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Burns Supper with a twist promises mix of the Bard and Bette Milder in Inverness

By Ian Duncan

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Entertainers Fiona Kennedy and John Bett will headline Nae Ordinary Burns Supper.
Entertainers Fiona Kennedy and John Bett will headline Nae Ordinary Burns Supper.

Organisers are promising "nae ordinary fundraiser" for an Inverness Burns Supper later this month.

It aims to combine the poet's music with songs penned by the Divine Miss M to raise money for local charities.

Produced and masterminded by Scottish entertainer and singer Fiona Kennedy and award-winning actor and director, John Bett, Nae Ordinary Burns Supper returns to the Highland capital for the third year running on Friday, January 24, at Macdonald Drumossie Hotel.

The unique evening will feature a stunning line-up of talented singers, musicians, a choir, The Jacobite Band and local singer songwriter Peter Macpherson.

Ms Kennedy, one of Scotland’s best-loved singers, has travelled the world to perform at Burns Suppers but wanted to do something very different for the Highlands.

She said: "I wanted to create an event which draws everyone in through Burns' wonderful songs, music and poetry and weave it together with contemporary songs which are also known and loved to make the evening fun, poignant and relevant.

"So much of Burns' work is about love and that's as relevant today as it ever was. I think it's wonderful that Auld Lang Syne is still sung all over the world at so many occasions and is regarded as the international song of friendship."

She said she was delighted to once again have John Bett by her side – he said he was very much looking forward to returning to Inverness, where guests appreciate the irreverent format of Nae Ordinary Burns Supper.

He added: "We do have many of the traditional elements of a Burns Supper – I always do the address to the haggis – but we don't have any long speeches. We tell our story through the music, poetry and wee bit of drama thrown in for good measure and a lot of laughs."

Guests will also have a chance to help determine the night's playlist by submitting in advance their favourite songs from more than 100 which Fiona and the cast have performed over the years – and many will be included in this special evening.

Nae Ordinary Burns Supper has been described by Roy Macgregor, from sponsors Global Energy, as "unique". He added: "Fiona and John with all the singers, musicians and choir put on an absolutely outstanding evening. It's Robert Burns presented in a wonderfully unique way. The quality of the singing is superb, as good as any West End Show, and we're delighted to support this."

The event will be raising money for charities operating in the Highlands and this time the money will be split between Marie Curie and the Scottish SPCA.

Vonnie Stevenson, a Marie Curie community fundraiser, said: "We are delighted to be again one of the chosen charities for next year's event. It is a truly fabulous night out, a celebration of Rabbie Burns work in a completely 'nae ordinary' evening, full of music, song, entertainment and fun."

Sharon Comrie, Scottish SPCA animal rescue and rehoming chief superintendent, added: "We are delighted Fiona Kennedy has decided to support us at the upcoming Nae Ordinary Burns Supper. To have such a talented and well-respected singer give a voice to the animals of Scotland is an honour. We are very much looking forward to working together to help make the event one to remember."

For further information either visit www.fiona-kennedy.com/burns or contact 07968 191632.

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