Page last updated at 13:14 GMT, Thursday, 15 January 2009

Three-day Burns festival begins

Robert Burns
A rare portrait miniature believed to depict Robert Burns

Dozens of academics are gathering at Glasgow University to celebrate the life of Scotland's national poet.

The three-day "Robert Burns 1759 to 2009" conference is the first major event in the Year of Homecoming to mark the 250th anniversary of Burns' birth.

Delegates will discuss the latest developments in the study of Burns.

The conference will also see the unveiling of a previously unseen sketch, believed to be the poet, by his contemporary, John Kay.

Delegates will be among the first to see a rare collection of Burns' work known as the Kilmarnock Edition.

Outside the planned academic lectures, a number of events will be held which are open to the public

All the delegates gathered both recognise and understand the worth of Burns as a major literary figure and as a cultural phenomenon
Dr Gerry Carruthers
Glasgow University
On Thursday, the Oran Mor venue on Byres Road will host an evening of Burns music and song.

Friday night will see the world premiere of James MacMillan's composition based on Burns' "Lament of Mary Queen of Scots".

Having been commissioned especially for the conference, "The Lament", will be performed in the University's Bute Hall.

The conference will be brought to a close with an alternative Burns Supper on Saturday evening, where actress Karen Dunbar will recite Tam O' Shanter.

Dr Gerry Carruthers, director of the Centre for Robert Burns Studies at Glasgow University, said the event was a "world first in terms of size and significance".

'Cultural phenomenon'

"There will be no bigger Burns event this year in terms of academic excellence and expertise," he said.

"All the delegates gathered both recognise and understand the worth of Burns as a major literary figure and as a cultural phenomenon.

"Our Burns Studies conference fulfils one of the aspirations of 'Homecoming' 2009.

"It will bring together academics and interested parties from a number of countries including the US, Canada, Spain, Germany and Ireland for three very full days of scholarship, discussion and entertainment."

Print Sponsor


SEE ALSO
Celtic Connections gets under way
15 Jan 09 |  Glasgow, Lanarkshire and West
Bard Burns' bride's dress on show
08 Jan 09 |  Glasgow, Lanarkshire and West
Banknote designs mark Homecoming
14 Jan 09 |  Scotland
Trust takes over Burns cottage
31 Oct 08 |  Glasgow, Lanarkshire and West
Late opening for Burns museum
25 Jan 08 |  Glasgow, Lanarkshire and West

RELATED INTERNET LINKS
The BBC is not responsible for the content of external internet sites


FEATURES, VIEWS, ANALYSIS
Has China's housing bubble burst?
How the world's oldest clove tree defied an empire
Why Royal Ballet principal Sergei Polunin quit

BBC iD

Sign in

BBC navigation

Copyright © 2019 BBC. The BBC is not responsible for the content of external sites. Read more.

This page is best viewed in an up-to-date web browser with style sheets (CSS) enabled. While you will be able to view the content of this page in your current browser, you will not be able to get the full visual experience. Please consider upgrading your browser software or enabling style sheets (CSS) if you are able to do so.

Americas Africa Europe Middle East South Asia Asia Pacific