Notes from shetland to Shanghai poster.jpg

Notes from Shetland to Shanghai

Following her stunning 2018 Fringe debut and now performing as part of the Made in Scotland showcase, Sophie Rocks' audiences can be wowed again but this time by a fusion of Harp music, poetry and spoken word in her new show, Notes from Shetland to Shanghai

Drawing from personal accounts, both of those who leave and those who stay, this show will take you on a journey, exploring the emotional side of immigration -  fear, sorrow, heartbreak, connection, freedom and, most importantly, hope. Sophie will be drawing influences from her traditional Shetland roots and cutting-edge contemporary music to explore the impact of migration on people from countries such as Scotland, Canada, Nigeria, Israel, Russia and of course, China.

What was the inspiration behind Notes from Shetland to Shanghai?

Having grown up on the Shetland Islands, a small archipelago north of Scotland, I was part of a small, very close community. I was also fully aware of the extent to which migration played, and continues to play, a part on the islands - at present, more people of Shetland heritage live in Canada, Australia and New Zealand than in Shetland.

In 1969, Shetland Fiddler Tom Anderson composed a slow air, Da Slockit Light, which was inspired by people migrating from Shetland. As I play this piece regularly in recitals, it in turn, inspired me to consider migration across the globe, an ongoing global phenomenon of huge consequence.

With this in mind, I programmed a recital named ‘Notes Shetland to Shanghai’ which I performed at the 2018 Edinburgh International Fringe festival. The programme consisted of solo harp works from all over the world, commencing in Shetland and ending with a traditional Chinese song. However, this year, I wanted to explore ways in which to expand this programme, and widen the audience for the Harp. Through this, I developed a programme combining Solo Harp music from global locations with readings of poems and letters connected to migration from all over the world.

I’m delighted to be performing this show at the TheSpace on the Mile for the Edinburgh International Fringe Festival. Tickets available here: