Scotland Week 2012

Scotland’s five National Performing Companies are set to wow audiences across Europe, the USA, China and beyond during the Year of Creative Scotland.

Government funding for each of the Companies’ international tours in 2012-13 has been confirmed by the Culture Secretary, who is in New York for Scotland Week. Fiona Hyslop made the announcement at a National Theatre of Scotland ‘Extreme Ceilidh’ workshop for high school students in Brooklyn.

The Cabinet Secretary said: “Scotland is known worldwide as a place of creative and cultural excellence, with our National Performing Companies attracting international acclaim.

“Their overseas tours showcase Scotland’s creative talent on a world stage, further enhancing our global reputation. They also strengthen cultural and diplomatic links with countries identified as a priority in our framework for international engagement.

“That is why I am maintaining the International Touring Fund at £350,000 in this, the Year of Creative Scotland, and I look forward to our National Performing Companies once again delighting audiences at home and abroad.”

During Ms Hyslop’s visit to Brooklyn’s Uncommon Charter High School, students performed an ‘Extreme Ceilidh’ - a mix of hip hop and drum ‘n’ bass with traditional dance and Celtic sounds. Ten pupils from the school are participating in the National Theatre of Scotland’s international exchange programme and will travel to Scotland in July 2012.

Ms Hyslop added: “The ‘Extreme Ceilidh’ fuses street and traditional dance and this project is a fantastic example of the international appeal of Scotland’s creative cutting edge. The National Theatre of Scotland’s work with these students in Brooklyn is deepening our cultural ties with the USA, one of our key objectives during Scotland Week 2012.”

Vicky Featherstone, Artistic Director of the National Theatre of Scotland, said: “The ‘Extreme Ceilidh’ is an exhilarating piece of performance which emerged from a highly successful National Theatre of Scotland community project in Aberdeen last year. We are honoured that our Learn team – whose brilliant work in Scottish communities has attracted international attention – is able to take a part of Scotland to the young people of Brooklyn.”