Folk Film Gathering returns for its third year
Highlights from the 2017 programme include Killer Sheep, Land of Songs and Latcho Drom
The world's first festival of folk cinema is back this year for its third edition, bringing with it another programme of interesting and rare world cinema that engages effectively with folk culture. This year, the festival will feature the work of filmmakers from the UK as well as from Finland, Brittany, Italy and Brazil, focusing on the strong connection between songs and labour.
What truly makes the festival unique though is its live music element, with many of the screenings being introduced by performances that link in some way to the film in question. The MacTaggart Scott Loanhead Brass Band for example will be introducing The Scar, while the Polish women's choir Davno will perform before Land of Songs. Elsewhere, you'll find Scots-Jamaican Burns singer Brina introducing Killer of Sheep and live music from singers Steve Byrne and Jess Smith and Scots Trad Awards Instrumentalist of the Year Rachel Newton.
The Gathering is a partnership between Transgressive North, Edinburgh Filmhouse and TradFest, giving voice to the folk traditions of working class communities and their culture, history and experiences. This year's programme will also place an extra emphasis on political solidarity by showcasing films that highlight the experiences of marginalised groups, displaced communities and those facing austerity.
With so many excellent films to choose from, we've rounded up a few of our top picks to help you decide what to see.
Introduced with a live performance by Margaret Bennett and followed by an audience with Normal Maclean.
Ruadhan is a young man facing a mammoth battle. To stop his community and hometown from changing drastically, he decides that he must fight for the past to keep traditions alive. The film features legendary folk heroes Norman Maclean, Sheila Stewart and Margaret Bennett and highlights the importance of the oral tradition of storytelling.
Sat 29 Apr, Filmhouse, 5.45pm
Killer of Sheep (1978)
Introduced with a performance by Brina.
Director Charles Burnett's debut depicts the working class black experience in Los Angeles in the 1970s through Stan, who works tirelessly in a slaughterhouse. With a brilliant selection of music from Etta James to Earth, Wind & Fire accompanying, the film draws attention to the struggles of inner-city life through Stan's increasing detachment from his daily work and personal life.
Sun 30 Apr, Filmhouse, 6pm