Page last updated at 14:25 GMT, Friday, 29 August 2008 15:25 UK

Musicians caught in Zoom collapse

Flying Fiddles. Pic: Stephen Carter
The Flying Fiddles will have to find 6,000 for their trip

Two groups of musicians fear they have lost money and the chance of playing at an international festival following the suspension of flights by Zoom.

Flying Fiddles - comprising youngsters from the Western Isles - were being sponsored by the airline.

Inverness Gaelic Choir is concerned it has lost 10,000 saved over two years.

The two groups have been preparing for performances during Celtic Colours, an event bringing together musicians and artists in Cape Breton, Canada.

It is such a great opportunity for any young person to go to Celtic Colours, but especially for young people from a remote place
Anna-Wendy Stevenson
Flying Fiddles
Anna-Wendy Stevenson, musical director of Flying Fiddles, said they now have to find donations to fill a funding gap of 6,000.

She said: "We have done so much work with fundraising for the trip.

"It is such a great opportunity for any young person to go to Celtic Colours, but especially for young people from a remote place."

Loganair - the airline they will use to get from the islands to the mainland - has offered assistance with that part of group's trip.

Meanwhile, Gaelic choir member Fiona Mackenzie said that following the collapse of Zoom, it was now unlikely they would be able to raise the funds to go.

Inverness Gaelic Choir. Picture courtesy of Inverness Gaelic Choir
The choir were due to fly out with Zoom in October
About 26 singers from the choir were to attend the festival in October.

Since 1997, the event has featured hundreds of musicians from Canada, Scotland, Ireland, Wales, England, Brittany, Spain, Denmark, Germany and Cuba.

Zoom suspended all its flights - blaming the economic downturn and steep rises in fuel bills.

Founded in 2001, it flew mainly to Canada from Glasgow, Gatwick, Belfast, Cardiff and Manchester airports.


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