Best Burns Night events in Edinburgh
From the National Museum of Scotland to Edinburgh Castle, here are some of the events taking place this January for Burns Night
Burns Night is a celebration of Scotland's much-loved national poet and lyricist, Robert Burns. But no Burns Night is complete without your traditional ceilidh, piped-in haggis and various raised glasses to lassies, mice and other creatures. If you're not sure how best to toast the bard, we have a few ideas.
At Lauriston Hall, join The Flaming Heather ceilidh band and caller Ken Gourlay for a Burns Night ceilidh (20, 21 Jan) complete with folk dancers and a piper. A few days later, The Annasach ceilidh band will be taking over The Counting House (25, 27, 28 Jan) for an informal ceilidh and buffet supper.
The Storytelling Centre will be hosting a number of events in the run up to Burns' birthday including a family ceilidh (21 Jan), and a special Burns themed Café Ceilidh (24 Jan), led by Scots Music Group. Also at the Centre, Donald Smith will explore the epic narrative poem 'Tam o' Shanter' (20 Jan), looking at its meaning and recitation. But if you can't make it on 20 Jan, don't worry about missing out because you can hear Donald's rendition of the poem at Supper with Burns (24, 25 Jan), which will also involve a traditional Burns Supper, storytellers David Campbell and Ruth Kirkpatrick and clarsach player Katie Harrigan.
Other feasts taking place throughout the city include Burns Night at Whiski Bar (25 Jan), Wedgwood Restaurant's Burns Supper (25 Jan) and Whiski Rooms' traditional Burns Night banquet (21, 25 Jan). The Contini Scottish Café and Restaurant will also be bringing their Burns Night Ceilidh back to the Scottish National Gallery after last year's sold out event (27, 28 Jan), while the Ghillie Dhu Rabbie Burns Experience (20-28 Jan) promises a great night packed with food, music and dancing.
Head to the National Museum of Scotland for Burns Unbound (22 Jan), a free mini-festival that aims to honour Burns, his life and his work through performances and workshops for all ages. At Edinburgh Castle, you'll be able to get a light-hearted introduction to the bard's work through Burns for Beginners (21–25 Jan), while over at the Festival Theatre, Rabbie: A Burns Night Spectacular (24, 25 Jan) will use multimedia theatre, aerial artists and Scottish band Treacherous Orchestra to take you on a journey through the poet's life. The Neu! Reekie! crew's Burns Blazer at Thomas Morton Hall is one not to miss with poetry, music and entertainment from the likes of Kathleen Jamie, Roddy Woomble & Rod Jones of Idlewild and the Triassic Tusk DJs.
The Stand will celebrate Burns through comedy, with a Burns Night Special (25, 29 Jan) and Gallery 23 will be putting on Toast to the Lassies (20 Jan–10 Feb), an exhibition that examines Burns' occasionally complex relationship with women. Visit the St Columba's Hospice Burns Supper at the Corn Exchange (27 Jan) if you're looking to lend your support to a good cause. There'll be live music from Corra and James Macsween from Macsween Haggis will be addressing the haggis, with all money raised going to the Hospice.