Events & Festivals
SADLY DUE TO THE 2020 COVID-19 PANDEMIC MANY EVENTS HAVE EITHER BEEN CANCELLED OR NOT ABLE TO CONFIRM DATES. PLEASE CHECK THEIR OWN WEBSITES FOR INDIVIDUAL EVENT UPDATES.
Events featured on this page are regular creative and cultural events throughout Perth & Kinross. Dates vary slightly each year so please check the individual websites for further information.
This list is by no means exhaustive and dates are correct at the time of editing, so if you have event details/updates you want to be included please let us know by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.
In addition to the following, the Culture Perth & Kinross ‘What’s On’ website page lists events and activities in Museums and libraries across Perth & Kinross.
The 2020 Winter Words festival Pitlochry Festival Theatre runs from 13-16 February 2020 and includes a wide variety of events. The Winter Words Festival kick-starts Scotland’s literary year into gear and takes place in some of the most picturesque surroundings of Highland Perthshire. Over the course of the festival you can hear from broadcasters, explorers, authors, adventurers. Click here to see the line up and book tickets
Perform in Perth Music Festival runs from 9- 21 March 2020, an annual festival of music, speech and dance. Each year around 3,500 performers take part in the two week festival which opens in early March. There are events for groups of almost any size and description, in addition to an extensive programme for solo performance. Performers have the opportunity to develop their skills through receiving advice and encouragement from a team of experienced professional adjudicators. Click here to see the timetable
The 17th Niel Gow Festival runs from 20 -22 March 2020 in Dunkeld & Birnam and is an annual Scottish fiddle festival celebrating the life and music of renowned Perthshire fiddler Niel Gow (1727 – 1807) raised in nearby Inver, and who is widely regarded as the most talented and influential Scottish fiddler of the 18th century. Growing in popularity each year, the festival attracts fiddle and traditional Scottish musical enthusiasts from across the world and features concerts, recitals, workshops and sessions featuring some of Scotland’s finest fiddlers.
March into Pitlochry is Highland Perthshire’s newest music festival (now in it’s 45h year) and runs from 27 -28 March 2020. It’s 2 days and 2 venues and offers a lineup of all genres of music. Check their website for the line up or buy a ticket here. A non-profit organisation, the chosen charity from 2014-2020 is PKAVS (Perth & Kinross Association of Voluntary Services).
The 42nd Glenfarg Folk Feast runs from 3 -5 April 2020 and is an annual event run by the internationally famous Glenfarg Folk Club. The event includes a guest line up of top class entertainment and events including a ceilidh-concert, workshops, singarounds, concerts, sessions, a song competition and more.
Perth College UHI host end of year exhibitions and performances from their varied Creative Industries courses. 2020 Show information will be updated as available.
Perth Festival of the Arts will take place 21-30 May 2020. Perth Festival of the Arts is an annual 10 day Festival, founded in 1972, and taking place in the City of Perth in Scotland. It is now in its 49th Year and is one of the oldest continuously running arts Festivals in Scotland. Taking place in Perth Theatre, Perth Concert Hall and St Johns Kirk with artists including Jools Holland, English Touring Opera, The Sixteen and Horrible Histories, there are more to be announced including rock and comedy. The programme and ticket information will be linked when it becomes available.
The inaugural Birnam Book Festival 2020 is 22 -24 May. With a fantastic line up of authors: contemporary fiction, crime, biography, science, social commentary, poetry and philosophy, as well as sessions for children and philosophy, there is always something for everyone. Regular updates can be seen on the Birnam Book Festival Facebook page.
ArTay Festival will be held on the 21-24 May 2020. ArTay is curated by Frames Gallery and features work from over 80 artists and makers drawn from all over Scotland and there will be around 300 works on show.
Perth Fake Festival is on Sat 16 May 2020. Perth Fake Festival is a tribute-based music event, featuring 6 pro-level ‘fake bands’, who are professional ‘touring-grade’ tribute bands. They look, sound and move like the real acts, in addition talented local ‘home-grown’ based bands get to play as support during the afternoon showcase.
Alyth Creates 2020 tbc. Following the much enjoyed and successful previous Alyth Creates events, we’re hoping it’s returning in 2020 with a diverse selection of events including art, performances, music, heritage and outdoor events, workshops, open studios, even an 11-mile hill run! Follow the Alyth Creates Facebook page details more information as it becomes available.
Potfest is on 12 -14 June 2020. Potfest is a ceramic show located at Scone Palace, an event where you can meet the potters, talk pots and buy directly from the maker.
The Solas Festival 19 -21 June 2020, at Errol Park, Errol, Perthshire. Solas is Scotland’s midsummer festival which has been running since 2009. The all-age weekend-long celebration of music and the arts is designed to entertain, inspire and challenge. The programme also makes space for challenging debate with activists, writers and thinkers from across the political, cultural and religious spectrum. Solas Festival offers a creative and entertaining programme for festival-goers of all ages in a safe environment.
2020 Perthshire Creates Summer Design Market dates to be confirmed, usually end of May/June. An opportunity to meet and buy quality contemporary artworks from creatives in the Tayside area. For an idea who was at the 2019 Summer Design Market have a look at Summer Design Market Facebook Event Page.
Rewind Festival Scotland 17 -19 July 2020, Scone Palace, Perth. Rewind is the biggest and wildest celebration of the music of the 1980s & returns to Perthshire for another year! Whether you want a blast from the past or just enjoy listening to the classics, Rewind offers a high energy experience with 27 top acts over the course of one weekend.
Crieff Comedy Festival was a success in 2019, hopefully dates soon to be announced for 2020! This is an opportunity to see great comedy shows ahead of The Fringe, including a sketch shows, workshops, comedy magicians and kids’ shows. Follow Crieff Comedy Festival Facebook for updates.
Southern Fried Festival, Perth’s festival of American roots music, are taking a break during 2019 returning in 2020. The festival offers four days of the very best in Americana covering all the roots music bases from blues to bluegrass, soul to country, rock and gospel. In addition there are free gigs and some great food on offer! Keep an eye on their Southern Fried Festival Facebook Page for updates.
Crieff Arts Festival – August 2020. A community event which is a celebration of local arts. Run voluntarily by a local group which creates a fun filled week of family entertainment. More information can be found on the Crieff Arts Festival Facebook page.
Fortingall Art 2020 dates tbc, usually end of July early August. An annual Summer Exhibition featuring work from over 30 local artists. Work includes painting, photography, printmaking, sculpture, jewellery and furniture, and the popular Schools Mini Art Competition. Held in the elegant Molteno Hall, in the village of Fortingall, with its Arts and Craft style architecture, and ancient Yew tree.
‘It’s Braw’ 2020 dates are still to be determined. The Blairgowrie & Rattray Arts Week (it’s BRAW) is an annual showcase of art, craft, music and drama. It’s a chance to get involved and have a go at all kinds of creative and cultural activities. The programme includes a wide variety of creative activities, workshops, events and much more.
Craigie Hill Music Festival in Perth, 2020 date tbc is a festival that offers an impressive line-up which has previously included Eddi Reader and The Red Pine Timber Company. In addition ‘The Join the Club’ gathering is an opportunity for local talent to perform. Follow their Craigie Hill Festival Facebook Page for regular updates.
Perthshire Open Studios 5 – 13 September 2020. Now in it’s 13th year, Perthshire Open Studios is established annual event known for the quality and range of art and hand craft on display and for sale to the general public. A great opportunity to meet the artists and makers in person and see inside their workspaces, some offer demonstrations and ‘have a go’ sessions too.
Perth Festival of Yarn returns for a 5th year on 12 -13 September 2020 at Dewars Centre, Perth. Perth Festival of Yarn is Scotland’s Contemporary Yarn and Fibre Festival; bringing together independent dyers, farmers, small-holders, knitters, spinners, felters and weavers. With a wide selection of vendors, demonstrations and workshops, it’s an inspiring event for all yarn lovers.
Doors Open Day in Perth & Kinross is a unique chance to enjoy a rich variety of architecture and heritage. An opportunity to visit behind the scenes many of the cultural venues throughout the area. Visits can include music, exhibitions, guided tours and walks. Dates for Perth & Kinross Doors Open Day vary and when available can be seen on this PKHT link .
Bookmark Book Festival in Blairgowrie, Rattray and the Glens runs from 2-4 October 2020. Launched in October 2013 in response to a demand from a range of book groups in East Perthshire, BOOKMARK was born from a passion for literature in all it’s forms and has a varied programme of author events. There are occasional events related to and supporting the event throughout the year and details can be found on the Bookmark Facebook page.
The Enchanted Forest will run from 1 October to 1 November 2020 at Faskally Wood, Pitlochry. With a new theme each year, The Enchanted Forest is Perthshire’s Big Tree Country’s multi-award winning fantastic outdoor sound and light show and won UK’s Best Cultural Event 2016 at the UK Event Awards, and the 2018 Scottish Thistle Award for best cultural event or festival for Central Fife & Tayside. A hugely popular event, you can find ticket information here.
The inaugural TalkFest Perth took place in 2018 in October at Perth Theatre This event was an exciting opportunity to see new writing in progress, meet playwrights and even try writing for the first time. Follow the Playwrights’ Studio, Scotland, Facebook page for updates for a 2020 event.
The 71st Perth Accordian & Fiddle Festival takes place on Saturday 31 October 2020 and is a major occasion in the Scottish music calendar, incorporating the official Scottish Accordion Championships for traditional music alongside fiddle competitions and a range of individual and group sections covering a variety of musical styles.
Perthshire Amber – The Dougie MacLean Festival returns for a full weekend of music sessions in Dunkeld on the 6 -8 November 2020. The programme, Artists and Venues will be announced in early May 2020 and tickets will be on sale on Tuesday 19 May. Regular updates can be found on the Perthshire Amber Festival Facebook Page.
Hamish Matters, exact 2020 dates tbc, usually early November to co-incide with the birthdate of Hamish Henderson on 11 November. 2019 will be the 3rd festival and marks the centenary of his birth. Hamish Matters celebrates the life and work of Hamish Henderson, the Blairgowrie born poet, songwriter, soldier and intellectual, and often referred to as the founding father of Scotland’s 20th Century folk renaissance. The event is growing each year with a multi-faceted programme for all ages, including storytelling, poetry, music and a celebration of Scotland’s indigenous languages (Scots & Gaelic). Details can be found on the Hamish Matters Facebook page.
The Aberfeldy Film Festival 2020 dates tbc, usually mid November. This annual event is organised by the Heartland Film Society offering a full weekend of films and events.
The 2020 Perthshire Creates Christmas Design Market dates are still to be confirmed. This annual event is an excellent opportunity to meet and buy direct from the maker, unusual one-off gifts and items from a wide variety of Perthshire and Tayside based artists and designer-makers. The 2019 Event Facebook page gives you an idea of the type of work available at this annual event.
The Kinross Music Festival is part of the Kinross Winter Festival which runs throughout November and December. The programme features a variety music events, family activities, local talent and community spirit. Keep updated via their Facebook page.