tour of great war play encourages gaelic learning

Tuesday 10th February 2015

Meanbh-chuileag, the theatre-in-education project that operates as part of ‘Fèisgoil’; Fèisean nan Gàidheal’s Gaelic language and arts education service, is currently on tour with ‘Getting Going’, an English drama set at the time of the Great War. With 10 performances in 8 schools, the play has been devised to encourage pupils to think about the impact of the First World War on the people of the Highlands. Children in primary schools throughout Lochaber, Argyll and Perthshire will see this interactive play, and they’ll have the opportunity to learn some Gaelic words and phrases during the performance.

In the telling of the story of a young Highland lad with plans of heading off to university, pupils will learn about the way of life in the Highlands at the beginning of the 20th century, and also about the life and day-to-day routine of soldiers in the trenches. Dougie Beck, one of Fèisean nan Gàidheal’s drama officers, developed the play with input from Angus Macleod (also a drama officer with Fèisean nan Gàidheal), and the well known Gaelic actor Artair Donald.

As Dougie said: “This play was originally performed in Gaelic, and toured Gaelic schools last year. With our increased involvement with mainstream schools in recent years, particularly through the teaching of Gaelic as a second language, we wanted to provide an opportunity for children to see a drama that intertwined Gaelic language, history and the way of life of the people who lived at the time who played such an important role in the history of the Highlands. The play was developed in keeping with the requirements of the Curriculum for Excellence, and therefore, in addition to the entertainment aspect, there are definite benefits for children with regard to their education.”

A tour of the one-man performance will be visiting the following schools:

Monday 9 February – Inverlochy Primary
Monday 9 February – Saint Bride’s Primary
Tuesday 10 February – Srath of Appin Primary School
Wednesday 11 February – Glen Lyon Primary
Thursday 12 February – Spean Bridge Primary and Roy Bridge Primary
Thursday 12 February – Upper Achintore Primary and Fort William Primary
Friday 13 February – Banavie Primary School

For more information about the play and the tour contact Dougie Beck at the Fèisean nan Gàidheal office in Fort William on 01397 704132 or e-mail

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