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Some like it Scot

Wren Wertin

A little bit of the highlands is coming to the Rockies with “A Scottish Christmas,” to be performed at the Vilar Center in Beaver Creek Sunday at 7:30 p.m.

They have made a reputation with fiery performances that encompass the heated revelry and keening sorrow of the stereotypical dream-hungry Scot. At the beginning of a performance, oftentimes kilted drummers and pipers wend their way through reels and rhythms, accompanied by snares and sticks. With clap-happy spirits, the occasion is always festive.

There’s history in the performance, with traditions explained – wassailing, to name one. “Paddy’s Leather Breeches” and “Mason’s Apron” are performance favorites.

Instead of only focusing on the light-hearted celebrations, “A Scottish Christmas” is also about the achingly beautiful – and often lonesome – Scottish highlands. Fiddler Bonnie Rideout has composed contemporary laments to sprinkle in with the ancient Gaelic melodies.

Rideout has been on all manner of stages, from the Edinburgh International Festival to the Kennedy Center. She turns her strings to the highland tradition of wandering fiddlers on Christmas Day, playing from door to door to awaken the village. “Greensleeves” and “Oh Come, Oh Come Emmanuel” showcase the entire company at its best.

“A Scottish Christmas” will include fiddles, bagpipes, uillieann and border pipes, clarsach (harp), bodran (frame drum), guitars and voices. The show begins at 7:30 p.m. at the Vilar Center. Call 845-TIXS for more information.

Wren Wertin can be reached via e-mail at wrenw@vaildaily.com or phone at 949-0555 ext. 618.


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