In Gaelic, Eigg is known as ‘Eilean nam Ban Mora’, or ‘The Island of the Big Women’. This name is derived from legend about a group of Pictish warrior women, who worked for the Queen of Moidart, whose kingdom included the Small Isles. In 617AD, she dispatched her female forces to defend the island against a newly arrived group of monks, who had travelled from Ireland to convert the islanders from Paganism to Christianity. The women took no prisoners, but that was not the end of the story. It is said that, at midnight, lights appeared where the monks’ bodies had lain, and unearthly voices could be heard, bewitching the women warriors, who followed the lights into the loch below the Sgurr, now known as Loch nam Ban Mora. We could see a distinct ‘separation’ in the story, and look forward to exploring it!
We intend to make two field recordings; one by the shore of Loch nam Ban Mora, and one in the Cathedral Cave, a resonant, enchanted space, where it is believed that the monks held their first services. This would be a fantastic place to record an a cappella song for ten voices.