CELEBRATING SCOTTISH-SCANDINAVIAN TIES
Thursday, 30 July 2015 13:32
MSP hails Nordic House arts initiative at this year's Edinburgh Festival
Falkirk East MSP Angus MacDonald has championed a parliamentary motion fostering cultural links between Scotland and its Scandinavian neighbours. The motion, tabled by Christina McKelvie MSP, calls for Holyrood to welcome the arts showcase 'Nordic 'House' that is to be hosted by the Scottish Storytelling Centre at next month's Edinburgh Festival.
The motion by the MSP for Hamilton, Larkhall and Stonehouse also highlights Scotland's "long history with the Nordic nations, which...can be seen today in the Northern Isles in the strength of feeling toward the history shared and the identity that many people feel part of".
An impressive, state-of-the-art multimedia exhibition of landscape art from all five of the Nordic nations - namely Norway, Sweden, Iceland, Finland and Denmark - is to form the backdrop of this creative outreach programme at the Storytelling Centre on Edinburgh's Royal Mile (pictured above).
Earlier this year, Angus MacDonald, who has cherished a lifelong interest in Scandinavia and the region's association with Scotland - culturally, historically, economically and linguistically - called for the Scottish Government to strengthen these ties by improving ferry services across the North Sea. The Falkirk East MSP stressed that "Norway and the Scandinavian nations are some of the wealthiest on the planet, so the economic benefit to increasing travel between the two islands is obvious".
Mr. MacDonald added that "the cultural and social benefits of closer ties between the Nordic progressive social democracies and this country can likewise only be a good thing. The Nordic House initiative uses the positive and popular medium of the creative arts both to embody and to encourage this spirit of mutual friendship and pan-national cooperation. I therefore commend that the thrust of Ms. McKelvie's motion be embraced by my fellow parliamentarians and by the nation as a whole."
"As a native of the Outer Hebrides, the wealth of Nordic place names around me growing up provided me with a tangible reminder of Scotland's Scandinavian legacy. Our key trajectory should now be to build on this historic relationship and look forward to enhancing Nordic-Scottish collaboration in all spheres of culture and commerce. And where better to encapsulate and showcase this theme than at the world renowned celebration of culture and cross-cultural appreciation that is the Edinburgh International Festival."