Tinderbox Orchestra at Fringe by the Sea

The Day That Was

Fringe By The Sea and the Tinderbox Orchestra

Sunday15th August 2021@North Berwick

Every week we have a team meeting and we have a round of sharing updates which we call “the week that was”. It is a nice turn of phrasing to begin each round. On Sunday the 15th of August we had our first official event since restrictions were implemented in light of Covid-19. This brought us to “the day that was”. Tinderbox Orchestra had the fantastic opportunity to play our first live gig since the pandemic began as part of Fringe By The Sea (tag). The Collective headed out to North Berwick for the event by car, bus, van, minibus, bike and motorcycle. We could gather once again and share music. It is quintessentially human to want to communicate and to express and it was a much needed moment that we all anticipated with great eagerness.

Just picture this. You walk through a beautiful garden to a path leading up to a giant blue and yellow striped tent, but this was no meagre tent. It invoked circus level energy and it was brilliant.

The stage was huge and soon enough the team got setting up. Practice and sound checks were underway. Everyone was pumped for this. Soon enough people started filtering in and there was a cacophony of sounds bouncing off the peaks of the ginormous tent, filled with children’s laughter, chatter and puppy barks!

Preparations and practice:







We started the set with our community anthem, Bethany Lane. It’s a call to bring everyone together to share music and creativity and has never felt more appropriate than for this gig. We went on to drift through the wonderland of Luci Holland’s creation that is Rimo, threw our hair around for Frazer Knox’s Quetzlequatl and were lulled by the stunning vocals of Julia Dorozynska pefroming the mighty Hailey Beavis’ ‘Daybreak’.

Have a listen to some of these pieces from our (soundcloud) https://soundcloud.com/tinderboxcollective

As the gig progressed, people had nestled into their seats or chosen a grassy seat of their choice on the ground. This provided great fodder for the children who created grass castles and mazes.

Before we knew it, we were winding up the show in true Celtic style, jigging away to Graham Coe’s arrangement of Cas na coire. The audience were showing their full appreciation with whoops, cheers and dancing.

It felt absolutely brilliant to have the show back on the road and on the stage again! What a relief after all this time apart. We had been quite apprehensive about how everyone would feel getting back together to rehearse after all this isolation and it was very encouraging to see the band return so quickly to full form. Congratulations to all the players and team who put in the effort to make that happen!

The day did not end with the event itself, a good day never does. We packed up and progressed to the beach (we were in North Berwick after all, right by the sea). The sun shone through and things were looking sweet. In our merry group, we had orchestra singers, musicians, young participants from the Tinderbox Online Music School (link here), their families, and other supporting team who helped bring everything together.

When a beach gathering occurs, you can guess correctly that it is soon followed by pizza. We shared pizza and Jed serenaded us throughout with his wonderful singing/guitar playing and all round encouraging words. The students and others chimed in with instruments of their choice. This continued on until the afternoon and we had a blast.

The day we envisaged, was.

See more pictures here:


You can check the moments from the day on our Instagram highlights: https://www.instagram.com/stories/highlights/18138974914201559/


A big thank you to all the folks in the audience, the team at the venue, Fringe by the sea, Tinderbox support staff, all of our partners/funders, and the orchestra contributors who shared their light with everyone that day.