10 things to do in Scotland this week, 21 – 27 January
The Pictish Trail

This week’s arts and entertainment highlights from across Scotland, covering music, film, theatre, clubs, exhibitions and art…

The Pictish Trail
[The Pictish Trail is touring his new album]

Music: The Pictish Trail

Thursday: Art Club @ Celtic Connections, Glasgow (with Rozi Plain)
Friday: Adam Smith Theatre, Kirkcaldy (with Eagleowl + Randolph’s Leap)
Saturday: The Tunnels, Aberdeen (with Eagleowl)

Fife singer-songwriter and Fence Records co-chieftain The Pictish Trail has just released his second album, Secret Soundz Vol 2, and the reviews have been widely positive. You have your chance to watch “the hirsute hunk of loveliness” (Scotland on Sunday) that is Johnny Lynch when he tours his new songs with support from Edinburgh’s Eagleowl.

Theatre: A Taste of Honey

Royal Lyceum, Edinburgh, until 9 Feb

The Royal Lyceum revives Shelagh Delaney’s iconic working-class drama about teenage Salford kid Jo, unloved by her mother, pregnant by a long-gone black boyfriend, and befriended by her gay chum Geoffrey; intense stuff, even now, with lovely Rebecca Ryan, best known as young Debbie in Channel 4′s Shameless, in the leading role.

Film: Lincoln

Cinemas nationwide from Friday

Steven Spielberg’s biopic of the 16th US president focuses on his battle to abolish slavery, with Daniel Day-Lewis tipped for Oscar success in the lead role. In a nation divided by war and the strong winds of change, Lincoln pursues a course of action designed to end the war, unite the country and abolish slavery. With the moral courage and fierce determination to succeed, his choices during this critical moment will change the fate of generations to come.

Exhibition: Vikings!

National Museum of Scotland, Edinburgh

The Vikings we are often told were not really hairy pirates in horned helmets, but nice quiet traders and artists. Nevertheless the National Museum of Scotland has an exclamation mark in the title of their blockbuster Vikings! exhibition. It can only be there as an echo of the alarms that were sounded when some poor monk spotted a fleet of long ships approaching his monastery. The exhibition includes 500 objects from the home of the Vikings in Sweden and the press release suggests they will “show the Vikings in a new and intriguing light”.

Music: Stanley Odd and Electric String Orchestra

Wednesday: City Halls and Old Fruitmarket, Glasgow

Currently riding high after rave reviews for their second album Reject, Edinburgh alternative hip-hop sextet Stanley Odd are winning fans well beyond their core genre audience. Here they unveil a brand-new collaboration with renegade classical 12-piece the Electric String Orchestra, lending yet more force and grandeur to the band’s panoramic soundscapes.

Theatre: Burns: Rough Cut

Saturday and Sunday: Spiegeltent, Dumfries

A show based on Donald Smith’s controversial novel ‘Between Ourselves’. It mixes live theatre and film to present an unfamiliar Burns for the 21st century, focusing on his stay in Edinburgh, the pivotal crisis of his life and career. It recreates his lost or unwritten diaries, describing Scotland through his own eyes, encountering the familiar and the unexpected.

Music: The Gillyflowers

Friday: The Voodoo Rooms, Edinburgh

The Gillyflowers are lead by a hard-wired and intrinsically talented Kirsten Adamson. Spending time in Nashville with dad Stuart Adamson of Big Country, Kirsten, at the tender age of 12, recognized that her particular songwriting style was ‘a little more country’ than a girl from Scotland’s should be. Also playing at this night from Limbo is King Elder and Hailey Beavis.

Music: Rafał Blechacz: Ollas, Schumann, Dvorák

Friday: Usher Hall, Edinburgh

Conducted by Andrey Boreyko, with award-winning Polish pianist Rafal Blechacz. If you love Dvorák’s New World Symphony, you won’t be surprised to hear that his Eighth Symphony is as enjoyable. There’s also a pre-concert talk with RSNO cellist Peter Hunt (6.45pm).

Clubs: Beat Bothy

Friday: The Arches, Glasgow

Back by popular demand after its sellout debut in 2012, the Beat Bothy takes over The Arches for the ultimate Celtic club night. Your hosts once again are Glasgow-based trio Halcyon – guitarist Barry Reid, accordionist John Somerville and fiddler Adam Sutherland – cooking up headily kaleidoscopic concoctions of folk, electronica and bangin’ dance beats. There will also be appearances from Glaswegian Sikh duo Tigerstyle and accordion/fiddle duo Angus Lyon and Ruaridh Campbell.

Art: John Bellany: A Passion for Life

National Gallery Complex: The National Gallery of Scotland, Edinburgh, until Sunday

It’s your last chance to see this exhibition marking John Bellany’s 70th birthday at the National Gallery, which contains paintings, watercolours, drawings and prints from all the key periods of the artist’s career.


What are your plans for the week ahead? Tell us in the comments below, or have your say via Twitter or Facebook