SAT 03 SEPT – ‘Following The Fleet: Drifters’ (PG)

Doors open 7:15 for a 7:45 start

£5 / £3 (under 16)



Part of Orkney International Science Festival

Cinema goers are in for a rare treat when beatboxer and composer Jason Singh performs his live vocal score to John Grierson’s monumental silent film Drifters

Following the Fleet: Drifters is cinematic tour of Scotland’s major herring fishing ports, starting in Shetland and ending in Anstruther. The performance in Stromness is part of Orkney International Science Festival, with West Side Cinema teaming up with Stromness Museum for the event. After the screening there will be storytelling, poetry readings and live traditional music, including a special performance by local musician James Watson playing the tin fiddle, an artefact from Stromness Museum. It was made by sailor James Foubister, from Deerness, after his wooden ones were broken on ships during the herring fishing. Thanks to Wendy Skidmore for allowing us to have it played on the night. 

John Grierson was a pioneering Scottish documentary maker, often considered the father of British and Canadian documentary film. He nurtured a whole generation of documentary makers and established the National Film Board Of Canada during WWII. His 1929 film Drifters follows North Sea herring trawlermen through their dramatic daily routines as well as depicting the industry’s struggles between tradition, modernity, technology, the environment and nature. Jason Singh’s score for the film is a totally unique performance combining live vocal sound effects, voice manipulation, beatboxing and live sampling to create an exhilarating cinematic experience.

The previous day Jason will give a workshop to Kirkwall Grammar School music students who will explore sound and how the human voice can mimic both the natural and mechanical world. They will be introduced to beatboxing, sampling, loop pedals and ‘off the shelf’ apps to demonstrate various ways of recording, processing, storing and sharing their musical creations.

Following The Fleet is produced by Shona Thomson and supported by the National Lottery through Creative Scotland, and by Film Hub Scotland, part of the BFI Film Audience Network.