Surgeons Quarter dances to new tune by hosting Spirit of Scotland

A DANCE and music event which encapsulates Scottish culture is expected to attract more than 60,000 visitors at its new Edinburgh home.

The Spirit of Scotland, featuring traditional dance, song, storytelling and music, has proved a huge hit with tourists and is forecast to grow its popularity further when it opens in April at the Surgeons Quarter.

Running all year round, the programme attracts more than 300 customers to each of its seven evening shows.

Featuring up to 12 performers each show, including children and adult dancers, the packed itinerary celebrates Highland dancing, sword dancing, bagpipe and accordion performances, and includes a balladeer.

Resident bagpiper is Pipe Major Andy Coulter, who has played for Her Majesty The Queen and Heads of State, while professional toastmaster Philip Henderson will have guests raising a glass as he swaps salutations for guitar and vocals.

Bruce Davies, who performed for many years at Edinburgh’s traditional music and dance mecca Jamie’s, is the host.

The Spirit of Scotland is popular with North American and Australian tourists but is a great favourite with domestic visitors to Edinburgh and non-English speakers.

John Keenan, Managing Director of Spirit of Scotland, said: “Location is key to a show like ours and we are delighted to be hosting the very best of traditional Scottish song and dance at this stunning venue in the centre of Edinburgh.

“Bringing together a selection of Scotland’s cultural heritage under the roof of the Surgeons Quarter is a winning formula for visitors to Edinburgh who want a glimpse of the rich tapestry of music and dance which runs through the spine of the country.

“The show is more of a visual and hearing experience than based on dialogue, so in addition to our visitors from North America, Europe and Australia, it has a really strong appeal with non-English speakers.”

Spirit of Scotland is also a culinary feast and as part of the ticket package, guests will enjoy a traditional four course Scottish dinner with an alcoholic or soft drink.

Scott Mitchell, Managing Director of Surgeons Quarter, said: “Anchoring Spirit of Scotland at Surgeons Quarter cements the venue’s status as one of Edinburgh’s premier hospitality and tourist destinations and we are delighted to be able to showcase the cream of Scottish traditional artists to more than 60,000 visitors each year.

“The quality of performers and performance will be matched by the quality of the food plated up for our guests and produced in-house by our expert chefs to offer a truly unique visitor experience.”

Surgeons Quarter is the commercial arm of the Royal College of Surgeons of Edinburgh (RCSEd) which hopes exposure to thousands of international visitors visiting Spirit of Scotland will encourage many to enjoy its main visitor attraction, the Surgeons’ Hall Museums in Nicolson Street.

Surgeons Quarter promotes, sells and manages all commercial activities held within the RCSEd campus.

It includes facilities for conferences, meetings, private events, parties, weddings and its own four-star hotel Ten Hill Place.

All profits support the charitable aims of the College which are education, assessment and advancement in surgical standards worldwide.

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