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Arts / More than £4,000 raised for accordion and fiddle club amid financial uncertainty

Local outfit Birls Aloud at a recent fiddle and accordion festival, that will now have to step up its own fundraising efforts after charitable trust cutbacks. Photo Dale Smith
Birls Aloud at an accordion and fiddle festival. Photo Dale Smith

A FUNDRAISING campaign launched by the team behind the Shetland Accordion and Fiddle Festival after its income streams were cut off is continuing to prove popular, with more than £4,000 donated so far.

All Shetland Accordion and Fiddle Club events have been cancelled or postponed, and restrictions have put paid to traditional fundraising activity.

It started an online fundraising campaign last year with a target of £5,000 to “help us maintain the club and festival as we all know it”.

It appears to be doing well, with more than £4,000 raised so far.

The organisers said that with “no club nights there are no memberships, and no income for the club and in turn no income for the festival.

“Restrictions have also meant we have been unable to hold any fundraising events either. Plus we no longer receive any grant funding.”

The accordion and fiddle festival usually takes place every year in October, with the last one held in 2019.

The club has further embraced the opportunities of the internet by holding its first virtual club night on Thursday (25 March).

The Facebook stream featured young musicians from across Shetland as well as the results from the club’s annual tune competition.

This year’s Shetland Folk Festival, meanwhile, has been pushed back to 2022. The event was due to be held in late April.

It remains unclear when festivals – and small concerts – will be able to take place again.

There is a hope that Scotland will move to ‘level zero’ of the tiered system of coronavirus restrictions by the end of June, if the suppression of the virus continues.

A number of contemporary music acts recently recorded live sets at Mareel with no audience, however, for Shetland Arts’ Refresh Now programme.

The performances were filmed and they will be broadcast online from 10 April.

The Peter Alec Trio, Ten Tonne Dozer, The Stoals, Sheer and Grimlok were commissioned for the project.