New Dundee anthem becomes National Theatre of Scotland's first music single

A new anthem for Dundee has become the first ever music single to to be released by the National Theatre of Scotland.

By Brian Ferguson
Friday, 12th April 2019, 6:43 pm
Updated Friday, 12th April 2019, 7:04 pm
Dundee art student and songwriter Kayleigh Shields has had her track Remember Use chosen as the National Theatre of Scotland's first music single.
Dundee art student and songwriter Kayleigh Shields has had her track Remember Use chosen as the National Theatre of Scotland's first music single.

Seventeen-year-old art student Kayleigh Shields’s track was chosen after she co-wrote it as part of a music and film project NTS ran for young people in the city last year.

Shields, an aspiring singer-songwriter, appears with a host of fellow participants in the video for Remember Us, which features locations in and around Dundee.

The single and music video have emerged from Radial, one of 10 projects staged across the country by NTS under the banner of the festival Futureproof to coincide with Scotland’s first “Year of Young People.”

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The video for Remember Us features footage filmed at mudflats on the banks of the River Tay.

A group of young people aged 14-26 joined forces with Dundee designer Hayley Scanlan, Highlands-based artist Robbie Synge and Australian theatre company Back to Back to create a film using music, dance, fashion and video art to create “a portrait of a community and landscape in motion.”

Footage shot for the film project was re-edited to help create the video for the single, which is available on outlets like Spotify, Apple and iTunes.

A former printworks where Beano, Oor Wullie and The Broons annuals were once published, a multi-storey car park in the city centre, mud flats on the banks of the River Tay and Tentsmuir Forest, in north Fife, are among the locations to feature in the Remember Us video and Radial.

Shields, who is studying contemporary art practice at Dundee and Angus College, was 16 when she wrote the song with the help of Australian composer Harry Myers Covill.

She said: “I didn’t know too much about the project when I went along to the first workshop. I just happened to mention that I wrote my own songs, although I’d never performed them anywhere before.

“The song is about family, connecting with people you’ve not met before and how they can become so close in such a short period of time. All the people I met on the project feel like my family now. Everybody just inspired me to write the lyrics.

“I was so thankful when I got the chance to write and sing for the film. It was such an amazing experience, but being able to actually get my song produced at then it being released is amazing.

“I’m hoping and excited to do more music in the future and doing this was definitely a push forward for me to do so.”

NTS released the video on the same day that Dundee was named the best place to live in Scotland, ahead of the likes of Leith and Stockbridge in Edinburgh, Finnieston in Glasgow and the Isle of Mull.

Jackie Wylie, artistic director of NTS, said: “We’re very excited to be able to launch the National Theatre of Scotland’s first ever single.

“As well as being a brilliant legacy for our Dundee Futureproof project, it’s also a testament to our commitment to inspiring people to participate in the arts.

“Alongside Radial, Remember Us is a beautiful piece of art that this special group of young artists from Dundee will have in their lives forever.”

Scanlan, who was the stylist on Radial, said: “It was good to be involved in such an exciting, innovative project.”