CELEBRATED Scottish Gael Mary Ann Kennedy is following in the footsteps of St Columba in a journey of musical discovery as part of a landmark collaboration with Scotland’s only festival of vocal and choral music.

In the 1500th anniversary year of the Celtic Saint’s death, she is making the historic 200-mile pilgrimage from Iona to St Andrews, honouring the route inspired by the legendary missionary and marking the return to singing for communities across Scotland.

During the journey she will visit and reconnect with other singers, composers and musicians, recording a special version of her song Eadar-Thir on voice and harp at Iona Abbey, the first Celtic church built by St Columba.

Next, she will travel back to Mull by boat, courtesy of local musician Sorren Maclean, to undertake a vocal workshop with Mull Gaelic Choir. From there she will pass through Oban to Taynuilt, visiting long-time collaborator and leading choral director and composer Sileas Sinclair of the Oban Gaelic Choir to record the song Taynuilt (Taigh an Uillt).

Later Kennedy will head to the banks of Loch Awe to meet broadcaster and musician Andreas Wolff of Taynuilt Gaelic Choir who has written a lockdown travelogue on the St Conan’s pilgrimage route.

Kennedy will then continue by bike to Glen Orchy before finishing the final section to Tyndrum by walking along the West Highland Way.

The pilgrimage will culminate in a concert as part of this year’s St Andrews Voices.

Kennedy said: “So many of us have been desperate to start singing again and there is something profoundly spiritual about connecting with musical communities across the breadth of Scotland.

“It’s truly special to be undertaking this momentous journey with St Andrews Voices and I am looking forward to seeing how it unfolds.”