Rothesay Pavilion announce ‘Closing Weekend Festival’ plans

Orkestra del Sol will be headlining at the Pavilion's Closing Weekend Festival.
Orkestra del Sol will be headlining at the Pavilion's Closing Weekend Festival.

There’s much to celebrate during the weekend of September 25-27 at Rothesay Pavilion’s Closing Weekend Festival, marking the building’s closure ahead of major renovations.

Inspiration for the weekend has been a desire to try to offer locals and visitors a taste of the kind of activities that the venue will offer when it reopens in 2017. The building’s incredible history, heritage and architectural importance also had to be reflected in the programme, at the same time as acknowledging the vital role the Pavilion has for the local community – shining a light on the wealth of activity that the building supports.

The festival has been programmed by Rothesay Pavilion Charity (the new organisation that will manage the venue when it reopens) and is produced in partnership with Argyll & Bute Council (the current operators of the venue). All proceeds from the weekend will go towards the costs of refurbishing and equipping the venue.

Featured in the weekend’s programme is globally-inspired Scottish-distilled Orkestra Del Sol; devised drama ‘Pavilion People’, produced by locals in collaboration with writer and director Linda Duncan McLaughlin; a photography competition and exhibition which will be judged by one of the UK’s leading photographers, Glasgow troubadours ‘Woodenbox’, and the launch of #ROTHESAYLIVE a new music project, led by Rothesay Pavilion Charity (RPC).

“Live music will be a cornerstone of the programme in the future so we had to have a concert as part of this weekend,” said development manager, Stuart Thomas, “and I’m delighted to have two of the most exciting bands in Scotland, ‘Orkestra Del Sol’ and ‘Woodenbox’, playing.” “These bands share two things: they are all fantastic musicians, and - while it is easy to cite their influences - what both bands do with those influences is create something which is distinctively their own, very fresh and incredibly compelling…as well as incredibly propelling.

“Orkestra Del Sol have also very kindly agreed to dust-off their records and mp3s to give the Pavilion (as it stands) a proper send off, a last waltz – a fitting, final fling.”

The material and social fabric of the building comes to the fore in ‘Pavilion People’, a show produced by Achievement Bute and Bute Players, has been created by members of the local community and community groups, aged from five to 95, who have shared their stories and memories with writer and director Linda Duncan McLaughlin and choreographer Natasha Gilmore (Barrowland Ballet) as the basis for a work that celebrates eight decades of entertainment, escapes and events.

Bute Island Radio will follow this with their ‘Pavilion Playlist’, a chance to dance to the hits of the Pavilion through each decade of its life.

The redeveloped facility will have a purpose-built gallery and exhibition space so it was important to RPC to produce an exhibition as part of the closing so we will run a photography competition and exhibition, which is open to all.

In September budding photographers will be asked to submit a photograph that they feel best captures Rothesay Pavilion, Scottish Modernity or Seaside Modernism, submitting their entries by social media. The best of these will be shortlisted by a panel and then printed up to form our exhibition, which will be judged by a leading British photographer (to be announced shortly) who will select the winning entry during the weekend. The prize will include a solo exhibition when the Pavilion reopens.

#ROTHESAYLIVE is a new music project which offers the best young, up-and-coming musicians, bands and songwriters the opportunity to work with professional musicians and producers in order to support their music, performance skills, songwriting and composition. #ROTHESAYLIVE will also offer these young people ongoing opportunities to perform and audiences the chance to hear their work as it develops.

More details to be announced shortly on twitter (check out the hashtag #ROTHESAYLIVE)

The Pavilion is a significant community asset, many people draw on the activities offered by groups and individuals who use the many spaces as venues for their work.

The Community Fair will bring together in one room for the first time the incredible range of groups and activities that the building supports. It will be a chance for these groups and individuals to promote the work they do, to let people know how they can get involved, and where each group will be relocating while the Pavilion is closed for building work.

During the weekend we will be offering free guided tours of the building, a chance to get behind the scenes at this Category A-listed, modernist masterpiece – discovering how each space will be restored, transformed and utilised in the new facility.

Rothesay Pavilion Charity will also hold an open meeting, offering a chance to meet the board, staff and volunteers and updating on the developments with the project over the last year and the plans going forward. It will also be an opportunity for the public to ask any questions or queries.

The Pavilion will be the hub and venue number one for the Isle of Bute Artists Collective (IBAC) Open Studios, where you will be able to pop in to grab your copy of the studio trail map, find out about all the exhibiting members and to plan your day.

“The Closing Weekend of Rothesay Pavilion will be totally memorable and one that you won’t want to miss, said Phyllis Steel, board member of Rothesay Pavilion Charity. “It’s a golden opportunity for everyone to join in and say your fond farewells to this much-loved building – but, keep in mind it’ll be back soon.

“We’re also celebrating the considerable achievement of securing 95 per cent of the funding required to allow the building to be refurbished to a modern, state-of-the-art facility for the islanders and visitors to Bute.

“Rothesay Pavilion’s Closing Weekend is a must for everyone. See you there!”