Marit and Rona

Marit and Rona

 Edinburgh, Scotland, GBR
DuoWorldFolk

Scotland and Scandinavia join forces in Danny Kyle Award-winning duo, Marit and Rona. Fiddler and Gaelic singer, Rona Wilkie (2012 BBC Scotland Young Trad Winner) is joined by Swedish-Norwegian låtmandola player Marit Fält. This pair bring a new perspective to the music of the North Sea.

Biography

Not everything has been done before. At least not in music. Which is something of a marvel.

The debut album from Marit Flt and Rona Wilkie melds tunes and songs from their separate geographical backgrounds to create a new music thats uplifting, daring and harmonious.

Turas explores the rarely probed similarities between Scandinavian and Scottish Highland tunes colouring them with songs from both traditions. But this isnt academia. Marit and Ronas music is playful, borderless and thrilling. It glides from evocative near-classical movements through elegant polskas to buoyant reels, brought to life by Ronas multi-personality fiddle virtuosity and Marits breath-ta king mastery of the versatile ltmandola.

The duo fell into playing together when they were studying in Newcastle. In 2012 they won the coveted Danny Kyle Award at Glasgows Celtic Connections Festival and Rona was named BBC Scotland Young Traditional Musician of the Year.

While the musical relationship between Scandinavia and the Northern Isles of Scotland has been investigated before, there were fewer creative unions between those countries and the Highlands. And its that which fused Marit and Ronas collaboration.

The way that the Gaelic and Norwegian and Swedish languages are sung is very similar, and the melodies of the languages are similar as well, Rona explains. But were also exploring the differences in the music in the tempos, time signatures and even the tone of the instruments.

The ltmandola (or Nordic mandola) was created for both accompaniment and melody. This inspired Marit and Rona to take the same approach to the cittern, violin, viola and Hardanger fiddle (to name a few) at times turning their traditional usage upside down. Similarly their voices add melodic and rhythmical layers, and contrasting tones instruments in their own right.

Joining them on several tracks is the bewitching percussion of Allan g MacDonald and the deliciously sweeping strings of the Cantilena Quartet playing Marit and Ronas own arrangements. The album was produced by the renowned musician, singer and broadcaster Mary Ann Kennedy.

The title Turas means the same in Swedish as in Gaelic: to take turns. It was chosen for its ease of pronunciation in English too. Because the music of Marit and Rona translates simply and poignantly to all audiences, no matter their nationality, background or experience.

Its something of a marvel.

Discography

Turas (to be released February 24, 2014)

Live Session January 2014 (Celtic Music Radio)

Live Session August 2013 (BBC Radio Foyle)

Live Session August 2013 (RT)

Live Session August 2013 (TG4)

Live Session August 2013 (Fleadh Live)

Live Session February 2013 (BBC Alba)

Live Session January 2013 (BBC Radio Scotland)

Live Session January 2013 (STV)

Live Session January 2013 (BBC Scotland)

Live Session December 2012 (BBC Alba)

Demo 2012

Live Session April 2012 (BBC Radio Scotland)

Set List

  1. Tobar Tobar
  2. Fhuair mi pog
  3. Nar som Flickorna/ Bodach Innse Chro
  4. Quebecois Reels
  5. Seo a' bhliadhna
  6. The Bold New England Fireman
  7. Tha bo dhubh agam
  8. Ebba Brahe/ Kilmartin Glen Campsite
  9. Psalm 107
  10. Rory's
  11. Angskar
  12. Slangpolskas
  13. Winder Slide/ Duck River
  14. Cignet Parade
  15. Smilgropen
  16. Bussan Lullan
  17. Oran Sniomhaidh