Media release: Festival heads north for sneak preview

Caolmhar from Sweden Northern Streams 2019

THE unique festival of Nordic and Scottish music, song and dance, Northern Streams, heads north from its Edinburgh base to Dundee for a sneak preview concert celebrating its 16th year later this month.

The details are:

Dundee Concert – Thursday 25 April: Afternoon Concert 1.00-1.45pm

HMS Unicorn Dundee, Victoria Dock, DD1 3BP, featuring:

Caolmhar – Hannah Sundkvist (fiddle, mandolin, voice), Kristian Hodén(accordion), Mattias Walla (viola, fiddle) and Mattias Hammarsten (guitar) associated with V-Dala Spelmanslag – recognised as Sweden’s longest-running student folk ensemble and three-times student world champions, perform a range of Nordic and Scottish music and songs.

Adult tickets only £5 (child £2), which also gets you the opportunity to look around the Unicorn as well.

Please note numbers are limited, so booking essential!

Booking information is in a separate link on the tickets page on

Other performers in Edinburgh during 26-28 April are:

  • Kata – a five-women group who sing traditional songs from the Faroe Islands in a striking manner
  • Jocelyn Pettit with Rav Sira and Ellen Gira – a trio of top young musicians studying in Scotland, from Canada, Norway and the USA, who enjoy playing both Nordic and Scottish music. This will be their first headline concert since forming.

Organiser, Fiona Campbell, said: “I really pleased to have some of the young Swedish musicians who delighted festival audiences last year, returning to play and sing in Caolmhar and be able to showcase their talent in another location this year.”

For more details of the Northern Streams programme visit or email: or tel: 0795 191 8366, or Facebook – TMSAEdinburgh&Lothians and Twitter @northernstream1.

Northern Streams is organised by the Traditional Music and Song Association (TMSA) Edinburgh & Lothians branch. Details about the branch at: and TMSA –

We acknowledge support from the Tórshavnar Kommuna, from individual donations, Torshavn Kommunar, Bilda plus the Edinburgh Old Town Development Trust (EOTDT) and City of Edinburgh Council Southside/Newington Community Grants & Local Events fund.

Notes to editors and listing details:

  • Publicity photos of all the performers are available electronically at the media page on – please tel: 07951 918366 (Fiona) or email: for any queries e.g. if you require any recordings.
  • Described as “…something out of the ordinary” by The Herald, throughout the years Northern Streams has showcased performers often new to Scottish audiences, offering opportunities to learn about different cultures around the North Sea through a mix of concerts and workshops.
  • The Pleasance is a student union complex run by Edinburgh University Student Association (EUSA). Its recent refurbishment has opened up spaces that are a great fit for the Northern Streams Festival and we are pleased to be returning to one of our original venues. A café/bar is available at the venue plus plenty of other options available locally.
  • The Traditional Music & Song Association of Scotland (TMSA) was formed in 1966 as an organisation to promote, present and preserve the traditional music and song of Scotland. Its first events were annual festivals based in Blairgowrie, bringing together many of the finest exponents of the traditions as well as new faces. Current projects include the annual TMSA Event Calendar, an interactive music map of Scotland and TMSA Young Trad Tour of the BBC Radio Scotland Young Musician of the Year finalists. For its 50th anniversary, the TMSA worked with Collins to get Norman Buchan’s iconic ‘101 Scottish Songs’ (Wee Red Book) reprinted after 40 years of being out of print as well as being celebrated at the Opening Concert of Celtic Connections 2016. Recently, the Little Book of Scottish Folk Songs (a revised reprint of the Scottish FolkSinger by Norman Buchan and Peter Hall) was launched as a second collaboration between Collins and the TMSA. The TMSA is registered as a Scottish Charity SCO03819 and a company limited by guarantee No: 199976. Registered Office: The Signal Box, Edinburgh EH14 1JL. Website:

Caolmhar – Sweden

Caolmhar is a Swedish quartet that interprets and performs traditional Scottish and Nordic music. The group performs the music with a mix of tradition, effects and improvisation to create an unique sound.

Their name comes from an appearance in a 19th century poem, which seems to be a misprint of ‘ceolmhar’ which means ‘musical’ rather than the possible other option of meaning ‘cheesy’!

The band members are:

Hannah Sundkvist (fiddle, mandolin and voice) is the leader of the folk-band, ‘V-dala Spelmanslag’, who performed at the Northern Streams Festival in 2018. It is considered the world’s oldest student folk music orchestra, founded in 1961.

Kristian Hodén (accordion) – another member of ‘V-dala Spelmanslag’ and has spent quite a bit of time in Scotland as a student learning Scottish music from the source.

Mattias Walla (viola and fiddle) – also a member of ‘V-dala Spelmanslag’.

Mattias Hammarsten (guitar)

At Northern Streams, we are looking forward to hearing their mix of repertoire from around the North Sea as well as being able to teach Swedish dances, songs and tunes.

Links to examples: (facebook-page) (live from this week concerts) (Soundcloud)



Uppsala Music Lovers: (review)

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Contact: Fiona Campbell