1.01.2023 - 31.03.2023 Events, Literature, Music, Theatre, Visual arts

Polish-Scottish Mini Festival Jan-March 2023

The sixth edition of the dual culture festival celebrating cross-cultural exchange and integration between Scots and Poles with a series of diverse cultural events across Aberdeen.

Jan-March 2023, Aberdeen

The sixth edition of the Polish-Scottish Mini Festival is back with a wide range of musical events, exhibitions and talks.

Organised by the Polish Association in Aberdeen, the festival seeks to prove  that  building a community  based  on  connecting  very diverse cultural  environments  is  possible and supports  integration  and  Polish  and  Scottish cross-cultural  exchange to build  local  patriotism.

In 2023 the festival combines diverse  events including: an outdoor exhibition ‘Loons & Quines o’Seaton and Old Aberdeen’ at Cruickshank Botanic Garden, an indoor exhibition at Trinity Centre about identity from the perspective of kids;  a ‘Polish-Scottish Ceilidh’ and the concerts of ‘Maria Peszek’ – a headliner, jazz concert from the ‘New Musette Quartet’ and ‘Matthew Kilner Quartet’ and folk fusion concert with ‘Kosy’ and ‘Iona Fyfe’.

From January, at Trinity Centre, the public will be able to see  an exhibition  about ‘identity’ from the perspective of kids who were born in Aberdeen/ live in Aberdeen and are part of the diverse and multicultural Aberdeen community. They are unique and we find out what identity means to them. Marta Surowiec is the author  and originator of the  project and Dorota Puszkiewicz is the author of  the photos.

The  first and the most  integrative  element  of the festival  is the traditional  ‘Polish-Scottish Ceilidh’. On Saturday 21st  January  the  Polish Scottish Ceilidh  at  Pittodrie Stadium from 7pm. We  will celebrate the birthday of the Scottish  poet  Robert  Burns with Polish  and  Scottish dances,    and along the traditional Scottish dishes (haggis, neeps, tatties) we will serve Polish  traditional dishes.  ‘Danse  McCabre’, the ceilidh band will play.

On 3rd February, ‘New Musette Quartet’ and ‘Matthew Kilner Quartet’ at the Blue Lamp

Wieslaw Przadka, the leader of ‘New Musette Quartet’ is one of the most important Polish accordionists and the only Pole to play the diatonic bandoneon – an instrument of the Argentine tango. Virtuoso, composer, arranger and artistic director of major music productions. Artist who introduced the accordion as a solo instrument in concert halls and Philharmonic in our country.

Aberdonian tenor saxophonist, Matthew Kilner, brings his newly-formed classic quartet to The Blue Lamp. Matthew will be joined by the mighty Neil Birse, Richard Glassby and Ewan Hastie. The quartet will be playing a mixture of original compositions as well as an assortment of classic jazz standards which will showcase the quartet’s biggest influences from John Coltrane to Bill Evans.

Event link:

Polish-Scottish Mini Festival: New Musette Quartet & Matthew Kilner Quartet Tickets, Fri 3 Feb 2023 at 19:30 | Eventbrite

On 18th of February, Maria Peszek at Lemon Tree 

MARIA PESZEK vocalist/actress/songwriter/performer with years of acting, she played alongside theatre directors and filmmakers, creating several award-winning roles. Cooperating with others such as Jerzy Grzegorzewski, Piotr Łazarkiewicz, Agnieszka Holland, Jerzy Stuhr, Kazimierz Kutz, Krystian Lupa. In 2005, she focused on musical performance and songwriting , which turned out to be her passion. She has released five solo albums – Miasto Mania (2005) / Maria Awaria (2008) / Jesus Maria Peszek (2012) / Karabin (2016) / Ave Maria (2021). Each of them caused a storm and showed itself to be artistic and successful, positioning itself as platinum and double platinum. Both selling over 250,000 copies and making Maria Peszek one of the most important personalities in the Polish music scene.

Defined as a “concert animal”, Maria Peszek played over 500 enthusiastically received concerts in Poland and abroad, on club stages and Polish and foreign festivals. Laureate of prestigious awards, among others–“Paszport Polityki”(Polityka’s Passport Award), “Fryderyki”(The Fryderyk Awards), “Wdech Gazeta Wyborcza” and “Fenomen Przekroju”(The phenomenon of Przekroj award). The author of moving and uncompromising texts on religiosity, Polishness, equality, often shocking public opinion. Inducing extreme opinions, Maria Peszek expresses her views.

Event link:

Book (aberdeenperformingarts.com)

On 4th of March, ‘Kosy’ and ‘Iona Fyfe at Lemon Tree.

KOSY – the intriguing female voices combined in songs from the region of Lower Silesia, where their life paths met. Blackbirds bring back the songs of our ancestors and present them in the space of modern cities. The KOSY band consists of four charismatic, socially responsible artists: Aleksandra Gronowska, Kasia Pakosa, Anastazja Sosnowska, Kasia Szetela-Pękosz.

On stage, they combine their arrangements with traditional, folk material. They do this in the company of many instruments: harmonium, hurdy-gurdy, ring drums, violin, viola, sansula and various percussion instruments.

IONA FYFE Aberdeenshire folk singer, Iona Fyfe, has become one of Scotland’s finest singers, rooted deeply in the singing traditions of the North East of Scotland. In 2021, she became the first singer to win the coveted title of Musician of the Year at the MG ALBA Scots Trad Music Awards. Iona is a fierce advocate for the official recognition of the Scots Language, leading a successful campaign to pressure Spotify into recognising Scots and add it to its list of languages. Iona performs both folk and pop songs in the Scots language, remaining true to her rooting in tradition.

Event link:

Book (aberdeenperformingarts.com)

In March, at Cruickshank Botanic Garen, members of the public will be able to see  the exhibition  ‘Loons & Quines o’Seaton and Old Abereen’ in the ‘Polish’  district  of Seaton. The exhibition is the second one of the cycle of social   campaigns (following the one in Abbey Place Park early 2022),   which  presents  the Polish community as  professionals  and  culturally  active  residents  of  Aberdeen,  integrating  through  their  activities /living  with  the area  and  the city. Project  ‘Loons & Quines o’Seaton and Old Aberdeen’ aims  to  build the  image of  Poles  in Aberdeen. Marta Surowiec is the author  and originator of the  project and Dorota Puszkiewicz is the author of  the photos.

For more details about the festival, visit the following links:


(2) Polish Association Aberdeen | Facebook

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