Arts boss confident of Mareel being ready for business early next month

Events scheduled for August at Mareel will go ahead as planned, according to director of Shetland Arts Gwilym Gibbons.

Fiddle Frenzy gets under way on 5th August, less than three weeks time, and Mr Gibbons “hoped” that at least some of the performances at the week-long event will take place in the controversial new multi-purpose arts centre, as part of a “soft opening” that will see the full range of Mareel’s facilities having been used by the end of October. The official opening is pencilled in for an undetermined date in November.

Mr Gibbons revealed that builders DITT were still undertaking snagging works to complete their contract while Mareel staff were installing cinema equipment as well as lighting and PA.

“It actually looks less finished than it did a week ago,” he said, but added that the events scheduled for August should still go ahead.

As well as Fiddle Frenzy, DJ Kutski is scheduled for Saturday 18th August while Americana singer Devon Sproule is playing in the venue the following Tuesday. Festivals also penciled in for August and September include Screenplay and Wordplay as well as the Guitar Festival in October.

“To all intents and purposes it will be fully up and running by October,” said Mr Gibbons, who added that more detail of what exactly would be held in Mareel during Fiddle Frenzy would be provided soon.


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