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Review: the audience loved every second

Laura Cortese and the Dance Cards were part of an 'incredible double-bill' at mareel on Tuesday night. Photos: Alex Garrick-WrightMusic fans were left clamouring for more after an incredible double-bill on Tuesday night, which saw Americana string quartet Laura Cortese and the Dance Cards take to the stage in Mareel's auditorium with acclaimed folk outfit Drever McCusker Woomble, writes Alex Garrick-Wright.

Review: delicate lines and subtle use of tone

Mighty Gullifoss by Richard RowlandTHROUGH the alchemical process of etching, Richard Rowland explores the dramatic tone and texture of landscape in his Recent Prints exhibition currently on view at Vaila Fine Art Gallery in Lerwick, writes Alex Purbrick.

A fitting monument to a friend of Shetland

Georges Dif's widow Nelly hanging one of his photos at Islesburgh Community Centre last week. Photo: Jonathan WillsGeorges Dif's many friends in Shetland will remember his endless patience, his skill - and his habit of getting up very early in the morning to get the pictures he wanted, writes Jonathan Wills.

An exhibition to launch the English edition of Shetland – a spectacular new book by the French photographer, ornithologist and author's work is currently on show in the foyer and staircase of the Islesburgh Community Centre in Lerwick. It runs until this Saturday (14 July).

Georges first came to Shetland in 1969. He was captivated by the scenery, the wildlife and the light in storms, fog and sunshine.

Hunt exhibition a 'powerful reflection'

Angela Hunt.SHETLAND's rich archaeological heritage and diverse natural environment are stunningly portrayed in the latest exhibition at Da Gadderie from Shetland based artist Angela Hunt, writes Alex Purbrick.

Locations is Angela's first exhibition in Shetland since moving here in 2008 when she came to work as a senior lecturer in Creative Industries at Shetland College UHI.

Review: US band bring 'sparkle of hope'

Birds of Chicago's Allison Russell on stage at Mareel. All photos: Dale SmithROCK and roll might not save the world, but there is no harm in giving it a chance. With this philosophy behind their new album Love In Wartime, Americana band Birds of Chicago bring a sparkle of hope into the dark days of today's world, writes Zdenka Mlynarikova.

Energetic tenderness and flawless harmonies

Siobhan Miller 'makes traditional folk music sound incredibly fresh '. All photos: Zdenka MlynarikovaTHE THIRD night of this year's Shetland Folk Festival brought an eclectic international mix of acts to the Clickimin stage. Featuring some of the festival's headline acts, the musicianship on show was outstanding, writes Zdenka Mlynarikova.

Exhibition of ‘cultural treasure’ opens today

Curator of Shetland Museum, Dr Ian Tait, and the director of the National Gallery, Dr Gabriele Finaldi, admiring Holbein's masterpiece during an exhibition preview on Thursday afternoon. Photo: Hans J Marter/Shetland News AN ARTISTIC masterpiece from the Tudor period arrived in Shetland this week giving islanders the unique opportunity to gaze upon a national treasure from one of the greatest portraitists of the 16th century, Hans Holbein the Younger.

Emma Leask is Young Fiddler of the Year

Emma Leask - 2018 Young Fiddler of the Year. Photo: Melvyn LeaskTHERE was a full house at Mareel on Saturday night as Shetland Folk Society celebrated another record-breaking year for their Young Fiddler of the Year competition with 175 entries from 100 young fiddlers, writes Christine Laurenson.

Review: making magic out of the mundane

Jon Richardson on stage in Lerwick on Saturday. Photo: Davie GardnerA COMEDY gig which ends on the dos and don'ts of stacking a dishwasher doesn't sound like the most exciting Saturday night out - but then again, Jon Richardson isn't your average comedian.

The acclaimed Englishman, perhaps best known for his captain role on Channel 4 quiz show 8 Out of 10 Cats, made magic out of the mundane at a packed Clickimin Leisure Centre as he brought his Old Man tour north to Lerwick.

The show's name was supposed to reflect that he had recently become a dad, but the evening instead touched more on his public persona of a man stuck in the wrong era, an ultimate worrier who prefers routine over revelry.

Review: ballet for every generation

Bethany Kingsley-Garner as the Sylph and Nicholas Shoesmith as James in Scottish Ballet's production of Matthew Bourne's Highland Fling. Photos: Andy Ross FOR the first time ever, Shetland got the unique opportunity to host a full-scale Scottish Ballet production when Matthew Bourne's Highland Fling visited the isles at the weekend, writes Zdenka Mlynarikova.

Review: an intimate portrait of local wildlife and flora

Peter Biehl's drawings can be seen at Vaila Fine Art until early July.BORN in Denmark in 1941 and trained at the Royal Academy of Fine Art in Copenhagen, Peter Biehl first fell in love with Shetland 20 years ago and became a frequent visitor, finally settling in the isles since his retirement as a college art teacher in Denmark.

The landscape enchanted him as he found himself "drawn to the rugged coastline, the shift between the mildness and cruelness of its temperament, seduced by the light, the contrast, the unfolding drama between life and death".

Review: a reminder of life’s tragic truths

Marion Brewster-Wright (Stephenie Pagulayan) makes her presence known to Eva and Geoffrey Jackson (Donna-Marie Leask & Martin Summers). All photos: Austin TaylorI grew up in the university town of Cambridge, where amateur dramatics were ten a penny. In studying Romeo and Juliet at sixth form college, I managed to see at least three different versions of the play in the space of as many months. And trust me, the quality varies some.

So, when you decide to see any amateur dramatic performance, I'm more aware than anyone that you have to take the view that you might just get what you pay for.

Review: a gripping performance from young cast

The Free9 is showing at Mareel this week ahead of a performance in Inverness next month. Photo: Stuart Hubbard.MAREEL this week welcomed a brand new play written for the National Theatre Connections project - The Free9 by In-Sook Chappell - writes Zoe Spence. Directed by John Haswell and Izzy Swanson, the play opened in Shetland on Tuesday (20 March), with a second performance on Wednesday (21 March) followed by a performance at Eden Court in Inverness on Tuesday 10 April.

The play follows eight teenagers from North Korea who escape and endeavour on a long journey through China and Laos with the help of “Big Brother” to try and seek refuge in South Korea. A harrowing story leaving the audience in stunned silence throughout.

Shetland IV: a grim and ruthless triumph

The fourth season of the popular crime drama concluded on Tuesday night. Photo: BBC.IT'S MURDER and it’s personal - it must be Shetland, writes Jordan Ogg. As the final episode spooled into view, you could have forgiven DI Perez for thinking he had it all figured out. But it was never going to be that easy.

After all, there was a full 60 minutes to get through and his theory was rather troublesome, not to mention complicated, as it rested on dodgy Duncan, his daughter’s natural father, having strangled Lizzie Kilmuir with a scarf all those years ago, and maybe more recently Sally McColl too.

Tidelines make their mark at Mareel

YOUNG Highlands band Tidelines kicked off an extensive Scottish tour at Mareel last night, and demonstrated to a 200-strong crowd why they are fast garnering a reputation on the trad scene for their upbeat folk songs.

Review: mellow gems and murder ballads

The Furrow Collective, from left to right: Emily Portman, Alasdair Roberts, Lucy Farrell and Rachel Newton. Photo: Kelly Nicolson Riddell.“SO YOU like your murder ballads, then” smiled Lucy Farrell in response to the warm applause greeting the conclusion of The Furrow Collective’s opening song, Willie’s Fatal Visit, at Mareel on Saturday night.

It is a grisly lyrical tale, granted, but Farrell’s crystal clear vocal imbues the song – discovered from Ray Fisher’s reading of the song back in 1991, accompanied by Martin Carthy – with elegiac beauty and grace.

Shetland IV: ‘a fine and nasty ride ahead’

Perez, now well worn in by Dougie Henshall, has his doubts about the whole Malone affair. Photo: BBCMurder grips the isles as DI Jimmy Perez returns for a fourth run of Shetland on the BBC, writes Jordan Ogg.

"There's a murderer running loose and there's been another murder. I dinnae think he's the killer, but I'm still going to have to spend six episodes trying to prove it", shouts DI Jimmy Perez as he climbs the Lodberry steps to face his next investigation.

Improvised comedy panto brings the laughs

The Imposters, from left to right: Ashlea Tulloch, Marjolein Robertson, Jill Charleson, Matthew Simpson, Thomas Jones, Alex Garrick-Wright, Les Sinclair. IT'S not very often you get to watch a pantomime which playfully juggles topics like cannibalism and veganism, but then again, local improvised comedy collective The Imposters don't always do things the usual way.

Sure, the panto at the Lerwick Legion on Friday night had all the classic characters - the hero, the dame, the villain and more - but its story and narrative was effectively made up on the spot following a one-word suggestion thrown over from the audience.

Queen II tribute acts hits the festive party spot

"IS THIS the real life, is it just fantasy?" sang the Freddie Mercury impersonator on stage at Mareel on Friday night.

Review: ‘Bravo’ for pulling out all the stops

John Haswell, as Captain Hook - 'the most villainous pirate of them all' with Hermione Boyes as Peter Pan. Photos: Jonathon BulterI wouldn't go as far as to say I'm a big fan of panto.
Oh yes you are! I hear you cry.
Well, maybe I thought I wasn't...

It's been some time since I was last at a panto, and I had forgotten the sheer delight and excitement that comes from an untypically young theatre audience once the music starts.

Island Medics: a cheery and cheesy take on life in Shetland’s only hospital

"There are more seals in Shetland than supermarkets" announces the narrator in the opening episode of Island Medics. Few viewers should be surprised by this fact. Any that are ought to be in the sea themselves, writes Jordan Ogg.

Yes, the narrator is annoying, but viewers can feel reassured that, despite some daft opening lines and a fairly bonkers map, the first instalment offers a pleasingly cheery and cheesy start to this BBC One 10-part series. It's a formula that should serve well, given the early morning slot.

Review: Lasting treasure at Home & Away

The Home & Away exhibition is on until Christmas.ARTS and crafts abound in shops and galleries at this time of year, unsurprisingly. At the Shetland Museum and Archives exhibition space, Da Gadderie, John Hunter has managed to curate a diverse range of products – paintings, drawings, pottery, and basketry among them.


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