Young Gaelic speakers who have a passion for the environment and a talent for songwriting could have their chance to shine, thanks to a new songwriting project launched by Highland arts organisation, Fèis Rois. 

The competition, which is open to applicants until November, Monday 23, is calling on budding Gaelic songwriters from secondary schools across the Highlands to come up with new Gaelic material, connected to the environment and Scotland's landscape. 

Fèis Rois, an arts organisation based in Dingwall, Ross-shire, has collaborated with NatureScot to launch 'Caithream na Cruinne', aimed at emerging Gaelic songwriters who take their inspiration from nature and the current environmental challenges. 

READ MORE: This is how Outlander fans can help save Sam Heughan’s favourite theatre

The project offers four young Gaelic speakers, of secondary school age, the opportunity to write a new Gaelic song each inspired by contemporary environmental themes and the nature around them whilst receiving mentorship from two of Scotland’s top Gaelic musicians and songwriters, Mary Ann Kennedy and Ewen Henderson (Mànran). 

Each young songwriter will receive 10 hours of one-to-one support and will also have the chance to professionally record their finished song.

Mary Ann Kennedy said: “I'm delighted to be working with new young writers creating songs for their own generation in their own language. I wouldn't be writing today without the support and encouragement of some wonderful wordsmiths and composers, and it's important to create a community where creativity can thrive." 

Becky Shaw, Rural Development Adviser at NatureScot added: “Nature, and our relationship with it, underpins a long tradition of Gaelic poetry and song.  This project builds on that long tradition and will create contemporary nature and environmental writing in Gaelic which recognises the inspiration and concerns of young people.”

Fiona Dalgetty, Chief Executive of Fèis Rois, commented: “We want to encourage our young musicians, especially at this time, to create new music and take inspiration from our surroundings, whilst also incorporating their Gaelic language skills.

"Our young people have a voice and song-writing is a powerful tool to use to let your voice be heard and get your message across.

“After the success of another recent musical collaboration with NatureScot. “In Tune With Nature’ which has seen 12 incredible music pieces and accompanying videos produced, Fèis Rois is really excited to see what our next generation of songwriters come up with.”

Those keen to apply can email by 5pm on Monday 23rd November with a summary of why they would like to be considered for this project, also including the name of their school and what year they are in.

You can find out more about Caithream na Cruinne here