Shooglenifty and Dhun Dhora 7pm – 10pm

When these two bands appear on stage together there is a meeting of minds and of cultures. Formed thousands of miles apart and yet with so much in common, the two combos have worked together for nearly four years and the bonds that bind them are stronger than ever. Both have lost band members in the past year – Shooglenifty their charismatic fiddler Angus R Grant, and Dhun Dhora their effervescent dholak player Roshan Khan. Grief and the desire for musical memorial informed ‘Written in Water’ a new recording project in Jodhpur last October, but there was also a celebration of lives well lived. This incredibly special album will be launched at the Mela in August 2018.

Performing in two minority languages – Gaelic and Marwari – Shooglenifty and Dhun Dhora know how rich their own traditional cultures are and are at the forefront of keeping them very much alive. They may converse in different tongues but they speak the same language musically. The project is very much a live interplay of equals rather than two bands bolted together for the short term. The Indian musicians, used to a life of patronage and playing to order, were a little reticent in the early days. But they have responded, over the past few years, to the deep respect and friendship offered by the Scots and together they have developed a mischievous improvisational musical kinship that is a delight to witness. No one emerges from a Shoogle/Dhun Dhora show without answering the urge to move.

The new album, ‘Written in Water’, features a dynamic young fiddler Laura Wilkie who travelled to Jodhpur with the Shoogles for the recording back in October 2017. The Mela gig is doubly special as it will feature Laura alongside brand new Shoogle Eilidh Shaw, a very exciting fiddle player who comes from the same tradition as our late frontman Angus R Grant. Also featured is puirt a beul vocalist Kaela Rowan, who is responsible for leading the band to Jodhpur in the first place, and who featured two duets with Dhun Dhora’s spellbinding singer Dayam Khan Manganiyar on her last solo album.

Shooglenifty is completed by permanent members on mandolin, banjo, guitar, bass and percussion. In addition to Dayam, Dhun Dhora features four dhol drummers (who performed with the band at the Glasgow Commonwealth Games in 2014, their 25th Anniversary concert in 2015 and at Festival Interceltique in Lorient also in 2015), and Latif Khan Mangaiyar (who appeared with Dayam and Shooglenifty at Celtic Connections in 2017) on morchang and bhapang.


Sports day in Leith Links: 13:00 – 17:00

MELA Sport Day5-a-side soccer, cricket match, and workshops for women with Street Soccer Scotland. Street Soccer Scotland will be delivering a FREE Soccercise programme for WOMEN only in Leith Links on Sunday 27th August from 1-2pm as part of the Mela's Sports Day. Street Soccer Scotland delivers free football drop-in sessions, across Scotland. For adults, who may be experiencing: Homelessness, Mental Health Issues, Addiction, Long Term Unemployment or integration into a new community. We also deliver football-themed personal development. Street Soccercise programme is for women only and is aerobic exercise based around a football.

Date: Sunday 27th August 2017

Time: 13:00 – 17:00

Venue: Leith Links Edinburgh

Tickets are free of charge.


World Mythology Mixed Media Workshop with Damian Callan: 10:00 – 16:00

Edinburgh Mela: World Mythology Mixed Media Workshop with Damian Callan

Damian Callan is a figurative painter based in Edinburgh. He teaches classes for adults and children at his studio near Haymarket. He is the author of Paint Like Degas and Paint Like Renoir. His work is exhibited widely in the UK and is held in collections across the world.

Working with recycled materials, participants will look at images from world mythology then design and make sculptures or masks based on this theme. We will begin with a slide presentation of images from around the world then go on to build up pieces in card, papier mache and paint. The finished works will be displayed in Custom House for one week.

Date: Monday 28th August 2017

Time: 10:0016:00

Location: Custom House Leith, 65-67 Commercial Street, EH6 6LH Edinburgh, United Kingdom

This is a free event with limited tickets so please book your space in advance to aviod disappointment.


Bollywood Dance Workshop: 19:00–21:00

UTSAV_3175_hi1Dance Ihayami will be running a Bollywood Dance workshop for Mela Week. It will be a fun and energetic two hour session which will have you dancing to the best of Bollywood beats. Open to adults and children, male and female.

Date: Monday 28th August 2017

Time: 19:0021:00

Location: Lifecare Edinburgh, 2 Cheyne Street, EH4 1JB Edinburgh, United Kingdom

This is a free event with limited tickets so please book your space in advance to aviod disappointment.