Friday, 9 December 2011

BBC ALBA – WEEKLY PROGRAMME HIGHLIGHTS Saturday 31 December 2011 – Saturday 6 January 2012

Title: Balaich Bhatarsaigh @ Na Barrowlands / The Vatersay Boys @ the Barrowlands

Scotland's number one party band, The Vatersay Boys, play their annual Glasgow Barrowland gig mixing their unique blend of ceilidh and traditional music. This one off concert special captures the madness and mayhem as the Vatersay Boy fans let their hair down and put on their dancing shoes.

Transmitted: Saturday 31 December 2011
Time: 9.30 – 10.30pm

Title: Iseabail / Ishbel MacAskill

Time stood still for a few minutes at the beginning of the year in March with the devastating news that the renowned Gaelic singer Ishbel MacAskill had tragically and suddenly died - leaving a void in the lives of so many.

The news shook the musical world, the Gaelic world and the Arts community here in Scotland and further afield to the core. They had lost one of their own.... a sister in singing. A woman who had a special gift - a voice like silk.

A special tribute to Ishbel - an incredible lady who had a zest for life and an infectious positive outlook.

A Mother, a Grandmother, a Singer, a Lewis woman and a point woman through and through...... Ishbel MacAskill.

Transmitted: Saturday 31 December 2011
Time: 10.30 – 11.30pm

Title: Ceilidh na Bliadhn’ Uire / Hogmanay Ceilidh

Hosts, John Carmichael and Kirsteen MacDonald are throwing open the doors of the Duisdale Hall in Sleat, Isle of Skye for a live Hogmanay cèilidh - Cèilidh na Bliadhn' Ùire 2011 to say farewell to 2011 and a big Gaelic fàilte (welcome) to 2012. Joining in the New Year party celebrations are a wealth of Gaelic singers: Donnie Munro, Julie Fowlis, Christine Primrose, Arthur Cormack with Norrie MacIver and Mànran, along with a host of Gàidhealach musicians joining in - Éamon Doorley, Ingrid Henderson and Ross Martin.

Fiona MacKenzie will be bringing you the craic from Am Pràban Bar at Hotel Eilean Iarmain, where The Angus Nicolson Trio will be raising the roof with their cèilidh sets. Also, several stars from the world of Gaelic broadcasting will appear with special messages and expect fireworks and fantastic first footers after the bells. Bring in the bells live from the Isle of Skye only on BBC ALBA.

Transmitted: Saturday 31 December 2011
Time: 11.30pm – 1.00am

Title: Te Bheag a’ Ghruffalo / The Gruffalo’s Child
The Gruffalo's child isn't too sure whether to believe her father's stories about the Big Bad Mouse who lives in the forest. One night, feeling very brave, she leaves the Gruffalo cave and goes in search of the fabled creature all on her own. However, there are many more of her father's old acquaintances to met on her journey through the deep, dark wood!

Transmitted: Sunday 1 January 2012
Time: 4.00 – 4.30pm

Title: Sgeulaiche
The McFinnigan family travel to Australia for a holiday. There's sun , there's sea and there's sand , but it's one wrong turn leads to a fantastic adventure.

Transmitted: Sunday 1 January 2012
Time: 4.30 – 4.35pm

Title: Pro 12 Live Rugby – Glasgow v Edinburgh

LIVE PRO12 Rugby: Glasgow host Edinburgh in the all-important 1872 Cup decider.

Transmitted: Sunday 1 January 2012
Time: 5.30 – 7.25pm

Title: Dolina

Born and brought up the youngest of seven children in the fishing community of Marvig on the east coast of Lewis, Dolina MacLennan became, within a few years of moving to Edinburgh in 1957, a mainstay of the Scottish folk revival of the 60's and 70's. Her Gaelic singing was a revelation and an inspiration to many while her writing for radio and her acting – perhaps particularly as the only Gael in 7:84's The Cheviot, the Stag and the Black Black Oil - contributed greatly to the developing culture of the Gàidhealtachd.

In this archive-rich celebration of her career, Doli converses with Domhnall Uilleam Stiubhart and reminisces with family, friends, and associates in locations as different from one another as Marvig and Edinburgh's Waverley Bar but all of them integral to her many-faceted career.

Transmitted: Sunday 1 January 2012
Time: 9.00 – 10.00pm

Title: Dha Gordon a-mhain / Just for Gordon

In December 2005 Scotland tragically lost one of its most innovative musicians and composers of the age of 41. It is surprising though that this world renowned Scottish musician was not someone that would be instantly recognised by the vast majority of the public in Scotland, yet his music is played the world over. Gordon Duncan, from Perthshire, was quite simply unique as a Piper of his generation. He was a multi instrumentalist and prolific composer.

Just for Gordon is a new documentary for BBC ALBA about his life and the tunes he wrote that have quickly become a mainstay of the Scottish traditional music repertoire.

His tunes had true significance, not just in their unique and original arrangement but also in their very inspiration often from entertaining occurrences in Gordon's life - Andy Renwick's Ferret, The Famous Barovan, The SleepingTune, Break Yer Bass Drone and Zito the Bubbleman - to name but a few.

His tunes can be heard at T in the Park, Celtic Connections, Celtic Colours in Canada, The Lorient festival in Brittany and the Fleadh Cheòil in Ireland. Gordon Duncan helped to put piping on the map for a whole new generation and for his pupils such as Ross Ainslie and Ali Hutton who are now themselves making their mark in the traditional music scene by following his style.

The programme features the musicians that knew and played with him and those who continue to play and be inspired by his music, especially his own pupils…. a celebration of the music and memory of Gordon Duncan.

Transmitted: Sunday 1 January 2012
Time: 10.00 – 11.00pm

Title: SPL Kilmarnock v St Mirren
The latest full-match coverage from the SPL as Kilmarnock host St Mirren at Rugby Park.

Transmitted: Monday 2 January 2012
Time: 5.30 – 7.30pm

Title: An Ribheid Chiuil

The pipes are one of the music world's most distinctive sounds and piping is one of its earliest musical forms. This exciting, new series - An Ribheid Chiùil / Reed Music - tells the amazing story of the instrument and its players, and is a fascinating introduction to the international, colourful and exciting world of the pipes. From diffusion, change and sophistication in the world of piping over history, to today's players who have taken piping into new popularity through pipe bands, solo performing and bands touring international festivals and circuits.

The first programme in the series looks at the earliest pipes, probably dating from as early as the 8th century which were made out of reed and commonplace in Iraq and Iran. Some of the world's foremost pipers also tell how they started playing the pipes, and we hear how the instrument became so strongly associated with Scotland. Presented by piper Anna Murray.

Transmitted: Monday 2 January 2012
Time: 8.30 - 9.00pm

Title: Farpaisean Chon-chaorach / Sheepdog Trials
The new series of sheepdog trials returns with coverage of the Comrie and District Sheepdog Trial in Perthshire.

Transmitted: Tuesday 3 January 2012
Time: 9.00 – 10.00pm

Title: Caman

In the final episode the Borthwicks play in the Camanachd Cup, Eddie, Lisa and the Rodger family look back over a great year, and the First Minister attends his first shinty match.

Transmitted: Thursday 5 January 2012
Time: 8.30 – 9.00pm

Title: Balaich Bhatarsaigh / Beware the Vatersay Boys

Beware The Vatersay Boys is a behind the scenes look at one of Scotland's most loved party bands. The boys give BBC ALBA exclusive access to their lives as they go about their day jobs as postman, bin man and fisherman and we join them as they head out on tour around Scotland. First it's a lively afternoon gig at their local pub in Castlebay, followed by an even more lively evening gig on the main stage in a tent at Barrafest. Life on the road with the Vatersay Boys is never dull as the onstage party continues off stage, and despite having up to four managers things don't always run to schedule!

We also see the band maintain their roots with a local ceilidh in the Vatersay village hall. Not just a live act, the band have an on-board resident engineer and recording studio on Vatersay, courtesy of Donnie's brother, former Simple Minds keyboard player, Mick MacNeill. The boys lay down a few tracks in their makeshift mini aircraft hangar. In early December the band pack up and head to Glasgow for the annual festive ceilidh at the Glasgow Barrowland. As the band motto suggests, life with the Vatersay Boys is full of unexpected twists and turns and the banter is hilarious.

Transmitted: Thursday 5 January 2012
Time: 9.00 – 10.00pm

Title: Alba: 1980

Experience some of the stories hitting the headlines in 1980 through archive footage and the year's chart hits: Scottish teachers strike for more money, Hercules the Bear goes missing and the Island of Eriskay is up for sale. The year's chart hits include Pink Floyd's Another Brick in the Wall, Blondie's Atomic and Cliff Richard's We Don't Talk Any More.

Transmitted: Friday 6 January 2012
Time: 8.30 – 9.00pm