Media Release: Gaelic singer, Mary Ann Kennedy, to open mountain festival

Mary-Ann Kennedy

THE Fort William Mountain Festival,  presented by the ‘Outdoor Capital of the UK’, will open with a unique launch event at Nevis Range’s new Pinemarten Restaurant on Wednesday 15 February.

Guests will be treated to a sumptuous four-course dinner inspired by and sourced from the waters, mountains and glens of Lochaber and enjoy an exclusive musical performance from award-winning Gaelic singer, Mary Ann Kennedy.

Mary Ann is a multi-award winning singer, composer, classical musician, and radio and TV presenter.

Originally from a Gaelic-speaking musical family in Glasgow, Mary Ann now lives and works from her base at Watercolour Music Studios, a residential recording studios and creative retreat developed by herself and husband, Nick Turner, near Fort William.

Mary Ann and accompanying singers will perform a very special contemporary piece called Bliadhna an t-Sneachd Dhuibh, ‘Black Snow’.

This wonderful evening showcases the beauty and power of uplifting Highland music that’s like no other.

Originally written for a commission giving the Scottish perspective on snow and ice, Mary Ann turned to her Gaelic-speaking background for inspiration to create a work contemporary in nature but informed and inspired by the relationship between Gaels and the natural world around them, as illustrated in poetry, song and lore.

It interplays between a recorded background of natural, synthesised and manipulated sounds, and four female singers to dramatic effect.

‘Black Snow’ will be a tasty cultural treat to kick off the 2012 Fort William Mountain Festival in style.

Mary Ann Kennedy is also a well-known voice on BBC Radio Scotland and Radio 3.

Her profile as a world/roots music presenter on radio and television was recognised in 2007, when she was named ‘Radio Presenter of the Year’ at the international Celtic Media Awards.

For full details of the commission ‘Black Snow’ and on Mary Ann Kennedy visit –

To find out more about Mary Ann Kennedy’s music visit

Tickets: £45 per person – ticket includes four-course meal and concert (black tie event).

The 2012 Fort William Mountain Festival, presented by the Outdoor Capital of the UK, has now been announced and it’s set to be a fantastic five-day celebration of mountain culture, based in the bustling Highland town of Fort William from Wednesday 15 – Sunday 19 February 2012.

This year’s festival includes a superb line-up of lectures from top climbers and mountaineers, mountain bikers, and mountain filmmakers; and film screenings from cutting edge outdoor athletes and adventurers.

To find out more and to buy your festival tickets, go to


Media contact:

Paddy Cuthbert | Podge Publicity | M: 07968699636 | e:

If you are keen to attend the Fort William Mountain Festival for a commissioned travel feature or adventure / activity feature please contact Paddy Cuthbert to discuss a funded press trip to The Outdoor Capital of the UK.

Social media:

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Useful websites:

Fort William Mountain Festival 2011 –
Outdoor Capital of the UK-
YouTube –

Sponsor and supporters:

The Fort William Mountain festival wish to thank the following sponsors and supporters: Outdoor Capital of the UK, Ellis-Brigham, Alpine Bikes, Marine Harvest, Nevis Range, Hotscot, Nevis Cycles, Tiso, John Muir Trust, Allround Signs, Crannog Restaurant, Highland Wood Energy, Nevissport, No Fuss Events, Big Tree Campervans, Nevispix, Highland Activities, Abacus Mountain guides, Trailab, Granite House, Bill Scott Architects.

Presenting partner:

The Outdoor capital of the UK –

Formed in 2003, the Outdoor Capital is a not-for-profit community company established to promote Fort William and Lochaber as the best place to experience the outdoors in the UK; with the vision: To establish and maintain Fort William and Lochaber as the UK’s premier destination for outdoor pursuits and adventure tourism in an exceptional natural environment.

Visitors interested in the outdoors are increasingly important to economy and community of Lochaber. There are over 65 different activities to choose from in an amazing landscape that encompasses the small isles to Ben Nevis with white water rivers, sea, lochs, beaches, forest, glens, cliffs and mountains in between.

Festival organisers:

The Highland Mountain Culture Association Limited, is a not for profit organisation, whose aim is to promote the understanding and appreciation of the world’s mountain places and people, by creating opportunities for people of all ages to share their mountain experiences, ideas and visions. To showcase these ideals, it stages annually a programme of events within the Lochaber area, called The Fort William Mountain Festival.

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Contact: Paddy Cuthbert
Phone: 07978 699636