Fiddling away those Nordic nights

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Scandinavia and Scotland unite in a smörgåsbord of Norwegian and Scottish music and food events this weekend.

On Friday in Maxton Village Hall, Gaelic singer and fiddler Rona Wilkie joins forces with Norwegian mandola player Marit Fält in an evening exploring their home countries’ folk music.

The duo, who won a Danny Kyle Award at Celtic Connections, promise to bring a new perspective to traditional music from both sides of the North Sea.

Rona, an exceptional fiddle player and Gaelic singer from the Highlands, was crowned the BBC Scotland Young Traditional Musician of the Year.

“She has a great drive behind her playing, and is also able to slow it down to tease the beauty of slower airs,” writes a spokesperson for the event, organised by Gaelic in the Borders.

“Marit is a hugely dynamic and inventive Låtmandola and cittern player from Norway, of Swedish parents. She captures the elegance and raw beauty of Norwegian and Swedish traditional music.”

The performance starts at 7.45pm, and tickets cost £3, or £2 for Gaelic in Scotland members.

Then, on Sunday evening, Borders band Riddell Fiddles team up with the Norwegian fiddle group Feleboga for a ceilidh at Selkirk’s County Hotel, followed by a dinner of traditional Norwegian food, including lapskaus, described as a dish between steak pie and stovies.

Teleboga were invited by the County’s owners, Will Haegeland and Trond Dalby, who said: “As Norwegians we are delighted to welcome Feleboga and their 25 fiddlers to the Scottish Borders.

“Both countries are renowned for their folk history and music. We look forward to celebrating this rich history together.”

The evening starts at 7pm in Scott’s Hall, and tickets cost £10 from the hotel.

Four musicians from Riddell Fiddles, Kim and Stuart Hendry, Louise Douglas and Kieran Sapkota, will be on a high after playing Border jigs and reels for the Scottish Parliament, on MSPs’ visit to the Heart of Hawick earlier in the day.

On Sunday December 2, Riddell Fiddles is hosting a concert with Shetland musicians Jenna Reid and Harris Playfair.

For more info, go to www.riddellfiddles.co.uk