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Top local talent to go head to head on The Spree stage

Local musical acts are getting the chance to appear alongside headline acts such as Edwyn Collins, Admiral Fallow and The Twilight Sad at this year’s Spree Festival in Paisley.

The cream of the area’s top talent will go head-to-head during a nightly contest on the Danny Kyle Open Stage.

thespreeThe Spree is returning after a successful debut in 2012 and will this year run alongside the Royal National Mòd, Scotland’s premier celebration of Gaelic culture and language, on its first-ever visit to Paisley.

The stage is a celebration of the life of the legendary Scottish singer-songwriter who was a passionate supporter of traditional music and a constant campaigner for its revival in Scotland.

The Danny Kyle Open Stage will run between Friday 11 and Thursday 17 October with the chance to progress to the final night showcase concert on Friday 18 October in the fantastic Spiegeltent in County Square. Each event will be broadcast live on www.celticmusicradio.net.

Each day at 5pm three successful applicants will take to the stage and be scored by a panel of industry experts.

The top three artists are then invited back to the final-night showcase and receive a live session on Celtic Music Radio, with the winner also being awarded with a slot at the 2014 Spree festival.

Rikki Kyle, son of Danny Kyle, said: “I am excited the Spree festival is holding a Danny Kyle Open Stage in Paisley. My dad would be very proud it had come to the town.

“He loved the town and was so involved with Sma’ Shot Cottages. He helped come up with the idea of restarting Sma’ Shot Day in the eighties to get the local community involved in showcasing their talents.

“In the nineties he also set up the ‘Gies A Break Club’ which went down a storm at festivals throughout the country and is now known as the Danny Kyle Open Stages.”

Other musical acts already announced for The Spree include Rachel Sermanni, Miaoux Miaoux, Capercaillie, Donnie Munro and Horse McDonald, while Craig Hill and Fred MacAulay and more will provide the comedy.

With huge amounts of interest in these Open Stages, acts are invited to apply to take part by downloading the application form from www.thespree.co.uk and returning it by Thursday 3 October to dkos.info@yahoo.com.

There will be over 70 Spree and Mòd fringe events over 10 days in October. For further information on The Mòd visit www.modphaislig.org.

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Have you heard the one about the mystery comedian?

Just two days to go until the launch of ‘A Buddy Good Laugh’ at Paisley Arts Centre. 

With just days to go before the launch of Dead Sheep Comedy and Renfrewshire Arts & Museums’ brand new comedy strand, everyone is talking about who the mystery headliner could be.

A+Buddy+Good+Laugh_482Over the past few weeks Renfrewshire Arts & Museums have given away a few clues about who the mystery stand-up star could be, but so far their identity remains a closely-guarded secret.

But fans of comedy are sure to know this act well from their sell-out tours just this year in Norway and Sweden, their recent stand-up performance alongside John Bishop and their appearance on the Glasgow leg of Michael McIntyre’s Comedy Roadshow in 2010. The Edinburgh-based comic has also appeared on hit TV series Mock the Week and 8 out of 10 Cats.

The mystery headliner’s identity will be revealed at the inaugural ‘A Buddy Good Laugh’ gig this Thursday.

Growing speculation as to who the special guest star could be has seen a spike in ticket sales – audiences are advised to book now to avoid missing out on this fantastic line-up and a night of non-stop laughter.

Joining the mystery headliner on September 26 will be Chris Forbes and Michael Redmond.

Widely regarded as one of Scotland’s hottest comedy talents, Chris Forbes gained a legion of new fans when he supported Kevin Bridges on his 2012 tour The Story Continues…

Charismatic and confident, Chris’ conversational style never fails to engage his audience or deliver laughs loud enough to bring the house down.

Well known for his portrayal of Father Stone in the classic C4 comedy, Father Ted, Michael Redmond is lined up to deliver his own brand of deadpan humour. A regular performer on the Scottish comedy circuit, Michael is currently resident host of his own show Michael Redmond’s Sunday Service at The Stand Comedy Club in Glasgow.

A Buddy Good Laugh will be at Paisley Arts Centre on Thursday 26 September. Doors open 8.15pm and show starts 8.30pm. Tickets cost £10 (£8 conc) and can be booked by calling the Box Office on 0300 300 1210 or going online to www.renfrewshire.gov.uk/onlinebooking

Tickets for the following ‘A Buddy Good Laugh’ show on Oct 31 will be available at the Box Office in Paisley Arts Centre immediately after the first show, costing £6.

For further information on Renfrewshire Arts & Museums’ events log on to www.renfrewshire.gov.uk/events or follow us on Facebook www.facebook.com/renfrewshirearts or Twitter @RenArtsMuseums.

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No Credit? No Problem. No Escape. ‘The Collection’ comes to Paisley Arts Centre.

Arriving in Paisley on October 1, The Collection is an exciting, edge-of-your-seat theatre performance by Rapture Theatre in association with The Beacon Arts Centre.

Lawson is the best collector in the business: operating in the seedy world of debt collection, he is at the top of the “profession”. However, when one of his clients commits suicide, Lawson’s life is shattered irrevocably.

The+Collection_482As the mystery darkens around the suicide, the noose tightens, the stakes rise and Lawson and his colleagues are pushed into a deadly power game from which there can only be one winner.

Mixing the wit of Harold Pinter, the gritty style of David Mamet and gallons of typically Scottish black humour, The Collection promises to be a very powerful night at the theatre.

Directed by Michael Emans and featuring an all-star cast of acting legends – Jimmy Chisholm, David Tarkenter, Tam Dean Burn and Pauline Turner, The Collection is not to be missed by fans of Scottish theatre.

The Collection will be at Paisley Arts Centre on Tues 1 October at 7.30pm. Tickets cost £10 (£6 conc) and can be bought by calling the Box Office on 0300 300 1210 or going online to www.renfrewshire.gov.uk/onlinebooking.

The Collection contains strong language and is recommended for ages 16+

For further information on Renfrewshire Arts & Museums’ events log on to www.renfrewshire.gov.uk/events or follow us on Facebook www.facebook.com/renfrewshirearts or Twitter @RenArtsMuseums.

Scotsman Fringe First winners touring Scotland

Award-winning Edinburgh theatre company Nutshell is touring Scotland with Thread by acclaimed Scots writer Jules Horne. This darkly funny play explores friendship, the choices we make and who we become when our memories start to fade.

Thread is the second play in Nutshell’s Still Points in a Turning World trilogy and will be touring this October as part of the Luminate Festival, Scotland’s creative ageing festival.

threadCome roll your dice at the Burntisland beetle drive and share Joan, William and Izzy’s tangled lives. Friends since primary school and closer-than-close ever since, identities stitched together as intricately as their homemade party clothes.

Living in the secure but suffocating embrace of a 1950s Scottish seaside community, who gets to become the person they want to be?

Nutshell director Kate Nelson founded the Edinburgh-based company in 2000 with the aim of making intelligent, entertaining theatre through great writing, direct storytelling and unconventional venues.

Two performances of Thread will take place at Renfrew Town Hall on Fri 18 Oct at 2pm and 7.30pm. Tickets to the show cost £10 (£6 conc) and can be booked at the Box Office on 0300 300 1210 or by visiting www.renfrewshire.gov.uk/onlinebooking

Thread is suitable for ages 8+

For further information on Renfrewshire Arts & Museums’ events log on to www.renfrewshire.gov.uk/events or follow us on Facebook www.facebook.com/renfrewshirearts or Twitter @RenArtsMuseums.

A celebration of Gaelic Heritage and Culture at Paisley Museum

To coincide with the Royal National Mòd, Paisley Museum presents three exhibitions, collectively titled ‘A Celebration of Gaeldom’ running from 27 September to 27 October.

The exhibition, ‘A Wing and A Prayer: Paisley’s Gaelic Chapel Graveyard’ will reveal how research into a secluded former graveyard has illuminated the rich cultural heritage of Gaelic AViewofGaeldom.jpgspeaking people who migrated to Paisley in the late 18th and early 19th centuries. Their lives were hard but Gaelic speakers performed a huge diversity of crafts and trades. Nowadays the site shows a diversity of a different kind – of wild plants and animals – providing a small wildlife refuge in the heart of Paisley.

‘A View of Gaeldom’ is an art exhibition, featuring works from the Paisley Museum collection that depict the beautiful scenery of those parts of Scotland in which Gaelic was traditionally spoken. Indeed Gaelic place names are in evidence in many of the titles. In addition some excellent examples of Celtic Revival Art will be displayed.

The final exhibition, ‘Weaving and Waulking’ will look at the traditional methods and skills of producing cloth in Scotland. ‘Waulking’ is a method of shrinking or ‘fulling’ newly woven tweed and is carried out by a group of women who sing in unison as they work the cloth on the table. During the week of the Royal National Mòd there will be opportunities to see a traditional hand loom in operation and demonstrations by waulking groups.

Councillor Jim Harte, Convener of Sport, Leisure and Cultural Policy Board at Renfrewshire Council states ‘ As we celebrate Paisley hosting the Royal National Mòd this year, these exhibitions are a wonderful opportunity to showcase the links Renfrewshire has with Gaelic heritage and culture.’  

 

Rugby sponsorship helps tackle youth unemployment

Three young Renfrewshire modern apprentices have landed sponsorship deals for the second year of their programme with Scottish Rugby Union.

Leading IT consultancy firm Sopra Group provided the sponsorship for local students Amanda Moore, Andrew Evans and Murray Sutherland.

The modern apprentices were funded in year one by the Scottish Rugby Union and Renfrewshire Council. With those organisations’ support, the offer from Sopra Group allows them to continue with the programme.

Two first-year apprentices, Daniel Caine and Martin McKellar, have been given support from the council to begin the apprenticeship programme this year.

The money came through Invest in Renfrewshire, the council’s £8m programme to boost the local economy and tackle youth unemployment.

Sopra’s Managing Director, Ian Huckle, visited the apprentices with Sopra’s Scottish Rugby Ambassador and ex-Scottish rugby international Scott Hastings and Councillor Jim Harte, Convener of Renfrewshire Council’s Sports Leisure and Culture Policy Board, as they delivered Renfrewshire rugby’s annual development day for Secondary 1 and 2 boys.

Representatives of Invest in Renfrewshire and the Scottish Rugby Union were also there to witness the apprentices put the pupils through their paces.

Councillor Harte said “It’s great to see companies such as Sopra taking an interest in the young people of the area and helping them reach their potential.

“Invest in Renfrewshire has worked very hard to secure funding for many young apprentices, graduate interns and young people who are out of work.

“It is exciting to see the hard work pay off and local firms getting more involved.”

Ian Huckle said “Sopra Group is pleased to be able to create opportunities for employment via the apprentice scheme. We recognise the positive and dynamic impact sport can have on lives.

“It can inspire and motivate children to strive for a better quality of life and develop core skills. By investing in the apprentices we hope we can help deliver a sustainable sporting legacy in the area.”

Scott Hastings added “With a long involvement in sport and rugby in particular I know that Amanda, Andrew and Murray will be gaining a huge amount from their apprenticeships, as will the children they are working with on a daily basis.

“Coaching has its own rewards and Sopra’s support is helping give young people the confidence to go out into their local communities and make a difference.”

The event, at Paisley Rugby Club, will also see teams from the local secondary schools compete in either the established school or emerging schools 7’s competition, which will feature teams from Castlehead High School, Paisley Grammar School, Trinity High, Johnstone High, Linwood High and Park Mains High.

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WEATHERSEAL COMMUNITY HEROES FUND LAUNCHED FOR PAISLEY

Scotland’s biggest home energy company Weatherseal has launched a major campaign to support Paisley community projects.

As part of an ongoing commitment to fund tens of thousands of pounds of worth local causes, across the country, the Weatherseal Community Heroes Fund will give back to the communities who have served Weatherseal so well over the years.

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Any community or charity project in the Paisley area can today apply for a grant of up to £500 to spend on improving the lives of the people in their area.

Every area in Scotland will benefit from at least one community bursary award.

Weatherseal has already gifted thousands of pounds already including projects for the elderly, vulnerable, and young people. Other good causes have included supported mental health charities, children’s hospitals, specific children’s health support groups, and carers.

Weatherseal managing director Tony Reilly comments:

“Weatherseal is proud to serve Scotland and throughout the length and breadth of the country, communities have been good to us.

“We have a tradition of supporting local projects and charity, and this launch of a major new Community Heroes Fund over the next year, is a sign of our desire to support those who support those in the communities in which we serve.

“I fervently hope that lots of deserving local projects in the Paisley area apply for a bursary from our Weatherseal Community Heroes Fund, and would encourage as many as possible to do so.”

The Weatherseal Community Heroes Fund grants bursaries of up to £500. Applications should be submitted online at http://community.weatherseal.co.uk/news/ Applicants are encouraged to choose the Paisley Daily Express when asked where they heard of the fund.

Enquiries:          Amy Forsyth, Progress Sponsorship & Communications, 07808 132 592

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If These Spasms Could Speak at Paisley Arts Centre

If These Spasms Could Speak at Paisley Arts Centre

Robert Softley gives an outstanding performance in thought-provoking play, ‘If These Spasms Could Speak’ 

Taking to the Paisley Arts Centre stage on Sept 24, this tough yet tender theatre production takes a closer look at disability and how disabled people feel about their bodies.

Presented by Robert Softley in association with The Arches, the play has just commenced a 7 date tour of Scotland following a hugely successful run at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe.

If These Spasms Could Speak at Paisley Arts Centre

Made up of a collection of real-life monologues, ‘If These Spasms Could Speak’ encourages audiences to take a closer look at disability – often viewing their own life through completely fresh eyes as a result.

The touching, sad, surprising and often funny stories that Robert animates help to illustrate how disabled people negotiate life: from love and parenting to attending music festivals.

The performance at Paisley Arts Centre also offers additional access facilities for visually/hearing impaired audiences. To make use of the Audio Description, British Sign Lanugage and rolling text services (which are available via a limited number of small hand held devices) please notify the Box Office at point of booking.

There will be two performances of If These Spasms Could Speak at Paisley Arts Centre on 24 Sept at 1.30pm & 7.30pm. Tickets cost £3 for the afternoon show and £10 (£6 conc) for the evening show. Call the Box Office on 0300 300 1210 to book or visit www.renfrewshire.gov.uk/onlinebooking to book online.

For further information on Renfrewshire Arts & Museums’ events log on to www.renfrewshire.gov.uk/events or follow us on Facebook www.facebook.com/renfrewshirearts or Twitter @RenArtsMuseums.

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GLASGOW AIRPORT PUTS £50,000 UP FOR GRABS

Charities and community groups have been invited to compete for a £50,000 lump sum from the Glasgow Airport FlightPath Fund.

The money will be given to the organisation which makes the most convincing case for a significant community project which will bring a lasting benefit to those living under the flightpath.

Glasgow Airport logo 2013In order to be considered for the airport’s third Challenge Fund, applicants must demonstrate their project will lead to positive outcomes in at least one of three areas – education, employment and the environment.

On two previous occasions the Challenge Fund has awarded large sums to worthy projects. The community departments of Celtic and Rangers football clubs received £50,000 between them to enable educational youth football programmes to take place in Clydebank and Drumchapel.

This funding ensured 280 young people were able to benefit from more than 40 hours of coaching and workshops designed to tackle anti-social behaviour and sectarianism, while also increasing the number of young people taking part in physical activity.

And the charity Scottish Business in the Community (SBC) received £40,000 which allowed them to pilot a new project called Skills for Sustainable Tourism, which introduces young people to the career opportunities available in the tourism and hospitality sectors.

Amanda McMillan, Glasgow Airport’s managing director, said: “This is a fantastic opportunity for a local community group or a national charity delivering local projects to think of a really innovative and beneficial project which would not be possible without this level of donation.

“After two successful Challenge Funds in recent years we are confident this will generate a lot of interest. Through the FlightPath Fund we support a wide range of organisations and hopefully the applications we receive will reflect this diversity.”

Bob Christie, SBC’s regional manager for Glasgow, said: “The Skills for Sustainable Tourism project was very successful and would not have been possible without the Challenge Fund money. It’s fantastic that a high-profile business such as Glasgow Airport, which directly and indirectly supports thousands of jobs in tourism and hospitality, both funded and participated in the programme.

“By committing so much of its money and time, Glasgow Airport showed it is willing to invest in the future of the young people in its community and the future of tourism in Scotland. Charities and community groups should be really excited that another Challenge Fund has been launched.”

The Challenge Fund is supported by money from the Communities Trust, formerly the BAA Communities Trust, which is the charitable arm of Glasgow Airport’s parent company.

The Communities Trust is one of the revenue streams which make up the airport’s FlightPath Fund, which was established in 2010 to ensure nearby communities share in the airport’s success.

It supports communities in those areas of Glasgow, Renfrewshire, East Dunbartonshire and West Dunbartonshire which lie under the flightpath. Each of these four local authority areas is represented on the decision-making panel.

The FlightPath Fund has awarded in excess of £550,000 to more than 150 community groups and charities, and in 2012 made awards totalling more than £200,000.

If you are a charity or community group seeking funding and your project meets the criteria below then why not apply?

To be considered a project must:

  • Create a significant and sustainable benefit to the community.
  • Yield positive outcomes in at least one of the following areas: education, employment and the environment.
  • Benefit a significant number of people.

Applications must:

  • Provide clear evidence that the project will fulfil a local need.
  • Provide clear evidence of the financial viability of the project.

The closing date for applications is Friday 18 October. The Glasgow Airport FlightPath Fund’s decision-making panel will shortlist the strongest entries and the winner will be chosen by the trustees of the Communities Trust.

If you would like more information on the Challenge Fund or FlightPath Fund visit www.glasgowairport.com, e-mail flightpath@glasgowairport.com or write to FlightPath Fund, Glasgow Airport, St Andrew’s Drive, Paisley, PA3 2SW

Renfrew Town Hall

Renfrew Town Hall

The newly refurbished Renfrew Town Hall was well worth a visit on Doors Open Day, money very well spent on this landmark building. The photos show the Main Hall and the Lesser Hall and the building is available for hire for weddings and other events. The modernised Renfrew Museum is also housed in this building and some of the displays change regularly.

All photographs taken by Anne McNair and allowed for use on www.paisley.org.uk