l ALEXEI Sayle, whose return to the Edinburgh Fringe was revealed in The Herald on Monday, is not the only big name who wil be gracing The Stand Comedy Club in Edinburgh during August.

Stealing a march on other venues, the club marked the end of Glasgow's International Comedy Festival by pointing out that some big names will be road-testing their newest material in their premises this summer. As well as Sayle, they include Mark Thomas, whose unveiled the acclaimed Bravo Figaro at the Traverse last year, and Stewart Lee, whose much-performed Remnant Carpet World was at the Assembly Rooms. His former double-act partner Richard Herring is also on The Stand's slate, as is – as all his fans will have been hoping – the inimitable Simon Munnery, pictured.


l CELTIC Fiddle Festival, the international quartet who were popular visitors to Edinburgh's annual fiddle weekend last November, make a quick return to Scotland with concerts at the Gaiety Theatre, Ayr on Wednesday, May 29 and Carnegie Hall, Dunfermline on Thursday, May 30. The group, which formed in 1993 when former Silly Wizard fiddler, the late Johnny Cunningham, joined forces with former Bothy Band fiddler Kevin Burke and Parisian-born Breton fiddle specialist Christian Lemaître, has survived a series of personnel changes and now features French-Canadian fiddler André Brunet alongside Burke, Lemaître and Breton guitarist Nicolas Quéméner. They release their 20th anniversary album, Live in Brittany, to coincide with their Scottish dates.


l AMERICAN roots music duo Cahalen Morrison and Eli West return to Scotland this month to showcase songs from their second album, Our Lady of the Tall Trees. The duo have been causing a stir on both sides of the Atlantic since they emerged from Seattle in 2010. Bob Harris invited them to record a session for his BBC Radio 2 programme after one listen to their first album, The Holy Coming of the Storm.

Celtic Connections gave them a headlining concert on their first UK tour and musicians including Tim O'Brien and English singer-songwriter Chris Wood have sung their praises. They open their tour at The Stables, Armadale on the Isle of Skye on April 11 and continue through the Highlands and Islands, Edinburgh, Dunfermline, the Borders and Ayrshire until April 24.


l ON Wednesday in the Stationers Hall in London the Worshipful Company of Musicians will present the annual Walter Wilson Cobbett Medal for distinguished service to chamber music to Edinburgh-born pianist Susan Tomes, pictured.

Ms Tomes was a member of the acclaimed Florestan Trio and has most recently been featuring in a series of Mozart recitals with violinist Erich Hobarth at Perth Concert Hall.

Past winners of the medal include composers Elgar and Vaughan Williams and players Yehudi Menuhin, Pablo Casals and Myra Hess.