SMIA Members Spotlight: Josie Gaitens (Fèis Rois)
- Tell us a bit about you and what you do…
My name is Josie Gaitens and I am an arts freelancer. I work for a number of
2. How long have you been working in the music industry?
I’ve been involved in music and community arts as a participant and volunteer for many years, but I officially started working in the industry in 2015. My first role was Internal Transport Coordinator for
3. What do you enjoy most about what you do?
There are a few key elements of my work that I particularly enjoy. I am very passionate about accessibility – I believe that everyone has a right to interact with the arts and express themselves artistically. I think society as a whole
4. Who are some of the people you’ve worked with
Working for leading arts
5. Where do you see you/your
Fèis Rois continues to go from strength to strength, not least because of the incredible work of a small but dedicated team, helmed by Chief Executive Fiona Dalgetty. We will continue to collaborate nationally and internationally to promote traditional and Gaelic arts at the highest level whilst constantly striving to improve accessibility to the arts for everyone in our communities. Fèis Rois has a number of targeted projects that have sustainable pathways for progression, including working with new Scots, offenders
For me personally, I am very excited to continue working in the arts and music, driving progress and investing in our cultural heritage. I have recently taken up the post of Gaelic and Traditional Arts Programmer for Lyth Arts Centre. I’m excited to develop in this role and provide excellent performance and residency opportunities for traditional music in the north. I’m also hoping to find a moment between all of this to work on my own musical output too!
6. What’s coming up for Feis Rois?
2019 is shaping up to be an exciting year for Fèis Rois. In a couple of weeks, we have our annual residential week for primary children in Ullapool. In May we run a similar event, but for adults this time! It’s hard to say which group has more fun…or which is better behaved! Over the summer we have our Ceilidh Trail programme, where we take 15 young musicians out on the road for 4 weeks across Scotland and beyond for a chance to experience life as a touring musician. The alumni from this project include some of the county’s top trad performers including Mischa Macpherson, Josie Duncan, Rachel Newton
7. What’s the best thing about working in music in Scotland?
Music in Scotland can be so up close and personal. You can frequently go see your musical heroes play a gig and then buy them a pint in the bar after. For the most part, it’s such a lovely wee community full of passionate people. I think we have an incredible output considering our small size. I am so proud to a contributing member of this vibrant and dynamic scene.
8. What do you feel Scotland’s music industry needs to excel?
We have talent in buckets, so that’s not an issue, but I would like to see better diversity, accessibility, honesty