Media release: BBC ALBA to broadcast BBC Radio Scotland Young Traditional Musician of the Year final 2013

BBC Radio Scotland Young Traditional Musician 2013

BBC ALBA – Monday February 4 at 9pm

THE BBC Radio Scotland Young Traditional Musician 2013 finals are set to take place in Glasgow during Celtic Connections and BBC ALBA will once again be providing coverage of the event.

Mary Ann Kennedy will host the event which can be seen on BBC ALBA on Monday February 4 at 9pm.

This will be the 14th year of the Young Traditional Musician of the Year and the second time that the finals have been televised.

Following the semi-finals which were held in October, where 14 performers competed, six musicians have made it through to the grand final, which takes place in the Stevenson Concert Hall, Royal Conservatoire of Scotland on February 3 2013.

It will be broadcast live on BBC Radio Scotland at 5pm.

The finalists in this year’s competition are:

Andrew Dunlop (Connel) piano

A native of Connel, Argyll, Andrew Dunlop was introduced to traditional piano at Fèis Latharna by local accordion guru, Neil Sinclair. He went on to study at the RNCM in Manchester and the Eastman School in New York, where he undertook a study of the life and work of Marjory Kennedy-Fraser.

Andrew has represented Scotland at the Pan Celtic Competition in Ireland where he won the New Song, International New Song Competitions and came 2nd in the International Harp Competition.

Andrew has performed across the UK, USA, Canada, Switzerland and New Zealand. He performs regularly with his sister Joy Dunlop, and can be heard on both her CDs Dùsgadh and Faileasan.

Graham Mackenzie (Inverness) fiddle

Graham Mackenzie (20), from Inverness, is currently in his fourth year at the Royal Northern College of Music in Manchester.

Most recently, Graham was a finalist in the BBC Radio 2 Young Folk Award 2012 which was held in The Lowry, Salford in February. He was the inaugural winner of the Highland Young Musician of the Year and has also won the Scottish Championships at junior and senior level, the Invitational Masters Competition in Oban and was a runner-up in the Glenfiddich Fiddle Championships held in Blair Castle.

Graham has appeared as a soloist at the Fiddle Festival in Edinburgh, Celtic Connections; where he was the youngest winner of a Danny Kyle Award, the Shetland Accordion and Fiddle Festival and Blas.

He has had the privilege of working and playing alongside some of the folk scenes top musicians including Mike McGoldrick, Aidan O’Rourke, John Doyle, Phil Cunningham and Julie Fowlis.

Grant MacFarlane (Paisley) accordion

Grant is a recent graduate of the Scottish music course at the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland. He now teaches and performs extensively around Scotland and further afield.

His cèilidh band, Scotia, is widely sought after on the dance band scene and is set to open and close the Mod this year in his hometown of Paisley.

His band, CherryGrove, performed in Olympic Park in August as part of a showcase of new Scottish talent and he has also played internationally with the Atlantic Seaway collaboration, travelling most recently to France and America.

With a passion for writing his own music, Grant is a keen composer and recently won the Mod Pàislig 2013 tune competition.

Hannah Fisher (Dunkeld) fiddle

Hannah Fisher (20) from Dunkeld began learning classical violin at a young age. She was first introduced to traditional music aged 11, when she began tuition with Pete Clark and attended weekly sessions at the local pub the Taybank.

Having grown up surrounded by the music of Niel Gow, one of Scotland’s most influential traditional fiddle players and composers, she has also been inspired by the playing of local piper, the late Gordon Duncan.

In more recent years, her range of influences broadened to Ireland and America with the likes of Cathal Hayden and Liz Carroll.

Hannah has already made a career for herself performing under her own name and has worked with many well known acts such as Dougie MacLean, Ross Ainslie and most recently Roddy Woomble.

Paddy Callaghan (Glasgow) accordion

Paddy Callaghan is a multi-instrumentalist from Glasgow who learned his trade under the legendary Frank McArdle and The St. Roch’s Ceili Band.

Despite playing Trad music on the Button Accordion, Harp and Concertina, Paddy has also managed to find time to play in successful Rockabilly/Cajun band, ‘The Chihuahuas’, and be an experimental visionary as a ‘Trad Disco’ or ‘Trisco’ DJ.

As a more conventional DJ, Paddy hosts his own Radio show ‘Trad with Pad’ on Celtic Music Radio every Tuesday evening from 6-7pm.

Professionally, Paddy is a full-time development worker for Comhaltas Ceoltoírí Éireann, which promotes Irish traditional culture, worldwide.

Scott Wood (Erskine) pipes, whistle

Scott Wood, 18, is a Piper and Whistle player from Erskine. He is taught pipes by Gordon McCready, Stuart Samson and Allan MacDonald and whistle by Marc Duff. He is currently studying Scottish Music Degree at the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland.

Scott competes regularly in solo piping competitions as well as playing with the Grade 1 Strathclyde Police Pipe Band.

Scott is also current Pipe Sergeant of the National Youth Pipe Band of Scotland Senior Band.

He is a keen composer and has recently been focusing on his new project: The Scott Wood Trio.

Scott now plays with the Red Hot Chilli Pipers and has appeared on numerous occasions with Skerryvore.

The final of the BBC Radio Scotland Young Traditional Musician is staged in a concert setting and each finalist is required to perform for 15 minutes in a concert setting for the coveted title.

Performances can be accompanied by a professional traditional musician of their choice, from a group provided.

The BBC Radio Scotland Young Traditional Musician of the Year award is organized by Hands up for Trad who also organize the Scots Trad Music Awards.

The ‘Young Trad’ Award exists to encourage young musicians to keep their tradition alive and to maximise their musical potential by the pursuit of a career in traditional music.

Each year, the winner is provided with high-profile performance opportunities and the necessary tools and advice they require to launch a career in traditional music.

The winner of the BBC Radio Scotland Young Traditional Musician 2012 will be awarded a recording session with BBC Scotland, performance at this year’s Scots Trad Music Awards in Aberdeen, one year’s membership of Musicians Union, while all finalists get one year’s membership of the Traditional Music and Song Association of Scotland (TMSA) plus the opportunity to take part in the TMSA’s annual Young Trad Tour.

BBC Radio Scotland Young Traditional Musician 2013 will be broadcast on BBC ALBA on Monday February 4 and repeated Wednesday February 6 at 10pm.


For further information please contact Gary McQueen at Media House on 0141 220 6040 or email

Notes to editors:

BBC ALBA is available on the following platforms:

•       Freeview 8 (Scotland only)

•       Virgin Media 188 (Scotland only)

•       Sky 168 (UK)

•       Freesat 110 (UK)

•       Live on BBC iPlayer (UK)

•       Ten hours of content per week is also available to view on demand via the BBC PC iPlayer and the BBC iPlayer on Virgin Media

BBC ALBA is run by MG ALBA in partnership with the BBC. MG ALBA is the operating name of Seirbheis nam Meadhanan Gàidhlig, the Gaelic Media Service. Find out more about MG ALBA and the partnership at or visit for scheduling and programme information.

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Contact: Gary McQueen