Tìr Ìseal nan Òran (Tiree: low land of song) is performing two short dramatic scenes from its recent multi-arts theatre production based on seven stories from Tiree. They are: 

The Tiree Mermaid, inspired by a witness account from 1811, in which Colin McNiven, a local crofter, swore that he had found the body of a creature, half boy and half fish, on the beach at Grianal.

Big Jura John and the Irish Earl’s Head, an outrageous story of blood, adventure and questionable morals, recorded by John Dewar, a Gaelic speaking woodsman who was paid by the 8th Duke of Argyll to collect historical tales from Argyllshire, Arran, Dunbartonshire, West Perthshire and Lochaber in the 1860s.

Tìr Ìseal nan Òran (Tiree: low land of song) is an island-wide creative project bringing together Tiree-based artists, the local community and the international audience connected to Tiree. The project explores seven categories of stories and each story is associated with a specific place or feature in the landscape or an event from Tiree’s past or mythology. 

The stories have provided the inspiration for Ian Smith, Seonaidh Macintyre, Angus MacPhail and Jack Lockhart to create new music, song and film, for the young people to engage in creative writing and drama and for the international Tiree diaspora to create textile squares for the Tìr Ìseal Tapestry. Each creative response stands alone but they were also woven into the community performance, developed by Douglas Roberts in collaboration with the artists and the young people and performed on Tiree on June 16th 2022. 

The project stories are connected by the stunning drawn survey of Tiree created by James Turnbull in 1768/69 and animated for the project by Jack Lockhart. 


Tìr Ìseal nan Òran has been supported by the Year of Stories 2022 Community Stories Fund. This fund is being delivered in partnership between VisitScotland and Museums Galleries Scotland with support from National Lottery Heritage Fund thanks to National Lottery players. It is supported by Argyll Estates, Historic Environment Support Fund, the National Lottery through Creative Scotland, Bòrd na Gàidhlig, Argyll & Bute Council Supporting Communities Fund, Clan Campbell Education Foundation, Inc., CHARTS Argyll and Isles, Tiree Community Windfall Fund, Pamela Campbell Bickford, Martha McKinnon and Elizabeth Kraus.