Singers, Musicians and Comedians Love to be Part of Big Burns Supper
Headline acts look forward to joining nine-day festival dedicated to Rabbie Burns and all that’s best in life
Feel the love – The Beat’s Ranking Roger, Shaun Ryder, Jason Byrne, Andrew Maxwell and other stars are looking forward to helping Scotland celebrate Burns Night.
All are heading to Dumfries for Big Burns Supper – a nine-day festival packed with music, comedy, carnival and cabaret all wrapped around the Bard’s birthday.
Ranking Roger ( Main Photo)of sensational ska band The Beat, who plan to dedicate a number to Rabbie, said: “We’re really looking forward to being there. You always get the strongest reaction from Scottish audiences – if they like you they really let you know – you can feel the love, and they’ll let you know if you’re rubbish too.”

Irish comedian Jason Byrne loves the idea of a festival inspired by the spirit of Byrne’s and modelled on the kind of big public celebration held for St Patrick’s Day.
He said: “I’m really looking forward to seeing what you do with a Scottish St Patrick’s. In Ireland everything we do becomes a celebration and I think the Scots do things the same, so they should be able to make a complete debauchery of it.”
This year Jason says he is on a mission to “make people fall in love with comedy again” and promises that the show will be “a perfect storm of props, audience help and spontaneity.”
Fellow Irish comic Andrew Maxwell, who has a new Radio 4 show in the making and heads off to Ireland the day after his Big Burns Supper gig to make a TV programme called Eureka, also loves the idea of the festival. He added: “I really like the sound of it – I must do as I’m coming up all the way from London to Dumfries to do the show.”

Shaun Ryder is looking forward to kicking off a hugely busy 2016 at Big Burns Supper, with new single in February, a solo album on the way plus plans for new Black Grape and Happy Mondays albums.
He said: “I really love Black Grape gigs – they feel so easy, so relaxed and so much fun. It’s all going so well at the moment and we’re really enjoying it.”
Home grown musician Innes Watson of the phenomenal Treacherous Orchestra is promising a show like no other: “There’s nothing else quite like us on the planet – twelve high energy boys who emerged from the big Glasgow party scene and play music that’s culturally deeply rooted in Scotland but is very forward-looking and takes influences from all over the world.
“There’s always a lot of excitement at our gigs. It’s in your face complex music, full of thought and emotion. Some people find it a bit of a shock at first, but then they find it hard not to move and by about half way through everyone is up and dancing.

“I hope people will really enjoy it in Dumfries – they’ll certainly see that we are absolutely loving it and having a ball.”
Eamonn Campbell, Dubliners veteran and now guitarist for the Dublin Legends, is in the midst of an eight-date tour of Scotland, after which he will be playing festivals in Ireland before 18 gig in England. But he and his colleague Sean Cannon have promised fans something special in Dumfries.
Eamonn said: “Given the date and that it’s a festival dedicated to the spirit of Burns we want to do something that suits the occasion. Sean really loves Burns and his songs, so we’re speaking soon to get something planned.”


But fans won’t miss out on the classics. He added: “I just love touring and getting out on stage and seeing the happiness these songs bring. In Dumfries there’ll be favourites like Whiskey in the Jar, The Irish Rover and Rocky Road to Dublin.
“People love them, these songs are part of their lives. I remember once we decided to change the programme at a gig in Glasgow – the number of complaints we had the next day.”
Eomann, who brought the Dubliners together with The Pogues to record Irish Rover, has also revealed that they would love to record with Mumford & Sons. He said: “They are just so musical, I’d love to do something with them.”
Eamonn was particularly impressed with their version of Simon and Garfunkel’s classic The Boxer: “There are some cover versions where you think ‘no, that doesn’t work’, but with that it works, it really works.”
Graham Main, Big Burns Supper artistic director, said: “This is our fifth birthday and it’s going to be a vintage year with so many great shows packed into nine days.
“Something that makes the festival really special is that we get big names coming from all over the country, and far beyond, because they love being part of a celebration which is about Burns, Scotland and all that’s best about life.”
Big Burns Supper is supported by partners including the Holywood Trust and EventScotland. It also benefits from £45,000 from Dumfries and Galloway Council.
Councillor Colin Smyth, the council’s Events Champion said: “The Big Burns Supper is successfully reinterpreting and reinvigorating Dumfries’s Burns heritage and creating a city quality festival for Dumfries, which is a fantastic achievement.
“Their packed programme can certainly lift the winter blues and attract new visitors to the region. The festival is utilising the creative skills of many local people and creating a new exciting showcase for people from Dumfries and Galloway. I’m looking forward to taking in many of the events and performances this year.”

Big Burns Supper 2016 will take place from 22 to 30 January, with a whole host of shows and entertainment wrapped round the Bard’s birthday – there will also be the fabulous Burns Night Carnival.
Tickets are on sale at www.bigburnssupper.com and from the box office at 28 Munches Street, Dumfries or by calling 01387 271820. Box Office is open from 9am – 5pm, Monday to Saturday

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