Unfortunately Creative Scotland has decided not to award us a grant for the rest of our George Campbell Hay Centenary Celebration, because they considered:
1.The time-scale was too tight to produce the range and scale of activity proposed;
2.It was difficult to be confident of the quality with many of the professional artists for the concert, CD recording and exhibition unidentified;
3.More detail on the proposed crowdfunding campaign would also have strengthened this proposal by giving greater indication of demand.
If the Creative Scotland Panel would have asked for an update on our progress we would have been able to demonstrate that we were on track with our preparations for the Celebration Concert, CD and exhibition. We had informed Creative Scotland that the following artists were ready to perform at the concert and on the CD: Mary Ann Kennedy, Joy Dunlop, Finlay Wells, Alasdair Whyte, Robert Robertson, Na Seudan Úr and Kenny Thomson/Glasgow Gaelic Choir. Recently Lorne MacDougall had also agreed to perform at the concert and on the CD. We are surprised that apparently this line-up of well-known professional musicians did not give the Creative Scotland Panel confidence in the quality of the concert, CD and exhibition. Our experience in crowdfunding was mentioned only once in our application as a possibility to raise additional money if Creative Scotland had been unable to award the entire requested amount. Our application did not propose a crowdfunding project.
We understand that our project received a positive assessment from a Creative Scotland staff member with relevant expertise, but was turned down by Creative Scotland Panel. Creative Scotland’s procedure does not allow the opportunity to appeal. The only option is to re-apply and wait a further 3 months.
As we have not received the grant we decided:
•to postpone our activities;
•to cancel/postpone the Celebration Concert on 5 December;
•to use the little money we still have available to record the 5 – 6 poems that have been set to music during the Music Workshops;
This will take place at the end of November in Inveraray Castle. The Duke and Duchess are happy to allow us the use of the Armoury Hall for free.
•to apply for a grant from Creative Scotland to produce a CD with all the poems that have been set to music; a CD that would document George Campbell Hay’s Centenary. Mary Ann Kennedy, Joy Dunlop, Finlay Wells, Alasdair Whyte, Robert Robertson, Lorne MacDougall, Na Seudan Úr, Kenny Thomson/Glasgow Gaelic Choir, Tarbert Gaelic Choir have all agreed that they will contribute to the CD. Creative Scotland suggested that such a grant request is ‘likely’ to be considered favourably.
•to explore various other options for organising the Celebration Concert, including organising the ‘concert’ as a live stream involving videos of performers, the poetry that has been set to music performed by all the different musicians involved and the photography/artwork that has been produced throughout the project. An actual concert could also be organised in the New Year, possibly in Glasgow/Edinburgh. We will be examining options available to secure the necessary funding and interest.