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Kenneth Steven

United Kingdom

No stranger to the Highlands, Kenneth has been so inspired by the beauty of the 'wildscape' that he has written a number of books with Dan, the first of his Highland Trilogy series being nominated for a Saltire Award. Also a Gold Sony Award winner for his documentary work with BBC Radio 4, Kenneth is planning an audio piece created from the voices of Distillery workers and the sounds around them as well as a poem to celebrate Glenfiddich.

“Capturing stories is my trade, whether those stories are for adults or children, they take the form of poems, novels or short stories. Here at Glenfiddich in 2008 there is a new story to tell. Three men who have given their working lives to the company are retiring. The record of their days is priceless; the years they knew will not come again. For that reason I wanted their voices to be at the very heart of this celebration in sound, and I wanted those voices to be interwoven with the sounds of their workplace and the sounds of the natural world. I found a local fiddler too who would be able to play the tunes of this part of Speyside that reflect its uniqueness, past and present. My own poems are spoken carefully from the edge of this land and workscape; I am a stranger to this corner of Scotland and for that reason the poems that have flowed from the pen have been diffident and cautious.”

“My thanks to all those who have made this melding of sounds and images and words possible. Slainte.” Kenneth Steven, September 08

"I’ve always been interested in the chords that link people with their land, how local character seems defined by landscape and history. By the same token, water is given a uniqueness by the minerals washed with it out of the depths of the hills. I’m aware that three men will finish their working lives at Glenfiddich this year, men whose combined decades of labour and service total more than a century. I want to hear their stories and record their voices, to interweave the songs and tunes and sounds of the place with those voices – and those of others – to create a living celebration of an epoch. As well as recording all this in a miscellany of ways, I’d like to work towards composing something new that celebrates a whisky. I’ve long thought that a good lyric poem of a dozen or so lines was made for a bottle – an encapsulation, the expression or distillation of a single idea. The process itself takes time – a listening, a watching, a maturing.” Kenneth Steven, June 08

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