01/02/2015


01/02/2015

A Burns Night celebration from the Belfast Waterfront Hall. Featuring Scottish singer of the year Emily Smith and local artists accompanied by the Ulster Orchestra.


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Transcript


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Great poets have always beguiled and inspired us

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and none more so than Scotland's favourite son, Robert Burns,

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whose memory we're here to celebrate tonight.

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His appeal is global but it would be difficult to find anywhere

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in the world with a stronger connection than here in Ulster.

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The audience have been called to take their seats.

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The Ulster Orchestra have tuned up.

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Backstage, the artists, including Scottish Singer of the Year,

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Emily Smith, are making final preparations.

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With Emily, we have Eilidh Patterson,

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we have the Berna Folk Band,

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we have Marcus and Matthew Wenlock, World Champion drummers,

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and we have the Markethill Dancers.

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Welcome to Burns Night at the Waterfront Hall.

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PIPE MUSIC

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APPLAUSE

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Ladies and gentlemen, please give an Ulster welcome

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to Scots Singer of the Year, Emily Smith.

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Good evening.

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We're going to start with a song called The Plooman,

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which has a chorus.

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You're very welcome to join us but it would take me

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a long time to teach it to you, so we haven't got time for that.

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We'll just have to go for it.

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# The plooman, he's a bonnie lad

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# His hairt is ever true, jo

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# His garter's knit below the knee

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# And his bonnet, it is blue, jo

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# Then up wi' and all my plooman lads

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# Hey my merry plooman

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# O aa the trades that I dae ken

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# Commend me tae the plooman

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# My plooman, he comes hame at nicht

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# He's often wet and wearie

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# Take aff the wet, put on the dry

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# And go to bed my dearie

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# Then up wi' and all my plooman lads

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# Hey my merry plooman

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# O aa the trades that I do ken

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# Commend me tae the plooman

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# I will wash my plooman's sark

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# And I will wash his o'erlay

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# I will mak my plooman's bed

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# And cheer him late and early

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# Then up wi' aa all my plooman lads

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# Hey my merry plooman

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# O aa the trades that I dae ken

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# Commend me tae the plooman

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# Well I've been east and I've been west

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# And I've been at St Johnstone

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# But the bonniest sicht that e'er I saw

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# Was my plooman laddie dancin

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# Then up wi' and all my plooman lads

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# Hey my merry plooman

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# O aa the trades that I dae ken

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# Commend me tae the plooman

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# Snaw white stockings on his legs

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# Siller buckles glancing

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# A guid blue bonnet on his head

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# And oh but he was handsome

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# Then up wi' and all my plooman lads

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# Hey my merry plooman

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# O aa the trades that I dae ken

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# Commend me tae the plooman

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# Commend me tae the barn yard

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# And the corn mou man

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# Oh, I never got my coggie fou

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# Til I met wi my plooman

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# Then up wi' and all my plooman lads

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# Hey my merry plooman

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# O aa the trades that I dae ken

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# Commend me tae the plooman. #

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APPLAUSE

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When I first became a traditional singer,

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interested in traditional songs,

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I kind of ran in the opposite direction of Burns' work

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because I thought I knew all there was to know about him,

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I thought I knew everything he had written.

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But it wasn't until 2009, his 250th anniversary

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that myself and Jamie McLennan decided to do something

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to mark that occasion so we recorded an album

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of lesser known works by Burns

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and particularly trying to source songs that he wrote

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within Dumfriesshire or about people from his time in the south-west.

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I just had this whole new appreciation for him.

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To have died so young, he wrote so much.

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You seem very comfortable in front of an orchestra

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as well as an audience, how is that for you?

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I'm good at acting!

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It's fantastic, this is the first time I've performed

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with an orchestra, so it's really exciting

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and it really puts a whole new dimension onto your performance

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and to hear songs that myself and Jamie have done

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just as a duo, having orchestration behind it is really fun.

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We're going to carry on with a song called the Silver Tassie.

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This one Burns wrote about a sailor boarding a ship,

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leaving from the Port of Leith just outside Edinburgh,

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and he calls for one final toast farewell to his sweetheart, Mary,

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so it's called the Silver Tassie.

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# Gae bring to me a pint o' wine

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# And fill it in a silver tassie

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# That I may drink afore I go

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# A service tae my bonnie lassie

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# The boat rocks at the Pier o'Leith

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# Fu'loud the wind blows frae the ferry

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# The ship rides by the Berwick-law

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# And I maun leave my bonnie Mary

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# The trumpets sound

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# The banners fly

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# Oh, the glittering spears

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# They are ranked ready

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# The shouts o war

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# Are heard afar

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# And the battle closes deep and bloody

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# It's not the roar o sea or shore

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# Wad make me langer wish to tarry

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# Nor shouts o war

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# That's heard afar

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# Oh, it's leaving thee

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# My bonnie Mary

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# It's leaving thee

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# It's leaving thee

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# Oooh, oh

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# Oooh, oh

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# Oooh, oh. #

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APPLAUSE

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I'm Matthew and I'm the Juvenile 2 MSR world champion.

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And I'm Marcus Wenlock

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and this year I won the Juvenile 3 MSR world title.

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And Matthew, how do your friends react to seeing you on the telly

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and seeing you winning world championships

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and seeing lines of girls outside your house,

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screaming like it's One Direction?

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I think they're a bit jealous.

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They always taunt me at school.

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Like, "You're always doing this, you're always doing that."

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Tell me about the track that you're playing tonight.

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It's a Bulgarian folk dance

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and it was wrote by Gavin Bailey,

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who passed away last year.

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It's quite complicated,

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as there's different changes in time signatures

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which means there needs to be a lot of thought to what you're playing.

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It's quite complicated to what we usually play.

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Marcus, this is a very important question

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and a lot of people want to know this.

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Who is the best drummer between the two of you?

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Well, that's for everybody to find out tonight.

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Matthew and Marcus Wenlock

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are going to engage in a drum battle to the Buschimich track.

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These world title winning brothers made drumming history

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by becoming the first brothers to win world titles in the same year,

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and both brothers played their way to getting perfect scores

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of first place across the board, from all the judges.

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I give you Matthew and Marcus Wenlock.

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APPLAUSE

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APPLAUSE

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We've enjoyed Emily Smith's wonderful renditions of Burns' work,

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and we'll hear more from her shortly.

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Emily was born and reared in Dumfriesshire in Scotland,

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which was Burns' stomping ground.

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So we have asked Emily to give us a whistle-stop tour.

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So this is Thornhill in Dumfriesshire.

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And I grew up in a wee village just outside Thornhill.

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This would be one of the busier villages

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towards the north of Dumfries and Galloway,

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so Burns would have frequented here a lot,

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and on his way north up to Ayrshire.

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My inspiration for traditional music really probably stemmed

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from Robert Burns and his work.

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And what continues to draw me back to his work

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is that he walked and rode these same roads

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that I see on a daily basis.

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The same landscape, the same villages, the same place names.

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A couple of miles north of Thornhill is Durisdeer.

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I have lots of childhood memories of coming to Durisdeer

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when I was wee, and going walks.

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You can go a walk in any direction here

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and the views are just beautiful.

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So Burns would certainly have come up and down here quite a few times.

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This road is called the Lang Glen.

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And Burns referred to it in his poem, Last May a Braw Wooer.

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"Last May a braw wooer cam doon the lang glen,

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"And sair wi' his love he did deave me.

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"I said there was naething I hated like men

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"The deuce gae wi'm to believe me, believe me

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"The deuce gae wi'm to believe me."

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When Robert Burns was 29 he moved from Ayrshire to Ellisland Farm,

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which is, again, in Dumfriesshire,

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and he farmed the land here for three years.

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But he wrote some of his most famous works here, Tam O'Shanter,

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the fantastic poem, one of my favourite poems ever,

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and Auld Lang Syne was also another work that he wrote here at Ellisland.

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The River Nith is our largest river in Dumfriesshire.

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It flows right past Ellisland Farm where Burns would have lived.

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You can walk along from Ellisland up to a place called Friars' Carse,

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and Friars' Carse was the mansion home of a man called Robert Riddell,

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who was one of Burns' associates, and he would come and visit him here.

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Robert Riddell built a summer house

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which was called the Friars' Carse hermitage.

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And he let Burns go and use that building as a place to work.

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Coming from Dumfriesshire

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and the same area that Burns lived in I am immensely proud.

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I feel like an ambassador for his work

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and it is always such a pleasure

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to see how far reaching his name has gone.

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It is amazing, actually, the countries we go to,

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and you can still find a Burns club,

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people that are still learning his work.

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He was such an amazing man.

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# Simmer's a pleasant time

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# Flowers of every colour

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# The water rins o'er the heugh

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# And I long for my true lover

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# Aye waukin-o

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# Waukin still and weary

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# Sleep I can get nane

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# For thinking on my dearie

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# Aye waukin-o

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# When I sleep I dream

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# When I wauk I'm irie

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# Sleep I can get nane

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# For thinking on my dearie

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# Aye waukin-o

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# Waukin still and weary

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# Sleep I can get nane

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# For thinking on my dearie

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# Aye waukin-o

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# Lanely night comes in

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# A' the lave are sleepin

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# I think on my bonnie lad

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# And I bleer my een wi' greetin

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# Aye waukin-o

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# Waukin still and weary

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# Sleep I can get nane

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# For thinking on my dearie

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# Aye waukin-o. #

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APPLAUSE

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Bernagh, the track you are playing tonight, El Otro Finisterre,

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tell me about that.

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Well, that's a very appropriate piece

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for a night like tonight

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because it has got a big Celtic Connections orientation, really.

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It basically means, "The other Finisterre",

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Finisterre being a kind of Land's End of Brittany.

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And it was a piece written by a Breton composer

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for a Galician piper, Carlos Nunez.

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And it has got that whole bagpipe connection,

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you know, from Galicia, Brittany, Land's End and Cornwall,

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Ulster Scots, bagpipe player...

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It is just the right thing to bring it all together.

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APPLAUSE

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The next number was composed by someone here in this hall tonight.

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Someone up here on this stage, in fact.

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Our conductor, John Logan,

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and I think I'll let him tell you all about it.

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John.

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Thank you very much and good evening, Belfast.

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It's nice to turn round to see an audience,

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because most of the time you look at my back.

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How do I look from behind, by the way? Is it OK?

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LAUGHTER

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Actually, maybe I should... How do I look from the front?

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Maybe I look better from behind.

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Tiree is the next piece that we're going to play,

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and it is a composition of mine.

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Tiree was born from an education project.

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I had to go to Tiree and work with some fantastic schoolchildren

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and I thought, "What am I going to do?"

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So I wrote a little theme called Tiree

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before I took it up into the island.

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It has grown some arms and legs.

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It's been used in film and all sorts. I hope you enjoy it.

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Please welcome to play the solo line, Emily Smith.

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-Eilidh.

-Yes.

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This is your first performance in public of a Burns song.

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It's Ae Fond Kiss. What will make yours so extra special?

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Well, I'm basically just going to sing it straight.

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I've never sung Burns before,

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so I'm a bit apprehensive about adding too much to it.

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It's a beautiful melody, beautiful lyric

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and I think I'm just going to sing it in my own voice and that's

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what will make it different from other versions you may have heard.

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Burns wrote the song for Nancy.

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Nancy was absolutely crazy about Robert Burns.

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He managed to get over her, I think, pretty quickly,

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but she, for 40 years, brought into her diary on the date that she

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last saw him, saying, "This is the last day I saw Robert Burns."

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And for 40 years, she wrote that into her diary,

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so her heart was broken well and truly

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and she was the one who kind of got the wrong end of the deal.

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# Ae fond kiss, and then we sever

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# Ae fareweel, and then for ever!

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# Deep in heart-wrung tears I'll pledge thee

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# Warring sighs and groans I'll wage thee

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# Who can say that fortune grieves him

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# While the star of hope she leaves him?

0:36:040:36:10

# Me, nae cheerful twinkle lights me

0:36:100:36:17

# Dark despair around benights me

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# I'll ne'er blame my partial fancy

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# Nothing could resist my Nancy

0:36:410:36:48

# For to see her was to love her

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# Love but her, and love for ever

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# Had we never lov'd sae kindly

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# Had we never lov'd sae blindly

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# Never met or never parted

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# We had ne'er been broken-hearted

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# Fare-thee-weel Thou first and fairest!

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# Fare-thee-weel Thou best and dearest!

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# Thine be ilka joy and treasure

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# Peace, enjoyment Love and pleasure

0:37:570:38:06

# Ae fond kiss, and then we sever!

0:38:060:38:13

# Ae fareweel and then for ever!

0:38:130:38:20

# Thine be ilka joy and treasure

0:38:200:38:26

# Peace, enjoyment Love and pleasure

0:38:260:38:35

# I'll wage thee

0:38:370:38:43

# Ooh-ooh...

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# I'll wage thee. #

0:38:510:38:57

APPLAUSE

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Thank you.

0:39:060:39:08

It's been a great night so far with the Ulster Orchestra,

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Bernagh and Emily Smith.

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But we've also had pipes and drums here as well.

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A lone piper and drummer brought on the haggis,

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and the audience were jolted when 43 young pipers came through

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the auditorium from the Ulster-Scots Agency Juvenile Pipe Band.

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The band was formed just three years ago,

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and we caught up with them recently to find out a little bit more.

0:39:320:39:35

They never really have one collective band practice.

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The only time they see each other is at an event.

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We teach them skills and run classes.

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A class in Raphoe, a class in Clogher,

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a class in Belfast.

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And we pull them all together for the events.

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They're very good attenders,

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they do travel all over the country to take part in these events.

0:39:540:39:57

Concerts, festivals.

0:39:570:40:00

'I've been playing in the band'

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for a year and a quarter.

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'You get lots of opportunities, like going to the Walled City Tattoo,'

0:40:040:40:10

er...competitions

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'and loads of concerts, like the Waterfront.'

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It's about the children enjoying themselves. It's light-hearted.

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Although we are pushing the children to be very good on their instrument,

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we let them get there themselves.

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We do encourage the children to go to competing bands,

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but if they don't want to do that,

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that's absolutely fine. There is some children are just with us.

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They have to leave us at 18.

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We hope that we give them the bug for playing these instruments.

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I played at the Waterfront last year

0:40:390:40:42

with the Ulster Orchestra, and it was loads of fun,

0:40:420:40:44

because we got to

0:40:440:40:46

interact with the orchestra,

0:40:460:40:47

and it was really different from everything I've done before.

0:40:470:40:51

Yeah, I'm really looking forward to it again.

0:40:510:40:53

RAPTUROUS APPLAUSE

0:43:040:43:08

One of the songs you're singing tonight is John O'Dreams.

0:43:130:43:16

Now that's not a Burns song. Why?

0:43:160:43:19

Well, I just thought, whenever I've heard that song,

0:43:190:43:22

and whenever I sing it, I always think of him,

0:43:220:43:24

because the lyrics are actually written by a songwriter

0:43:240:43:27

called Bill Caddick, and the piece of music he set his lyrics to

0:43:270:43:31

are from a piece by Tchaikovsky,

0:43:310:43:32

so it's got quite a history to it, but in the second last verse,

0:43:320:43:36

is... "Both man and master in the night are one,"

0:43:360:43:41

you know, and it's the bit about the prince and a slave man.

0:43:410:43:44

Everyone's free, at the end of the day.

0:43:440:43:47

And that just really rings true with so much of what Burns wrote.

0:43:470:43:50

And he was a real voice for the people.

0:43:500:43:52

And his work could stretch across the classes

0:43:520:43:54

and across divides, so it just always reminds me of Burns.

0:43:540:43:58

# When midnight comes and people homewards tread

0:44:020:44:11

# Seek now your blankets and your feather bed

0:44:110:44:19

# Home comes the rover His journey's over

0:44:190:44:30

# Yield up the night-time to old John O'Dreams

0:44:300:44:38

# Across the hill The sun has gone astray

0:44:400:44:49

# Tomorrow's cares are many dreams away

0:44:490:44:58

# Your stars are flying Your candle's dying

0:44:580:45:09

# Yield up the night-time to old John O'Dreams

0:45:090:45:18

# Both man and master in the night are one

0:45:350:45:43

# All men are equal when the day is done

0:45:440:45:52

# The prince and ploughman The slave and freeman

0:45:520:46:02

# Both find their comfort in old John O'Dreams

0:46:020:46:11

# When sleep, it comes And dreams are running clear

0:46:130:46:20

# The hawks of morning cannot reach you here

0:46:220:46:29

# Sleep like a river Flows on forever

0:46:290:46:40

# And for your boatman Choose old John O'Dreams

0:46:400:46:48

# And for your boatman Choose old John O'Dreams

0:46:500:47:03

# Ooh-ooh-ooh

0:47:050:47:08

# Ooh-ooh-ooh

0:47:080:47:12

# Ooh-ooh-ooh

0:47:140:47:17

# La-la ooh-ooh. #

0:47:170:47:22

Thank you very much.

0:47:350:47:37

Well, this last song of our little set here is called Gala Water.

0:47:370:47:42

Burns not only wrote poems and songs,

0:47:420:47:45

but he was a great song collector, to which we owe a great debt.

0:47:450:47:47

So, this is one that he collected from the town of Galashiels.

0:47:470:47:50

This is called Gala Water.

0:47:500:47:52

# Braw, braw lads on Yarrow braes Rove among the blooming heather

0:48:150:48:22

# But Yarrow braes Nor Ettrick's shaws

0:48:220:48:26

# Can match the lads o' Gala Water

0:48:260:48:29

# Oh, braw, braw bonnie lads-o

0:48:290:48:33

# But there is ane, a secret ane

0:48:350:48:38

# Aboon them a' I loe him better

0:48:380:48:41

# And I'll be his, and he'll be mine

0:48:410:48:45

# The bonnie lad o' Gala Water

0:48:450:48:47

# Oh, braw, braw bonnie lads-o

0:48:470:48:52

# Although my faither wasnae laird

0:48:590:49:01

# And though I hae nae meikle tocher

0:49:010:49:05

# Yet rich in kindest, truest love

0:49:050:49:09

# We'll tent our flocks by Gala Water

0:49:090:49:13

# Oh, braw, braw bonnie lads-o

0:49:130:49:16

# It ne'er was wealth It ne'er was wealth

0:49:430:49:46

# That coft contentment peace or pleasure

0:49:460:49:49

# The bands and bliss o' mutual love

0:49:490:49:53

# O, that's the chiefest world's treasure

0:49:530:50:00

# Braw, braw bonnie lads-o. #

0:50:000:50:02

WHOOPING

0:50:540:50:56

WHOOPING

0:51:010:51:03

WHOOPING

0:51:470:51:49

APPLAUSE AND CHEERING

0:53:450:53:47

Stalked by debt and illness, Burns died at Dumfries on 21st July 1796,

0:54:030:54:11

aged just 37.

0:54:110:54:13

Tonight, over 200 years later,

0:54:130:54:15

we honour the immortal memory of Burns.

0:54:150:54:18

We hail the great bard,

0:54:180:54:20

who still touches a chord in every Ulster-Scot heart.

0:54:200:54:25

Ladies and gentlemen, thank you for being a wonderful audience tonight,

0:54:250:54:30

and together, we'll remember Rabbie Burns.

0:54:300:54:34

# Should auld acquaintance be forgot

0:54:340:54:40

# And never brought tae mind

0:54:400:54:43

# Should auld acquaintance be forgot

0:54:430:54:49

# For auld lang syne

0:54:490:54:54

# For auld lang syne, my jo

0:54:540:54:58

# For auld lang syne

0:54:580:55:03

# We'll tak a cup o' kindness yet

0:55:030:55:08

# For auld lang syne

0:55:080:55:14

# And surely ye'll be your pint stowp

0:55:150:55:20

# And surely I'll be mine

0:55:200:55:24

# And we'll tak a richt gude-willie-waught

0:55:240:55:29

# For auld lang syne

0:55:290:55:33

# For auld lang syne, my jo

0:55:330:55:38

# For auld lang syne

0:55:380:55:43

# We'll tak a cup o' kindness yet

0:55:430:55:47

# For auld lang syne

0:55:470:55:55

# Should auld acquaintance be forgot

0:56:090:56:15

# And never brought to mind

0:56:150:56:20

# Should auld acquaintance be forgot

0:56:200:56:26

# For auld lang syne

0:56:260:56:31

# For auld lang syne, my dear

0:56:330:56:37

# For auld lang syne

0:56:370:56:43

# We'll tak a cup o' kindness yet

0:56:430:56:49

# For auld lang syne

0:56:490:56:54

# And there's a hand, my trusty fiere

0:56:550:57:01

# And gie's a hand o' thine

0:57:010:57:06

# We'll tak a cup o' kindness yet

0:57:060:57:13

# For auld lang syne

0:57:130:57:19

# For auld lang syne, my dear

0:57:190:57:24

# For auld lang syne

0:57:240:57:30

# We'll tak a cup o' kindness yet

0:57:300:57:36

# For auld lang syne

0:57:360:57:42

# For auld lang syne, my dear

0:57:430:57:48

# For auld lang syne

0:57:480:57:52

# We'll tak a cup o' kindness yet

0:57:520:57:59

# For auld lang syne. #

0:57:590:58:07

WARM APPLAUSE AND CHEERING

0:58:150:58:17

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