic Galloway, Gill Maxwell and Karine Polwart.

Winners will receive a £500 cash prize, as well as the opportunity to take part in live performances throughout the year. Each winner will also make a film on the nature reserve which inspired their music with a professional film-maker.

The competition, the first of its kind in Scotland, is part of the celebrations for the Year of Coasts and Waters 2020. The deadline for entries is May 31.

Organisers hope it will help inspire people to connect with nature through music

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David Steele, SNH’s reserve manager at Isle of May, said: “There’s so much to be inspired by on our nature reserves, particularly during the Year of Coasts and Waters 2020. We have such an amazing variety of marine wildlife and seabirds in Scotland, as well as stunning beaches, lochs and rivers. It’s hard not to be inspired by such beauty.

“Music and nature have so much in common – they’re both moving and give us so much pleasure. We can’t wait to hear what people come up with to make us see these special places in a new light.”

And Fiona Dalgetty, chief executive of Fèis Rois, added: “We also believe that musicians have an invitation here to make a creative response to the climate challenge affecting our natural heritage in Scotland today. We look forward to receiving entries from all genres of musician.”

Other reserves featured in the competition include Beinn Eighe, Ross-Shire; Caerlaverock Dumfries; Creag Meagaid, Lochaber; Forvie, North East; Loch Leven Perthshire; Noss, Shetlands; Rum, Inner Hebrides; Tentsmuir, Fife; and Taynish, Argyll. Entries can be in any style of music, with or without lyrics.

References to local culture, language and tradition are encouraged.

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