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At the Scottish Gaelic Awards held recently at the Marriott Hotel in Glasgow, Sgoil an Rubha’s Iolaire play, An Oidhche Mus Do Sheoil I, secured the Community, Heritage and Tourism Award.
The play was performed by pupils at Sgoil An Rubha as part of their project to highlight the impact the Iolaire disaster had on the Point district in the Isle of Lewis.
The play was written by Councillor Alasdair Macleod and produced and directed by Marisa MacDonald, with huge input from members of the Point community.
Fifty servicemen from Point were on the Iolaire that fateful night and only 11 survived.
The 50 servicemen were played by 50 pupils from Sgoil An Rubha and each was assigned the name of a serviceman as they came on stage in the opening scene, speaking their names, ages and the village they were from.
The full story of the Iolaire was performed on stage by the pupils from the time the ship left Kyle of Lochalsh until it ran aground on the Beasts of Holm on that fateful New Year’s morning in 1919.
Thirty-nine pupils left the stage dressed in black T-shirts and 11 were in white T-shirts to depict those who perished and those who survived. The pupils left the stage to the singing of Psalm 23 in Gaelic.
Councillor Macleod commented: ‘This was a truly memorable community event depicting the grim reality of the Iolaire from a Point perspective.
‘It was wonderful to see the community pulling together to support the project in a variety of ways but the key players were the pupil, teachers, ancillary staff and parents from Sgoil An Rubha.’