Skye Festival 2017 – Fèis an Eilein

Alasdaair Fraser concert + children 794

The 26th Fèis an Eilein, Skye Festival, takes place between 4 July and 25 August 2017.

Taking place in venues mostly in the Sleat peninsula at the southern end of  the Isle of Skye over two months in the summer, the Skye Festival or ‘Fèis an Eilein’ is a celebration of island culture and performing arts with a strong focus on Scottish traditional music, all spiced up with visiting Jazz, Theatre and some World Music.

Organised by SEALL, each year between July and August, the festival hosts around 30 top quality events in music and innovative theatre, with a community-led fringe programme of house concerts, charity cafés, environmental days, food and drink, art exhibitions and ceilidhs.

At the moment the main programme could well include:

Anne Martin and Jason Singh with ‘Ceumannan’
Circus Weekend
Cape Breton Concert
NYJOS Ambassadors and Jazz Film
The National Youth Jazz Orchestra of Scotland
‘Yan and the Yeti’ Children’s theatre
Fergie MacDonald -The King of Ceilidh
’16 Years Till Summer’ Film
Inner Sound Gilbert and Sullivan’s ‘Patience’
Alastair Fraser’s Mammoth Fiddle
Comedy Night
Eduardo Niebla, guitar
Duncan Chisholm & Jarlath Henderson
Anne Martin – The Little Blue Book of Gaelic Song.
Charlie McKerron, fiddle
Gaelic Song with Mairead Stewart
Piano and silent movies ‘Seven Chances’
‘Wayfarers’ the 2106 Young Musicians of the a Year
Isle of Skye Piping Society
Hands Up for Trad ‘The Battle of the Trad Bands’
Adam Sutherland and Mairearad Green
Jackie Kay – the Scots Makar

Skye Festival/Feis an Eilein logo

Festival Awards

  • ‘SEALL at Sabhal Mòr Ostaig’ was Venue of the Year at the Scots Trad Music Awards 2015
  • Highland Community Initiative of the Year 2014

25 years of Festival history

Fèis an Eilein or the Skye Festival was created by SEALL in 1991 as a joint venture with the Short courses at Sabhal Mòr Ostaig, who needed a marquee for two weeks of classes. It seemed suitable for SEALL to create an evening programme of events to use that space and thus the Festival was born.

The festival developed over the next several years in the new buildings at SMO and other venues in Sleat and continued in its two week format for 19 years until 2009. In 2007 it was voted the Best Community Event of the Year of Highland Culture. In those years the programme included around 90 events in two weeks including providing a stage for young performers from the area and a range of visiting touring musicians and companies, including many of the best known traditional bands, world music, jazz, theatre events and orchestras. It provided employment and an opportunity for many young people to get involved in its running.

In 2010 we took a rest and for the next 4 years Fèis an Eilein was low key: the name used for a set of summer concerts.

In 2014 the Festival was resurrected, this time as a two month festival!

Intellectual Copyright and Use of Names

SEALL has been regularly using the names ‘The Skye Festival’ and ‘Fèis an Eilein’ since 1991 and thus claims intellectual ownership of these names. SEALL owns several website domain names using ‘SEALL’; ‘The Skye Festival’and ‘Fèis an Eilein’.

However we recognise that our friends in Nova Scotia also run a ‘Fèis an Eilein’!

Likewise the names ‘The Skye Jazz Festival’, ‘The Skye Swing Jazz Festival’ and ‘The Skye World Music Festival’ are names that have been, and still are, in use by SEALL on several occasions since 1991.