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Scottish Parliament opening Thursday, 1 July, 1999, 14:22 GMT 15:22 UK
In tune with the people
Sheena Wellington sings
Sheena Wellington sings the Burns poem
Organisers of the opening ceremony of the Scottish Parliament arranged a musical feast to create a sense of occasion for the historic day.

Even before the ceremony officially began in Edinburgh on 1 July, spectators heard a samba school band, a brass band and pipe band music in Parliament Square West.

A majestic tone to the main proceedings in Edinburgh's Assembly Hall was provided later by leading Scottish composer James MacMillan, who composed a special fanfare.

The piece was composed for the occasion
Mr MacMillan, 39, is no stranger to the big occasion, having enjoyed international recognition since the successful premiere of his work Tryst at the St Magnus Festival in 1990.

His appointments have included the posts of affiliate composer of the Scottish Chamber Orchestra and artistic director of the Philharmonic Orchestra's Music of Today series of contemporary music concerts.

At the opening ceremony, brass musicians from the Royal National Scottish Orchestra sounded his fanfare for the first time on the arrival of the Members of the Scottish Parliament.

Shortly afterwards, the second part of his composition filled the chamber when the main procession - led by the Duke of Hamilton bearing the Crown of Scotland - entered.

Scotland's most celebrated poet, Robert Burns, also featured musically during proceedings.

His famous work, A Man's a Man for a' That, was sung by folk singer Sheena Wellington from a balcony overlooking the chamber.

By Robert Burns

Is there for honest poverty
That hings his head, an' a' that?
The coward slave, we pass him by -
We dare be poor for a' that!
For a' that, an' a' that,
Our toils obscure, an' a' that,
The rank is but the guinea's stamp,
The man's the gowd for a' that.

What though on hamely fare we dine,
Wear hoddin grey, an' a' that?
Gie fools their silks, and knaves their wine -
A man's a man for a' that.
For a that, an' a' that,
Their tinsel show, an' a' that,
The honest man, tho' e'er sae poor,
Is king o' men for a' that.

Ye see yon birkie ca'd 'a lord',
Wha struts, an' stares, an' a' that?
Tho' hundreds worship at his word,
He's but a cuif for a' that.
For a' that, an' a' that,
His ribband, star, an' a' that,
The man o' independent mind,
He looks an' laughs at a' that.

A prince can mak a belted knight,
A marquis, duke, an' a' that!
But an honest man's aboon his might -
Guid faith, he mauna fa' that!
For a' that, an' a' that,
Their dignities, an' a' that,
The pith o' sense an' pride o' worth
Are higher rank than a' that.

Then let us pray that come it may
(As come it will for a' that)
That Sense and Worth o'er a' the earth
Shall bear the gree an' a' that!
For a' that, an a' that,
It's coming yet for a' that,
That man to man the world o'er
Shall brithers be for a' that.

The ceremony closed to the sound of music with the singing of the hundredth psalm, All People That On Earth Do Dwell.

The psalm was sung by all present in the Assembly Hall to organ and brass accompaniment.


All people that on earth do dwell,
Sing to the Lord with cheerful voice.
Him serve with mirth, his praise forth tell,
Come ye before him and rejoice.

Know that the Lord is God indeed;
Without our aid he did us make:
We are his flock, he doth us feed,
And for his sheep he doth us take.

O enter then his gates with praise,
Approach with joy his courts unto;
Praise, laud, and bless his name always,
For it is seemly so to do.

For why? the Lord our God is good,
His mercy is for ever sure;
His truth at all times firmly stood,
And shall from age to age endure.

From the Psalms of David

The second part of James MacMillan's fanfare
Sheena Wellington sings the poem
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