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Auld Lang Syne ... Our Scottish Diaspora Tapestry premiere is in Prestonpans May 31st/ June 8th

The final panel [stitched by Mairi Campbell and friends] in the Scottish Diaspora Tapestry was as inevitable as the melody you know so well ...

‘There’s a hand, my trusty fiere, and gie’s a hand o’thine, and we’ll tak a right gude-willie-waught, for auld lang syne.’



Come a see this fine artwork and the hundred and more panels which precede it from across the world ... all at the Prestonpans Community Centre from May 31st/ June 8th 2014, throughout 3 Harbours Festival.

Robert Burns’ Auld Lang Syne is sung everywhere across our diaspora but it’s also Scotland’s gift to the whole world. The Immortal Bard’s words recall happy days gone by, our separation and reunion once again.

The anthem was sung by all the soldiers at the end of the American Civil War and in the World War I trenches on Christmas Day 1914. It rings out today at parties in China, Russia and Mexico, as a folk song in Denmark, in the Netherlands at football matches and just everywhere across the globe on New Year’s Eve.

Radio, tv and Hollywood have spread Burns’ words from Guy Lombardo’s Royal Big Canadian Band on New Year’s Eve in the 1920s to Shirley Temple who sang the song in Wee Willie Winkie in 1937. It features in Charlie Chaplin’s Gold Rush, Frank Capra’s It’s a Wonderful Life, When Harry met Sally and most recently in Sex and the City – where it was sung by Mairi Campbell who has herself embroidered this beautiful panel with friends. [That version is available on the Tapestry's brilliant companion CDs from Greentrax HERE]

The Japanese adopted the melody with their own words Hotaru no hikari, it inspired the popular Bengali song Purano shei diner kotha, and was the music for the national anthem of united Korea from 1919 – 1948.


Clearly, despite the present magnitude of this tapestry, not all auld acquaintances have yet been brought to mind. If you or your family or friends have a diaspora tale to tell, and yes perhaps even to embroider, please be sure it’s not forgot … and is ever brought to mind. Give us the details in Prestonpans. Let’s explore whether we can add it to what we are honoured to have captured already in this magnificent artwork. GO info@scottishdiasporatapestry.org



Published Date: April 15th 2014


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