Teenage songbird Melissa Airlie honoured the Bard with a rousing rendition of classic Burns songs.
The 13-year-old St Andrew’s and St Bride’s pupil performed at the National Museum of Rural Life’s ‘Burns Unbound’ event on Sunday, which was hosted by STV weatherman Sean Batty.
Hitting the high notes in celebration of Burns, Melissa wowed the crowds with a selection of traditional songs, and gave a polished performance of ‘Every Child’ and ‘Anthem’ – both specially written for her in the style of Burns by her musical director Brian Brown, of Stewartfield.
Among the audience were a number of Burns aficionados including Murdo Morrison, a director at Burns World Federation, who described Melissa’s voice as “amazing”, and her performance “outstanding”.
As a primary school student Melissa’s burgeoning talent won the support of her hometown after winning the Robert Burns schools competition. And, the Westwood girl has maintained her interest in the Bard ever since.
Melissa is the principal vocalist with East Kilbride charity Music for Life, which aims to give local kids the opportunity to perform in public and raises money for school music departments locally.
Part of Scotland’s Winter Festivals, Burns Unbound brought live music from Glasgow-based traditional music group Wildings and a performance by Hopscotch Theatre Company of their much-loved production of To a Mouse. This short comic play recounted Burns’ meeting with the mouse that inspired his famous poem.